Tommaso Ciampa Reveals That ROH COO Joe Koff Told Him That No Other Promotion Would Pay Him More Than $20,000

Tommaso Ciampa Reveals That ROH COO Joe Koff Told Him That No Other Promotion Would Pay Him More Than $20,000

The former NXT Champion details how he felt about his time with Ring of Honor on Lilian Garcia's Chasing Glory podcast. Check out the low ball offer the independent promotion made to Tommaso Ciampa here.

Times certainly have changed for Tommaso Ciampa.

The former NXT Champion has had an incredible run with the black and yellow brand, especially during his intense and personal feud against Johnny Gargano last year. The “Blackheart” of NXT has evolved into one of the greatest wrestlers on the WWE roster; however, that help didn’t come from his run down in Ring of Honor.

The former NXT Champion speaks about his four year run with Ring of Honor, and despite being a former ROH World Television Champion, Ciampa was frustrated with how things were going down in the promotion (Transcript courtesy of

I was like, 'You guys hired me for my promo. What the heck is going on?' I went two years where, I bet you if someone pulled up every match I had in Ring of Honor for two years, I had like five matches with people contracted with Ring of Honor. It was always against extras they brought in or enhancement squash matches. I remember hitting a point where I was like, 'Man, I'm not getting better here.' I would be begging, 'Let me work with Generico, Chris Hero, Claudio.' And I never got to do it. It was so frustrating," Ciampa told Lilian Garcia on Chasing Glory.

While things did get better for the 34-year-old when he won the ROH World Television Championship, Ciampa’s time with the company came to an end due to the terrible negotiation he had with ROH COO Joe Koff:

“My contract was coming up and we were negotiating. At this point, ROH started giving out deals that were exclusive and you could make a living. You had a salary and all of that. I was like, 'Crap, this is great. This might be the break in wrestling where I don't have to have a job anymore.' The offer that I got was awful. It was an extremely low downside salary, not exclusive. I couldn't do television anywhere, but I could take Independent bookings. But the number was something where I would have to keep doing my job."

Ciampa continued, "I remember going to the negotiation with them and saying, 'I'll sign five years, ten years, I'll make my career in Ring of Honor if you guys show me that you're looking to invest in me the way I'll invest in you.' I thought the conversation was going well and it took this hard turn. I remember talking to the owner, Joe Koff, and I told him how I feel. And he was like, 'No one is going to offer you more than $20,000.' I remember freezing and going, 'Oh. I didn't realize you thought that of me.' It was like, 'Okay, we don't have to do this anymore. My contract is coming up. I'm good. I'm gonna go somewhere else and find out if you're right or not.' Immediately he was like, 'No no, I didn't mean it like that.' And I'm like, 'It's cool. I'm not mad at you. I cared until that was said. I don't care anymore. It's cool. I just didn't understand that you guys viewed me as my ceiling was not above the midcard.' I went to Delirious that day and said, 'Just so you know, I discussed things with Joe, and I'm wrapped up. I'll finish my dates and I'm done.'"
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