WWE Rumors on Drew McIntyre; Seth Rollins Talks Retirement; Lashley Open to Boxing | News, Scores, Highlights, Stats, and Rumors
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Bleacher Report catches you up on the latest news from the WWE Universe.
McIntyre’s WWE Contract to Reportedly Expire Before WrestleMania 40
Drew McIntyre’s WWE contract status has been a major talking point in the pro wrestling world for the past year, and his deal is now reportedly set to reach its conclusion in the near future.
According to Fightful Select (h/t Felix Upton of Ringside News), McIntyre has not yet signed a new contract with WWE, and he has less than five months remaining on his current contract, meaning it will be up before WrestleMania 40 in April.
McIntyre has been among WWE’s top stars since returning to the company in 2017, winning the 2020 men’s Royal Rumble match and holding the WWE Championship twice.
Although he has had his fair share of title matches, McIntyre has not been a champion since dropping the WWE Championship to The Miz in 2021 when he cashed in his Money in the Bank contract.
McIntyre has gotten back into the title scene recently and will challenge Seth Rollins for the WWE World Heavyweight Championship at Crown Jewel on Saturday, leading to speculation that he either has or is close to signing a new deal.
Fightful’s report suggests there has been no movement regarding McIntyre’s contract status, though, meaning the clock is ticking for WWE.
It was previously reported by Fightful that WWE had yet to approach several high-profile Superstars for extension talks despite the fact that their deals are up, but some of those wrestlers told Fightful they expected talks to happen soon now that the WWE-UFC merger into TKO Group Holdings is complete.
Since it seems like McIntyre is the big-name Superstar with the least amount of time left on their contract, his negotiations could set the precedent for others over the next year.
Rollins Gives Thoughts on Eventual In-Ring Retirement
Rollins has long been one of the WWE’s top stars and is the reigning world heavyweight champion, but at 37 years of age, he is already aware that retirement will have to happen at some point.
During an appearance on Last Meals for the Mythical Kitchen YouTube channel (h/t H Jenkins of Ringside News), Rollins said he recently saw one of his favorite bands live in concert, and noted that something the lead singer said stuck with him with regard to retirement:
“I went to see one of my favorite bands a couple of weeks ago, The Wonder Years, and the lead singer, Dan, is a good friend of mine and he’s got this bit where he tells the audience that, ‘We’re closer to the end than we are to the beginning.’ That resonated with me. The crowd boos, and then he turns around and says, ‘We’ve got a lot more in the f–king tank.’ That’s how I felt. It was a real fired up moment for me, you know?”
Rollins acknowledged that he has suffered many injuries during his career and is thinking about when the right end point would be in order for him to spend more time with his daughter, but his comments suggested that he isn’t looking to hang up the boots any time soon.
After a highly successful indie wrestling career that saw him become ROH world champion, Rollins signed with WWE in 2010, and by 2012 he made his main roster debut as part of The Shield.
Ever since then, Rollins has been at or near the top of the card, and he has consistently been one of WWE’s hardest-working Superstars, often competing in more matches than most or all of his peers over the course of a year.
Since winning the world heavyweight title in May, Rollins has defended it with regularity and been the face of Monday Night Raw.
Rollins will have to slow down and perhaps take some time off eventually, but he seems to be enjoying his current run, and that may be part of the reason why he feels so strongly about his ability to continue competing at a high level.
Lashley Interested in Having Boxing Match
Bobby Lashley is among WWE’s top Superstars, but the former amateur wrestler and MMA fighter has interest in broadening his combat sports horizons again.
Speaking to Alex McCarthy of Mail Sport (h/t Subhojeet Mukherjee of Ringside News), Lashley discussed his desire to potentially have a boxing match:
“I’ve been offered a bare knuckles fight against a football player. I talked about a couple boxing matches that I’d be interested in doing. MMA is still in the horizon also. But for me to have another fight, I hope, I’m crossing my fingers, I’d like to do some. … I personally think boxing is the way to go right now.
“There’s a lot of buzz with boxing. Am I fighting Tyson Fury? I don’t think so. That’s not where I wanna go. But I do wanna get in that ring, and I wanna have one of those bigger matchups against someone. I mean, I don’t have the time to train for a Tyson Fury. But I train all the time anyway, so I can probably fight somebody that has and boxing experience that still want to do it, such as myself.”
As Lashley alluded to, boxing has experienced something of a renaissance lately, and it is primarily due to outsiders getting involved.
WWE Superstar Logan Paul and his brother, Jake Paul, have had high-profile fights as of late, and former UFC world heavyweight champion Francis Ngannou stepped into the ring for the first time last weekend.
Despite having no previous professional boxing experience, Ngannou knocked down undefeated world heavyweight boxing champion Tyson Fury and narrowly lost the fight by split decision.
After Lashley was released by WWE in 2008 and during his tenure with TNA, he became a professional MMA fighter and experienced a great deal of success in Bellator.
Overall, Lashley posted a 15-2 record with six wins by way of knockout and six submission victories, but upon returning to WWE in 2018, he seemingly moved on from MMA for good.
Lashley’s comments suggest he still has the itch to have another legitimate fight, however, and it sounds like boxing could be his combat sport of choice.
Given how successful Lashley was inside the MMA cage, he likely has the tools needed to thrive as a boxer as well.
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