Wade Barrett still has a little left in the tank, but seeing him make his in-ring return with WWE remains to be seen.
Barrett was a recent guest on WWE After The Bell, and co-host Vic Joseph opened the conversation talking about Barrett’s WWE career and his exploits on commentary as well. Barrett (aka Stu Bennett) said he always knew he wanted to be an announcer one day, and “fortunately” this opportunity with NXT came at the right time for him. He says Michael Cole recruited him for the job and it’s been a fun ride ever since.
In regards to his in-ring return, Vic Joseph asked if there’s a chance we see him back in the ring. Barrett said he loves working in the booth for NXT, but doesn’t think it would be hard to talk him back into the squared circle.
“I’m all about the big paydays, Mr. Joseph. You know, It would not take much to remove me from the seat next to you and get back in the ring. I will say, [I] very much enjoy my job with NXT,” Barrett said, “but I have always made sure there is at least a little bit left in the tank.”
We’re afraid we’ve got some GOOD news! @VicJosephWWE chats with @WWENXT broadcast partner @StuBennett about his transition to commentary, whether he’ll ever compete again and more! Follow #AfterTheBell all #WrestleMania Week on @spotifypodcasts! https://t.co/fJiqndfHPU pic.twitter.com/bFK81gJ2sh
— WWE After The Bell (@AfterTheBellWWE) April 8, 2021
The idea of Barrett’s in-ring return has been tossed around before, with Nick Aldis recently revealing he’d spoken to him about while Barrett (then Stu Bennett) was working for the NWA.
Barrett also spoke with WrestleZone last year about his early commentary work and how Dusty Rhodes had been an early supporter of him. Barrett explained that Dusty Rhodes saw something in him early on in Florida Championship Wrestling and that getting the opportunity to tell a story in that form is something that has always appealed to him.
“Yeah, 100 percent. I’d say even prior to WOS, in fact probably even before anybody knew who Wade Barrett was, I was a commentator in Florida Championship Wrestling in 2008 and 2009. I was in developmental at the time and this was a time when developmental was seen as the “red-headed stepchild” of WWE, it was never mentioned and you’d never see references to us on the WWE website, anything like that. Nobody really knew what was going on in Florida apart from the people in Florida that got the local network’s show.
“Dusty Rhodes, who was the head of creative at that time in FCW, liked the way I presented and liked the way I talked. He was a supporter of mine and gave me the opportunity to be the color commentator down there. He liked what he saw and he left me on there for the better part of a year, and soon after that the writers of WWE TV took notice and said, ‘We like the way this guy talks, can he wrestle?’ ‘Yeah, he can wrestle.’ ‘Let’s get him on the show!’ And I was on NXT season one straight away then. That took me in a different direction and obviously I wrestled for a long time, but in the back of my head, I knew that when I was done in the ring, whenever that would be, I would want to go on and commentate in some capacity, someplace. To this day, it’s something that I love doing. It’s a chance for me to add story, add character, add personality to essentially what is a stunt show in the ring. It allows me to tell other people’s stories by commentating and that has always been the draw of pro wrestling to me above anything else.”