Former WWE Talent Matt Cardona Discusses Wrestlers Connecting With The Audience

The self-proclaimed "Indie God" and current GCW general manager, Matt Cardona, while on the shelf with a pec injury, is an advocate for giving back to the wrestling business and helping younger talent navigate the independent scene. 


Cardona is known to show up to shows with merchandise to sell and interacts with fans before wrestling a match, and he recently spoke about the process on "Busted Open Radio." He said it's not just about the extra money he makes, but connecting with the audience. The former WWE star said younger talent not taking advantage of the pre-show opportunities as he does "blows his mind."

"I get to these shows, I bring like a whole mall with me, and I set up and I'm there," Cardona said. "Of course, it's to make extra money but it's to make a connection with the audience. Whether you want to be so nice to them, or you're an a****** 'heel,' you can make a connection. I get to these shows, sometimes I'm the only person selling stuff beforehand. I'm like, 'What are you guys doing?'"


Cardona mentioned Steph De Lander, whom he has helped along the way, claiming she's making more money on merchandise than she's paid to wrestle. He believes pro wrestlers are more preoccupied with going over their match than making a personal connection with fans. Cardona said it's confusing why wrestlers "b***h and moan" about what they're getting paid, but don't put in the extra effort.

"To them, it's all about the moves," he said. "A lot of these independent wrestlers, they have to get noticed somehow. I'm not saying 'Don't do cool stuff.' I'm not saying that at all, but why can't you also make a connection with the audience, make some extra money, and then do these cool moves."

If you use any quotes from this article, please credit "Busted Open Radio," and provide a h/t to Wrestling Inc. for the transcription.