He hasn’t quit, he’s not fired; he just isn’t there.
Sherdog and LA Times contributor Todd Martin’s highly anticipated appearance on Rob McCarron & Jeff Hawkin’s Shake Them Ropes podcast kicked off with in a big way Tuesday the host and guest wasting no time cutting to the chase.
And the answer was… underwhelming. At least on the surface. But, reading between the lines, Martin’s answers could bely something deeper brewing as to his status, and what his future as a podcast personality may hold.
Much like the current status of Seth Rollins’ Curb Stomp, Martin appears to be neither officially in, nor out over at WONF4W. He’s just simply not doing shows.
Addressing what he called the “elephant in the room,” Martin tackled the recent controversy regarding his whereabouts and status as co-host of F4Daily’s Thursday edition.
“No I have not quit WrestlingObserver.com And no I have not been fired from WrestlingObserver.com. Yes, you will hear me very soon, either there or somewhere else.”
The last part is, perhaps, the most noteworthy.
Recent reports behind the scenes at WONF4W seem to point toward the potential for split camps having formed within WrestlingObserver.com / F4WOnline.com between two factions: One that includes Todd and Dave, and the other being that of Bryan Alvarez and former member Michael Coughlin.
Tensions had seemed audibly palpable over the last several months between Alvarez and Martin, with Todd seeming increasingly less willing to rise to Alvarez’s bait, and Alvarez, in turn, seeming increasingly preoccupied, even bored, during his shows with Martin.
This was never more apparent than in the tone Martin took Tuesday on the STR podcast, where the normally stoic, understated Martin of F4Daily seemed almost jovial and enthused to be on a show.
Joining McCarron and Hawkins for the majority of the hourlong podcast, Martin dominated much of the discussion, providing his insight and commentary on the current WWE product leading into this Sunday’s Extreme Rules event, the continued rose of NXT and who the breakout superstars are, and even sidebarring off into baseball territory.
Though his current status with WONF4W would not come up again during the course of the show, the exuberance on display from someone ordinarily heard to be exasperated was a stark contrast few could ignore.
Martin’s lack of room to showcase his analytical prowess due to Alvarez’s childish attempts to pick fights and goad Martin into squabbling for the purpose to entertain listeners was apparent as far back as February when, in an exchange with Martin, this reporter suggested it might be time to set out on his own, and start a “ToddCast” free of Alvarez’s shenanigans.
Martin wasn’t completely against the idea, even admitting it had crossed his mind before, “I looked into it a couple years ago,” Martin said. “But after much experimentation, I couldn’t get the technical up to a level I was comfortable with and tabled the idea.”
Tabled, but not dismissed altogether…
Martin’s comments on STR would seem in line with prevailing opinions currently surfacing that, if Martin returns to WONF4W, it would be on a show not involving Alvarez. And, if that doesn’t turn out to be possible, he would end up “somewhere else,” whether that is as a new addition to the growing slate of podcasts on Voices of Wrestling, or somewhere else remains to be seen.
But, as Martin himself eluded to, we can expect to learn more “very soon.”