The indie wrestling scene is an important part of the production line which inadvertently helps out WWE on many levels.
Guys such as CM Punk began there and came to the fore in WWE eventually before he left.
But he’s by no means the only indie wrestler who’s made it in the big time, with Seth Rollins explaining stars such as himself have blazed a trail which has enabled others to make the step up.
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We’ve seen the likes of Sami Zayn, Finn Balor and Kevin Owens snapped up by the wrestling company after having strong careers in the indies, and Rollins believes it’s the hard work he and other stars like Cesaro, Dean Ambrose and Punk which is making the WWE feel more assured when dipping into the indie talent pool.
“I’d like to think I played a small part in transforming the entire system,” Rollins said. “Without guys like myself, Cesaro, Ambrose and Punk having success on a high level, you wouldn't have the company taking the leap into that area,” Rollins explained this week.
“They wouldn't have the faith to go out and grab a Sami Zayn and a Kevin Owens and a Finn Balor. And they wouldn't have the faith to look at EVOLVE and work with Gabe Sapolsky and stuff like that if it wasn't for guys who he had recommended becoming top stars.
“So I think some of us from the previous years will go down as heroes in that regard for helping pave the way, I think, from Punk all the way up to where we're at now with Neville and Finn Balor and Samoa Joe.”