Report: Stardom official initially turned down the opportunity to use Sasha Banks

As previously noted, Sasha Banks (Mercedes Varnado) will reportedly become “the highest paid Bushiroad (parent company of NJPW and Stardom) contracted wrestler” once she is legally free to make non-WWE wrestling appearances in 2023.

It’s believed that because of her price tag, she will only be used for major events. Dave Meltzer of wrote the following…

“We haven’t been able to confirm what she will be earning or if it’s more than [Chris] Jericho, but those close to the situation did confirm it was a huge per-event deal, a number Rossy Ogawa of Stardom, when first approached with it, turned it down thinking it wasn’t cost-effective. However, Takaaki Kidani, the CEO of Bushiroad, wanted the deal made at her asked for price.”

According to Meltzer, the deal is with NJPW but Sasha is expected to make at least one Stardom appearance. Meltzer noted that Bushiroad hopes Sasha’s WWE and Star Wars fan-bases can help drive streaming subscription sales for New Japan World in similar fashion to what Chris Jericho did.