EXCLUSIVE | Even Vince McMahon thought I was disrespectful: Matt Riddle
The WWE Universe has taken to the laid-back attitude, in your face persona and impressive wrestling ability of Riddle. He won the Dusty Rhodes Classic and NXT Tag Team Championship with Pete Dunne while also holding the record for the fastest match in NXT history when he defeated Kassius Ohno in his debut Takeover match.Updated: Jun 10, 2020 17:10 IST
Matt Riddle joined the WWE in and has quickly established his name in the professional wrestling sphere. The former UFC fighteris one of the most popular wrestlers in the NXT. The WWE Universe has taken to the laid-back attitude, in your face persona and impressive wrestling ability of Riddle. He won the Dusty Rhodes Classic and NXT Tag Team Championship with Pete Dunne while also holding the record for the fastest match in NXT history when he defeated Kassius Ohno in his debut Takeover match.
Riddle was introduced as the newest member of the SmackDown roster last week and wrestled his last match against Timothy Thatcher on NXT. But how does Riddle take that news, is he excited to go to SmackDown or would he have liked to stay in NXT for a little while longer? Riddle maintains that he has dreams to be the face of the WWE and for that to happen he had to move to SmackDown.
“I am extremely excited about coming to SmackDown. It’s not like I don’t like NXT or what they represent but I want to grow and get bigger. I want to be at Royal Rumble, I want to be at WrestleMania, I want to be the main event and I can’t do that at NXT. You can be great at NXT, have great matches, have great moments at takeovers but you can’t be the guy. Or as I would say it, The Bro,” Riddle said in an exclusive interview.
“I am glad I got the call. I am glad that I am working with Vince McMahon and Bruce Prichard. I am glad that I get to wrestle AJ Styles, Daniel Bryan, Cesaro, Baron Corbin, or Sheamus. This is what I have been dreaming of.”
Now that Riddle is moving to SmackDown, there must be some feuds he would have in mind. Riddle says that there is only one grudge match that he can of and that is against Baron Corbin, who pinned him at Survivor Series and then threw him out of the ring at Royal Rumble.
“One feud that has got to happen as the guy has cost me too much already. Baron Corbin threw me out of the Royal Rumble, the guy pinned me after pinned Randy Orton at Survivor Series. I feel like he has it coming. But there are dream matches also like with Daniel Bryan, Cesaro, Nakamura, Sheamus, Jeff Hardy. Endless possibilities with dream matches but when it comes to grudge matches, Baron Corbin has rubbed the Bro the wrong way.”
Riddle has been in constant news due to his vocal issues with wrestlers like Goldberg and Brock Lesnar. He has constantly spoken out against former WWE champion Goldberg, criticizing his wrestling ability. It is widely known that both the superstars are not fond of each other. Riddle explained why he rubs the wrestlers the wrong way. He said that pro wrestlers get offended very easily and they might be jealous of him.
“I don’t want to make anybody really mad or upset. But people take things extremely personal and get offended pretty easily, especially in pro wrestling. You would think people would have thick skins but a lot of them don’t. You can rub them the wrong way very quickly. When it comes to people that matter, people that are important, people that sign my cheques, I haven’t upset any of them. They all like me and that’s what matters to me.”
“There might be some other wrestlers, I won’t mention names, they might be jealous because I am the new toy coming in. But at the end of the day, it’s just egos and money. Some people might get upset as I called somebody out or got them upset but that’s my job. My job is to make people care about what I am doing. And Sometimes I am going to ruffle some feathers for real and I am gonna get people really mad for real. But I can tell you this, my employer does not mind. Some of the toys in the toy chest mind but that’s not my problem either.
“If they have a problem they can say it to me, we can deal with it. And you know I fought in the UFC, I am a pretty bad person. If they want to step up to the plate then they are more than welcome to. I am also willing to have an intellectual conversation about it and we can talk about our differences.”
There were reports that Riddle had a backstage altercation with Brock Lesnar at Royal Rumble. It was mentioned that Lesnar said that he would never face Riddle in a match. The ‘Bro’ has always maintained that he wants to retire Lesnar in WWE and that might have been taken as disrespectful by the ‘Beast’. Riddle always revealed that WWE Chairman Vince McMahon also might have taken his demeanour as disrespectful.
“I think they take my demeanour and my mindset or how I look at things as disrespect. I think even Vince might have taken it as me being disrespectful. When I talked to Goldberg, I told him I wasn’t being disrespectful, I was just telling the truth and me being honest.
“Brock Lesnar misunderstood what I was saying. I said I want to retire you, It’s been my goal since I started wrestling. It is because in my head it was that I would become a legend in the process. It just happens that I am still going and the match might actually happen. That’s it, bro. And Brock took that a little sideways. There’s nothing personal, it’s just business. End of the day, somebody like Goldberg, I hurt his ego a little bit.
“With Brock, like somebody wants to retire, it hurt his ego a little bit. I get it but I don’t get it because if somebody did that to me I would be flattered as someone’s talking about me. Somebody is basing their entire career on retiring me because I am that good. But they don’t understand it that way, they don’t see it that way and they take it as disrespect. And that’s how they take it, it’s fine. All I can do is change their mind. I can do that with money or become more popular, so that’s what I will do.”
Riddle has made it clear that his goal is to become ‘The Guy’ in the WWE and he would continue to ruffle some feathers in the company due to his honest attitude. Now he is set to play a big part in the SmackDown roster and if things fall in the right place, Riddle could actually face Lesnar in the WWE.