Joey Ryan discusses his decision to remain on the Independent scene.
At the May 30 Bar Wrestling event, Joey Ryan revealed that he would not be joining WWE or AEW but instead would remain on the Independent scene. The decision was a surprising one as it was long assumed that Ryan would join AEW due to his appearances on Being The Elite and friendship with The Young Bucks.
Appearing on the NotSam Wrestling Podcast with Sam Roberts, Ryan explained why he turned down a deal with AEW.
"People still think I'm [in AEW] or expect me to be there. Those guys are my best friends, and that doesn't change. I've had extensive discussions with them, and they're not sure if what I do can play on their television show," revealed Ryan. "They don't really have an idea specifically for me where it's like 'if we bring you on, we have to take away what makes you over.' So, it's a gamble for me, not only creatively, but financially, because I'm making better money than these contracts offer, at least to start. So I'd be taking a pay cut and essentially start over. We've had discussions, but it just didn't make sense. It felt like I'd be irresponsible to myself and where I'm at with my life, finances, my geography, and creativity. It would be a gamble that I don't need to take."
Ryan continued, "We realized they're gonna be successful without me and I'm gonna be successful without them. Maybe our paths will cross at some point, but there is no urgency to it because neither of us necessarily needs the other one right now. It'd be nice to work with my friends, but it's not a necessity right now until they figure out their product and how they want to present it."
The King of Dong Style will continue to run his Bar Wrestling promotion out in Los Angeles while taking other Independent bookings. AEW is set to premiere on TNT at some point this fall.
You can watch Ryan make his announcement in the video above.