Ever since Paul “Triple H” Levesque came to creative power within the WWE Univese, fans have been scouring the independent wrestling markets to determine which of “his guys” could be in play for a return to The Fed. So far, those dreams have largely and widely been answered, as WWE has brought back more than a dozen acts released during the pandemic, may of whom, including Johnny Gargano, Karrion Kross, and Hit Row were very much “Triple H guys” but that still hasn’t left fans from pining to see other acts with Levesque-connections from returning, with the tweets of FTR, Swerve Strickland and Keith Lee routinely littered with fans suggesting they should return to WWE when their respective deals come to an end, as they, according to said fans, just aren’t as good in AEW.
Unfortunately for these WWE free agent fanatics, it would appear one team in AEW, FTR, aka The Revival, decidedly weren’t Triple H guys, as Dax Harwood noted in an interview with Inside the Ropes
“I always knew, or at least had a hunch that we were not Hunter guys,” Harwood said via Wrestleside News. “Even when we were at our peak in ‘NXT,’ we weren’t Hunter guys. For example, the two out of three falls match we had with DIY — which has now gone down as maybe one of the greatest tag matches in WWE history — but Hunter, and I don’t think I’ve ever told this, but Hunter wanted that to be a two-straight fall win for DIY. We had to fight for it to get two falls to one.”
Now, for fans in the know, this revelation is pretty interesting, as Vince McMahon was notoriously not a fan of The Revival either, with the former head booker once telling the duo they had the “worst match he’d ever seen.” With Levesque booking both RAW and SmackDown and McMahon back in the company too, albeit in a more vague role moving forward, FTR will have to weigh that into their plans moving forward, as they don’t want to re-sign with WWE only to find themselves a square peg in a round hole once more.
FTR finally weighed in on the ending of Blood and Guts.
On FTR the podcast, Harwood discussed The Pinnacle’s match with the Inner Circle at Blood and Guts, where the two team’s took part in Tony Khan’s answer to WarGames. While fans at the time weren’t too happy with the finish, as MJF threw Chris, Jericho, off the top of the cage onto a very clearly placed crash pad, Harwood let it be known that the wrestlers wished it was executed better too.
“Yeah, that finish the ending how it went down, did kind of suck,” Dax Harwood admitted via WrestleZone. “It wasn’t the fault of any of the performers. I just think that, again, this was during the pandemic era, so we were all working without a net on how to shoot things. Daily’s Place kind of made it a little difficult to shoot. But that’s the cards we were dealt. First Blood and Guts match ever in AEW. And again, like I said, working on live TV without a net.
“So the way it was shot is the reason that the fans soured on it. And again, I don’t blame the cameraman or the directors, the producers, nobody knew. It was just those are the cards that we were dealt. So when I say that, it was the way it was shot. I don’t mean that in a bad way. I just mean that we were all still in the process of learning how to deal with this pandemic-era style of wrestling.
“I thought the idea for the finish was great. I thought that the execution going into it was done well. It’s just the way it was shot probably could have been thought through a little bit more considering the small confines of the Daily’s Place.”
Asked by his co-host Matt Koon about how the finish felt for the guys in the ring, Harwood noted that no one felt good after the match and that it very well may have hampered the feud between The Pinnacle and Inner Circle.
“Yeah, it was embarrassing. If you think about it, God, it just didn’t help the feud at all,” Dax Harwood said. “You know what I mean? It probably hindered it more than anything. So I think we had worked so hard to make this match special. And I think it was pretty special, decently special. And good up until that one moment, and then like you said, that’s all everyone can talk about and all everyone can remember.
“But it is weird also to me that the same people that sh*t on it, sh*t on the finish, also would have sh*t on it if it looked too dangerous. They would have said that we weren’t taking enough care of our talent. we were throwing caution to the wind.
“So to those people, It’s not everybody; it’s not all AEW fans or all wrestling fans. It’s just to a certain group of people. There is no pleasing them. So you have to sometimes pick your poison. But in saying that, in the defense of those fans, it could have been shot a little better.”
Fortunately, AEW seemed to have fixed their Blood and Guts issues for the second running of the match and that effort received much better reviews. While it’s unfortunate that The Pinnicle-Inner Circle was to effectively serve as a guinea pig for the effort, at least no one was seriously injured, which is what matters most.