When asked if he ever had any interactions with WWE owner and chairman Vince McMahon, Sw3rve stated they had limited interactions but weren’t close. That said, Sw3rve also revealed that McMahon gave Hit Row some creative freedom when they first came up.
“I had a couple of conversations with him, like, little discussions,” Sw3rve said. “I won’t say we were close. We didn’t have time to get really close like that. But when we first came up, he definitely was a fan of our work. It was like, he gave us a lot of freedom.”
Sw3rve also discussed his thoughts on the current WWE product. He believes that talent only has wiggle room if they’re in a top spot. Otherwise, Sw3rve believes, there could be consequences for speaking out about creative.
“They’re in a time right now that everybody just needs to toe the line from like top to bottom, you know?” Sw3rve said. “There’s only wiggle room for these kind of like… you only got like four of those guys that can really be free speaking and move in that way. They kind of like, want to nail it down to like, everybody toes the line. Anyone speaks out of turn, they’re pushed away or you’re off TV for like five months and you don’t know why. Because you spoke out.”
Having spent most of his time in WWE working for the NXT brand, Sw3rve The Realest talked about the changes to the brand since the arrival of NXT 2.0. He believes part of the reason he and Hit Row ultimately didn’t make it in WWE was because WWE couldn’t mold them like they did other acts, and aside from himself, the rest of the group wasn’t integrated into WWE the way other acts were.
“I feel like, based off what I’m seeing from the product now, with like main roster and NXT, ambition can be misconstrued as like, a disrespectful thing,” Sw3rve said. “It can’t be ‘we don’t wait our turn or like, we’re jumping pecking order or things like that.’ Yeah, we got this way because we all had ideas and we were like, hell-bent, and we were all focused on the same thing, just had different ways of doing it, but that’s what made us move together, you know? What they want from talent and their product now, they want guys with no shape. They just wanna mold their own clay. They want hand-delivered talent ready to go unless you have guys that have been integrated in your system for a long time and years like a Tomasso, a Pete Dunne, a WALTER, GUNTHER, whoever.
“They’ve been there for so long, they’re familiar with them and they’re comfortable with them, you know? Adam Cole would’ve been one of those guys if he chose to stay. But they would’ve been, they have equity and they’ve been lasting long with the company and they have a rapport with them. We’re a lot of these type. I think I’m the longest-tenured person there, in this group. So they trusted me, but for everybody else, they were still new. So us coming up with ideas ready to go, we wanted to jump out on TV, we wanted to do all these things. I feel like for them, it was just like ‘no, we want that.’ I feel like for them, we were already a made product, we didn’t need anymore detailing. They wanted to detail and I guess for them, that was a turn-off for them. So they just dispersed it because there was nothing more to detail.”
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