Dax Harwood and Cash Wheeler are due to challenge for the AEW World Tag Team Titles very soon.
However, it will be more than just the gold on the line, as FTR has promised to leave AEW if they don’t defeat The Gunns. The storyline plays into the story that has been told online concerning FTR’s contracts and the possibility that the pair could become free agents in April.
While discussing the storyline, Bryan Alvarez of the Wrestling Observer, recently stated he “wasn’t buying it” and called out for FTR hinting they might sign elsewhere while working for AEW.
“I have not bought this whole deal that they’ve been telling for months now. I haven’t bought it, not one bit have I bought it. This ‘our deals are up.’ I don’t buy it for a second. I think that they have either been re-signed, or their deals were never coming up, they still have time left on the deals. And this whole thing has just been a storyline to set up this deal right here [Gunns vs FTR]…
Even if their deal IS up in April, I am so sick of people talking about how they might want to go somewhere else. How is this helping AEW? It’s now a storyline, all these guys going on Twitter, and crying about how they want to leave! This is not what this company needs! It needs FTR to have great fucking tag team matches, go in there, win the tag team titles, we don’t need this aspect of the storyline. That they may quit. I don’t know. Golly. This business has passed me by.”
Speaking on a recent episode of his podcast FTR, Dax Harwood had a strong response to the criticism. Harwood began by hitting back at suggestions that he had mentioned working for someone else on AEW television.
“Not one single time, dude. Not one time have we mentioned anything with our contracts on TV. The only time I’ve mentioned it is on my Twitter, where I talk about my personal life, and on this podcast. That’s okay if he doesn’t buy it. That’s totally okay if he doesn’t buy it.
What I will say are the tons of other people who buy it. And the tons of other people that were in the arena that night when I put our careers on the line, and like I said, they audibly gasped. At the fact that I put that on the line, and they were like ‘oh my god, we don’t know what’s gonna happen.’ Or the thousands of people that tweet at me, and they don’t know what we’re gonna do.
I’ve been very transparent with what I’m gonna do, very transparent that I’m not playing one company against another. But y’know, he’s telling me what I should and shouldn’t do, ‘go and have great matches. Everybody wants to see FTR have great matches. Just do that.’ No, dude! That is the most asinine thing I’ve ever heard in my entire life.
Great matches are icing on the cake. The great matches are icing on the cake. I want them to *care* about me. I want them to care about *Cash*. And they do, man. They fucking love us! They love us, dude! A love that outside of my wife and daughter I never thought I could feel.”
Harwood added that it shouldn’t even matter if the contract situation is all a story, as that’s what professional wrestling is built on.
“So whether this is a story or not, whether this is, as he says, not real, or whether he buys it or not… why does it matter? Professional wrestling is about emotion, professional wrestling is about story. If we didn’t have the fuckin’ story with the Ass Boys from 8-10 months ago, if we didn’t start that, and finish it off with this, if this is ‘just a story’, why would anybody care about this match we’re having?”
“I’ll Never Be Awarded A Five Star Match” – Dax Harwood
The AEW star explained that while having good matches is important, storytelling is the real hook. Harwood said that he’ll probably “never be awarded a ‘five-star match,'” after his comments.
“Having great matches is awesome. I get it. But having a story, and let’s say all this is fake. Let’s say everything I said over the last year and a half has built up to this moment. So what. So what. That’s wrestling. That’s storytelling. That’s what it’s all about. And if it’s not? And I’ve been telling the truth? So what. That’s wrestling. That’s storytelling, too. Because the people care anyway. Either way we go about it, the people care about it, man. And that’s the business I’m in.
I’m probably from now on, the day we’re recording is March 25th 2023, from now on going forward never be awarded a ‘five-star match.’ I don’t give a damn. Cause I don’t just wrestle for them [Alvarez, Meltzer, et al]. I wrestle for everybody. For all the fans. I wrestle for them because I want to make them care, make them feel the way I felt when I was 8, 9, 10, 11, 15, 16 years old. That’s what I want.”
The multiple-time World Tag Team Champion then challenged Alvarez to meet him face-to-face to tell him why his vision of wrestling is wrong.
Now what I say to Alvarez is. I would imagine you’re gonna be at a scrum, or you’re going to be at an AEW pay-per-view. Dude, I’m not your friend. But I want you, the you behind this mic, I want you to keep the exact same energy. I want you to come to my face and explain, explain professional wrestling to me. Please. Explain it to me and tell me why the way I’ve done it, on a mainstream level for ten years, is ‘wrong.’
And tell me how this five-foot-ten, shitty-ass body, shitty-ass mustache, bald-ass, dumbass accent, has made it to the heights I’ve made it. Please tell me, dude. Cause I would love to hear your answer, face-to-face. GodDANG, [Matt], you got me fired up! Invite [Alvarez] to the live show! Tell him to come explain it to me at the live show! I’d love that. I’ll give him his own mic, his own platform, and we can talk about it face-to-face.”
Harwood closed by claiming that Alvarez thinks he has an understanding of the business and the situation so he “doesn’t want to learn anymore.”
H/t to 411 Mania