Many successful talents in professional wrestling today have made their way through the Bullet Club, a faction in NJPW created by Prince Devitt, now known as Finn Balor in WWE. The original group members were Devitt, Karl Anderson, Tama Tonga, and Bad Luck Fale, with Fale being the only member to never leave the Bull Club since its inception in early May of 2013.
While on “The Extreme Life of Matt Hardy Podcast,” former 10-time WWE Tag Team Champion and current AEW Star Matt Hardy revealed how Vince McMahon reacted to constantly seeing Bullet Club merch on wrestling fans at WWE shows.
“When this Bullet Club phenomenon was happening, and they were selling all this merch, I mean, obviously, it was on Vince’s radar,” Hardy said. “There was one point where Vince said, ‘All these shirts, they keep showing up at our shows, these Bullet Club shirts, who are these people? Who are these people? Where are they from?’ ‘It’s this real hot act. They’re from New Japan; sometimes they come over and do Ring of Honor stuff,’ and Vince said, ‘I want them. I want them all.'”… He got a lot of the Bullet Club, but he didn’t get them all.”
Vince McMahon may not have been able to get all of the talents that went through the Bullet Club; however, he was still able to bring over talents such as Adam Cole and the Good Brothers. Those three are no longer with WWE but found success during their time with the company, as Cole became the second triple crown champion in NXT history, and the Good Brothers won the Raw Tag Team Championships on two different occasions.
AJ Styles and Finn Balor both came over to WWE after they were each Bullet Club’s leaders and have found significant success in WWE as they both are former World Champions, former Intercontinental Champions, and United States Champions. Styles and Balor are both currently on the “Monday Night Raw” brand in WWE.
The talents McMahon could not get that the company showed interest in are some of the main pillars in WWE’s most prominent rival promotion since WCW — AEW. Kenny Omega, the Young Bucks, and “Hangman” Adam Page all had interest shown by WWE; however, none of them chose to go that route and instead placed themselves in AEW, which at the time was a startup company. Omega and the Bucks, along with former Bullet Club member Cody Rhodes, who has since left the company and returned to WWE, were the original EVPs and have all won championship gold in AEW.
The Bullet Club still exists to this day; however, the group doesn’t have the popularity surrounding it that it once did when Omega was the leader of the group. The current leader of the Bullet Club is Jay White, leading other members Bad Luck Fale, KENTA, Gedo, Chase Owens, Ace Austin, Chris Bey, Karl Anderson, Doc Gallows, Juice Robinson, El Phantasmo, Hikuleo, and Taiji Ishimori. Bullet Club also has a subgroup known as House of Torture with members EVIL, Yujiro Takahashi, Sho, and Dick Togo.
If you use quotes from this article, please credit “The Extreme Life of Matt Hardy” podcast with a h/t to Wrestling Inc. for the transcription.
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