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Kenny King On 2012 ROH Exit, Not Having Heat With Anyone But Jim Cornette, Being Welcomed Back in 2015

August 6, 2020 | Posted by Jeremy Thomas
Kenny King ROH TV

Kenny King was a guest on the latest ROHStrong podcast and discussed his exit from the company in 2012 and being welcomed back in 2015. King’s exit from ROH in 2012 was a big story, as he exited the company while he and Rhett Titus were the ROH Tag Team Champions and headed to TNA. The duo had just won the titles at Best in the World 2012, just before King’s contract was up despite King being unhappy with a lack of bookings and saying he was looking to go elsewhere. Cornette and King reportedly agreed to a handshake deal and King ultimately appeared on a live episode of Impact.

Cornette has been vocally critical, in his usual way, about King’s actions, which forced ROH to vacate the titles. King said on the podcast that there was never any heat from anyone in ROH except Cornette. Cornette was replaced as lead booker in October of 2012 and left ROH a month later. King also discussed how his return ended up happening in 2015. You can check out the highlights and full podcast below:

On his ROH exit in 2012: “Well, I’ll say this. And this is all I’ll say on this part of it. There was just one lame [bleeped] where the departure was not amicable. And that’s a whole other topic for a whole other podcast. But I just want to remain, and I want to be absolutely clear, because I don’t feel like I’ve been clear with this in the past. There was never any heat between me and any other members of the ROH office except for that one lame [bleeped]. And so that, we can fast-forward to the question, which was what were the circumstances of my return. I never had any, as far as I know and I had my ear to the street. And I never heard any undue slander on my name come from Joe Koff, or from Greg [Gilleland], or from [Delirious], or from anyone else ”

On how his return came about: “How it happened was, I remember ROH came to Vegas in February of 2015, and I had just signed a new deal with TNA. And everybody was coming, and I talked to Roddie [Strong] and I talked to Eddie, and I was like, ‘Man, I don’t know if I should come, it might be weird. I just don’t want it to be odd.’ And they were like, ‘Bro, it’s fine. It’s all good. Don’t worry about it, it’s fine.’ After much trepidation, I went. And I show up and it’s going great, because the first face I see is Cary [Silkin]. And Cary is my guy. Cary Silkin is the guy that you know, I used negotiate all my contracts with Cary Silkin in the back of the ECW Arena over a cigar and a handshake. And that’s how the first three or four years of my ROH life went, negotiating with Cary Silkin. So me and Cary are solid.

“Well, guess who the second person I see is? And my heart just drops. It’s Joe Koff. So now, I’m like, ‘Ay-yi-yi-yi-yi. And Joe Koff couldn’t have been nicer, he couldn’t have been more welcoming. As a matter of fact, after our initial pleasantries and ‘Hey, Kenny, it’s great to see you,’ Joe Koff looks at me and says, ‘Are you ready to come back home?’ And I couldn’t believe what I was hearing. I said, ‘Joe, that’s unbelievable. Thank you very much, but I just signed a new contract. But the fact that you even say that, you have no idea how that makes me feel.’ And then so fast forward to August of the same year. So there’s lots of restructuring happening over at TNA and things are not going so great. The whole meltdown of the BDC happens and things are not just happening. They gave me the option to opt-out of my contract, and I did. So about a week after that, I go to the ROH show in Vegas, I see Joe Koff, he asks me, ‘Are you ready to come back home?’ And you know what I said this time? ‘Yes, Joe, I’m ready to come back!'”

On the way he handled his exit helping in his : “Regardless of how it was perceived, I handled myself in a very professional manner when I left. Otherwise, I would have never been welcomed back. It wasn’t a situation where, ‘Okay well, you did us this way and we forgave you.’ There was never any hard feelings to begin with.”

On Cornette’s side of the story: “I mean, it goes deep, right? And this is all I’ll say about it, right? That’s the reason why what he says, it sounds so appealing. Because he knows how to mix facts with bulls**t. So he knows how to seamlessly weave, ‘Okay, these are the facts of the situation, these people were here,’ but then the rest of it’s nonsense. So again, all it really boils down it is that I was welcomed back, and he never was and never will be.”

If you use any of the quotes in this article, please credit ROHStrong with a h/t to 411mania.com for the transcription.