I might even argue that 2017 was a banner year for Austin Aries. The circumstances that led to his departure from the WWE were unfortunate. However, Aries did wrestle at Wrestlemania in 2017. And although his last match with the WWE had him performing in Japan, Aries would go on to capture three world championships on two different continents as the year was coming to an end. Although Aries never was successful in defeating Neville for the WWE Crusierweight Championship, he was the top contender for the title.
Aries' first matches back on the Indies were for the House of Hardcore in November, but really made headlines when he captured the WSW Heavyweight Championship on November 27th on the International Assault Tour in New South Whales, when the "Truth" defeated Ricochet.
In less than a month since, Aries would shock to the world again by capturing the Defiant World Title (formerly the What Culture Pro Wrestling) by defeating the Villain Mary Scurll on December 5th in West Midlands, England. Then on Dec. 17th Aries added his third World Championship to the repertoire by defeating Mark Haskins to win the IPW: UK World Championship.
Aries is expected to return to Australia for the All Star Invasion 2K18 Tour. He'll be wrestling in Melbourne for two night, Adelaide, and Sydney March 16th thru the 19th. He's expected back to defend his title for Defiant and IPW UK in the beginning of the new year. But I believe that Aries 2018 will be bigger and better than 2017.
Austin Aries Returns to World Series Wrestling
Austin Aries Released from WWE
When James Storm spoke to Cerrito Live he stated that, "It actually hasn’t [become] official for me, but, yes, I have left Impact Wrestling and it’s just one of those things where it just kind of felt like I did everything I can do with that company and the landscape of it has changed from the time I was there.” Storm continued, “but so many people want to frown upon Dixie [Carter] and Jeff [Jarrett] and all that, but the reason I thank them and Bob Ryder is because basically if it wasn’t for those guys, there would be no ‘Cowboy’ James Storm. There might not be an AJ Styles and might not be a Bobby Roode, might not be all these other guys who got the breaks that Jeff gave us when he started up TNA Impact Wrestling back in the day."
It shouldn't come as a big surprise that Storm is parting ways with Impact Wrestling, as its believed that many of the long time wrestlers have grown to be too expensive for the brand. There have been a few other names linked to the brand that may be gone soon. He's a 5 time NWA World Tag Team Champion, 7 time Impact Tag Team Champion. He's a former King of the Mountain Champion, and Impact Global Champion.
Storm already has been taking dates outside of Impact working for the former What Culture Pro Wrestling CWF, in Canada, some dates on the indies; Storm is already scheduled to wrestling in Los Angeles on December 23rd.
Take this one with a grain of salt and only a rumor, but Laurel Van Ness may have asked for her release from IMPACT Wrestling. This one is a head scratcher because Chelsea Green is heavily involved in the company's Knockout Division and will be competing for the Knockouts Championship on TV. Green from Victoria, British Columbia, so one would imagine that IMPACT would be a good fit for her, considering where she's from.
International Wrestling Fanbase recently reported "sources within IMPACT Wrestling have told us that current IMPACT Wrestling Knockout Laurel Van Ness aka Chelsea Green recently asked for her release from the company after the most recent set of tapings. While IMPACT has yet to grant her a release we are told it should be coming shortly."
Green has wrestled regularly outside of IMPACT as well, most recently at Shimmer, Wrestle Circus, and has been announced for NPWL (the same promotion that Taeler Hendrix is exclusive too) versus Hendrix in the Main Event of their March 24th show in Petaluma, California. Green is also scheduled to take part of the RISE and AWS shows this weekend in Southern California.
Green signed with IMPACT in June of 2016. She's currently the QOC Tag Team Champion with Hendrix and is formerly the ASW Women's Champion. It'll be interesting to see where this story develops. If released she will join MJ Jenkins, Madison Rayne, and Taryn Terrell as Knockouts who have left the company recently.
Wishing you the best, on your future endeavors.
Keeping up with the ever changing world of professional wrestling...