Former AEW Star Mike Santana Opens Up About Fallout With Former Partner Ortiz

Mike Santana and Ortiz were one of the first tag teams to join AEW in 2019, making an impact on the premiere episode of "AEW Dynamite" by joining up with Chris Jericho, Jake Hager, and Sammy Guevara to form The Inner Circle. Despite their promise as a team, Santana and Ortiz never captured the AEW World Tag Team Championship, with the two breaking up in 2022 amid rumors of discontent. Santana recently left AEW, and appearing on "Insight with Chris Van Vliet," the wrestler opened up regarding his split with Ortiz.


"We were together for 10 years, I think," Santana said. "When you're together with someone that long, it's like a married couple, right? There's good, there's bad. ... I think we just grew apart over time and, also, our visions for the tag team and its future and its success — we weren't on the same page when it came to a lot of those things."

Santana then stated that everybody has their own way of handling their careers, and he and Ortiz stopped seeing eye-to-eye on the matter. Without giving any labels to his former partner, the former LAX wrestler referred to himself as a "go-getter" who is willing to fight for the position he believes he deserves. Santana didn't feel that Ortiz saw things the same way.


According to the former AEW performer, Santana's desire to expand into more singles matches also caused friction between the two. However, he doesn't think there is any animosity remaining between himself and his former tag team partner following their "AEW Rampage" match last year.

"I told him after the match, ... 'Yo, I hope the best for you,'" Santana continued. "'I hope you do well and there's no hard feelings.' I hold no hate, no grudge, nothing."

If you use any of the quotes in this article, please credit "Insight with Chris Van Vliet" with a h/t to Wrestling Inc. for the transcription.