Kushida Reveals why he Left WWE

There have been quite a few departures from WWE NXT over the past few months, including Kushida, who departed after his contract expired. Kushida is now wrestling in several companies, including New Japan Pro-Wrestling and Impact Wrestling, and during a recent interview with NJPW he revealed what led to his departure from WWE. The reasoning was two-fold, as Kushida notes of the major shift in NXT's approach to matches and its stars as well as his want to move to LA. He wasn't allowed to move from Orlando as part of NXT, but once the shift started happening and the uptick in releases, he saw those as signs it was time to depart.

"Well, to set the scene a bit, the turnover in WWE is really relentless. In August of 2021, there was a really sudden change in thinking there. Essentially they wanted to train young wrestlers, under 30, that didn't have pro-wrestling experience and had come from other athletic backgrounds. When it comes to me, I don't think it's controversial to say that left me redundant, effectively, Kushida said.

"You have to remember I was 36 when I got an offer from WWE. It still really seems kinda hard to believe that HHH would reach out with an offer...So with this youth push on over there, it wasn't like I had a shoot time machine of my own, so it became 'OK, what can I do here?'. Everyone was asking the same questions, I think, actually," Kushida said. "And NJPW immediately popped in my head. I felt really strongly right away that LA would be the best place to base myself. Even when I was in WWE, I had wanted to move from Orlando to LA, but the company wouldn't let me; that hurt my motivation a little, heh. I think there's a little bit of magic around LA that made it somewhere I always wanted to live."

Now Kushida has moved and is wrestling all over the place, and he's up for wrestling as part of every tour happening in Japan.

"Well, the stance I have now is I want to base myself in LA and wrestle as much as I can in Japan and worldwide. I think there should be at least someone with that mindset in NJPW, it's 2022 after all. I'm not denying Japan anything, at all and I'll essentially be a part of every tour going on in Japan. That's something I've told the company as well," Kushida said.

What do you want to see next from Kushida? Let us know in the comments or as always you can talk all things wrestling with me on Twitter @MattAguilarCB!

H/T PWMania