Jack Evans: I Got A Bit Lazy In AEW
Jack Evans takes responsibility for his AEW release
Former AEW star Jack Evans has opened up on his recent release from the company.
Speaking with Chris Van Vliet on Insight, the high-flyer claimed that although injury layoffs led to confidence issues, he believes the guaranteed salary led to laziness and a deterioration of his in-ring skills.
Detailing his injuries and explaining the effect of the COVID-19 pandemic, Evans said:
"I feel for that first year, the run went good and we had a little place of semi-comedic tag team, not straight comedy, but we were doing stuff with Kevin Smith and we had a place. Then there was the Mexican border. Me and Angelico got stuck in Mexico and it got closed for the COVID restrictions. We had a four-month layoff, I came back, had one match, and then in practice before a match, I got my face broken again. Then, I had another month and a half, two-month layoff and I feel after that, I never came back. I feel I deteriorated.
"I can't even blame it on ring rust. I don't know what happened, but after that, I never came back, we never had the same momentum, but it wasn't one of those things where I felt like I was wrestling good and the momentum didn't get started. I felt like I had deteriorated in the ring and it started giving me these self-confidence problems. Anyone who knows me, who has been in the locker room, I'm so nervous before my matches. I dry heave. I'm the most annoying guy in the locker room. When I step through the curtain, 100% confident and even cocky. With this thing, I'd go through the curtain and still be nervous as hell.
"After the COVID layoff and the layoff from the face break, I feel on a personal level, I never came back to wrestle like me, both character, in-ring, anything. Also, that salary contract made me a bit soft. There was even a little while where I got plump. I kind of fell off after that layoff and I only started getting back on the ball towards the end and by then, the company had already made up his mind on me. I did get kinda, not lazy in the ring, but I wasn't as good in the ring and I was lazy outside the ring. It all started with the original COVID layoff and face break layoff".
Going into further detail on being a salaried performer and how it affected him, Evans said:
"It made me soft. Totally no fire, nothing. I just wasn't going down and doing the lucha training, I used to always practice a little something to keep up on my skills, and I didn't. I went through eight or nine months of nothing. The only exercise I would get was in the ring. I really do think it was my fault for getting too [internet connection issues]...basically, after I started getting that salaried money, I turned a bit lazy and I feel it was bad for me and helped speed along in-ring deterioration".
Evans refused to blame anyone but himself for his release, noting that his tag team partner Angelico's contract was renewed while his was not.
Asked whether things might have been different if not for COVID and other layoffs, Evans was hesitant to fully agree:
"I don't think, in the end, that would have changed anything. In the end, it really came down to me having an extended period of laziness. During that period, I probably would have been used more and maybe I would have stayed on the ball more if I didn't have that big layoff. I really think I didn't have the right mentality when I was on salary. It felt like it was going to last forever".