Kevin Sullivan Urges AEW to Sign Controversial Ex-WWE Talent

Legal woes shadow Ryback's post-WWE career trajectory.

by Atia Mukhtar
Kevin Sullivan Urges AEW to Sign Controversial Ex-WWE Talent

Former WCW chief strategist, Kevin Sullivan, passionately voiced his opinion on wrestler redemption during the latest episode of "Tuesday with The Taskmaster." Advocating for AEW's President, Tony Khan, to welcome former WWE superstar Ryback into its roster, Sullivan underscored the value of granting wrestlers a new beginning, especially if they've been distanced from the limelight for some time.

"A fresh slate awaits Ryback at AEW — an environment where past transgressions can be overlooked. With sincere remorse and a heartfelt apology, I believe in second chances for everyone," Sullivan conveyed. Interestingly, Ryback, who parted ways with WWE under strained circumstances in 2016, hinted at his inclination towards AEW in December 2019.

On his "Big Guy" podcast, the wrestling powerhouse extolled the virtues of AEW EVP Cody Rhodes and shared his belief that AEW's growing stature is a catalyst for compelling WWE to evolve and break away from complacency.

Ryback's Battle for Identity

However, Ryback's journey post-WWE wasn't devoid of turbulence.

He found himself enmeshed in a long-drawn legal tussle with WWE over the rights to the 'Ryback' moniker. It wasn't until earlier this year that "The Big Guy" jubilantly proclaimed his victory, rebranding himself from Ryan Reeves to Ryback.

Throughout this period, he never shied away from expressing his grievances, particularly against wrestling stalwarts like Triple H, Vince McMahon, and CM Punk. Elaborating on his relationship with WWE in a "K100" interview, Ryback shared the deteriorating dynamics with Triple H over the course of his six-year WWE tenure from 2010 to 2016.

So, the lingering question remains: Is AEW prepared to roll out the red carpet for Ryback? It's noteworthy that the now 41-year-old wrestler showcased his skills at a NEW Wrestling indie event as recently as August 2018. Only time will tell if AEW is willing to bet on this seasoned performer.

Kevin Sullivan Aew Ryback