Only time will tell if the more open borders policy we’re seeing from promotions ranging from Lucha Underground to New Japan constitutes an alliance or not. But it’s making for some interesting possibilities, and Chris Jericho’s Rock ‘N’ Wrestling Rager At Sea looks like it will be an experiment on water for some of those.
The October 2018 cruise has been affiliated with Ring of Honor (ROH) since it was announced last year, and this week Jericho picked up Impact Wrestling as another business partner. The company is working on the details of who among their roster of talent will sail from Miami with Y2J. But even before the deal was official, Impact’s co-executive vice president and Jericho’s friend Don Callis was talking about ideas for what his company might do on the boat.
Callis (as Cyrus, because pro wrestling) said on the most recent edition of his podcast with Paul Lazenby, Killing The Town, that an Impact vs. ROH challenge is possible:
“To use Sami’s language, if Chris and Ring Of Honor have the intestinal fortitude to step up and say, ‘Yeah we’ll accept that challenge’, I think it’s what’s best for the Jericho Cruise and it’s definitely what’s best for the fans because you can see people love interpromotional. We’ve been doing Lucha Underground, we’ve got Impact vs UK coming up - so we’ve already been doing that stuff, breaking those paradigms of pro wrestling, that whole insular mentality of ‘we only work with who we work with’, etc. I think that we’re in a position now with this where there are some really cool stuff for the fans.
Impact vs Ring Of Honor could be very interesting and I’ll be interested to have some internal discussions about who we might take on that cruise cause I don’t know other than Callihan and who knows whether he’s available or allowed to travel internationally.”
As you can tell by the way they talk about Sami, there’s an element of kayfabe at play here. But that only serves to set-up the angle in my mind, such as when Callis again teases tension after Lazenby suggests expanding the “Sea of Honor Tournament” to 16 men and adding 8 Impact stars:
“It’ll be the first time that you’ve really got Ring Of Honor in kind of the same very enclosed space, I guess you’d say, with Impact Wrestling. And who knows exactly what is gonna happen with that. So, should be interesting, we’ll see what happens.”
Callis and fellow co-executive vice president Scott D’Amore have been talking up a talent and fan-friendly approach to their roster since getting their jobs, and we could see that bear some serious fruit on the Jericho cruise from Oct. 27 - 31.
Intrigued? Most importantly, are people who don’t already follow Impact and/or ROH intrigued enough to start paying more attention?