Vince McMahon didn’t want to lose Cash Wheeler and Dax Harwood when they were in the WWE. He turned down their requests to be released and would offer them $750,000 each to re-sign when their contracts were getting close to expiring. McMahon also took the time to personally create a new gimmick for the duo, which involved them wearing flashy colors, having tassels, waving glowsticks, and a “Shatter Machine” chain necklace. The team would turn down the offer, as they were still unhappy with WWE’s portrayal of the tag-team division, citing Braun Strowman and a 10-year old winning the Raw Tag Team Championships as their example.
Once they finally received their release, the pair would join All Elite Wrestling under the name FTR and be allowed to be pro wrestlers instead of sports entertainers. This lead to a great run of matches and now being named #1 on the inaugural >Pro Wrestling Illustrated Tag Team 50 list, a neat achievement for anyone who grew up reading the PWI 500.
Following PWI’s announcement, Dax Harwood decided to have some fun at Vince McMahon’s expense. He did this by sharing a photoshopped image of FTR and their former boss in an art gallery admiring the magazine cover, captained with “Good shit.”
It’s highly unlikely that had Wheeler and Harwood remained in WWE, they would have had the opportunity to showcase their ability to the level they would be considered the best tag team in the world. So while turning down such large figure contracts and leaving WWE was a risky move, it seems to have paid off.