Eric Young: Personally, professionally & morally, I just couldn't work at WWE anymore

Originally published at https://www.postwrestling.com/2023/07/20/eric-young-personally-professionally-morally-i-just-couldnt-work-at-wwe-anymore/

For the first time, Eric Young speaks about his recent WWE stint. 

In December 2022, it was first reported by PWInsider that Eric Young was heading back to WWE. There was a segment that aired on their weekly show during which Deaner continuously stabbed Young. 

At IMPACT Wrestling’s Slammiversary pay-per-view, Young returned as Scott D’Amore’s tag team partner and they defeated Deaner and Bully Ray.

Mike Johnson of PWInsider conducted an interview with Young and he dove into his recent WWE stint and his return to IMPACT. Young never stopped working with IMPACT’s parent company, Anthem. He is part of their Game Plus Network. He stated that personally, professionally and morally, he could no longer continue working at WWE. Young expressed that the contract and what he was poised to do on TV was great, but he did not want to take orders from someone he’s not willing to do that for. 

The (tweet) with me in front of the laptop with the keyboard is definitely a side project that I’m working on… I’ve never not worked for Anthem since leaving IMPACT. I’ve been appearing once, twice or sometimes four times a week on Game Plus Network for the last three years, so I was still linked to them when I was under contract at the other place (WWE)… I signed up for one thing and it turned into something completely different, and personally, professionally and more importantly for me, morally, I just couldn’t work there anymore. If you’re a wrestling fan, you know what’s going on, and I know that you’re a smart guy, Mike (Johnson), and you’re well aware of what I’m saying and what’s going on.  

It was not a super difficult choice for me to be honest. I know it was a dream come true, going back, for sure. The contract was fantastic and all this other stuff and what I was poised to do on the TV show was excellent, but in the end, I would’ve had to answer to somebody that I’m just not willing to. That’s where we ended up now. Like I said earlier, I’m a believer in fate and everything happens for a reason, and I’m not mad about it. I’m not bitter about it, just like I wasn’t last time. Obviously, it’s a massive mistake on one person’s part, but a huge gain for wrestling. 

I’m still very good at this, and it’s something that I’m very passionate about. Something that I work myself to the bone trying to make the best possible outcome of each thing that I’m handed to do. So, I’m excited for the future, and I’m always working on other stuff. The reality is, wrestling, you can’t do it forever. I’ve got tons of other interests outside of wrestling, but wrestling is my first love. It will always be one of my biggest passions in my life and I think it’s the perfect creative medium for anybody that loves sport and loves cinema, and those are the two things that I love most in the world.

He does not regret departing IMPACT in 2022. Young recounted company President Scott D’Amore telling him he’d be a fool not to give it a shot. There was a part of Young that did not want to leave. 

No (I don’t regret leaving IMPACT in 2022). Yeah, I don’t. I can say that I don’t really regret anything that I’ve done. I’ve said this in other interviews before, as I’m a very experiential person. Even Scott (D’Amore) would say, he would tell me… he told me himself, I would be a fool to not go. That’s just the reality of the business side of it. The truth is-is anybody close to me, my wife and a bunch of guys on the IMPACT roster that are some of my best friends in the world. I said it and I said it to Scott, ‘I don’t want to leave.’ Like there was part of me that was really not wanting to, and I’ve never had that where I felt this weird regret of leaving because I felt we were doing something very special.

I think IMPACT Wrestling (is) for people that love pro wrestling… it’s a very special place to work. You could ask almost anybody that’s on the roster and they’re gonna tell you the same thing to varying degrees. But, to me it’s the best minute-for-minute pro wrestling show in the world. That’s biased because I work there, but, I would’ve told you that at any point because it’s written for pro wrestling fans by pro wrestlers, so it’s minute-for-minute, the best one. I’m proud to be part of it, but (do I have) regrets? No, but I didn’t want to leave. That’s the truth. It was what it was business-wise. It totally made sense to me. I can’t do this forever and, uh, I’m hoping to not work when I’m 55.

At the post-Slammiversary IMPACT TV taping, Young went one-on-one with Nick Aldis. Aldis finished up with IMPACT and he spoke in-depth about his recent run there

Someone who doesn’t kowtow. I applaud him.

I mean, he signed with WWE in 2016, got fired, then re-signed in 2022……then once it becomes evident he’s not getting a true push he has issues with their morality? I’m sorry, but I have a hard time believing that morality is the main reason why he won’t go back.

A lot happened between those times with Vince and his role and what was known about his sex pest behaviour.

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There is nothing that has happened between 2022 and 2023 that the average wrestling fan was not already aware of. The Rita Chatterton accusation which is the worst of them all has been known for decades, and come on, was anyone surprised that Vince was sleeping with employees?

If people want to act surprised, fine, but I don’t buy it for a second.

The difference was clearly Vince’s official capacity and involvement with the company.

Vince’s official position from June 2022 through March 2023 was that he had no official say over things. That changed dramatically with the sale. Officially.

He was still the majority shareholder, I don’t buy this morality angle one bit. It’s creative based, people have no problem taking Vince’s money, they Have a problem with him being involved creatively. I’m fine with that, but don’t try to sell me it’s a morality issue.

As per the other post, he signed up after the Vince scandal, clearly he knew what Vince was accused of when he signed up.

He re-signed with WWE in late 2022. Vince “came out of retirement” in January 2023. EY decided to bounce right around then. Is that accurate? If so, makes perfect sense to me.

Now whether it’s a “morality” thing or a “Vince booked me like shit once, I’m sure he’ll do it again” thing, only EY knows for sure.

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Exactly, that’s all I’m saying. EY should just say that he don’t trust Vince’s vision for him, I don’t blame him one bit for that. I think he signed on thinking Hunter would book him, Vince came back in the picture and he got pissed off. I don’t blame him.

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You should probably just let Eric Young say what he wants. This doesnt affect your life in the least. Calm down

Lol ok. You realize this is a discussion board where we discuss topics in the world of professional wrestling. He made public comments, myself and anyone here on this board has the right to discuss the comments. If you don’t like that I’m doing that, block me.

Vince regained power he didn’t have when Young was first hired and he didn’t want to work for a sex pest. Not hard to understand

It’s professional wrestling. Literally none of it affects our lives in the least.

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We love wrestling. Wrestling is great.

Exactly, nothing Eric Young said made me mad and I’m still a fan of his. I just don’t believe what he said. If others buy it, cool.

Personally I just don’t believe that if scenario A is that the majority share holder is an accused sex offender but not involved in day to day there is no moral issue. While in scenario B, the same sex offender is a minority shareholder but involved with “long term direction” or whatever he does now, that all of a sudden “morality” is a major problem. I believe that both scenario’s rank equally high on the morality scale.

Not sure why some posters have such a hard time understanding this logic (I dont mean you, you flat out said only EY knows for sure which I agree with).

If you don’t agree with something I say, just make your point in a respectful manner against what I am saying. @MarkP did that earlier in the thread, and while I disagree with him, everything he said to me IMO was respectful.

I am a firm believer that on this board we all have every right to counter any argument from anyone and to comment on anything someone in the industry says about the business. As long as the comment is not something bigoted, you should never go personal. Luckily the majority on this board are not like that which is why I post here, and the very few that don’t get this, I block them. I hope you agree with this as I dont want to block you because I love respectful discussion.

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I fully agree with you @kliq .

The thing about Vince, is that the Board Of Directors did in their letter told Vince they considering suing him.

Tell a person upfront you thinking about suing them isn’t the most wisest way to go about things, so Vince as the overwhelming controlling investor (of WWE) got rid of WWE Board before Board put an injunction on Vince as a WWE Investor (Vince would been frozen while litigation is ongoing).

Interesting thing is Steph & Triple H most likely was the ones against suing Vince, hence the Vince Hall Of Fame talk.