Leva Bates opens up about her exit from AEW.
Bates had been with AEW since its inaugural year, 2019. She was an AEW Original, as she was part of the company's first shows with her memorable character as "The Librarian" alongside Peter Avalon. Bates subsequently took a behind-the-scenes role and continued to wrestle sporadically for the company. She was also involved in the AEW Heels program. On May 1, Bates stated that her AEW contract had expired.
Speaking on her Twitch stream, Bates discussed her departure from AEW and made it clear that she has no regrets. She then noted that she's trying to make things happen in a variety of ways moving forward.
"Yes, I am no longer with AEW, and that is okay. I put a lot of love, effort, and energy into that place. No regrets. I am so happy to be there from day one, before we had a show or our first pay-per-view. I have made history. I am a part of history. I am forever grateful and will forever be so thankful to have been part of that. As you know, probably realized, I have not been performing as much as I would like to perform. I am taking all this energy and focusing it on trying to make things happen, trying to wrestle as many places as I can, to go, maybe, who knows where. I’m trying acting. I have some stuff lined up to get me on my journey," Bates said.
Bates continued by describing how she has a meeting for a voice-over demo, and she's interested in pursuing a path in that field. She stated that she has a lot of things in motion, including indie bookings, as she is more available now than she was during her time with AEW. Bates also joked about continuing to be part of Being The Elite, but she noted that she wasn't sure whether that would be an option.
"I have a really cool meeting for voice-over demo stuff. Hopefully, that goes well and I can move forward with that. Hopefully, land a voice-over agent and all the things you’re supposed to do. I have a lot of things in motion. I’ll be honest, I already got a couple of indie bookings lined up. I’m not sure I’m allowed to say where they are yet, we literally just locked them down. I’m going to be available more than I was before. Peter and I jokingly thought, ‘Maybe I should still do BTE.’ I don’t know if that’s an option, maybe. Maybe you’ll see me on BTE still. Maybe I’ll do my own thing. A lot of people that aren’t signed have shown up on BTE. I could show up again," she said.
Bates then explained how AEW Heels will be one of the things she'll miss the most, as she put a lot of love and work into it. She stated that she'll still be around in some capacity. Overall, she noted that sometimes it's necessary to walk away from a comfortable situation and do scary things in order to make your dreams happen.
"I really put a lot of love and work into (AEW) Heels. I think that’s going to be one of the things I miss the most. That community, I love so much. I’ll still be around, in one capacity or another. I’m always a Heel, whether I’m there or not. I’m still part of the community. Sometimes, you just have to walk away from a comfortable situation and sometimes you have to do scary things to make your dreams happen. I’m a free agent. A full free agent. Let them know. If you want to see me somewhere, let them know loud and clear. I know a lot of people are sad. I was sad. I went through a gambit of emotions. Also, really excited. I’m excited to see what’s next. I think I have some good stuff coming," Bates said.
Bates mentioned Twitch and noted that she has talked to her friend about doing more online content, including a Patreon. She also commented on the end of AEW Dark and Dark: Elevation, the two shows where she typically wrestled throughout her time in AEW.
"I found out about Dark: Elevation being canceled by dirt sheets. That’s how much I knew about it. Probably, to make room because they have Ring of Honor. There is only so much time to devote. I honestly have no idea," Bates said.
Fightful Select recently reported more information about Bates' departure from AEW.
Fightful will provide more information about Bates' path forward as it becomes available.
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