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Former WWE Superstar Jack Swagger spoke with the folks from The Wrestling Estate ahead of the WrestleJam 16 charity wrestling event he is headlining this weekend. Below are some of the highlights from the interview.

On whether or not there was a specific moment where he decided he wanted to leave WWE: “I’m very grateful for the career I’ve had, but I’ve seen a lot of friends go and I had been passed over for opportunities. I don’t want to blame anyone else for something that I didn’t achieve because that’s just not the way to go through life. But it did get frustrating not even being on the playing field, not being allowed to compete. So it was a combination of that and pro wrestling being as popular as it is now that I felt I could take advantage of 10 years of TV exposure. I want to move forward and see where that takes me.

“I don’t regret it. I’m very glad that I did it because I needed a change. I needed to find a way to push myself again. This is definitely doing it. Be careful what you ask for. It’s a lot less stressful, but at the same time, a lot more work. Now you’re handling everything. We handled a bunch before, but now it seems like more. But it’s been fun. I have 100% creative control over my character and merchandise.”

On whether or not he is considering fighting for Bellator MMA: “I’m considering going into MMA. Like I said earlier, combat sports is at an all-time high in popularity. I’m lucky that I still can go and have exposure outside of MMA. I’ve been training. I’m still trying to figure out the best route. I’m 100% serious about it because the reward that could come from it would be astronomical. Plus, it’s something I’ve done all my life. Maybe not MMA-totally, but it’s very similar to competing in wrestling, just with punches. It’s kind of a natural transition for me. When you leave WWE, you need to find a way to use that exposure for whatever you want. This would be a great way – I just have to learn to bob and weave a little bit, and don’t get tapped out. But I’m very excited about it. The sky is the limit and my body has never felt better, which is surprising at 35 and after 10 years of traveling.”

On whether or not he was surprised to see CM Punk make the transition to MMA: “I’m considering going into MMA. Like I said earlier, combat sports is at an all-time high in popularity. I’m lucky that I still can go and have exposure outside of MMA. I’ve been training. I’m still trying to figure out the best route. I’m 100% serious about it because the reward that could come from it would be astronomical. Plus, it’s something I’ve done all my life. Maybe not MMA-totally, but it’s very similar to competing in wrestling, just with punches. It’s kind of a natural transition for me. When you leave WWE, you need to find a way to use that exposure for whatever you want. This would be a great way – I just have to learn to bob and weave a little bit, and don’t get tapped out. But I’m very excited about it. The sky is the limit and my body has never felt better, which is surprising at 35 and after 10 years of traveling.”

Check out the complete Jack Swagger interview at TheWrestlingEstate.com.

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