Zack Ryder says Vince McMahon pulled his first WWE shirt design because he thought it promoted TNA Wrestling.
In 2011, Zack Ryder was one of the first Superstars to utilize social media to get himself over with the invention of the Z! True Long Island Story YouTube series. at the end of every episode, Zack Ryder would sign off by saying “take care, spike your hair!” When it came time for Zack Ryder to get official WWE merchandise, Ryder, who had gotten himself over, wanted to be very hands-on.
In a new Instagram Q&A, Matt Cardona, the man behind Zack Ryder, reveals that Vince McMahon pulled his first shirt design that said “take care, spike your hair” on the back of it because McMahon assumed it was promoting TNA Wrestling because of the time the rival promotion was on Spike TV.
Zack goes on to say that after a live event, he was given all of the shirts that were available at the event to take home because they were no longer able to sell them. The company would go on to replace the slogan on the back with, “are you serious bro?” which was another of Zack Ryder's catchphrases.
Another signature of the YouTube series was Zack Ryder's custom-made Internet Championship. Although the custom championship was featured in video games and alongside Zack Ryder action figures, Ryder was repeatedly denied permission to wear the championship on television and he says he was called a mark for himself.
“So I was presenting it to someone to, you know, to get approval to wear it on television,” said Cardona on Instagram. “I was denied and I was told that I'm a mark for myself, which isn't true. But like I said, I didn't actually think I was the Million Dollar Champion or the Internet champion. I explained. It's just like the Million Dollar Championship, right? It's an accessory. It's cool because with a gimmick and you could have sold these things. You could have made a killing selling these things, the foam, the replicas. But that did not happen. I never wore that on WWE programming, but it's in the video game. There's a T-shirt with it and my action figure. but I never wore it on TV.”
He continued, “I think there was some money lost, a lot of money lost, especially at that time. Like I said, replicas of the foam stuff they sell at the events, like the merchandise stuff or even, you know, Mattel, you know, toy belts, but whatever. It's definitely my most prized possession.”
Looking forward, Matt Cardona says there will be a new Internet Championship belt made as a just-in-case because he is “Alwayz Ready.”
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