Although he will not 100 percent rule out an in-ring return, Nigel feels his present day strengths lie elsewhere.
Dating back to late 2016/early 2017, Nigel McGuinness had been with the WWE as a commentator. He started off calling the first-ever WWE United Kingdom Championship tournament. He then moved over to NXT and went on to call the action for 205 Live, NXT UK and NXT Level Up.
Nigel finished up with the company in October 2022. This coming Thursday in Santa Monica, California, he’ll be doing a magic show titled ‘CELEBRATION: The Magic of Nigel McGuinness’ and to promote that, he appeared on the Two Man Power Trip of Wrestling Podcast.
When it comes to his exit from WWE, McGuinness said it was not a huge shock. He added that he’s grateful to have been employed as long as he was.
It wasn’t a huge shock to me (being released from WWE). I don’t think so. I think with the NXT U.K. brand being put on hiatus and moving a lot of guys over to NXT, I kind of wasn’t being used as much as I might be and so I understood. Certainly, I’m not sure how much longer that role was gonna be there. I was very grateful to still be employed as long as I was, doing the smaller shows in terms of (NXT) Level Up or 205 (Live). The ability to work with younger guys and stuff like that and watch younger guys just breaking into this industry, that was a great experience in and of itself but to answer your point, there wasn’t a huge shock. Again, I just had felt very grateful about everything that had happened there and very appreciative of the six years of the learning and the education and the experience.
The last time the former ROH World Champion wrestled was in December of 2011. McGuinness feels his current strengths in the wrestling business are outside of the ring but would not rule out the idea of returning to the ring.
He cited talents such as Edge, Lita and Trish Stratus who have come back to help the next generation. Nigel recalled a conversation he had with someone in WWE who stated that he could get back in the ring anytime he wanted. He responded by saying he probably could, but is not sure if he could get back out.
That’s the million dollar question isn’t it? Exactly, yeah. Everybody’s asked me that as soon as I went my separate ways from WWE as well. I can’t give a definitive answer other than to say that I certainly feel my strengths at this point in my life are in other aspects of the industry but I wouldn’t rule it out 100 percent either, you know? There’s always that part of you that wants to have that final moment but sometimes, cooler and smarter heads have to prevail. So, it’s a cliché of course just to never say never. See a lot of people, Edge, Lita, Trish (Stratus) of course, a lot of people come back and have really, really good matches and have a really positive influence on the industry and in a way they are able to help the next generation. I think that’s fantastic so, only time will tell what really happens from here. I got a lot of strings to my boat. Getting ready to fire.
It would be amazing to me (if I returned to the ring). Someone said to me when I was actually at WWE, they said, ‘You know, Nigel, I bet you could get in the ring tomorrow.’ I said, ‘Absolutely. I’m just not sure if I could get back out.’
Continuing on that topic, McGuinness touched on what his future in wrestling could look like. He said he’s open to offers and possibilities of being involved in some capacity. He said there’s been some ‘bites’ here and there but nothing is official.
McGuinness feels he’d be silly to walk away from a business that has treated him so well throughout the years.
Oh, I’m certainly open to offers and possibilities and obviously, I’ve been putting some feelers out there, seeing if there’s any interest. There’s been various different bites here and there but without going into the details, nothing’s taken yet but hopefully, you know, professional wrestling is an industry that I’ve devoted the last portion of my life to and when I went my separate ways from WWE and I sat down with a piece of paper obviously, I wrote down wrestling as one of those things because I’d be silly to walk away from an industry that has treated me so well and given me so many blessings over the last 10, 20 years so, certainly open to offers but nothing definitive right now. It’s a very exciting, interesting world in the professional wrestling industry at the moment. Always is but especially right now, WrestleMania season, it’s so many people from all over the world coming into Los Angeles. There’s a lot going on, a lot to talk about too.
In May, Nigel is scheduled to appear for PROGRESS Wrestling at their Super Strong Style 16 show.
If the quotes in this article are used, please credit the Two Man Power Trip of Wrestling with an H/T to POST Wrestling for the transcriptions.