Von Wagner Bay Bay! Unfortunately it just doesn’t quite have the same ring to it does it? Adam Cole has revealed on the latest episode of the Talk is Jericho podcast that one of the pitches made to him before he left WWE was to change his name and give him a new look.
This seems like one of WWE’s “changing something for no reason just because they can”, and it’s fair to say Cole wasn’t keen on the idea at all.
“It was funny because apparently, there were a lot of ideas, but they were very vague on what exactly they wanted to do. This is interesting too because I remember when I first had the conversation, they had mentioned something about ‘maybe we’ll do a name change or maybe we’ll change your look a little bit.’ So that scared me a little bit just because I’d spent nearly 14 years as Adam Cole, and then our latest conversation, they were definitely more open to me being me and being myself and stuff like that. They could tell I was not too thrilled about the idea.”
Given WWE’s recent batch of new ring names, Cole probably dodged a bullet. Having Adam Cole renamed to something like Twang Traffic likely wouldn’t have helped him get over.
Cole admitted this pitch was a red flag for him when it came to his decision over whether to stick with WWE or jump over to AEW.
“It was definitely something that made me a little bit more timid about maybe pulling the trigger on that one. Of course, they could not have been nicer, but when I think about me and my career and what is best for me, the idea of that being an option did scare me a little bit, where I was like, okay, what if I do go, and then something happens anyway because at that point, I can’t really say or do anything. Red flag is the perfect way to put it.”
Cole went on to discuss how important his name has become for his own personal brand, and that while he understood why WWE had suggested it, it definitely wasn’t something he wanted to do.
“I understand where they’re coming from, to some extent, but I feel like a big part of what has made me work is, I’m not 6’3″, and I’m not, 285 pounds.. The ‘Adam Cole baybay’ and the ‘boom’ and all that stuff is such a big part of what I do and how I connect with the audience, aside from the wrestling and the promos. I feel like it would have been quite the challenge if that would have happened, as far as the name change goes, to kind of build myself back up.”
Thanks to WrestlingInc for the transcription.