Right now, there are many current and former WWE stars who are disgruntled with the way that they have been used by the company. Shawn Spears, f.k.a. Tye Dillinger, is the latest to voice his issues. The recent AEW signee sat down with Chris Van Vliet and spoke about his time with WWE.
"Everybody has a different story," said Spears. "A lot of big stories right now are people not being granted releases. I look at it now from a personal standpoint, I don't really put myself in anyone else's shoes because I can't. I look at it from my personal point of view and I know I made the right decision, right call for me, professionally and personally."
Even though Spears takes the complaints on a case by case basis, he sees the problems both as a wrestler and a fan. He also feels that changes are coming to the current product because they have to.
"It's difficult for me," Spears added. "I'm able to still see the issues I had back then (with the current product). Now with a big company, that has had one show, they are the second biggest company, that is massive. That is going to shake the very foundation of WWE, whether anyone wants to admit that or not, that is happening. Because I see it, I hear about it, the scrambles, we are an hour on TV and still writing shows. Everybody has their own path.
"I don't look at it as how they are treating people, I look at it as an overall product. And they are going to have to change things up, step things up if they are going to give the audience a product they want to see."
Spears was a last-minute entrant into the Casino Battle Royale at AEW debut show Double or Nothing. Despite AEW only having one show, Spears has his opinion on the biggest difference between the clashing organizations.
"Credibility," Spears stated. "Talent needs credibility. They don't necessarily need pushes. Everyone is like you should push this guy. I see it on the internet all the time, they are burying this guy, not everyone needs a push, everyone needs credibility. If you are watching television and two guys come out and you are already able to tell what the finish of that match is based on entrances alone, that's a problem.
"Now you are giving the audience the chance to change the channel, they don't care, they are not invested. I said to the Chairman (Vince McMahon, when he requested his release), 'With all due respect, we are insulting their intelligence.'"
In regard to his own issues with WWE, Spears feels they missed out on how he could contribute and they did not have a plan for him once he joined the main roster.
"There wasn't one specific thing, just a combination of missed moments, missed opportunities," Spears explained. "You have to understand when you sign up for something like that, a company like that, good things will fall through the cracks. A lot of guys are picked ahead of time before they walk in the door. People say, 'That is my guy, I'm going to mold him, shape him, present him to the audience the way I feel he should be presented.' If something on the side is getting popular, getting bigger than I had initially planned, doesn't matter, I'm going this way."
"Looking back at it now, there was no plan in place," Spears exclaimed. "I was there for two years, there was never a storyline never an angle. I think the closest thing I had to that was with AJ Styles and Baron Corbin for the US title. But I was put in there to keep them apart for five weeks until the pay-per-view match, so they didn't wrestle each other every week. During that time people were like, 'Hmm, this actually works.' I was having good matches with AJ, working with Corbin, by the time the event rolled around, it was still AJ Styles versus Baron Corbin and everyone thought we were going towards a triple threat. It took both of those guys going to Vince saying you need to put him in this match right now."
You may view the full interview above. If you use any of the quotes in this article, please credit Chris Van Vliet with a h/t to Wrestling Inc. for the transcription.