Big Update On When Sting's AEW Contract Expires

Sting has been a constant presence in AEW for over two years, both as Darby Allin's mentor/advisor and a carefully protected in-ring special attraction, going back to his surprise debut at the first "Winter is Coming" event in December 2020. His time in AEW has more or less universally been viewed as a huge success that greatly exceeded expectations, where "The Icon" has been used carefully in tag team matches that, while they were laid out carefully to protect him, still featured Sting going way above and beyond what would be expected of him, with balcony dives becoming something of a trademark. And according to Sting himself in a feature article released on D Magazine's website, this pleasantly surprising coda to his career is ending soon.

In the article, Mike Piellucci writes that Sting's AEW contract expires this year—Sting won't get more specific—and that "[w]hen it ends, so will his time behind the face paint." Sting further explains in the article that "[w}hatever I do, I want wrestling fans to say, 'That was incredible,'" hoping to avoid a situation where the reaction is "That was embarrassing" after a poor performance that shows his age. "I just want it to be a great memory and then to just finally, once and for all, say, 'Adios.'"

Sting also noted that he came very close to calling it quits after the match he and Allin had with FTR at Dynamite Grand Slam in September 2021.He felt his mobility was compromised by a hip injury suffered days earlier and was not happy with it.

The denouement of Sting's career comes as the legend is set to team with Allin alongside The Great Muta in Muta's retirement match against Hakushi, AKIRA and Naomichi Marufuji on January 22.