Former WWE Superstar Wade Barrett has opened up about his run in the WWE.
Barrett was recently interviewed by the SPORTBible to talk about a wide variety of topics about his WWE career and his life after leaving the company a few years ago. During the interview, he revealed the story behind WWE dropping his ‘Bad News Barrett’ gimmick, which was a fan favorite.
He moved on to use the ‘King Barrett’ gimmick following his win of the King of the Ring tournament. Barrett won the first season of NXT in 2010 and made his Raw debut on 7 June of that year, rising to prominence as the leader of The Nexus.
He headlined five WWE pay-per-view events during the remainder of 2010 and challenging for the WWE Championship in three of those. Barrett formed the Corre with former Nexus members Heath Slater and Justin Gabriel in January 2011 and won his first Intercontinental Championship, which is a title that he has won overall five times.
In 2013, he became Bad News Barrett until becoming the 20th King of the Ring winner in 2015 and changing his ring name to King Barrett. He left WWE in May 2016 and has since taken a hiatus from wrestling in order to focus on his acting career.
"The problem with Bad News was that I was getting a babyface reaction. It was one of those things where it was supposed to be a heel thing but I think people were so entertained by it that they started cheering it and look forward to it, even though I am insulting them.
Vince never wanted me was a babyface, he thought I wrestled like a heel and I was English. He didn't want me to be a babyface at all, which was fine and I was happy being a heel. But I think sometimes the crowd dictates things and even though Vince wants me as a heel, you can't put me as a heel and the only way we could really turn me back into a heel, and stop them cheering for me, was to take away 'Bad News'.
At that point, I was just a guy who had nothing, so I was coming out, I wasn't allowed to do the catchphrase or anything like that. I was just a very bland guy. So they gave me King of the Ring as something to do, I suppose, but doing a King of the Ring in this day and age just doesn't work. It might have worked in the 80's but I think wearing a crown and scepter in this day, to me, it doesn't work."
When asked about his release from WWE, barrett made it clear that he didn’t ask for it but rather his contract expired.
"I didn't really ask to be released. My contract was coming to an end, I'd been there just over nine years at that point - I was not happy with the way my creative had gone and not happy with some stuff behind the scenes, and the way I'd been treated by certain people there, so in my opinion it was time to move on and do something else, at least for a while. I'd been offered a new contract by them, I didn't want to sign; I told them, I was upfront with them. I don't think they were thrilled about it but there's not a lot you can do - I felt that I was wasting my time there.
There's a lot of guys who are not happy with their lot there, I wasn't happy with my lot there for several years but always believed I was capable of getting to the next level through my work or through my performances, and my ability to get over.
It got to the point where I didn't believe I was getting the opportunities to get to the level that I wanted to and I think once I'd seen the writing on the wall from that perspective, it was a very easy decision for me to leave and I'm guessing it was the same for guys like Ryback, guys like Del Rio, guys like Cody, who perhaps, like me, decided it was best to move on too."