Johnny Gargano opens up about turning down WWE contract offer and why he left NXT

During an appearance on Renee Paquette’s podcast, Johnny Gargano talked about his departure from the WWE NXT brand…

“I felt like I was in a good place. I felt this way for a while to where I felt like I accomplished everything I wanted to accomplish in NXT. It’s kind of one of those things where I said I’m betting on myself because it is kind of a scary thing to have a new baby on the way and decide I’m going to turn down this new contract, that’s a good contract, a safe contract, and you’re going to get money every single week coming in to kind of go off to do your own thing. But I felt really good, I felt complete, and I felt that way for a long time.”

“But being able to end that story kind of on my own terms, like have that match, and then have like that promo segment where I was kind of able to kind of say goodbye, which a lot of people don’t get a chance to do nowadays, like I was very lucky to be given that chance. It’s so funny because so many people thought I re-signed, obviously because no one gets this treatment to where they’re able to do their match, and then come out the next night on live television, which is wild. It’s live television. I could have literally said anything I wanted to. They let me say anything I wanted. I sat down with one of the writers, but all the words that came out were my own. I wrote my own thing. I wanted to thank people and I wanted to do things like that because I feel like I just have such a good relationship and rapport with everyone in NXT, and everyone in WWE in general.”

“I know people said, like, ‘Oh, Johnny left because NXT changed.’ No, I always had it in my mind that I wasn’t leaving to go to any particular place. I kind of just felt like I needed to go because I felt like if you watch a TV show, or if you watch anything in general, if you see the same character, and obviously I changed character, I turned heel, I did funny stuff, I did things like that here and there. But if you see the same person on TV for five years, six years, it gets stale.” (quotes courtesy of