The All-Night Express (ANX), weeks following their Tag Team championship victory at ROH’s Best in the World, have been stripped from the titles. Ring of Honor’s decision was made after Kenny King’s departure from the company, as he was clearly seen wrestling live for TNA’s Impact Wrestling TV show. And despite King stating that he would come back to ROH to wrestle matches to drop the belts, ROH has declined to do further business with him.
Kenny King, who’s contract with ROH expired on June 24, 2012, wrestled for TNA on July 5 in spite of a verbal agreement made with ROH, in which King was permitted to weigh his options with other promotions on the condition that he didn’t wrestle for them. King had a meeting in Orlando on July 3, which was within the scope of his agreement, but when he contacted an ROH official on the morning of the live Impact TV taping, he was not given permission as it violated the agreement. King’s response was that the agreement seemed fair at the time, but others have told him otherwise, so he didn’t intend to honor the agreement.
Kenny King took a risk in jumping ship to TNA while burning bridges with ROH. Especially after Ring of Honor decided to place the belts on ANX at Best in the World. But that’s the life of a professional wrestler, because unlike the “independent contractor” status in the WWE, Kenny King, and all independent wrestlers, are independent on their career paths.
After defeating Lars Only to qualify for TNA X Division championship tournament at Destination X, Kenny King was seen talking backstage to Austin Aries, telling him that he wishes to follow in his footsteps. Aries, who was released from Ring of Honor in October 2010 due to cutbacks, worked his way through Dragon Gate USA and Evolve before returning to TNA in June 2011. In one year’s time Aries went from a guy fighting for a contract to the top guy on a national stage, so for Kenny King to want the same for himself isn’t selfish. Kenny saw an opportunity and he took it.
However, Kenny King wasn’t the only one stripped of the tag team titles, Rhett Titus was stripped as well. Titus, who debuted in Ring of Honor in 2006, started teaming with King in 2009. And his partnership with King was fulfilled at Best in the World, but after 16 days, Rhett is without his championship.
So if anyone should be upset at Kenny’s departure, it’s Rhett Titus. But does Kenny King feel bad about that? Would Shawn Michaels have become the Legend that he is if he didn’t sever ties with his tag team partner? That’s the business of professional wrestling, if Kenny’s decision to wrestle for TNA makes him millions of dollars, then good for him.
Kenny King, much like Austin Aries, deserves to showcase his skills on a bigger stage.
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