A funny thing happened during WWE Royal Rumble weekend in San Antonio. I was attending a Special Olympics event that WWE was hosting and towards the end, they invited the press to do interviews with the talent on hand. Two of those talents were Chad Gable and Otis, better known as Alpha Academy, and I had the chance to speak with them separately. There was one question I wanted to ask each of them, “How would you feel about FTR returning to WWE?”
It seemed like a good question to ask because both men had worked with FTR in WWE NXT when they were in different tag teams, American Alpha and Heavy Machinery, respectively. I wasn’t sure what to expect but when I asked Gable first, he seemed open to the idea, if not giddy about it.
Otis, on the other hand, was far less receptive, simply responding, “I actually don’t care one way or the other.” Before adding, “If they want to come over here and do business, let’s do business.” Later, off camera, when I asked Gable about Otis’ response, he insinuated that each of them had different experiences working with The Revival, as they were known in WWE.
I definitely wanted to know more about why their experiences were so different, so I decided to ask Dax Harwood about it in an exclusive interview conducted for Haus of Wrestling.
“I think Chad Gable understands that if we come over there, I think that he gets that the level of sportsmanship, the level of work, is going to go through the roof,” Harwood started. “I think Otis probably understands that the level of sportsmanship and the level of work is going to go through the roof, and he might not like that too much. I think Gable is always up for the challenge, I think he thinks he is the best and I think he wants to prove he is the best.”
Harwood went on to discuss how much he and Wheeler enjoyed working with American Alpha in WWE NXT, noting that the four men became good friends out of the ring. His praise for Gable didn’t end there, either, as he boldly labeled Gable, “the most underrated wrestler in the world right now.” He then joked that FTR’s M.O. was trying to blow up their opponents in the ring and Gable and Jordan were the only two men they couldn’t do that to.
“I think we got along well in WWE,” Harwood said of his time working with Otis. “I know that I and Cash were saddled with teaching him towards the end of our run there. If you see some of the house shows we were working with him and Tucker. Tucker was always grade-A. He’s a great professional wrestler, the chips just didn’t fall in his favor.
“Otis, on the other hand, still had a lot to learn and we were saddled with teaching him and I think sometimes, like always, I can be a bit abrasive and say, ‘hey, you might of dropped me on my head tonight,’ or, ‘you gotta be up for this,’ but I would try to teach him things but my style of teaching can be abrasive.”
“Maybe that’s where Otis … or maybe he just doesn’t give a f-ck? I don’t know,” Harwood continued. “Maybe he doesn’t care if we come or not? And, that’s what she said, by the way. I don’t know, I love Gable. I would love, love, love, love the opportunity to have one more match with him. Maybe he’ll show up at my live event if he’s not afraid of getting in trouble in LA.”
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