One day after Brian Kendrick asked for and was granted his WWE release he was scheduled to make his AEW debut, taking on Jon Moxley on the February 2 2022 edition of Dynamite.
However, Kendrick’s appearance was cancelled after past controversial videos resurfaced featuring Kendrick airing his views on several conspiracy theories including those on the Holocaust and the Sandy Hook school shooting.
Appearing at a virtual signing with K & S WrestleFest, Kendrick commented on what transpired the day of Dynamite, and how his debut was cancelled:
“It came about due to opportunity at WWE,” said Kendrick. “I was down there producing and mostly coaching at NXT and I was asked if I was happy and I was… I mean I was happy to coach, happy to produce but I wasn’t satisfied and I wanted to wrestle, so I was given the option, ‘Would you like your release?’ And I said, ‘Yes’ and this was right around November, November of last year. So I put in my time ’till the new year, got my release and then, got the opportunity to go wrestle with AEW, talk with Tony Khan on the phone, they made me music, I had an entrance and everything was ready to go.
“Show up to Chicago, I’m in my wrestling gear. Few hours from going out there and performing, I get a call from their lawyer who texted me earlier in the day, AEW’s lawyer. She asked if there was a time to talk. I had saw my texts, I said, ‘Yeah, where do you need me?’ Not thinking she wasn’t in the building. Few hours later, I go to call my wife because I’m getting ready to do this match, I get a call from the lawyer and she says, ‘Calm down, calm down.’ I said, ‘Oh boy, I sure am nervous right now’ and she goes, ‘Is it true?’ I said, ‘Is what true?’ And she goes, ‘Well there’s this video out there’ and I said, ‘I don’t know what video.’ Meanwhile, this has already been made the wrestling scoops and she says, ‘Oh, there’s some pretty salacious stuff about the Holocaust, about Sandy Hook’ and I go, ‘Oh! M’fer. I know exactly what you’re talking about. It was from a conspiracy video I did for Highspots about ten years ago, it was 2013’ and that was it. She goes, ‘I think we’re gonna have to pull you from the show.’ I said, ‘I understand.’
“I text Bryan Danielson, I said, ‘Hey buddy, I’m sorry for the embarrassment,’ call my wife and she goes, ‘Is it bad?’ I go, ‘Yeah, it’s pretty bad.’ ‘What’s going on?’ I said, ‘I think I’m getting thrown out of the building.’ Then I get a call from Sonjay Dutt, go in to meet him and Bryan Danielson, Tony Khan, my first time actually meeting Tony. We only talked on the phone. He says, ‘I apologise. I don’t think this would have happened if you wouldn’t have quit your job and came here, but this is what we’re dealing with right now so I think it’s for the best that if you grab your gear and leave.’ I said, ‘I understand’ and that was it. I grabbed my gear — well I went from there, from my gear to the dressing room, I grabbed my bag, snuck off into a public restroom, got dressed and then just started walking as far out as I could out in the snow from the building in Chicago and caught myself an Uber and I’ve been in a daze ever since.”
Despite never making an appearance for AEW, Kendrick revealed he was ‘officially released’ by the company on May 1:
“‘Is it completely over? Yeah, I don’t know what I do next. I don’t know if my wife’s gonna stay with me,’ you know? I don’t know any of this stuff [Kendrick recalled what he was thinking when the situation first occurred]. You know, luckily, all my friends, my wife, everybody’s been real supportive. Anybody that could’ve been offended, any of my friends took it for what I believe it was. It was me talking crap, trying to create a buzz and they still love me and [we’re still] friends luckily.
“I had a few friends who wanted some explanation and they seemed to be satisfied with it, but as far as the business goes, Tony [Khan] doesn’t know me from nothing. He just knows he has a headache walking in, it’s a problem I have to deal with and it’s easier not to use him, so that’s the route they chose. I officially got released on May 1st so it was about three months in limbo, being quasi-employed, getting paid on one of my two contracts there until they said, ‘It’s nothing we can do with you’ and that was it so now I’m figuring my life out,” said Kendrick.