Johnny Gargano is reportedly putting serious consideration into a run with AEW.
Gargano became a free agent a few weeks back when his WWE NXT contract expired. WWE reportedly made a strong contract offer for Gargano to re-sign, but he turned it down.
In an update, it was noted on a recent episode of Wrestling Observer Radio that Gargano is “heavily considering” AEW. There’s no word on if AEW and Gargano have had contract talks, or if Gargano is planning on signing with the company, but he is weighing his options.
It was speculated that we could see Gargano debut during the January 26 edition of AEW Dynamite on TNT, which takes place from the Wolstein Center in Cleveland, which is Gargano’s hometown. That would guarantee a massive hometown ovation for the debut.
Gargano reportedly told people earlier this month, when his WWE contract expired, that he had not decided what he was going to do in the future, past taking some time off. Gargano’s wife Candice LeRae is due to give birth to their first child, a baby boy, some time in February, and Gargano is said to be very serious about taking time off until she gives birth. Gargano has made this clear publicly on Twitch and privately to friends, so that would be the one significant hold-up to a potential AEW debut in Cleveland.
LeRae’s WWE contract expire reportedly expires in May, but it’s believed that the company will add at least a period of time to the contract to cover the hiatus she’s been on since announcing her pregnancy back in August. If WWE does add to LeRae’s contract to cover her time off, she will likely remain under contract into 2023. There’s no word on how that will impact Gargano’s decision, and if he wants to stay working where his wife works.
As noted, Gargano recently stated on his new Twitch channel that he wanted to face Kenny Omega, who he considers to be a dream opponent. Gargano also told fans to let him know which promotion they want to see him work for by chanting “Johnny Wrestling!” in the crowd. It’s rumored that we will see Gargano make at least some indie appearances in the near future, perhaps special events such as PWG’s Battle of Los Angeles.
Stay tuned for more on Gargano’s future.