Anthony Ogogo valued AEW's vision for himself more than WWE's money.
Speaking with Wrestling Inc.'s Nick Hausman, Ogogo explained his decision to sign with Tony Khan's All Elite Wrestling rather than the WWE. The Olympic Bronze Medalist stated that he was already a corporate guy once before, but wasn't always able to act the way he wanted. He decided to pursue boxing as a career, and at the end of the day, all he got out of it was the loss of sight in his left eye.
“I was the first boxer in the world to ever be signed to a long-term deal with Nike. That’s how notorious I was in the UK, in the world,” Ogogo said. “I was signed to Subway for five years. I had some proper top, top brands sponsoring me, and because of that, I have to be the corporate guy. I couldn’t go on Twitter and call this person a c**t because I was representing them as well as myself. And then I did that. And what did I get out of my boxing career? I’m blind in my left eye."
For Ogogo, wrestling is a bonus career that he never expected to have, and while he did act like himself in some respects while boxing, he plans on being unapologetically himself this time around. He added the following:
“I didn’t achieve the things I wanted to achieve, and I left thinking, I should have been me. I was me. I’m nice in many aspects. I’m respectful and polite, and if you respect me, I respect you. If I think you’re an a**hole, then I will treat you like you’re an a**hole. I’m just going to be unapologetically me. I’m getting a bonus career, I didn’t think I was ever going to be a wrestler. I thought I was going to be a boxer. This is bonus for me. I’m going to be me."
It's for that reason that he chose to join AEW instead of WWE. He believes in the vision that Tony Khan and Cody Rhodes have and loves how they care for their wrestlers. Sure, WWE offered more money, but he appreciated the way they put people first.
“That’s why I didn’t go to WWE. They offered me more money than AEW. I didn’t join them because I believe in Tony Khan’s vision," Ogogo explained. "I believed in Cody Rhodes’ vision. I believe in AEW’s vision. I love being a part of AEW. I love how the team give a f**k about their wrestlers. If I’m going through a tough time in a minute, I’m getting texts from the management asking me if I’m okay daily. They care about the people rather than the money. The other place, they seem to care about money first and people if at all. We care about other people first because they know that a happy workplace creates good stuff.”
AEW signed Ogogo in October 2019 and he made his Dynamite debut in April 2021. He has aligned with QT Marshall and The Nightmare Factory and is set to take on Cody Rhodes at Double or Nothing on Sunday, May 30, 2021.
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Transcription via Wrestling Inc.