FTR left WWE because they wanted to help grow tag team wrestling and help the division, and knew that they couldn’t do that if they stayed in WWE, Dax Harwood recently revealed.
One half of the team formerly known as “The Revival” spoke candidly on the maiden episode of his podcast, lifted the lid on how he and his partner managed to leave the WWE and sign for Tony Khan’s promotion within the year.
Their run in WWE had been mixed up until that point. They had won all the tag team titles available in the company, including the NXT and WWE Tag Team Championships, in a successful run that ultimately left them creatively unfulfilled.
Vince McMahon never appreciated the art of tag team wrestling and refused to push FTR as “Top Guys”, nor respected their craft in two-on-two matches.
They were left to try and managed poor gimmicks and non-existent storylines, which pushed them to leave the company in 2020.
Speaking on the debut episode of “FTR With Dax Harwood“, the former AEW Tag Team Champion let slip why he and partner Cash Wheeler walked out of WWE at the end of their contracts.
He revealed FTR left WWE because they could not grow the tag team division in WWE as much as they could in AEW and that the opportunity to showcase their craft was much better moving to Tony Khan’s promotion.
“I do think that you should be grateful for what you have, but I also believe that if you don’t stand up for what you believe in, no one else will. And me and Cash worked with the biggest wrestling company in the world and there was a time we knew we had to move on.”
“We never did that. We just wanted better for ourselves. We wanted better for the tag team division because we knew that if the division grew, we could grow with that division. And we knew that if we stayed in the rut that we were in, we were never gonna be elevated.”
FTR made their AEW debut on the May 27, 2020, saving long-time online rivals The Young Bucks from an attack by The Butcher and The Blade.
They would have some legendary matches against the brothers, losing the tag team titles they won from Adam Page & Kenny Omega to the Bucks at AEW Full Gear 2020.
They went on to win a multitude of titles while signed to AEW. They are one time AEW Tag Team Champions, as well as holding the ROH, IWGP Heavyweight and AAA Tag Team Championships at the same time – the first duo in AEW to hold three sets of championships at any one time.
There are many rumours about the pair leaving AEW. Cash Wheeler and Dax Harwood could move back to WWE once their contract runs out in mid-2023, given the fact that Triple H – a big fan of The Revival during their time in NXT – taking over the running of WWE Creative in 2022 due to the retirement of Vince McMahon.
FTR has requested their release multiple times during their WWE career, even before AEW became a viable alternative for wrestlers to work for.
On April 10, FTR (then known as The Revival) were granted their releases from WWE, fifteen months after their request in January 2019.
Then known as Scott Dawson and Dash Wilder, the pair were known as one of the best tag teams in the world and thoroughly underutilized and saddled with poor gimmicks by a man who did not understand the art of tag team wrestling.
After their release, they were quoted as saying “the tag team division doesn’t get respect, it doesn’t get the time that we think a lot of these teams deserve, and we want to take chances on ourselves”.
He also noted that “the tag team titles, they don’t really mean anything” in the WWE. They were multiple time world champions (they won gold less than a year before they were released) but were not treated as the “top guys” they thought they were.
FTR left WWE to sign for AEW, and are set to wrestle against The Young Bucks at All In, despite Cash Wheeler being arrested for assault with a firearm just weeks befroe.
Hamish is a writer and podcaster and wrestling fan who is a key part of the Atletifo team.
After playing countless hours of WrestleMania X8 on the Gamecube, he discovered Rey Mysterio getting his head crushed by The Great Khali, and thus a love for professional wrestling was born.
He is also a Media Graduate, as well as writing for multiple sites about Premier League football and the culture of Wales – his home country.