It was one of the shortest Intercontinental Championship reigns in history when Matt Cardona won the title at WrestleMania 32 in Dallas, and lost it just 24 hours later on Raw.
However, in a recent interview with Pro Wrestling Junkies, the former Zack Ryder explains why it was the right move for his character.
I think losing the next night made the moment. I wish I could have lost later on in the [same] night. You know? Why have the title for two weeks or two months? Unless I’m going to go undefeated for two years, take it off me! That’s the story of Zack Ryder, the underdog that finally gets it and then it gets taken away. So I thought that’s what made the story so special, because nobody thought I was going to win. And then to lose it the next night, it’s like, ‘Oh my God, he finally got something and then he lost it.’ So I thought that moment was the way to go. If I would have lost it, I don’t know, at Backlash against Cesaro or something, who cares? I’m glad that I lost the next night. Perfect fit for my career.
In the twilight of his days with WWE, Cardona and Brian Myers (then Curt Hawkins) had a number of vignettes played out on WWE.com.
Whilst entertaining, the main aim for the pair was to establish themselves as villains in the company – something which never ended up playing out on screen.
Towards the end with Hawkins, I do think that we were trying to push to be bad guys, to be heels. And we kind of were doing it in some backstage stuff that they put on WWE.com, where we wanted to preach that we were in the ‘Gratitude Era,’ and kind of be like over-the-top cheesy and positive where people would hate us. I wish we would have got the opportunity to do that, but we didn’t. And that is what it is.”
With thanks to 411 Mania for the transcription.