Today, Jake Atlas (Kenny Marquez) confirmed to SoCalUncensored.com that he is stepping away from wrestling and has pulled out of all future bookings. Atlas advised he is stepping away for his mental health and the anxiety pro-wrestling has been giving him.
He also mentioned that he had been dealing with the effects of having COVID-19 last year, taking a toll on him physically and that he “simply lost his passion for wrestling” and plans on exploring completely different industries to find that passion again.
This comes after a match this past weekend in Ring of Honor, where there was some speculation that Atlas may have been injured. Atlas did confirm that he was not injured but that he just “simply can not keep going anymore.”
Here is the full statement Atlas released on Twitter:
I’m not concussed or “banged up.” I simply just can’t keep going anymore. Take your mental health seriously, both for yourselves & for each other, because we only have one life to live. Thank you to anyone who did support me for 5 years. I didn’t do much, but what I did was fun.
I’m stepping away from wrestling completely right now so please don’t ask me to do interviews/appearances. I’d like my privacy to be respected. At 26 years old, I’ve got my entire life ahead of me & I’m choosing to explore completely different industries to find my passion again.
Unfortunately, it was unhealthy for me the entire time. I just learned how to hide it really well. I hope that friends & fans I’ve made alike continue to support me no matter what.
When we spoke to Atlas, he said he was not doing any interviews about stepping away from wrestling but wanted to thank Santino Bros, Joey, and Sylvia Munoz for all they’ve done for him. Atlas also expressed to us that he wanted to thank all of the fans who have supported him on his journey so far and that while he won’t be wrestling, he isn’t going anywhere and will still be regularly updating his social media with whatever he is doing on his next adventure.
Jake Atlas debuted in 2016 and won the 2017 Southern California Rookie of the Year Award, becoming the first openly gay wrestler to do so. He was named the 2019 Southern California Wrestler of the Year and Most Outstanding Wrestler in Southern California. He became the third wrestler to win both of those awards in the same year.
In late 2019, Atlas signed with WWE, and reported to NXT in January 2020. In WWE, Atlas was used sparingly but did make several appearances on 205 Live. He was released from his WWE contract last month.
Atlas was scheduled to make his Southern California pro-wrestling return on the September 26 PWG event in Los Angeles before announcing that he is stepping away.