Samoa Joe Explains Why He Signed With Both AEW and ROH

Samoa Joe made his surprise return to Ring of Honor at the end of Friday night's Supercard of Honor event, chasing away both Jay Lethal and Sonjay Dutt before cutting a promo talking about how a new era of ROH had arrived. Moments later it was confirmed that Joe had signed with both ROH and All Elite Wrestling and would be appearing on this week's AEW Dynamite. In the post-show scrum, the former ROH World Champion shed some light on why he decided to sign with both of Tony Khan's companies after being released by the WWE once again in January. 

"At this point, in my career, what I have done, the second release, my going back to WWE was majorly because of the people I had worked with and the relationship I had built in the company, namely Triple H and William Regal," Joe said. "As for Triple H, dealing with his situation, which I knew about and was way more concerned about than my employment, and Regal and his departure, I knew the writing was on the wall for me, which is fine. We were a big collective team and a big collective think tank within the company and they went a different way. As far as the release, it's an up and down process for a lot of people. For me, it just freed me up to pursue a lot of projects that I really want to work on and freed me up to talk with Tony and talk about the future of what he wanted to do and I was very surprised a lot of that matched up," 

Joe admitted that Khan didn't have much of a chance at talking with him when he was initially released, hinting at how Triple H had contacted him within hours of his release in order to get him back into the fold at the Performance Center. He also talked about the surprise of Khan buying ROH and its tape library, something he was pushing for WWE to do behind the scenes. He then made it abundantly clear that he's no longer focused on trying to build up the next generation like he was at the Performance Center — his only concern now is winning both the ROH and AEW World Championships. 

"That's why I'm here. I tried my bid at bettering the world of professional wrestling, but at the end of the day, I'm here in AEW and ROH to be a Unified Champion. I'm here to win the AEW Championship and Ring of Honor Championship. I'm here to win anything they put in front of me. I'm more than willing to go into the Owen Hart [Tournament] and win that," Joe said. "This ain't a game anymore. AEW has a lot of feel-good moments, a lot of great wrestlers who respect each other. I don't respect nobody. Until you're in the ring with me. I'm coming out there to smack people in the mouth and take what they have. That's pretty much my edict when I'm here. Broadcaster, mentor, good guy — I am all those things, but not here. Not here."