Breaking: Shawn Spears Officially Parting Ways With AEW

Earlier today, Fightful reported that Shawn Spears, one of AEW’s original talent hires, would be leaving the company to become a free agent on January 1. It was noted that the split between Spears and All Elite Wrestling is amicable. Spears has taken to X to confirm the news, and issue a statement to his fans.

“What a wonderful time it has been,” he began. “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. #10.”

He added one more note in a follow-up post.

“Most importantly, to the incredible fans of ALL professional wrestling: I love you guys,” he concluded. “I really do.”

Prior to his time in AEW, Spears worked in WWE for over a decade under the name Tye Dillinger. His gimmick was that of a high-end athlete who considered himself a “10” and would flash a hand sign to get fans chanting the same. Once in AEW, he was quickly put into a top program with current WWE star Cody Rhodes, with whom he has had a long-time friendship.

As part of their feud during AEW’s inaugural year, Spears leveled Rhodes with a brutal unprotected chair shot at Fyter Fest. Following the blow, Spears christened himself “The Chairman” and began walking around with a steel chair. The gimmick evolved into an elaborate entrance that saw him sitting backlit at the top of the entrance ramp. Over time, Spears was used less and less by the company, with his last Dynamite match taking place in May 2022. He was last seen in action as part of the AEW All Out Zero Hour pre-show, competing in the Over Budget Charity Battle Royal.