Jake Hager Won't Leave Wrestling For MMA

Jake Hager has balanced two careers since 2017 when it was announced that he had signed with Bellator MMA.

Hager didn't make his debut until January 2019 and during that time, joined AEW, making his debut on the first episode of AEW Dynamite. Hager has had four MMA fights during that time while being featured weekly on AEW television as part of The Inner Circle.

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Speaking on the AEW Unrestricted podcast, Hager was asked if he could see himself leaving wrestling for MMA.

"I don't see a reason why I would. One hand makes the other hand bigger. They both compliment each other. It's one of those things where being on television as a pro wrestler makes me a bigger draw, a bigger opponent, and makes me more money. They go hand in hand and it's a perfect storm," he said.

Hager last fought in October 2020, defeating Brandon Calton by split decision.

When asked if he's had to defend wrestling to MMA fighters, Hager replied, "I've never had to justify pro wrestling. In this day and age, pro wrestling speaks for itself. it's bigger than it was in the 1980s. The internet has exploded it and it's a household name. It's no longer something you have to hide in the closet and be like 'I don't want pro wrestling.' Everyone watches pro wrestling. More importantly than that, everyone wants to be a pro wrestler. You look at how they sell MMA angles or NFL or NBA angles, it's all pro wrestlng tactics. They all use the same heel and babyface tactics and it makes me laugh because everyone wants to be a pro wrestler."

Hager last wrestled at AEW Full Gear, competing alongside the Inner Circle (Chris Jericho, Sammy Guevara, Santana & Ortiz) in the Minneapolis Street Fight against Men of the Year (Ethan Page & Scorpio Sky) and American Top Team (Andrei Arlovski, Junior dos Santos, & Dan Lambert).

If you missed anything from AEW Dynamite, check out Fightful's full report on the show by clicking here.

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