When Chris Jericho was written out of the storylines in late August, it was widely assumed by fans he would be back in WWE sooner rather than later.
After all, he's still fairly young, a hard-worker in the ring and has always been a reliable company man. Even with his outside interests (he fronts popular heavy metal band Fozzy), he can be a great asset to the company, especially when considering the lack of roster depth in recent times. Frankly, WWE needs all the stars it can get right now.
However, a recent report has emerged that indicates we shouldn't expect to see the former WWE Champion back with the company any time soon.
Indeed, in this week's (subscribers-only) Wrestling Observer Newsletter, Dave Meltzer notes that negotiations between the two parties for a new deal has hit some major obstacles, with the root of the problem seeming to be Jericho's outside ambitions:
Not sure what happened, but there were talks with WWE and Jericho about a new contract while he was away touring with Fozzy about a new deal. The talks just fell through. This time it was WWE that made the decision to pass on negotiations. The deal was for him to do limited dates, during down time from touring or other entertainment things. I think he wanted control of his outside activities as well.
As Meltzer goes on to note, Jericho's requests for lighter schedule and to have total control over his outside pursuits were not compatible with the company's wishes: "They wanted a deal where wrestling would be his priority and there was the control issue regarding outside projects, although they’ve worked through that in the past."
It will be interesting to see where the WWE/Jericho relationship goes from here. It may sound practically impossible to imagine him never coming back, but if neither side is willing to budge on the main issues, we may be set for a future WWE landscape that doesn't involve Jericho at all.