Wade Barrett Reveals Why He Left WWE in 2016, Talks Being Depressed After He Left


During a recent appearance on Colt Cabana’s “Art of Wrestling” podcast, Stu “Wade Barrett” Bennett revealed the reason he left WWE in 2016, being depressed after leaving, and more. You can check out some highlights from the interview below:

On why he decided he wanted to leave WWE: “So okay. 2015 and — I left probably, I think it was April or May 2016. And I told them, ‘Okay, my contract’s up I’m not resigning.’ They made me a couple of offers, I said, ‘I’m not interested, it doesn’t matter what you offer me, I need to leave. I f**king hate it here, let me out.’ And that changed — I loved my job probably until the end of 2014, beginning of 2015. Because I’d done some exciting things, I’d done some not so exciting things, but I felt I at least had this carrot in front of me and I was excited about, ‘You know, if keep improving my physique, I’ll try and get ripped, that’ll convince them. Oh, no, no, maybe I need a catchphrase. And got a catchphrase. Oh, maybe I need a t-shirt that’ll be a big seller. Maybe I need to work on my in-ring skills.’ There was always something in my head, ‘Oh no, I can improve that, improve that, improve that.’ By the time I got to 2015 and felt like ‘Look, I’ve had these good waves.’ But now in 2015 I was sliding down the card and getting opportunities that I thought were kind of wasted. Like, I became the King of the Ring, which sounds like it should be impressive. But what it was followed up with was zero writing. It was 30 seconds of writing at the end of there, telling me, ‘Oh, what are we going to do with these guys today?’ ‘Ah, just have them wrestle for three minutes, and have this guy go over, Stu, whatever.’ It was that level of writing week after week after week. And suddenly, after putting in all that effort, I had to climb up the card and get to where I wanted. To be rewarded with, I thought was pretty disappointing, to say the least. It was a realization that it doesn’t matter what I’m doing here, I’m completely out of control of this. I’m waiting for one man to give me the thumbs up or thumbs down. And I’m spending my whole career waiting and hoping that I get a thumbs up next week and next week, and next week.”

On how hard of a decision it was to leave: ‘It was a big one to get over at first, because you have to remember I’d spent my entire adult life at that point wanting this, and dedicating to this. And also, what the hell do you do after that when you walk out of wrestling? Where do you go? It’s not like, ‘Yeah, well, the obvious career path after that is,’ whatever. I didn’t even open the contract. I have the contract at home that they offered me and it took me months to even open it and look at what they offered me. I didn’t care, didn’t matter because I wanted out. They could have offered me four times whatever I was on before.”

On being depressed after leaving: “It was kind of [me] being really down, actually. It’s a big change in life to go from the 280 days a year on the road and whatever it is. And even when you’re off, you’re not off because you’re doing phone calls around to all the arenas the next week, and you’re thinking about how you can improve this. And ‘Oh s**t, I’ve got to go and get that new gear made.’ You’re constantly in wrestling mode. And then you go to the shop and everyone recognizes you because you’re on TV twice a week. You never turn off. So to suddenly go from that to only being in my house. I lived along in a giant house on Tampa that I’d bought, just north of Tampa. And yeah, it’s a big period of decompression. Especially when, [you go] ‘Oh man, it’s Monday, it’s Raw — no it’s not, I don’t work there anymore. And then, there were things throughout the year that would occasionally come up, when I’d think ‘Okay, I got it out of my system now.’ And then suddenly, it would be like WrestleMania season. And everybody’s sending pictures from WrestleMania, and I’d be thinking, ‘Oh, I should be at WrestleMania. No, no, I’m not there anymore.’ It took me a long time, probably a year to get all of that out of my system.”

(h/t – 411 Wrestling)

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