Chris Jericho Confirms WWE Departure, Talks Royal Rumble

WWE News: Chris Jericho Confirms WWE Departure, Predicts ‘Royal Rumble’ Surprises

Chris Jericho’s returns to WWE have typically lasted anywhere from several months, a few weeks, or just one night. By his own admission, however, the current WWE United States champion has stayed with the company longer than expected this time around.

Jericho returned to WWE last January to begin the Road the Wrestlemania 32; now he’s preparing for the Road to Wrestlemania 33, the first time Jericho would have competed at back-to-back Wrestlemania’s since Wrestlemania 28 and Wrestlemania 29. However, once Jericho completes his Wrestlemania buildup, the six-time WWE champions tells Metro that he will leave the company soon after that.

“It’s time to get back into Fozzy and there are a couple of other projects I’ve got going on because I don’t do WWE part-time, I do it full-time,” Jericho said. “I come and go, but when I’m working there I’m definitely a full-timer. There will be no wrestling from May, you don’t do both at the same time.”

[Image by Frazer Harrison/Getty Images]

On an episode of his Talk Is Jericho podcast last week, Jericho revealed that he signed a new WWE contract. Jericho previously noted that he had signed a series of WWE contracts since his return last year, taking his run one month at a time. On the same episode, he noted that his rock band Fozzy will play at Rocklahoma and Carolina Rebellion in May and he has three Hollywood projects lined up.

As Jericho’s departure nears, he feels he has scratched everything he wanted to do off his list.

“I’ve had a great year which has gone way longer than it was supposed to. It was only supposed to be four months, then it got extended to eight, then 12 and 16. Wrestling will go on hold for a while which is the way I’ve been doing it since 2010.”

Jericho still has at least three pay-per-views left before he temporarily leaves WWE. The first will be tonight at the Royal Rumble in San Antonio, Texas. Jericho will pull double duty as not only will he compete in the 30-man over the top rope battle royal, he will be suspended above the ring in a shark cage during the Kevin Owens vs. Roman Reigns WWE Universal Championship match.

Jericho has said he will win the match and face Owens for his title (after he defeats Reigns) at Wrestlemania 33. However, in the meantime, Jericho gave his predictions for potential surprise entrants.

Before competing in his 12th Wrestlemania on April 2, Jericho and the rest of the RAW roster will prepare for WWE Fastlane on March 5. The event could be Jericho’s penultimate WWE PPV appearance and the beginning of his Wrestlemania 33 storyline.

Reports have suggested that Jericho will face his on-screen best friend and co-champion Owens. Dissention among the Canadian duo has been teased several times over the past few months.

[Image by WWE]

Facing Jericho in a one-on-one match at Wrestlemania 33 would be Owens’ first singles match on the grandest stage in sports entertainment; he was part of the Intercontinental Championship ladder match last year.

However, before Wrestlemania 33 plans are discussed, Jericho needs to compete in the Royal Rumble match, where “anything can happen,” according to Jericho.

“It’s only January and I’m not leaving until May,” he said. “I suppose I have just as much of a chance as Mojo Rawley has.”

[Featured Image by Simon Hofmann/Bongarts/Getty Images]