To say that Matt Cardona was somewhat upset at being forced to relinquish the NWA Worlds Heavyweight Championship last year would be an understatement.
After leaving WWE, Cardona, formerly known as Zack Ryder, found plenty of success in smaller promotions, most notably IMPACT and the National Wrestling Alliance (NWA). His time in the latter promotion saw him become win the NWA Worlds Heavyweight Championship, which is widely considered one of the oldest recognized world titles still around.
However, Cardona had some bad luck as NWA’s top champion when he was forced to relinquish the title due to an injury. And while he understands why the NWA’s power-brokers made him so that, he disagreed with that decision and insists he could’ve worked around that when he was still champion.
Matt Cardona insists he could’ve remained NWA World Champion while injured
In an interview with WrestlingInc to promote the upcoming NWA 75 event, Matt Cardona discussed several topics, one of those being the circumstances surrounding his relinquishing of the NWA title back in June 2022, four months after first winning it.
According to Cardona, he suffered a torn bicep and was forced to surrender the title. However, he was only sidelined for three months instead of much longer, and because his time off was relatively short, Cardona argued that he could’ve remained champion while not actually wrestling.
“Honestly, I’m kind of a little pissed off … because I missed less than three months. I missed less than three months as the champion. I could have held onto it. I could have done promos, I could have done media appearances, I could have done whatever, but I respect Billy’s decision. His decision was final, and that’s it.
If I get an opportunity, I feel like, every opportunity I’ve had since, there’s always been some sort of collusion. There was a triple threat match with Tyrus and Trevor. It wasn’t one-on-one or, with Tyrus, even Bully Ray got involved. I’m not going to sit here and b**** and moan and complain and say it wasn’t fair, but I haven’t gotten a fair one-on-one rematch for my title.”
After Matt Cardona surrendered the title, it was won by Trevor Murdoch, who held it for five monthsw before losing it to current champion Tyrus.