It only took less than one year for Alberto Del Rio to realize that the grass is not always greener on the other side. Being released from WWE in 2014 due to unprofessional conduct, Del Rio became one of the most popular free agents in professional wrestling, competing for multiple organizations. Being renamed Alberto El Patron, he made an immediate impression for Ring of Honor, feuding against Jay Lethal for the ROH Television Championship.
He also returned to his old stomping grounds of AAA, as well as becoming a feature on the Lucha Underground series. Returning to WWE last October, it took him less than a year to realize that he was earning much more respect competing outside of the WWE umbrella, and asked for his release.
Yesterday, Alberto Del Rio was scheduled to compete for AAA again. He has been promoting it, with his last tweet about it being four days ago.
There were a number of reports indicating sightings of El Patron being in Orlando, which was also where the TNA Bound for Glory PPV was held.
This is not the first time El Patron has made a bad business decision with AAA, as he refused to drop their major championship when he returned to WWE last October.
Here is a statement from AAA (translated from Spanish to English):
"Lucha Libre AAA WorldWide announced that for reasons outside the company, Alberto "El Patron" was not presented to the role of Immortals Heroes X, which took place just this afternoon. This despite having confirmed their attendance to the event in advance and even this morning.
We regret the lack of commitment of Alberto, as he fails the Mexican public that has supported him throughout his career, to turn it into one of the leading figures of wrestling in Mexico and internationally.
For Lucha Libre AAA Worldwide, it is important to offer the best shows of international quality, in addition to strengthening the Mexican wrestling is the best in the world and is a fundamental part of the culture of our country."
El Patron has been competing for independent organizations since his WWE departure last month. While it looks like his relationship with AAA has gotten worse, an El Patron Orlando sighting may indicate that he is scheduled to appear at the upcoming tapings.
There was once a major story going around that when El Patron left WWE the first time, TNA was immediately willing to drop all of their creative plans and award him the World Heavyweight Championship. With Bobby Lashley defeating EC3 at Bound for Glory, they may have picked those plans back up, with El Patron defeating Lashley for the title at an upcoming Impact Wrestling episode.
The two competitors have not crossed paths much, so it would be a fresh feud. Recently, Lashley competed against Ultimo Guerrero at Liga Elite Lucha Azteca event, in which El Patron also has a history with the company.
While this may not be a bit of a desperate measure for El Patron if he does end up competing with TNA, it may be too little, too late. With names such as himself, Bobby Lashley, Drew Galloway, Cody Rhodes, and Aron Rex at the helm, it would be a great way to revive the company and engage fans again in numbers similar to what they did years ago.
However, with the brand name being so tarnished, and strong talks of WWE buying the company, it may be a futile move to become a member of the TNA roster at this point. El Patron appearing on TNA television would indeed spark a renewed interest in the company that helped build many stars we see on WWE and NXT television, including AJ Styles, Bobby Roode, Samoa Joe, Austin Aries, and Eric Young.
However, the question remains of whether El Patron has enough star power to shift stark critics to turn their TVs on to Impact Wrestling on Thursday nights.