Jon Moxley Recalls Nearly Walking Out On WWE, Dealing With Vince & more


A new contender for best podcast interview of all-time has now arrived!

As advertised, Chris Jericho released the latest episode of his Talk Is Jericho podcast, which features the highly-anticipated in-depth interview with Jon Moxley.

During the episode, Moxley speaks at great length about his decision to part ways with WWE, telling several behind-the-scenes stories, including a big one where he talks about nearly walking out on WWE.

The official description for the podcast, which you can listen to in full via the audio player embedded below, reads as follows:

    THE EMANCIPATION OF JON MOXLEY

    Jon Moxley made his AEW debut in surprise fashion at “Double Or Nothing” last Saturday in Las Vegas, but before he laid-out CJ and threw Kenny Omega out of the ring after entering through the sold-out crowd, the superstar wrestler formerly known as Dean Ambrose sat down for an in-depth interview on his much-speculated departure from WWE. Jon shares the story in great detail from the first moment he knew he would not return to WWE after his contract expired to some of the creative decisions that led to his exit in the first place. He speaks about the injury that kept him sidelined for 9 months, his anti-climactic post-injury return to WWE, his angle with Nia Jax, his last run with The Shield, what Seth Rollins and Roman Reigns had to say about Jon’s leaving, the weird press release issued about his departure, and why AEW is the perfect wrestling home for him.

Here are some highlights (h/t 411mania.com)

On how he feels after leaving WWE:
“I feel so good. I feel like the weight of the world has been lifted off of my shoulders. And nothing but gratitude toward WWE. Nothing but positivity over here, nothing but gratitude. That place…I’m so grateful for my run there. That place changed my life. When I walked in there, I was a kid. Now I’m an adult. I grew up there in a lot of ways. In a lot of ways I’m a different person than I was when I started there. In a lot of ways I learned a lot of life skills and have grown as a person during my time there. I mean it was almost eight years ago exactly, in May of 2011, I got in my little beater car, I drove 24 hours straight nonstop from Philly to Tampa, with nothing but my gym bag full of wrestling gear and whatever cash I had in my pocket was all I had to my name. And now eight years later, I got to live my dream. I got to do so many amazing things in the ring in WWE. I got the opportunity and the real blessing to be part of the Make-A-Wish program and to connect with so many fans all over the world. It’s something I kind of took seriously over my whole time there no matter what I was mad about, if I was mad about creative or whatever, always tried to remember…until you are one of those guys, doing Make-A-Wish stuff and you meet these fans from all over the world, they tell you these stories about how you help them persevere through whatever…I always took that responsibility very seriously so I was always very grateful for that. If nothing else, for all these past eight years…I met my wife in WWE who’s my best friend and my soulmate. If we got nothing else out of this run, I got her. I always tell her, if things ever get too weird, we’ll just sell all this stuff, we’ll hop in an RV and we’ll hit the road, because all we need is each other. So needless to say, the last eight years couldn’t have been any more successful and full of gratitude to WWE for that.”

On when he knew he wanted to leave the company:
“I knew, pretty much knew that I was gone in July of 2018. At that point I was out with an injury. I tore my tricep. Normally that would only be a four month thing but I was so banged up and bruised because I had been working on it and hurt for a long time, the tendon was all mangled and everything, the minimum was six months. Then I got a staph infection and I had to go in for surgery again, it turned into nine months, it was a mess. Very miserable time in my life. Very challenging. In July is when I knew. […] Even though I knew in July, I knew the whole time I wasn’t gonna quit. I wasn’t going to ask for my release, I wasn’t going to try to get fired, anything like that. I was just gonna ride it out to the very end for a couple of reasons. One, I’d just rather not do business like that if I don’t have to. My wife works there. It would have been unfair to put her in a position of any awkwardness and we get to April 30 and the clock strikes midnight, I’m just free and I get all my royalties. So if they’re gonna sell a Shield DVD in Cambodia two years from now, I’m getting my 2.7 cents.”

On an example of dealing with Vince McMahon over creative issues:
“So one day I come into TV like normal, at this time I think I’m on Smackdown. I’m a good guy, a babyface. I’m a pretty major good guy on the show, basically the lead good guy on the show at this point. I come in and I get a backstage promo handed to me from a writer. Writer is gonna be a key word in this podcast, you will find…and the word script. I get a script handed to me by a writer. And it’s a backstage promo and it’s me describing the things I did on the way to the arena that day. And I can’t remember exactly what the things were because they were so ridiculous and this isn’t an isolated incident. There’s hundreds of these promos that have happened over the years that they all get lost in the shuffle. But it was three or four things, they were things that a cool person does, that a relatable person does, that a guy you wanna have a beer with does. Not even things a guy you wanna root for does. These are things that an idiot would do. Like things along the lines of driving backwards on the street in a unicycle or sharing a pizza with a homeless man on the street, just weird stuff like that. So I’m like, ‘I’m not saying any of that. Change all of that. Rewrite it just to something normal.’ Go about my business. Writer comes back to me later. Vince redid it, put all that stuff back in. Now I have to go in and talk to Vince. Now Vince has rewritten it himself, now it’s out of the writer’s hands, now I gotta go in and talk to Vince. I’m like, ‘Yo. All this stuff, I can’t say all this stuff. It’s ridiculous.’ And he’s like, ‘Oh! It’s such good shit! This stuff! This is the reason people like you! That’s why they connect to you! You’re different! This is you!’ And I’ve had a million conversations with him that are almost this exact same conversation about similar promos. ‘You know this is you! It’s such good shit! It’s what makes you you!’ And I said, ‘So I’m an idiot?’ And he goes, ‘No! [laughs’ It’s you! You’re different!’ And I don’t know where we landed on that particular promo, but that kind of sums up the battle I’ve been fighting for six years.

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