The brand wars between WWE and AEW started ever since AEW arrived at the turn of 2019, and several WWE wrestlers showed interest in joining the brand new promotion led by the Elite.
PAC (Neville), Dustin Rhodes (Goldust), and Shawn Spears (Tye Dillinger) are few of the superstars who were recent departures from WWE and immediately joined the new company. Other wrestlers like Sasha Banks, Luke Harper, The Revival, etc. have shown interest in joining the rival promotion, but are still bound by the WWE contract.
According to Wrestling Observer Newsletter, WWE was initially reluctant to let go of superstars to their rival promotion. However, WWE has apparently changed their mindset, and will probably allow superstars to leave if they think the superstar won’t be a major loss.
“it was noted that they may be giving releases to some people with the idea they don’t believe they would be going to AEW, or if they do, wouldn’t help them, and it is possible he will get his release”
RAW superstar and former Tag Team Champion Sin Cara recently requested his release, but it was apparently rejected by the WWE head honchos. Sin Cara wrestled against Drew McIntyre on RAW this week but was subsequently taken off the European tour.
Luke Harper and The Revival have their contracts expiring pretty soon, and it is highly possible that they will jump ship to All Elite Wrestling. Scott Dawson and Dash Wilder recently posted a series of tweets, in which they expressed their desire to work for lesser money but in a better environment.
WWE’s hesitation towards granting releases is justified, as it sets a precedent that will lead to retaliation from the locker-room. Several frustrated wrestlers will look to join AEW, which offers them the option of continuing performance at the indies while working for a big promotion.