Kevin Kelly on his decision to leave NJPW

Nov 3, 2023 - by James Walsh

In an interview with AEW Unrestricted (via Fightful), Kevin Kelly went into more detail about his decision to leave New Japan Pro Wrestling, a decision he announced back in September.

He said:

“Because my wife said, ‘I don’t want to be alone anymore.’ I’m not lying. We’ve been together 33 years, married 30. I told her, when the time is right, you tell me and I will stop going to Japan because I’ve been gone weeks at a time, months at a time. Come home briefly, go back weeks at a time. We’ve all missed birthdays and family vacations and those types of things, but when you’re missing Christmas and you’re missing New Years and you’re missing anniversaries and you’re missing everything, it just gets to be too much. So, when this AEW opportunity came around, the first conversation that Tony and I had was about still keeping up on New Japan commitments and he said, ‘Yeah that’s fine, we’ll have Ian or somebody fill in.’ He and I figured it would probably be 12 dates a year and I talked to [my wife] about it, and she was like, I don’t want to be alone anymore. I was like, okay, say no more, that’s it. I talked to New Japan, I talked with Tony. I got these two [shows] that I definitely have to do for New Japan, but after that, I’m just going to be here in the states, here in North America within a couple hours flight. I’ll be gone away from home as much as AEW needs me, but I’ll always be that close. I’ll never be more than half of a day away.”

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