On a recent episode of The Wrestling Inc. Daily, Matt Taven and Mike Bennett of The OGK returned to the podcast to chat with Wrestling Inc. Managing Editor Nick Hausman about reuniting as a tag team after Bennett returned to ROH. With Bennett’s return to ROH and the return of the original Kingdom, Hausman asked Bennett if fans can expect Maria to return to the group as well.
“Maria, I’ll never say no because she’s my wife, so if she ever wants to come back, she’s always more than willing to. The Kingdom’s just as much her as it was me, and Matt and [Adam] Cole,” Bennett noted. “The door’s always open for her. I will say this about Maria though, she’s very, as most people know, she’s very methodical. She’s very methodical in her decisions.
“When Maria comes back, she’ll come back when she wants to come back on her terms, doing what she wants to do because that’s how she’s always done it, and I’m sure as hell not going to tell her any other way. I will never say never, Maria back to the Kingdom, but where Maria’s mind is at now, I would definitely say when she returns to wrestling, it’ll be her decision [and] her choice doing what she wants to do. She’s been doing this a long time, and she’s done a lot in this industry. So she’s deserved a rest, and she deserve to come back when she wants to.”
Current WWE NXT Superstar Adam Cole was also an original member of The Kingdom, but Hausman noted that it does not seem likely that Cole would ever return to ROH and to The Kingdom. Bennett said that Cole “joined the dark side” before Taven noted that he and Cole are still friends, and they would always welcome Cole back to The Kingdom.
Bennett stated, “He joined the dark side.”
“Would we welcome our friend back, yeah,” Taven responded. “It’s one of those things that The Kingdom always worked because it was real friends. It was a real group of guys that hung out with one another. I think I texted Adam a joke yesterday just out of the blue. It’s one of those things that’s not just put together in front of the camera.
“It’s as as real as it gets, and I would always get asked the question, ‘Do you want to team with Bennett again?’ And I’d be like, ‘Is a five-pound robin fat?’ Of course I want to travel the world with my best friend. What kind of question’s that? There’s only one person who’s ever screwed up The Kingdom thing and that’s balloon boy there, Vinnie.”
Bennett later said that they are not actively looking for members but noted that if someone is a fit, then they won’t say no. He also reiterated Taven’s point that The Kingdom was always a group of friends and that is why it worked well.
“We’re not actively looking,” Bennett said. “We’re not doing a Diva Search. It’s one of those things, like Matt said, The Kingdom has always worked because it was always actual real-life friends who traveled the world together and did things together. When The Kingdom first started, it was me, and Cole, and Matt Hardy and Maria, and we were all in this together.
“Matt was looking to help out me and Cole, who are younger guys. Me and Cole were trying to get our footing. When Hardy left, the idea was thrown out for Taven to come in because it was another person — he might have not have been officially in The Kingdom, but unofficially, at that time, he really was, and so it’s all right, come on in. With us now, if there’s a fit, we’ll never say no.
“We’ll just know that it’s a fit, and then we’ll work with it from there. We’re not like, ‘Oh we need a fourth member because we got to juice up the ratings a little.’ No, it’s will this work, or will this won’t work, and that’s that’s how we go. And most of the time, it just happens organically anyway.”
Taven also added that Bennett just came back and reunited with him. He questions why people already want to see something new when they haven’t seen the new version of him and Bennett yet.
“I just want to say, why is everyone in such a rush for things to change? We had just got back together,” Taven pointed out. “It just happened, and everyone’s like, ‘So when are you guys going to change everything?’ It’s like, I haven’t even done it yet okay. Let me cook the meal before you change the recipe.”
Taven and Bennett’s full interview aired as part of a recent episode of our podcast, The Wrestling Inc. Daily. Subscribe to get the latest episodes as soon as it’s released Monday – Friday afternoon by clicking here.