After 25 years with WWE, Henry joined AEW in May as a commentator and coach. He explained on his Busted Open radio show earlier this month that McMahon reluctantly told him he should leave WWE if he wanted to.
Speaking on Renee Paquette’s Oral Sessions podcast, the 2018 WWE Hall of Famer elaborated on his final conversation with the WWE Chairman before leaving:
“I told Vince, I was like, ‘Man, I hope you don’t have any ill will or negative feeling,’” Henry said. “He said, ‘Mark, I know you’re gonna be great at whatever you do. You approach things from a point of not wanting to fail, as opposed to wanting to have success, and those people always do good. I just can’t do it right now [give Henry the deal he wanted].’ I said, ‘Well, I appreciate you being honest with me because if I were to sit around and wait, I don’t think that nobody beneath you is gonna call me and tell me straight up what it is.’”
A former powerlifter, Mark Henry signed a 10-year contract with WWE after the 1996 Olympic Games. Henry worked as an in-ring competitor for Vince McMahon’s company between 1996 and 2017 before transitioning into a role as a backstage mentor.
Mark Henry asked Vince McMahon for a more important role in WWE
Former WWE Superstars including Hulk Hogan and Ric Flair have signed 'Legends' contracts with the company in recent years. The contract enables WWE to use their likeness for merchandise and other WWE-related deals.
Mark Henry worked under a 'Legends' contract after his in-ring career ended. However, due to concerns about his lack of importance to WWE, he decided to speak to Vince McMahon about changing the deal:
“I talked to Vince probably about six months ago and I said, ‘Man, I really, really wanna do more. A Legends deal is not enough,’” Henry said. “For the usage of my name, I was doing a loan-out agreement for them to use and license my name, and it was coming up. I didn’t wanna re-sign unless I was gonna be working there as an employee.”
During the same conversation, Mark Henry told Vince McMahon he wanted to be involved in educational programming and community work. He also had an interest in becoming a WWE writer and an agent.
Please credit Oral Sessions and give a H/T to Sportskeeda Wrestling for the transcription if you use quotes from this article.
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