Stu Bennett (formerly Wade Barrett in WWE) has made a comfortable living post-WWE with his movies and announcing.
But with his new movie "I Am Vengeance: Retaliation" coming out and rumors of a Nexus reunion scheduled for this past WrestleMania, many have wondered if Bennett will jump back into the ring at some point. AEW co-executive Vice President Cody recently stated Bennett is a future world champion.
Speaking to Comic Book Movie, Bennett commented on potentially joining AEW.
"Part of my issue is that I'm close to 40 now. I'm 40 in two months, so the prospect of going back and working a full-time professional wrestling schedule isn't particularly high on my agenda at the moment. That might change. It was very kind of Cody to say that, I'm still very good friends with Cody. We've been tight for ten plus years, and he's done an amazing job with AEW. I am really excited about the explosion in opportunities in the professional wrestling world. I work for NWA currently as a commentator, and there's Ring of Honor which a friend of mine Marty Scurll is running the moment, obviously IMPACT has done some great stuff recently and grown from the ashes of where they were years ago, and then there's all the Japanese stuff, and there's some good stuff going on in the UK too. The fact is, there's a ton of opportunities out there now for professional wrestlers which, when I was coming through, weren't really there. The only game in town realistically was WWE, and it was very, very difficult to see yourself working anywhere outside of that. I think the digital revolution and the opportunity for smaller brands to get big platforms now is fantastic for professional wrestlers and professional wrestling in general," he said.
Bennett was thought to be a franchise player for WWE during his days as the Nexus leader, but things fizzled following SummerSlam 2010 when Nexus lost to John Cena and Team WWE.
When asked about the possibility of returning to WWE, Bennett said, "When I left there, I was of the opinion that I was done with working there. I was pretty angry with a couple of people from when I was working there and when I left, a couple of people in management. I think time is a great healer, shall we say, and I certainly don't have much anger left in me in regards to that now. Similarly, I don't feel like I have an automatic affiliation with the company itself or the people who work there. It's not like I have any ingrained loyalty where I have to jump the second they call me, for example. If there were to be an offer, I would approach it as a normal business decision if it was an offer from AEW or Ring or Honor or New Japan, or anything like that. It's simply a business decision: is it worth it, do I like the offer, do I like the pitch, do I believe what I'm being pitched is actually going to happen? That's another big one. I would approach anything that came my way, the same I would from any other company to be honest with you."
Bennett provided commentary for NWA before the pandemic shut things down.
"I Am Vengeance: Retaliation" is currently available on-demand.