WWE icon and reigning IWGP Intercontinental Champion Chris Jericho has expressed his sheer dissatisfaction over AOP pairing with Drake Maverick on the main roster.
The Authors Of Pain (Akam and Rezar) started as a heel tag team in NXT back in 2016 with legendary manager Paul Ellering. During their two years on the black-and-yellow- brand, the team won the NXT Tag Team Championship once. After dominating the tag team division in the developmental territory, AOP made their main roster debut this past April at the WWE Superstar Shakeup.
Akam and Rezar defeated Heath Slater and Rhyno on their debut in a squash match. However, after their victory, the two monstrous men dropped Ellering as their manager, shocking the entire WWE Universe including Chris Jericho.
Soon after, the duo aligned themselves with the General Manager of 205 Live, Drake Maverick. On November 6, AOP captured the RAW Tag Team Championship by defeating Seth Rollins who fought alone to defend the titles.
On his podcast “Talk Is Jericho”, Y2J addressed AOP and Maverick’s pairing:
“I think the concept of AOP is cool as they were obviously very popular on NXT,” said Jericho. “I have a problem… AOP in NXT were managed by Paul Ellering who used to manage the Road Warriors. Now, they bring Akam and Rezar to the main roster and the first night they fire Paul Ellering. I never got that.”
“Akam and Rezar, they’re young guys, but so is Drake Maverick. Why would the young guys listen to Drake Maverick when they could have listened to Paul Ellering who’s already taken a team to the top?”
Akam and Rezar (w/Drake Maverick) defeated SmackDown Tag Team Champions The Bar (Sheamus & Cesaro w/ Big Show) in a classic Champion vs. Champion match at Survivor Series.