Backstage Report On Upcoming AEW Departure

The winds of change have been hitting AEW over the past month, with the likes of wrestler/producer QT Marshall, and behind-the-scenes executives like Kevin Sullivan, Rafael Morffi, and Dana Massie all set to leave the promotion on January 1. As it turns out, however, there will be another wrestler joining Marshall in skipping town.

Fightful Select reports that Shawn Spears will also be departing AEW on January 1, when his contract will expire. In a brief statement, Spears confirmed his departure, and that it was amicable between both sides.

"What a wonderful time it has been," Spears said. "Thank you AEW for allowing me to be there from the ground level. It's been a fantastic 5 years of growth and personal development. This is a personal choice and one that is best for me and my family at this time. Thank you to all, staff and talent alike for the memories."

As with the other departures, Spears had been part of AEW since the beginning, joining the promotion in the spring of 2019. Spears, who initially gained fame in WWE as Tye Dillinger, was a big part of AEW's earlier years, feuding with Cody Rhodes and joining the stable The Pinnacle, alongside MJF, FTR, Tully Blanchard, and Wardlow, in 2021. After the group disbanded, however, Spears found himself in no man's land and he hadn't wrestled in AEW since September.

Spears will still have plenty to look forward to however, as he and his wife Cassie Lee, aka former WWE star Peyton Royce, announced earlier this week that they were expecting their second child. The couple welcomed their son, Austin, on January 17 of this year.