Johnny Gargano has confirmed that WWE Chief Content Officer Triple H taking over creative for the company is what sealed the deal on his return in late August.
Gargano made his in-ring return on this week’s WWE RAW, defeating Chad Gable in his first match since WWE NXT WarGames on December 5, 2021. He appeared on the “Out of Character” podcast this week and was asked about how soon he began return talks with WWE following the management changes that came after the late July retirement of former WWE Chairman & CEO Vince McMahon.
“It was pretty quick. I’m trying to think of the exact timeline of it cause it went by pretty fast. The one thing I will say is in my downtime, everyone was extremely respectful of my time away. They understood that I kind of wanted to focus on the dad thing for a while,” Gargano said, adding that he has a team around him that had talks with other pro wrestling companies while he was a free agent.
Gargano also commented on his relationship with Triple H and WWE Senior Vice President of Talent Development Creative Shawn Michaels.
“I do have a team around me that were having discussions, that were having conversations different places but as soon as the changes happened, as soon as everything went the way it did, communication definitely increased in abundance,” he said. “I have a different relationship with Hunter and Shawn than a lot of other people. I’ve known them for a long time now at this point and I’ve always said they are like my wrestling dads because they are.”
Gargano talked more about the conversations his team had with other promotions.
“There were conversations, for sure. We’d be dumb not to have those conversations, right? Especially given everything that was going on, the uncertainty around everything,” he said. “I watch everything, I’m a fan of wrestling, and for me, it just felt like I wanted to go to the place that not only could utilize me best but also a place where I already have a relationship with Hunter and a relationship with a lot of people backstage. That was the big thing for me, I’m all about relationships, I’m all about the familiarity and as soon as the change happened, I think there was only one option in my head.”
Gargano continued and said the return to WWE was a no-brainer.
“The fact that I could take my time, wait it out, and kind of just pick my spot in the place I’ve dreamed of working since I was a little kid, it seemed like a no-brainer and it seemed like a home run,” he said.
Gargano is expected to wrestle Austin Theory at WWE Extreme Rules on Saturday, October 8.
For those who missed it, you can click here for details on Gargano revealing his recent body transformation.
Stay tuned to WrestlingHeadlines.com for more. Below is the full interview with Gargano: