During an Ask Coach Anything Live podcast on AdFreeShows.com, former WWE personality Jonathan Coachman vented about his 2nd run with the company in 2018…
“I have a very bad taste in my mouth from the sport of wrestling right now. I’m at a point in my life that everything I do, I want it to be positive. I want it to be working with people that care about other people. I want it to be working with companies which I’m now within CBS, the PGA Tour, and EA Sports that they put people first.
When I returned to WWE, I made it very clear I was there to help them try to grow. The things I saw, and the way they were treating people, and ultimately a year ago when they asked me specifically to come back and do the XFL because, and this is a quote, ‘We need somebody from the WWE on that side to give Vince [McMahon] what he wants.’ From January to March, I flew coast to coast because I live in California. They didn’t have the expenses setup because it was technically a different company. I paid my own expenses, which was between 8 and $20,000. I was supposed to be reimbursed later. Because I had a 20 year relationship, I didn’t feel the need to turn in my invoices to get paid because I always lived up to my end of the bargain. I’ve never not come through on my end, and they bounced a big check to me, and to this day, have not paid me. It’s not a grand. It’s not two grand. It’s a lot more than that.
I reached out, and the week after they bounced that big check on the XFL side, they cut my contract on the WWE side. The XFL was a mess. It went into bankruptcy. A lot of people got stiffed. When you treat people that way, and I’m a survivor, I was fine, they still owe me that money. But there were other people, that was their full-time job. They got called on a Friday and they were told they were out of a job and they were not going to make any more money. Sometimes when you’re a leader, you’re called on to sacrifice, not cash checks and stock for millions of dollars when you’re bouncing checks. I don’t know if he bounced any others, but I can only tell you what I know. If anybody wants to question it, I have the receipts. When somebody does that, and then somebody who has asked you many, many, many, many times over the years to sacrifice time with your family, sacrifice time of your body, sacrifice a lot of other things, and then you’re treated that way on the back end, I’m not ok with that.
I will never work with somebody like that again. So, the taste in my mouth from wrestling right now is very, very bitter because when you put in 20 years into somebody, a relationship to help them build their brand, and then they just turn your back on you over, to them, a little bit of money. To me, it was a lot of money. Then at the same time, they’re cashing in millions of dollars in stock, and laying people off the same day they are doing that is bad business. To me, you can’t take money when you’re gone. You can’t take anything but your legacy and how you treat people. I know that I treat people great every single day of my life. I can go to bed and put my head down. When I got that reaction, they basically told me, ‘That’s another company. We’ll talk to Vince, but I don’t know if there’s anything I can do.’ That’s when I knew that I had been gotten just like so many other people had been gotten before me, that they were willing to throw away somebody that was dedicated to them for 20 years over money, and that’s why I will never go back.”
Coachman also talked about being taken off the commentary team…
“I was as dedicated as anyone that’s ever been. I can promise you that. So to miss five times in six or seven months, they acted like I sprung it on them, like, ‘You’re not dedicated to us’, when I said, ‘I literally talked to you about it the day you called me’, and you said, ‘Yes, this is very important for us too.’ So it completely changed from that January to when, I don’t even remember when they took me off, August or September. To be honest, I was ecstatic to go back to the preshow. That was awesome because that’s where I thrive is being the host of a panel or being a character, not sitting on Monday Night RAW and SmackDown when you’re miserable because the people don’t want to work with you. I couldn’t make Corey [Graves] want to work with me. I just couldn’t do it, so I was very happy. People used to tweet at me, ‘Oh, you idiot. You got demoted.’ The check didn’t change, I had more fun, and I traveled only once a month instead of every single week. I see that as a win if you ask me.”
(quotes courtesy of WrestlingNews.co)
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