Jonathan Coachman returned to WWE and was a part of their programming for a while before he was moved off once again. They wanted him to take part in the XFL, but that revamped league didn’t last very long at all. There were apparently some issues with payment.
During a conversation with AdFreeShows, Coach revealed that he didn’t want to return to WWE or any other pro wrestling company. He returned to WWE so he could help them, but the whole experience left him with a bad taste in his mouth after seeing how the company treated others.
“I have a very bad taste in my mouth from the sport of wrestling right now. I am at a point in my life that everything I do, I want it to be positive. I want it to be working with people that care about other people. I want to be working with companies, as I am now with and CBS, and the PGA Tour and EA Sports, that they put people first. When I returned to WWE I made it very clear I was there to help them try to grow. The things I saw and the way they were treating people and then ultimately a year ago, when they asked me specifically to come back and do the XFL because, and this is a quote, ‘We need somebody from the WWE on that side to give Vince what he wants.'”
Coach said that he paid out of his own pocket to travel for the XFL, and then the company bounced a big check when trying to pay him. Then they fired Coachman a week after they handed him a rubber check.
“So, from January to March, I flew coast to coast because I live in California. They didn’t have the expenses set up because it was technically a different company. So I paid my own expenses, which was between $8000 and $20,000. I was supposed to be reimbursed later. Because I had a 20-year relationship, I didn’t feel the need to turn in, you know, your invoices to get paid, that sort of thing. Because I’ve always lived up to my end of the bargain. I’ve never not come through on my end. They bounced a big check to me and to this day have not paid. It’s not a grand, it’s not two grand, it’s a lot more than that. I reached out and the week after they bounced that big check on the XFL side they cut my contract on the WWE side.”
“The XFL was a mess. It went into bankruptcy. A lot of people got stiffed. And when you treat people that way, and I’m a survivor, I was fine. They still owe me that money. But there were other people that was their full-time job and they got called on a Friday and told they were out of a job and they were not going to make any more money. Sometimes when you’re a leader, you are called on to sacrifice, not cash checks and stock for millions of dollars when you’re bouncing checks. I can only tell you what I know and if anybody wants to question me on it, I’ve got the receipts. When somebody does that and then somebody who has asked you many many many many times over the years to sacrifice time with your family, sacrifice your body, sacrifice a lot of other things, and then you’re treated that way on the back end, I’m not okay with that.”
“I will never work with somebody like that again. So the taste in my mouth from wrestling right now is very very bitter. Because when you put 20 years into somebody, and a relationship, to help them build their brand and then they just turned their back on you over to them a little bit of money. To me, it was a lot of money. Then at the same time, they’re just cashing in millions of dollars in stock and laying people off the same day that they’re doing that. It’s just bad business. To me, you can’t take money when you’re gone. You can’t take anything but your legacy and how you treat people. I know that I treat people great every single day of my life. So I go to bed and put my head down, but when I got that reaction, and they basically told me, they said, ‘That’s another company. I don’t know, we’ll talk to Vince, but well, I don’t know if there’s anything I can do.’ That’s when I knew that I had been gotten just like so many other people have been gotten before. That they were willing to throw away somebody that was dedicated to them for 20 years over money, and that’s why we’ll never go back.”
Jonathan Coachman is doing his own thing now and it doesn’t seem that he’s game to make a return to WWE any time soon. That is understandable, especially after hearing about this experience.
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Thanks to Fightful for the quote