One of the biggest news in pro wrestling’s recent memory was Paul Wight signing with AEW. He had been in the WWE for a little over 20 years and was believed to have stayed with them until he retires from pro wrestling. Paul Wight recently appeared as a guest on Renee Paquette’s “Oral Sessions” podcast to talk about a number of topics including his frustrations with the WWE and the reason why he left them and signed with AEW.
This is what Paul Wight said:
“I got pulled into a Talent and Relations office.” “And [I was told] I will never main event WrestleMania again. I will never main event a pay-per-view again. And I will only be used to get over NXT talent. That was said to my face. There’s your f–king inspiration, now go work hard. Vince didn’t say it to me; it wasn’t him. But you know where it comes from. It hurt a little bit. It was like, is this really where we’re at?”
“Again, I’m not making any excuses. I understand where they’re coming from. But they were trying to give me the heads up like, ‘Hey, you’ve done everything that you could do. You’ve had a great career. Maybe it’s time for you to start thinking about slowing down.’ F–k that, Jack!”
“For me, it was creative frustration.” “I’ve gone back and forth with Paul Heyman and Bruce Prichard and Vince [McMahon]. You know how things are there: If you kind of get out of the loop for a little bit, it’s real hard for them to work you back in no matter how much talent you have and no matter how much you have to offer.”
“It was frustrating to me because, sure, I was making money, and I worked against Drew [McIntyre] after WrestleMania. Then, I came in and teamed with Kevin Owens and Samoa Joe, but I need more. I’ve never been a sit on the bench [kind of] guy. I’m not going to take money and sit at home and be a happy little princess. No. I like to work for my money.”
“I like to earn it and I like performing. I think I went 18 years with WWE without missing a European tour, spring or fall. People ask, ‘Show, how do you get on this plane? how do you do that?’ I just had to do what I had to do. I had two choices. I could go to work or I could not. It’s all in the attitude and I love doing what I’m doing.”
“I think the biggest thing was the let down for me of not being able to get something going creatively. I’ve known Vince for a long time and he gets focused and gets blinders on and he’s doing what he’s doing. It’s real hard to be that squeaky wheel that gets the grease. If you’re not at TVs and you’re just sitting there, it’s like, ‘Hey, Paul Wight is still alive. Paul Wight is cleared. He can work.’ It got frustrated trying to knock on the door. They were trying to use me for other things. They wanted me to do the community relations thing which is something I love to do anyway, but they were trying to do me a favor I think by putting me out to Shady Pines. I don’t want to be in Shady Pines. I tried to tell them, ‘Look, don’t put me in Shady Pines.’”
Paul Wight also talked about having an opportunity to do something else and AEW being the place to do that. Wight also talked about it not being an anger thing for him leaving WWE, it’s just business and in AEW he gets to work in an environment where he can really contribute.
This is what Paul Wight said:
“I had an opportunity to do something else and I took it. Here’s the thing, I’ve talked to Vince. I’ve talked to Kevin Dunn. Nobody is mad and nobody is upset. It’s not an anger thing. The day I signed, Vince called me and wished me all the luck and said I’m going to be a big asset for AEW and to have a good time and all that. I’ve done a lot of things with them, so for me to turn around and bury WWE, it’s not about that. It’s just business. I get to work with younger talent. I get to work in an environment where I can really contribute. I can do color commentary. I’m excited about this. Then, hopefully, I get to work with some of these guys. There’s a lot of younger talent here that are bigger guys that I can really help and bring them along and find out who they are, and I can still perform in front of the fans. When you have more to contribute and you have more in the tank to give, you want to give it. I know this will come to an end someday. I know it will. Not for a while yet. It’s on my terms.”