In 2011, Matt Cardona (Zack Ryder in WWE) began a YouTube series entitled Z! True Long Island Story. The series quickly caught on with fans and gain him a cult following that translated to television with live crowds rallying behind him.
While Cardona did find some success on television during the height of the show, many believed WWE didn't do enough with him given the popularity of the show and the backing he had from some major names. For example, John Cena and CM Punk showed their support for Cardona on social media when the show premiered.
"I do think some of the boys saw it," Cardona said on MC! True Long Island Story Podcast. "I do recall in the early episodes where guys like CM Punk and John Cena were retweeting it, which was huge for me. Back then, Twitter was small, a retweet was big. Twitter, I don't think it's as powerful as people think it is. At the same time, it is very powerful. Right now, I have 2.6 million followers. That doesn't mean 2.6 million people are going to listen to this podcast. I wish it worked that way, but it doesn't. At the time, when a Cena or a Punk or a Ziggler retweets it, it's huge."
Cardona made 100 episodes of the series before deciding to end things. His new podcast reflects on the series.
He is currently part of IMPACT Wrestling and engaged in a feud with Brian Myers.
If you use any of the quotes above, please give a h/t and link back to Fightful for the transcription.