Pillman Jr. weighs in on his presentation in AEW and the storyline with the House of Black.
29-year-old Brian Pillman Jr. is signed to All Elite Wrestling and is one-half of The Varsity Blonds with Griff Garrison. The duo most recently competed on AEW TV on 8/17 in a match against Austin and Colten Gunn.
In May of last year, Dark Side of the Ring released an episode about Pillman Jr.’s father and that lined up with Varsity Blonds getting a shot at the AEW World Tag Team Championships. Pillman Jr. was a guest on a Café De René livestream and feels that more could have been done with him during that period of his career.
I definitely feel like we could have done a lot more [with me in AEW after Dark Side of the Ring on Brian Pillman Sr. aired]. At that point in my career, I was getting all kinds of attention, both mainstream and just in the wrestling world… In a perfect world, the ideal business decision would probably have been to push me at that time but you know, hindsight’s 20/20. They did a little bit of something with it which I’m grateful for. We [Varsity Blonds] had a nice little promo, build-up to — we actually had a title match with The Young Bucks that nobody seems to ever remember but that’s because, like you said, they didn’t continue to go with it but they did give us an awesome little opportunity against The Young Bucks and it was a very well received match by the community. But it was during the pandemic so there was no live crowds. So The Blonds never got to get a lot of momentum in the live crowd era. A lot of our momentum and a lot of our greatest matches were in Jacksonville in front of nobody and then the few matches after that when we started letting fans into Jacksonville, we had a great crowd there for a while too so, once we hit the road, I think things just got real hectic and busy with that and stuff. But no, I definitely think they could have done more with me but at the same time, you got all this roster, you got all these different people coming in, you got Sting, you know? You got everybody so there’s a lot going on. I’m still pretty grateful for the opportunities I was given. Some of them I knocked out of the park and some of them, I fell flat but at the end of the day, I think I’ve shown the company what I can do and I think the sky’s the limit from here, you know what I mean? I just keep getting better with each week that goes by so, I’m excited to see what these new deals will be and what these new storylines will be.
The Varsity Blonds were intertwined with the House of Black (Malakai Black, Brody King & Buddy Matthews) on AEW television. Ultimately, Julia Hart left Pillman Jr. and Garrison and shifted over to House of Black.
On 9/18, Malakai confirmed that he requested his release from AEW. Pillman Jr. was asked about Black’s exit from the company and spoke highly of his in-ring ability. He said he’s been able to learn from Malakai and specifically on his departure, he does not know exactly why because Pillman Jr. has not been at TVs lately.
Like I said, I had a lot of respect for Malakai [Black]. He’s one of the best athletes and wrestlers ever I think. Learned a lot training with him but I mean, if it would have went my way, we probably wouldn’t have broken up our group so soon or even at all, you know what I mean? Or there would have been some redeeming storyline to not make us look so, you know, like losers in the end but at the end of the day, it’s everybody trying to squish their angle on the show and he was working really hard to try to get a really good product on the show. I think that’s where I can at least agree with him on that-that he was trying to make some good stuff, like really good content and really good matches. Really hard working guy and unfortunately, it was a little bit at our expense with the Varsity Blonds gimmick but if it wasn’t meant to be, it wasn’t meant to be, you know? As far as him leaving, I don’t know what that’s about at all. I just know some people deal with different stuff. You know, maybe he had some mental health issues going on. But overall, pretty cool guy. He’s always talkative to me and he was all right. I think just with all the drama too, maybe he just needs some time to recharge and step back and maybe focus on his personal life or something. I don’t know, I couldn’t tell you about him leaving because I haven’t been around as much at TVs so…
House of Black is still intact in AEW. Brody King and Buddy Matthews are taking on Sting and Darby Allin at Rampage Grand Slam.
If the quotes in this article are used, please credit the Café De René podcast with an H/T to POST Wrestling for the transcriptions.