In a recent interview with the AEW Unrestricted podcast, All Elite Wrestling’s Pat Buck discussed several topics, including his decision to depart his role with the WWE, joining All Elite Wrestling within the same week and more.

“Since AEW’s inception, I feel I’ve had an unofficial working relationship with Tony Khan, it’s always been interesting, because I never really thought, after chasing wrestling for so long, not having the TV contract sort-of successful performer that I would be completely working for myself for the rest of my career and I was fine with that. I started in 2001, and 2011 comes and I’ve been wrestling pretty much full-time, everywhere and anywhere, but never really got that opportunity to really cement something and I said, screw this, I’m going to put on a show and become a promoter and luckily, that worked out, I opened my schools and I figured that was what I would be doing the rest of my life and I was fine with it, if I want to wrestle somebody, I’ll book them to wrestle, a poor man’s Jerry Lawler, if you would, this is my area, I’m running 30-50 events a year in the New York-New Jersey area, I have these schools.

Then, my students started getting noticed a lot, primarily and only by AEW, even when I worked at my former place. It was the act of getting independent wrestling talent seen and getting into the system, they had different requirements. Tony and I value talent in a similar light, The Acclaimed, Kris Statlander, Bear Bronson, Mark Sterling, there are six or seven of my kids that I see what they are doing and I think it’s awesome, but I never had an official talk with Tony.

Tons of people I’ve worked with have worked with most of the roster in some capacity, independents or WWE or somewhere. Sonjay Dutt, we worked not just in WWE together, we had a long-standing relationship before that promoting and working shows together, producing shows together. I submitted my release on a Monday morning, post-WrestleMania before RAW and I was on the plane ride back and a certain talent text me and said Tony would like to speak with you on Wednesday. It was a short 12 hours, maybe a little bit longer, maybe 24 hours of going from one place to another, which is pretty wild, but it’s the greatest thing that has happened to me.

I assumed that the moment I walked in, it’s going to be out there and I also thought and I think people would assume when I quit WWE, I didn’t have this lined up. Did I hope in my heart that I’d be here, for sure. Did I hope Tony would recognize this and there is a thing there, I took a gamble on myself and by what happened and being here, it didn’t get out for quite a while, I was kind of shocked. That goes to show you the different kind of respect in the locker room, even the extras booked that day, some of them I booked for WrestleMania and the shows a week ago, they walked in like what the heck is this, but credit our locker room for having that respect, it got out a couple of weeks later, but it shocked me.

It was one of those things where I knew for a while about leaving WWE and it was really because of the schedule primarily. I always wanted to be here, but there was no official thing, however there was randomly I e-mailed Tony, I didn’t hear back, but I was like, AEW has actually done more for me in terms of my reputation in pro wrestling than WWE has. That’s weird to say, because they did take care of me for 3 years and I look back as a positive experience, but the fact that the talent here came that I produced or trained meant the world to me. This is home, it was meant to be. Early on, when AEW was starting, this was the place, there were talks early on and it was right around the time that I took the job with the WWE. So many things were happening here and I ended up going to the WWE, but I’m glad that happened because I feel my tool box and skill set is extremely sharp in terms of production and structure. Now, I get to be here with everybody and do my best to make this a little bit of a better place.”

The interview is available in full at this link.