Johnny Gargano is watching with pride as two young talents climb the ranks in WWE. Gargano helped mentor Austin Theory and Indi Hartwell during his final year in the company. Theory was drafted to RAW late last year and had a prior run on RAW in early 2020 when the company was producing pandemic-era programming at the WWE Performance Center.

Since returning to WWE’s main roster, Theory has been featured regularly on RAW, sharing the screen with Vince McMahon on an almost weekly basis.

“It feels like Austin just kind of went from me being his father figure to Vince McMahon now being his father figure,” Gargano told ComicBook.com. “But yeah, it’s wild, man. I’m so happy for him because he does work really, really hard.”

Theory and Hartwell were part of The Way in NXT. The faction was led by Johnny Gargon and Candice LeRae during Gargano’s final year in NXT.

Theory’s time in The Way happened between his first stint on RAW in early 2020 and his return to the main roster late last year. Gargano embraced his role in helping him and Hartwell improve.

“It was always my mission this past year to put them in a position where they could be Superstars. And they’re so young and they’re so talented, the both of them, and I feel like WWE has such a gold mine in Austin and Indi that I hope they take advantage of it because I feel like they can make that company a lot of money for many, many years.

“But yeah, it’s so cool to see,” Gargano continued. “I left a comment on one of (Theory’s) Instagram posts and told him to go become WWE Champion because he’s got all the tools to do it. So it’s just very cool to see him get that opportunity.

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