With everything that’s happened in the pro wrestling this summer, it’s easy to forget that four months ago Wardlow may have been the hottest act in the business.
His quest to break free from Maxwell Jacob Friedman (in kayfabe, Wardlow worked for MJF and not AEW) was a really well done angle. Arenas were LOUD for the War Dog as he entered — handcuffed and without music, at Friedman’s direction — to powerbomb his way to a shot at his boss.
When that shot came at Double or Nothing, though? Wardlow was an afterthought. Fans and the wrestle web had spent the last 24 hours reading reports about Max’s issues with Tony Khan, no showing a meet & greet, and even parsing flight records to see if he was still in Las Vegas for the PPV.
Wardlow’s spoken a bit in the past on his feelings regarding MJF. In an interview with Digital Spy’s Stephanie Chase, he’s now opened up a bit more on what was supposed to be his big Memorial Day weekend moment:
“That should be considered one of the best nights of my life and it really wasn’t.
“Everything that was going on with Max at the time and then in my life personally. Just nothing was going right and it’s kind of sad that everything built up to this big night and there was so much that ruined it.
“All the crap with Max and everything he was pulling. I mean, I showed up that day not knowing if I was wrestling. There’s a lot more I could say about it but I don’t want to get angry but yeah, that should have been one of the best nights of my life and obviously the outcome was amazing but I really didn’t ever have the opportunity to enjoy it.”
Despite winning the TNT title, the Wardlow express hasn’t really been able to regain the momentum it lost when CM Punk’s World title win and MJF’s “pipebomb” became the story after Double or Nothing. AEW’s booking hasn’t helped matters, either. None of Wardlow’s title feuds has been terribly memorable, and the angle behind one of them will continue at All Out — where his rivalry with Jay Lethal is taking a backseat to the dream showdown between their tag partners, FTR & Motor City Machine Guns.
Still, Wardlow points to Double or Nothing as the root of the problem:
“I feel like ever since that night things have kind of been just off and I feel like I’m still trying to get back on track ever since that night and we’ll get there.
“But it is what it is, in this in life and in this business, not everything goes perfectly.”
Wardlow acknowledges that, other than defending against Lethal, he hasn’t “done anything since being TNT champion.” But he vows to prove he’s the hardest worker on the roster, and regain what he lost that weekend in Vegas.
Let us know if you think he’ll be able to, Cagesiders.