Tommy Dreamer is set to turn 50 this Saturday, potentially celebrating by challenging Impact World Champion Rich Swann for his title at Impact Wrestling: Rebellion. Swann offered Dreamer a title shot, but the Innovator of Violence has yet to formally accept the match.

Despite not having the contest officially on the pay-per-view card yet, fans have already criticized the potential match-up. Speaking on a media call, Dreamer responded to the disapproval, specifically questioning why fans hate on the older generation of wrestlers.

“I’m not a social justice warrior, but I see a lot of people straight up hating that I’m getting a world title shot for the fact that I’m 50 years old,” Dreamer said. “And they’re like, ‘Oh, there’s so much youth’ and all that stuff. Okay, number one: do you not like me because I’m going to be 50 on my birthday? Like, I’m sorry I’m 50 and I’m still wrestling? But there should never be that about anything. Like, I’ve even said that it’s a gift and it’s something that Rich [Swann] wanted to do. So how do you begrudge someone?

“David Arquette, someone said, ‘Hey! You’re a big fan. Do you want to wrestle for the world title?’ And that was met with such hatred in this dark day in professional wrestling. Yet here’s a guy… Like, if someone said to me or D’Lo [Brown], ‘Hey, there’s a football game on Sunday. It’s called the Super Bowl. Would you like to play one down?’ I don’t know anybody that wouldn’t say yes.”

Dreamer pointed to a similar situation that played out in WWE. While fans were strongly behind Edge in the lead up to the Royal Rumble match, there was immediate backlash when the Rated-R Superstar won the battle royale.

“You look at Edge, who’s two years younger than I,” Dreamer said. “What a great story, you know, for him to win the Royal Rumble. And then the moment he won it, you have all these people like, ‘He shouldn’t have won it. He’s too old.’ And I’m like, ‘Wait, you loved it before he won it!’ Or my favorite is, everyone was rejoicing Victoria was in it. Victoria’s older than me!”

The Heart and Soul of ECW is expected to accept the challenge, but if he doesn’t, it could be chalked up as one of the bigger missed opportunities in his career. Speaking of missed opportunities, Dreamer teased that he had Impact World Title intentions last year when Tessa Blanchard held the strap. The former ECW Champion revealed he pitched a program with Blanchard, but it never came to fruition.

“In Impact Wrestling, as you know I had a great relationship with Tessa Blanchard, and I was kind of her mention,” Dreamer said. “And I wanted to do, this is for old wrestling fans, Mr. Wrestling #2 vs. Magnum TA. And I wanted to actually turn heel on her, and beat her for the title. Then transition it to somebody else. But I wanted to turn on her and be total, total heel. It didn’t happen, but I think it would’ve been pretty damn good if it did because you would’ve had people hating on me and my biggest heat was, ‘You turned on a woman? Who trusted you?’ I thought it would’ve been pretty damn good, but it didn’t happen.”

If you use any quotes from this article, please credit Impact Wrestling Press Pass with an h/t to Wrestling Inc. for the transcription.