Keith Lee certainly had a solid run in NXT, where he won both the NXT and North American Championships. Fans thought he would find success in the WWE main roster but that did not end up happening at all. Tony Khan also commented on WWE releasing Keith Lee and Swerve Strickland.

Keith Lee was released by WWE last year after he failed to get over with the fans due to his Bearcat Lee gimmick. The move ultimately disappointed fans as they wanted to see him succeed in WWE.

WWE even ended up releasing Hit Row, including Swerve Strickland. Both Lee and Strickland made their way to AEW this year. While speaking to  Rasslin’ with Brandon F. Walker, AEW President Tony Khan made it clear he couldn’t understand what WWE was thinking after releasing Keith Lee and Swerve Strickland.

Also, speaking of established stars coming in, Swerve Strickland and right before that Keith Lee. I can’t believe these guys got fired by any wrestling company in the world. I don’t know what the hell you’re thinking if you run a wrestling company and you don’t have a spot for Swerve Strickland and Keith Lee. I get that there are only so many positions in a company but I think any company that has those guys and, you know, it wasn’t like they’re unreasonable guys. They’re great! I love both guys. They’ve been a huge part of what we’re doing here now, too.”


Keith Lee and Swerve Strickland are currently working together in AEW, as they are also feuding with Team Taz. We’ll have to see how they will be booked in the coming months.

h/t to Fightful for the quotes

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Tags: Tony Khan
Subhojeet Mukherjee

Subhojeet is a professional wrestling fan for over 22 years. He got captivated by the sport during the Monday Night Wars and has a passion for it ever since. He also enjoys TV shows, movies, anime, novels and music, which broadens his perspective and appreciation for wrestling. He is a knowledgeable and respected voice in the industry.

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