Former NXT Star Jake Atlas has opened up about wanting to leave WWE before he was eventually released by the company.
Speaking on Instint Culture with Denise Salcedo, Jake Atlas recalled turning down a WWE contract extension in July. Atlas explained that he struggled with his mental health during his time with the company, noting that he wanted to prioritise his own well-being.
Discussing the end of his WWE tenure, Atlas said:
“When I turned down the contract extension, I counter offered with some terms of my own and I more than anything wanted a meeting with Triple H and our conversations were kind of at a standstill and as you know Canyon ended up getting let go himself.
“So then that put me in a really weird situation, I had asked Canyon for my release at some point in our conversations, it wasn’t a ‘I wanna leave,’ it was more so a conversation of ‘ I want to be here, and feel like I have so much value and I feel like I am not being heard.’
“I had requested a meeting with Triple H for 6 months, and I never got it. I think that that was the thing that kinda had me worrying the most in that ‘I don’t know how they see me, or how they view me, or how they value me.’ There were a lot of things that I wanted to do and talk about and I was just given the runaround.
“So I said that ‘I wanted to ask for my release, I don’t want to, I want to stay but my mental health comes first and I am suffering. I took a trip to LA to unwind, and I wanted to go back for the summer, then I came back and it was the week after that I got let go.
“I don’t have the answer as to if I was already on the chopping block which is why I was hesitant to even say that I asked for my release because then people would be like ‘you’re ungrateful.’ I understand the narratives that people will want to say by me saying that I wanted to quit.
“You have to understand that my mental health was really bad, not at that given moment. I am strong now but the entire time it was not good. So I felt like I needed to leave for myself like I needed to put myself first. So I just want people to understand and not think that I was ungrateful for having a job because they’ve been releasing left and right.
“I take my mental health and my sanity and being alive before I take having a job. To this day I don’t know if I was already on that list to have been cut or if they went through Canyon’s emails after he got let go, saw that I didn’t want to be there. I wish I knew that answer, but I don’t want to ask.
“I’ve moved on completely, I obviously asked for a reason and when it happened it’s like be careful for what you wish for, you got it, what’s next?”
Atlas was released by WWE on August 6.
Following the passing of former WCW star Daffney, Atlas opened up about WWE paying for 6 months of his therapy, saying the company saved his live.He is set to wrestle at ROH Death Before Dishonor this Sunday.
If you are experiencing mental health struggles, information on where you can find help is available at this link: https://migration-stage.wrestletalk.com/features/support-wrestletalk-support-each-other/
Transcription by Denise Salcedo, via Wrestlezone.
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