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AEW signs former NJPW champion Lance Archer

AEW signs former NJPW champion Lance Archer
Lance Archer signs with AEW. Pic credit: NJPW

AEW has just signed another big free agent. This one is a former NJPW star who got his start in TNA Impact Wrestling — Lance Archer.

All Elite Wrestling announced the signing of Archer on its Twitter page, with the old tagline, Lance Archer “is #AllElite.”

Lance Archer signs with AEW

Lance Archer was rumored to be in talks with AEW in January. The news broke on numerous websites but started with Dave Meltzer.

It turned out to be 100 percent accurate.

Archer worked for New Japan Professional Wrestling from 2010 to 2015 and the returned in 2017 and ended his current contract with them early in February.

Now, he is working for All Elite Wrestling.

“Lance Archer is explosive, dynamic and unpredictable, making him perfect for AEW. He’s made his mark in every corner of the world,” said AEW President Tony Khan. “He’s brutal, colorful and will be a factor the minute he steps into the ring.”

Who is Lance Archer?

Lance Archer broke out in TNA Impact Wrestling under the name Dallas. He worked with Kid Kash as his muscle while he was learning the business.

He changed his name to Lance Hoyt after that and became a crowd favorite, and was pushed up the roster thanks to his connection with the fans of TNA Impact Wrestling.

In TNA, Archer was a two-time NWA World Tag Team Champion with Kid Kash, but he never won a singles title there.

After leaving TNA Impact Wrestling, he moved to WWE for a short time in developmental.

He then moved on to New Japan Professional Wrestling and worked on his skills there. He also kept his toe in America, working in Texas for the NWA Houston promotion.

At the time, Lance said that he knew a lot of people hated him over time due to his push, but his goal was to just get better and use the hatred of fans to propel him and make him better.

“It’s a lot of fun being able to get in the ring and show the people,” Lance told me in an interview in 2012. I have had a lot of haters over my time, people that have said ‘oh you don’t belong,’ that I am just there because of this and that and whatever, and that’s cool. Please hate on me because the more people that hate on me the more people are paying attention.”

He took that with him to New Japan and became a star as part of the Killer Elite Squad with Davey Boy Smith Jr.

The American Psycho, as he called himself, won the IWGP Tag Team Championship with Davey Boy Smith Jr. three times.

After Davey Boy Smith Jr. left New Japan to work in Major League Wrestling, Lance Archer became a singles star and won the IWGP United States Championship by beating Juice Robinson.

He lost the title to AEW star Jon Moxley last month, and one wonders if AEW will play that into his debut with Moxley fighting Chris Jericho for the AEW World Championship on Saturday night.

AEW Dynamite airs on Wednesdays at 8/7c on TNT and their next PPV will air on Saturday at 8/7c on B/R Live.

Shawn S. Lealos has been a freelance writer for 25 years, starting with magazines and newspapers before moving to the internet. He has been published... read more

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