AEW star Lio Rush discussed why he decided to return to pro wrestling following his recent retirement during the most recent episode of Vickie Guerrero’s Excuse Me podcast.
Rush made his AEW debut at the 2021 Double or Nothing PPV then shortly retired while dealing with an injury.
He returned to AEW last month.
“During that time of me debuting in AEW, my wrestling career, viewed by the casual fan, it was on the up. I was going all over the country with Independent promotions, New Japan, MLW, and Triple A. It was a lot. I was also going through a lot of personal things during that time too and a big part of that was me…part of it was financial because of the huge hit that me and my family took with being released from WWE and trying to find consistent work without being under contract. It was a lot of things going through my mind. I was also doing music and me taking back and moving in a direction I thought I was capable of moving in the music industry and letting that be a source of income while also allowing me the time to be with my family and wife. I never really got the opportunity to be the dad I wanted to be because I got pushed in the wrestling world pretty quickly and that was when I had my first son. Then my second son, I was with WWE, so I definitely wasn’t as home as I wanted to be. Then, with being released and having to work during the pandemic, I had to work twice as hard and twice as much to make up the money and I definitely wasn’t home.”
“I saw where my life was going and I didn’t want it to be like that. It was a hard choice between signing a contract with AEW, along with the frustrations I’ve had with the wrestling business in general. It was a lot of everything. It was a lot of me kind of giving it up, believing in myself with other ventures I had, putting my family first, being selfish. Just a lot that I wasn’t expecting. It was such a split decision. If I would have taken the contract during that time in my life, I feel like it could have affected me and my family. It came down to, do I want to work on being the family man I want to be or hurt my personal life even more and take the contract, but it might work out more financially, but by the time it works out financially, what does the personal life look like? It was a lot weighing on me and I decided to walk away and not take the contract. I decided to do things on my time. During that time, I found out a lot about myself and I started to get a grasp of how much influence I have on the wrestling world in a way that I didn’t realize. The injury forced me to sit down, think, stop, and figure out where I would go, what I would do, who I would do it for. There’s a bigger picture than just wrestling.”
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