Speaking in a recent interview, Malakai Black has reflected on his final weeks and months in WWE.
Black was released by WWE on June 2nd after only recently returning to television after a long absence. Due to a clerical error, Black was able to join AEW just a month later, debuting on the July 7th episode of Dynamite.
While the former NXT Champion has previously spoken about his frustration at WWE’s ’50-50 booking,’ he has now revealed that he already wanted to leave the company ahead of being released.
Appearing on Talk Is Jericho, Black said that he felt it was time to move on, but the company made the decision for him.
“Towards the end of my stint in WWE, I felt it was time to go. I felt they made the decision for me. I told my wife months in advance, ‘this isn’t working out the way they promised me it was going to work out. I’m going to move on to different things.’ I felt like I hit a wall and they don’t want to push me over the wall and I wasn’t going to keep bumping my head into the wall because eventually, I feel I owe myself more in life. I want to be a player,”
Black then turned his attention to the locker room in his current home AEW. The former WWE star said that he’s enjoying being able to pass on his experience to the next generation.
“The good thing about being (in AEW), it’s such an amazing locker room with new and young talents. Some walk up to me and want information, and I’m glad I can do that because I feel, I’m 36 and I hope I’m blessed enough to go another 15 years, but we don’t have that guarantee. It might be five or six years and my knees or back give out. I want to make sure that what I leave behind is not only a body of work that people can look at, but also be around for this generation of kids who will eventually inherit the business and say, ‘I picked up XZYZ from Malakai’ and I helped make them better. I want to help make the next generation of wrestling be better.”
At AEW Homecoming, Malakai Black made his in-ring debut with a destruction of Cody Rhodes. After the match, Rhodes was seemingly set to announce his retirement, before Black returned to the ring to dish out more punishment.
H/t to Fightful for the transcription.