For most of his AEW career, MJF has been a loathed figure but that all changed thanks to the friendship of Adam Cole.
Somehow, Adam Cole was able to see past the worst of the AEW World Champion and MJF began to change his ways. Rather than degrading the AEW fans every week, MJF began to embrace the support and love he was being shown – but he had no confidence that being beloved would translate into success on-screen.
Speaking to Sports Illustrated, MJF explained why he was scared to change tact and allow himself to be the people’s scumbag:
I had zero confidence in this. For the longest time, when I walked through the curtain, my only goal was to make people viscerally hate me. I never wanted people to like me.
Getting liked is hard because it opens the door up to be rejected. So when the fans started chanting my name, it really shook me. There was even a wave of MJF support when I won the belt. I remember thinking to myself, ‘No.’ And that was out of fear. And I’m still scared, but it’s a lot less.
MJF Faces Tough Night At AEW Full Gear
MJF will put the AEW World Title on the line in the main event of Full Gear against Jay White. However, The Salt of the Earth will have more to contend with than the former IWGP World Heavyweight Champion.
On the Zero Hour pre-show, MJF will also defend the ROH Tag Team Championship against The Gunns. As Adam Cole remains out of action after a serious injury, The Gunns might well have the advantage unless MJF can find a friend or gives into Samoa Joe to make a deal that would see Joe get a shot at the AEW World Title – unless Jay White wins that.