Tony Khan was very pleased with the minimal number of cuts he was forced to make due to travel restrictions caused by the global COVID-19 pandemic, however, two major members of The Dark Order say they were at risk of being cut due to their inability to travel.
Evil Uno and Stu Grayson were the main members of The Dark Order at the beginning of AEW. Soon thereafter, Brodie Lee entered the fray as “The Exalted One” and changed the direction of the group with his immediate impact. Outside of the ring, Uno and Stu are not spooky cult followers, they are two Canadians who have been working their whole lives to make it in the wrestling industry.
Speaking with the Ottawa Sun, Uno and Grayson reveal that they had trouble making it to work at the beginning of the pandemic and we're at risk of being cut. Now they say they are considering a full-time move to the United States.
“We travel every two weeks (to Florida) and quarantine in between,” Uno said. “We don’t leave our houses; that’s a stress. There was a time where it was very uncertain for both of us because we couldn’t make it to work for several months, so we were at risk of being cut. We didn’t know the scope of what COVID would be like. We also didn’t know what kind of financial hit AEW was going to take. It was stressful at first, but now it feels like the norm. We have deep roots in this area, we helped build up this whole wrestling scene over the past 15 years. We’re still within the decision phase.”
In a past life, they were known as the Super Smash Brothers, Player Uno and Player Dos. The pair described in the interview how they arrived at their new name as they could not use the Nintendo intellectual property as their name on global television.
“They didn’t want to use (Super Smash Brothers) name for obvious reasons; it’s the property of Nintendo,” Grayson said. “They wanted us to come up with a new name. Uno and I got on the phone, we started pitching ideas to each other. We had, I think, five names, we sent them to The Young Bucks and they told us The Dark Order was the one they liked the most.”
Uno added, “What’s great about AEW is we have a sense of freedom for what we want to do. There is no writer in AEW. It all goes through (executive vice-presidents Cody Rhodes, Kenny Omega and the Jackson brothers) and Tony Khan. They have final say. When we initially started, they had no TV show to explain our characters. We had masked men with us, but we had no way of properly explaining what that was. So we pitched that we explain it on TV, that we were a Scientology-like cult. From there, it blossomed.”
On the most recent episode of Dynamite, Uno invited Dustin Rhodes to join their group as Seven, a play on a failed gimmick from WCW. You can check out our live coverage of that episode at this link.