During a recent appearance on The Wrestling Inc. Daily, former WWE Intercontinental Champion Carlito opened about the reasons for his departure from WWE in 2010.
“The rigors of traveling all the time [took their toll] on my family life,” he recalled. “It just felt like I needed an escape. I needed to get away, I needed a break from everything.”
Carlito was released in May 2010 due to a violation of the WWE Wellness Program and refusal to attend a rehabilitation facility for a reported addiction to pain killers. Looking back on those days, Carlito admitted he was “in a dark place” especially since he was constantly traveling.
“Even when I wasn’t wrestling for WWE, I was wrestling for my father’s promotion [World Wrestling Council],” said Carlito, the son of WWE Hall of Famer Carlos Colón Sr. “I was on the road all the time, from one airport to the next plane.
“It sounds great to everyone at first. But when you’re traveling all the time, you start to enjoy your time at home more. But, of course, I wasn’t enjoying my time at home, either. I was just in a dark place and needed to get away. I don’t know if I needed to get away for ten years, though [laughs].”
When asked by Wrestling Inc. Managing Editor Nick Hausman to pinpoint the exact time he came out of his dark period, Carlito said it was “2 or 3 years” after he left WWE in 2010.
“I finally had time to just sit and breathe, everything just slowed down for me,” recounted Carlito. “I was able to analyze everything, bide my time, and focus on myself. I didn’t have to be anywhere, which was great. I could also set some goals to set myself right.”
When asked if he has had any talks with AEW, Carlito said that nobody from the new wrestling promotion has contacted him. Not yet, at least.
“While nobody from AEW has reached out, people from Impact Wrestling and NWA have reached out,” he revealed. “There is a lot of interesting places to go right now. So, we’ll see what the future holds.”
During the interview, Carlito also spoke about his experience portraying the character of “Big Kurt Jackson” on the Netflix series GLOW.
“It was a great experience, my first taste of acting. It was a great crew and cast. It was fun to do something new, after wrestling for over 20 years. It was great to feel like a rookie again, to do something I never thought I’d be doing. After that, I have done a few more things [acting gigs] and its also something that interests me.”
You can following Calito on Twitter @aliidayii1. Full audio and video from Carlito’s interview can be found via the embedded players below.