Details Behind Evan Bourne/Matt Sydal’s Presence at Ring of Honor “Best in the World” – Why He Wasn’t on the Show, Original Plans & Return Date

Mike Killam



Recently released WWE Superstar Evan Bourne (real name: Matt Korklan) returned to his stomping grounds last weekend for Ring of Honor "Best in the World", but was kept off the show because of contractual obligations. 

This isn't surprising news, as most WWE stars have a 90-day "no compete" clause in their contract that keeps them off television and PPV. The clause wouldn't prevent stars like Brodus Clay or Drew McIntyre from making live appearances or even working matches at independent promotions, however since Ring of Honor has a television show, and "Best in the World" was being aired live on PPV, this became an issue for Korklan. 

According to the Wrestling Observer Newsletter, Korklan told Ring of Honor that he was given permission to work the show, and was scheduled to give a live interview prior to the Adam Cole vs. Michael Elgin main event title fight, challenging the winner. However, when ROH reached out to WWE to solidify their plans, they were told he could not work the show and would be unable to appear until September, when his contract played itself out. 

To compensate for the cost of his flight, Korklan was backstage working with some of the younger talents before and after their matches. He is expected to return to Ring of Honor – much like Christopher Daniels, Kazarian and AJ Styles all have – when the clause in his contract expires. 

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