Shawne Merriman Says WWE Wants To Own The Rights To His “Lights Out” Nickname

In an interview on Renee Paquette’s “Oral Sessions” podcast, Shawne Merriman said he’s considering wrestling for WWE after his NFL career:

“Growing up and being a fan of it, I don’t know anyone my age who didn’t watch WWE. I started talking to Paul, Triple H, before I retired, probably in 2011. We talked about it at an event. We started going back and forth at an event in LA, I believe. I think I’ve been to One Night Stand, or some PPV that I did in San Diego, and I’m part of the show. I got a very good response and we started chatting. I said to Paul, ‘I will retire here in whatever comes next.’ The plan was to work with the NFL Network and then have enough time to train in Orlando at the Performance Center. I want people to know that training is brutal. I thought they wanted to see if they could get me to the ringer, but it was an hour of non-stop. I try to tell people that those wires, there’s metal under those wires. When I finished this exercise, I was bruised. Billy Gunn was my live coach, and then Regal did the grappling part and some other work. Once it was done, we did a weekly ad cut with Dusty. I finished my workout and everyone was there for about two hours doing their promotions. Everyone who was on the main stage is down there now. I’m sitting in the back. Two hours went by and I hit my journalist and said, ‘Get ready to get out of here.’

Just as I was about to get up and leave, Dusty said, ’56, I bet you didn’t know I was going to do this, but bring your** down. ‘ No practice, nothing. I didn’t come across anything. I have 20 seconds to think what the hell I’m going to say when I get up there. First, it’s Dusty Rhodes. I didn’t tell him no. If Dusty asks you to get your ** up there, you go. I was sweating profusely. I go there and do what I know best without having to gather or practice at all. I started snooping on some of the people I’d seen their ads with because I’d been following the whole time, so I just started snooping on certain people. When I was done, JBL pulled me aside and said, ‘Listen. That’s one of the best commercials I’ve seen from anyone who’s never worked out. ‘ Everything was fine. I said to my poster, ‘Let’s go back to the hotel I’m staying at.’ Dusty and I sat in this little office and we talked about football for three hours, and it was one of the best conversations I’ve had. I left and returned to the NFL Network. Now I’m trying to schedule and now I’m talking about contracts. One of the biggest holdouts I think is the whole thing. We go back to my ownership of Lights Out and the name rights. That kind of hair is also ruffled. But overall, they launched Network around that time, had a lot of layoffs, and a lot of things happened around that time. I think they laid off 10% of the total staff in WWE.”

Renee asked, “They’d name it Lights Out if you were going to work there?”

Merriman said, ‘It’s like, ‘Come on as Shawne Merriman and then we can figure out everything else. ‘ I said, ‘Look, I made this name, and more importantly, you want this there.’ I’ve worked with people in every licensing department, people in every department, and I know everyone there in the company. I know them and talk to them every day. So I know exactly what they want and what they need me to do. I told them, ‘Lights Out is what you want, so figure this out first.’ Then everything happened. I did some stuff on the Net by hosting WrestleMania and RAW Monday Night. I believe I did a SmackDown or something like that. I still talk to a lot of people there, still to this day, so who knows? ”

If you use any part of the quote from this article, please credit “Conversation with Renée Paquette” with ah / t to for transcription. Shawne Merriman Says WWE Wants To Own The Rights To His “Lights Out” Nickname

Chris Estrada

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