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TNA's EC III pulled from Mania week Preston City Wrestling show; TNA gives an update

EC III

This story was updated Saturday evening with new details:

Preston City Wrestling owner Steven Fludder announced Saturday that he was told that Ethan Carter III was being pulled by TNA from his show on WrestleMania Sunday. The original booking was made by EC 3 and not by TNA, so this was a completely independent booking of which TNA was possibly unaware.

From Fludder:

"It saddens me to announce that TNA have issued the withdrawal of EC3/Ethan Carter from our April 3rd PCW show. The other international talent booked being Ken Anderson, Jade, Eddie Kingston and Cedric Alexander are all still confirmed to appear. WrestleMania weekend is the hardest time of the year to secure a replacement talent, but I have worked hard to secure somebody and subject to him finding his passport we may have another guest from the USA.

"I did reach out to TNA management, but was told, `Unfortunately nothing can be done.  This is a network commitment and something he had no control over Considering TNA was publicly vocal about not being happy when AJ Styles pulled out of an agreement with them, it does seem double standards to me that the company would ask talent to back out of a deal that has been in place for many weeks.

"I have lost out financially, having paid for an extensive promotional campaign with EC3 clearly front and centre promoting his appearance, but most of all I feel for fans who have used their hard earned money and booked travel to see/meet EC3. 

We have gone above and beyond to try to secure a replacement in tough times for those fans but it is a shame that when asked for assistance, TNA told us, `nothing can be done.'

I will in the future be thinking twice about using TNA talent to avoid repeat scenarios, as even WWE respects that when a date is agreed it is agreed to do not try to pull talent from it.  I try to give my fans more than value for money and will continue to do so but even though I do take full responsibility for the change in the lineup, you know I will always be honest with you all."

Additionally, Carter was pulled from a Saturday Southside Wrestling show who had the same explanation as above.

The following was updated on Saturday evening:

The TNA side of the story is that this was a booking made directly through Michael Hutter (Ethan Carter III) and it wasn't theirs. They said that Hutter's flight had not been purchased and as of Wednesday, he had not been paid a deposit. They also said Hutter had made an offer to make things up for being pulled late.

TNA had something come up for Hutter, but it was not said what it was other than it involved ECIII and James Storm, which will cause Storm to miss an appearance at WrestleCon. In the case with Storm, the booking was through TNA, the promoter had paid everything in full that was required and booked the flights, but TNA and Wrestlecon reportedly reached an agreeable solution to the product.

Under normal circumstances, if the booking was done through TNA, the company should try and send an adequate replacement, but with much of TNA's top talent like the Hardys and Drew Galloway booked over WrestleMania weekend, that would be difficult.  Bobby Lashley is booked in Mexico but that's on the Wednesday prior to the Sunday.

In fairness, when it comes to WWE, similar situations have happened where major talent has had to pull out of outside commitments based on last minute changes in plans or things that come up.