Joe Hendry
Photo Credit: Joe Hendry

Joe Hendry Details Sponsoring His Own Work Visa, Cashing In A Favor For ‘Final Battle’ Spot

Joe Hendry took matters into his own hands when securing his work visa.

After Ring of Honor announced their hiatus from activity late last year, with their last show set at Final Battle in December. Meanwhile, discussions in the United States brewed about closing the borders back down due to the ongoing pandemic. For Joe Hendry, that would bar him from returning to America for work. As a result, the Scottish talent recently opened up about his pitch for Ring of Honor to place him on the Final Battle pay-per-view card during the “small window of time.”

“I phoned Greg [Gilleland], who was like the boss of Ring of Honor,” Hendry told Tommy Dreamer on the House of Hardcore podcast.I said ‘Greg, you know how I’ve been making all this additional content for free and doing all this extra stuff that nobody else is doing, and I do it every week all the time, deliver it, blah, blah, blah.’ And I went, ‘I’m cashing it right there and I want on that pay-per-view.’ I hadn’t been on the show for like a couple of years forever. So Greg’s like, ‘All right, talk to Hunter.'”

So I phoned Hunter [Johnston] and I go, ‘Hunter, Greg wants me on the pay-per-view.’ [laughs] It’s so funny. He was like, ‘Oh, I guess we could put you the TV title match.’ I’m like, ‘Yeah, that works.’ Then because I wasn’t on the poster, I phoned up the graphics guy and I’m like, ‘Hey guys, the title match for the pay per view, you’re gonna have to put me on the poster.’ I’m way bigger on the poster than I should be. So I got a kick out of that,” he said.

Ultimately, the borders to the United States did not shut down, meaning Hendry remained free to travel again. “I got to go over and do the first AEW-owned ROH show, so me and Dalton [Castle] could close off our feud,” he explained. However, his work visa expired shortly after that, leaving Hendry in need of securing a new one.

“I was presented with a dilemma and that was that I needed a visa, and it was unclear how that was going to happen. So I just thought, ‘What? To hell with it.’ I paid a lawyer at $250 to just tell me everything about visas for an hour. So, they did that. Then I took that information and then I phoned around all the lawyers and actually turned out the Ring of Honor one had all my stuff on file, so I was like, ‘Wait a second, so you guys have got all my stuff on file. That means it’s going to be quicker and easier, right?’

“They’re like, ‘Yeah.’ [It] turns out it was going to be about like seven-eight grand to get it done, and I had to make a decision at the time. I was like, ‘do I have to accrue an extra seven, eight grand to just get this done?’ And they were like, ‘Yeah, but we can’t guarantee it. It might work, it may not.'”

“The Prestigious One” soon accrued enough money needed to obtain the visa himself. “I just thought, ‘to hell with it, let’s do it.’ So I genuinely had to work multiple jobs. There was a point where I was getting like three [or] four hours sleep at night because I was trying to juggle all these different jobs. It was crazy. I never want to put myself through that again, but I got the money, got it done, got the visa, and then we were able to talk to IMPACT, and it happened.”

Hendry continued to explain how the stars aligned for him, and how a simple tweet caught the attention of the Executive Vice President of IMPACT Wrestling, Scott D’Amore. “It was crazy because Scott [D’Amore] and I had spoke before, but the thing that actually got Scott’s attention again was, after the Ring of Honor stuff, I was doing a show down in Newcastle, England, and I was about to leave and the photographer goes, ‘Oh, we didn’t get to do photos.’ You know, when you’ve got your gear off your back and your clothes and you go, ‘Oh man, I just want to go home.’ I thought, ‘No, you know what? I’m a professional. I’ve been paid to do this, and photos is part of that, let me go put my gear back on.’

“So I go put my gear back on, come back, takes a photo, and I’m like, ‘Oh, that actually turned out pretty well.’  I tweeted it [later] and I said, ‘Dear major promotions, you’ve left some money on the table.’ Hundreds of people tagged Scott and IMPACT, and that was the day that Scott was like, ‘All right, let’s talk.’ That’s how it happened. So it was just the smallest of things. If I just left, who knows? If I didn’t get those photos, who knows? So, yeah, it’s just crazy how life works sometimes.”

IMPACT officially announced the signing of Joe Hendry in September.

RELATED: Joe Hendry Reveals How He Called His Shot And Got His Dream Match Against Kurt Angle