Striker’s response to the backlash.
Closing out Major League Wrestling’s Kings of Colosseum special was a singles match between Jacob Fatu and Matt Riddle. It was Riddle’s first match since his release from WWE in September.
As the match was ongoing, MLW color commentator Matt Striker praised Riddle and questioned how he could be let go. He stated that he does not ‘care what Riddle does’.
He’s from another world. How do you let this guy go? This guy is a star, a mega-million dollar star. I don’t care what he does. How do you let him go? This is our coup de grâce right here.
Elsewhere during the match, Striker said the court of public opinion would love to see Fatu put his hands on Riddle but the court of public opinion does not convict. He added that if anyone has a problem with Riddle, they can approach him about it in public and they’ll see what happens.
Let’s talk about the elephant in the room. The court of public opinion would love to see Jacob Fatu slap the taste out of Matt Riddle’s mouth. But the court of public opinion does not convict, I’m sorry. I know it’s the world in which we live but, it’s not the case.
He can do whatever he wants, he can kick your ass. Anyone out there (has) got a problem with him, step to him out on the street, watch what happens. End of conversation.
After receiving backlash on social media about his remarks, Striker posted the following message on X:
I’ve given this a lot of thought. Could not sleep.
My critics are right.
I was wrong. Tone deaf.
Trying to use the guise of art or character portrayal is self preservation. Thank you to those that shone light on this.
It is now on me to stand in that light.
I will be better
As Riddle arrived to WWE’s main roster in 2020 while the #SpeakingOut movement was ongoing, he was accused of sexual assault by fellow wrestler Samantha Tavel a.k.a. Candy Cartwright. He denied the allegation but admitted to having an affair with her.
Tavel filed a lawsuit against Riddle, WWE and others but that was dropped in the summer of 2021.