There was a familiar face that debuted on this week’s edition of AEW Dynamite in Miami. The former Aleister Black (and Tommy End) appeared on Dynamite with a familiar look and a new name – Malakai Black. It was reported that Black, who was released by WWE on June 2, had a unique clause in his WWE contract because instead of a 90-day no-compete clause like most main roster WWE wrestlers, Black had a 30-day no-compete clause because it was never changed from when his NXT run. It was a clerical error on WWE’s part and AEW took advantage of it to debut Black as soon as they could.
— All Elite Wrestling (@AEW) July 8, 2021
Black went on the Twitch channel belonging to his wife (WWE’s Zelina Vega) to talk about his AEW debut. Thanks to our friends at Fightful for the transcript of some of Black’s most interesting comments.
Here’s Malakai Black talking about his AEW debut and keeping it a surprise:
“It was a hassle to keep under wraps. Once I found out that my contract was a tad different than the usual, I just came up with this idea. I had already made the character movie and I came up with this idea and the company liked it so we ran with it. It was all very last second. I feel like, in modern day wrestling, there are few moments to make a genuine surprise and get people to look your way. For me to sneak in, not be seen, dip and dive so they wouldn’t see me, that took some skill. Kudos to AEW and the entire crew. What a great operation they have there. It feels good where I’m in a place where my creative mind can be utilized instead of stopped and controlled and knowing that things weren’t going to work.”
It should be noted that there were reports that Black may have been at Dynamite, but it wasn’t known for sure if Black was going to appear on Dynamite the way that he did.
During Dynamite this week, the lights went out multiple times to tease Black’s debut and Black spoke about how it was his idea.
“I pitched that idea and said, ‘what if we do multiple blackouts throughout the show and insinuated the technical difficulties?’ Commentary did a great job getting that over and it came off great.”
Black mentioned that his wife and dad knew about his AEW Dynamite debut, but he tried to keep it limited to only a few people.
“We made it a thing to make it available to as limited people as possible because that’s how you keep it under wraps. Security, Cody Rhodes, and a few others. It may have been five or six total people. It was a good feeling. It’s been a rough seven or eight months but I feel like I got a win last night. I feel wrestling got a win.”
Black was really happy with how the debut was done and called it one of the best things that has happened in his career.
“Last night was top three one of my favorite moments of my career. I slept for three hours because my adrenaline was so high. It was the cumulation of months and months and months and having this big payoff was worth the pain, chaos, and perseverance.”
Black had nice words to say about AEW’s President Tony Khan, which isn’t a surprise when talking about a guy that you work for.
“My first impression of Tony is great. What a fucking wonderful dude. Really nice guy. Loves his company. Love wrestling.”
Lastly, Black talked about how he felt like this was the right move for him.
“It was the right move for me to make for me, my family, my career, the state of mind I’m in. It’s just a really good company. I can’t say enough good things about it. They have a bright future. There are a lot of dedicated people and I’m really glad to be part of it.”
There were rumors that WWE might have wanted to get Black back after cutting him, but it didn’t happen and now Black is in AEW.
You can watch Black’s debut below.