Wade Barrett Losing The ‘Bad News’ Gimmick Was The Last Straw For Him In WWE

Wade Barrett left WWE this summer after being with the company for a decade. As a wrestler and performer, he saw his fair share of ups and downs, and was repackaged several times before finally calling it quits. He’s focusing more on acting now, and is somewhat bizarrely starring in the latest WWE direct-to-DVD release.

Watching then-King Barrett’s final incarnation in WWE as a member of the lackluster League of Nations, it was easy to see how he could be frustrated with his role in the company after so many stops and starts, but it turns out the final straw came long before that. Barrett explained in a lengthy interview with Sports Illustrated:

“‘Bad News’ Barrett was a really fun time,” explained Bennett. “The reactions from the crowd I was getting were really about my speaking and my portrayal of a character rather than my in-ring work. You can even go back to the Nexus era, when I was cutting promos every single night. People were really hanging on my every word, and I was really dictating a lot of the shows that we were doing. I’ve always had that confidence in my performance ability and my ability to speak in character. One of the most exciting parts of the Nexus and ‘Bad News’ Barrett eras were I had a lot of influence in the character and I had a lot of influence in how I was going to portray myself. When I became King Barrett, the influence I had in the character was taken away. I was told, ‘This is your outfit, and here is your promo that you have to say word-for-word.’ Any time I tried to tweak the storyline because I thought it wasn’t working, or because it wasn’t me, I was denied. The lack of control over my career reduced my passion more than anything.

“For the first time in my life, I was questioning why I was even getting out of bed and going to work. I wasn’t enjoying it and it wasn’t motivating me at all. For that reason, I made the decision that I couldn’t re-sign a contract and continue for three more years when I knew nothing was going to change. My choice was: to take the paycheck and accept that I was probably going to get the same kind of creative that I’d had for the last couple of years, or alternatively to walk away and look for something else. So I decided to do the latter. I’ve always been smart with my money, and I saved a lot during my time with WWE. I’m not in a position where I’m living paycheck-to-paycheck, and I can afford to explore other avenues.”

The worst news of all turns out to be “You’re not ‘Bad News’ anymore.” In that interview, Barrett also talks about being rejuvenated after being able to take time off for the first time in nine years, and his plans for the future. It’s worth your time, so head over to SI to check it out.

Peace out, Bad News. We’ll always have the cherry picker. Although I guess Bobby Roode’s using that now. So never mind.