Zack Ryder Calls WrestleMania 'Heartbreaking,' Discusses YouTube Show Regrets

Daniel Van BoomAnalyst IIMarch 2, 2013


It's no secret that Zack Ryder currently occupies a low position on the WWE totem pole, and he's not afraid to vent about it.

Following several anger-laced tweets, Ryder had an interview with Busted Open radio, where he discussed WrestleMania and his famous "Z! True Long Island Story" YouTube sensation.

Speaking on WrestleMania XXIX happening in New Jersey, Ryder said:

It's cool that it's in New York/New Jersey, basically in my backyard, but I'm not on it. It kind of sucks. I got all my friends and family who are going to be there and they are expecting to see Zack Ryder on the show and as of now, he is not on it. So that part of it is heartbreaking.

Despite espousing deep disappointment over his likely meager positioning on the card (if he's on there at all), Ryder remained optimistic about the quality of the show, stating: "It's still going to be a great show with Rock and Cena. It's going to be one of the best WrestleManias of all time."

Ryder went on to discuss his YouTube show, "Z! True Island Story." He originally created the show in an attempt to get noticed by fans and WWE management after he wasn't getting any TV opportunities.

Fans of the show have noted that many of the later episodes didn't meet the high standards of creativity and originality found in earlier ones. Ryder blames that on influence from WWE officials.

I did it for a hundred weeks straight. It should have ended after 50. After I became the U.S. champion, WWE came to me and said 'we want to move this to our YouTube channel.' I was really hesitant to do it and I should have said no. That was the end of the Z! True Long Island Story in my opinion right there, when I made that switch to the WWE YouTube channel at around episode 51...Then WWE was editing it and taking things out, even though they said they weren't going to touch it. Then it just became a job and not fun.

Despite acknowledging a drop in the show's quality, Ryder remains proud of the impact it had, stating: "For the most part the last 50 were horrible, but the first 50 changed the business. Now Raw is all about social media and Tout, and Facebook and Twitter. They weren't like that before 'Z! True Long Island Story.'"

Many fans, myself included, remain confused about what exactly derailed Ryder.

He received a massive surge in popularity in 2011 following his YouTube show's creation, with fans around the country chanting "We Want Ryder" on Raw week after week.

He eventually got a midcard push that saw him win the US championship at TLC 2011, but he quickly lost the title to Jack Swagger.

Swagger was also experiencing a career downward spiral from which, it seems, he was able to recover. Ryder has not been so lucky, and has been jobbing ever since.

Ryder himself noted that he was forgotten about after "Eve kicked me in the bro-nuts at WrestleMania," and asserted that "2013 better be different. It can't be worse than 2012."

It's easy to understand Ryder's frustration, but it doesn't seem likely that a higher up in the organization will realize what they've got with the Long Island Iced Z.

You'd think it'd make sense to push a guy that can get more over and sell more merchandise than 90 percent of the roster without even being on TV, but who know's WWE's logic?

Some fans have said that a heel turn for Ryder could rejuvenate his character, and while it would be fresh, it's hard to imagine the WWE machine getting behind Ryder, regardless of the circumstance.

But we can at least hope that in 2013, the Ryder Revolution goes all the way.