“Respect, that’s something that Manu, who had a chance to be part of Legacy, didn’t have,” Orton told WWE Magazine. “He grew up in the business, and you would’ve thought he’d have that ingrained in his mind. He had been wrestling since his early teens, and he thought that he was already a veteran in his early 20s. That’s what got him fired from Legacy. But I think we’re looking to include another part man in the stable to make it all the more powerful. I’ll say no more.”
While Orton’s comments appear to be in-character, they are apparently not as the interview was a non-kayfabe interview with the members of Legacy discussing their real-life aspirations for the group, their families’ lineage, what makes the group different than other groups of the past, and more.
Behind the scenes, it is known that Orton legitimately pushed for Manu to be kicked out of the group, feeling he wasn’t in the same league as the other members, and didn’t fit in as a result. WWE officials apparently agreed as the son of WWE Hall of Famer Afa was booted from the group in an angle that aired on the January 12, 2009 edition of Raw. Manu’s departure from the group ultimately led to his release from World Wrestling Entertainment as the company didn’t have anything else for him once they opted against sending him back down to developmental.