Speaking through his official social media accounts, Johnny Gargano, who finished up his independent commitments before he reports to WWE on a full-time basis, issued a statement thanking everyone for his time on the independent scene.

“To every promoter that’s ever booked me, to every fan that’s ever supported me, to every performer I’ve ever shared a locker room with..THANK YOU for the past 12 years. It’s been an unforgettable journey and I absolutely would not be where I am today without each and every single person I’ve encountered along the way. One way or another, you’ve all helped make a chubby little 8 year old boy’s improbable lifelong dream come true.

I am eternally grateful to you and thankful for this crazy world we call independent wrestling. Whatever happens..I will always be me..a kid from Cleveland, Ohio and in my heart, I will always be an independent wrestler. I will do whatever I can to make you guys proud in this next chapter of my career. I love you all.”