It has been nineteen years since wrestling was on national television and the end of the Monday Night Wars. It's been five years since wrestling was on national television and a lot has changed in the years since both happened. Nineteen years ago World Championship Wrestling called the Turner networks home especially TNT as this was the home of Monday Nitro the company's flagship show. Spike TV had TNA Wrestling on the air starting two months after the WWE hightailed it back to USA Network. TNA called Spike home for a respectable nine years before being removed from the network.
Going back nineteen years to April 2000 when Turner had their upfront presentation for advertisers this is when they officially reveled the planned re-launch of TNT & TBS. Now fast forward to May 2019 and this time the presentation will likely be a lot more positive for wrestling. At this point various sites are reporting that All Elite Wrestling and Turner seem to be in advanced discussions for the company to begin airing Tuesday Night Dynamite in October.
As of right now we don't know too much about the upcoming program other than at this point the contract has yet to be signed. The only details we know is that Jim Ross will be on the announce team and the show will have a two hour run time. The contract could also include a "multi-platform" existence for AEW which means it will likely be available on other Turner Properties as well like Bleacher Report Live Stream. One rumor is that the weekly series could possibly not run all year round similar I would guess to how Lucha Underground has operated outside of the contracts; partially due to the fact that we aware of the type of contracts that AEW has in place currently.
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Though very early on most of us knew that Adam Page & Pac would collide at Double or Nothing following their confrontation at Press Conference back in January. Now at this point I don't think that they will be crowning a World Champion right away, but this match will set the stage for us to know what to except from the top talent in All Elite. I haven't seen Pac since he left the WWE, but I know he likely hasn't lost a step because I think he found his prime in the last year he was with the company. In reality there is no doubt that Pac is a very capable main event talent as he showed his potential but now he needs to break through.
The Wrestling Observer crowned Adam Page the most improved wrestler of the last twelve months and I would completely agree, because he has come very far in recent years. I remember Page as a youngster when he looked like a trucker, but now he has an identity and has all the potential in the world to be a leader in All Elite, but we need to see him in a major position as this will be his first chance to display his talent on a major scale.
Now looking at the other match listed being the Young Bucks and Lucha Bros and even though I mentioned it yesterday after seeing the Road to Double or Nothing episode I like the build of the match, but need to see more. Considering I don't think these two teams have ever faced each other I'd rather not have super high expectations, because it's tough to know if teams will click in the ring if they have never fought before. Though these two have very similar in ring styles that doesn't always mean that they will click in the ring and even though these are four of the best in the world I can't wait for the match.
Overall these two matches alone are making me very excited for the show and in my opinion I am more excited for Double or Nothing then I am for Wrestlemania this year just based on how lacking the big event feels this year. Now don't get me wrong I will not walk away from WWE or anything, but I really would love to see what All Elite have to offer as a company.
Following the departure of Kenny Omega from New Japan Pro-Wrestling last month it lead many fans to speculate if the former IWGP champion could remain with NJPW work with both promotions. However, within days of his title loss it was officially announced that New Japan would be sticking with Ring of Honor instead of joining forces with All Elite Wrestling. This isn't really surprising albeit a little disappointing, but I guess it's just a part of the bigger picture that has been coming together since the announcement of this brand new promotion.
One thing comes up from there is does this mean that AEW will not be working with CMLL down in Mexico either since that promotion has had a decades long working agreement with CMLL. However, with the signing of former AAA World Cruiserweight Champion and would hold the title until losing the championship to Laredo Kid on February 16, 2019. Though this could mean nothing but it could also set up a working agreement with the two fledgling wrestling promotions providing some stability for both companies. Now All Elite Wrestling has set up some sort of agreement with OWE or Oriental Wrestling Entertainment as members from the roster are a part of the company. It is unknown if there is an agreement in place or not but we do know that the Good Heart stable and Cima are among the names from OWE set to appear for AEW.
Overall though if the last few years have proven anything it's that both the companies and talent can benefit tremendously from working agreements it doesn't matter if it's ROH & NJPW or Evolve and WWE each company has been benefited in a variety of ways from there respective agreements and I think it's only a matter of time before AEW makes some of their own.
They have been the talk of the wrestling since the company was announced early last month and the talk hasn't died down. The momentum that All Elite Wrestling has been building just continues to trend in the right direction especially following the announcement of Kenny Omega officially signing with AEW. At the tickets presser live in Las Vegas we not only got the signing of Omega we also got two matches officially announced for the event. Going along with the dream match announced the Young Bucks fighting the Lucha Brothers we now also have Pac meeting Hangman Page.
Next to the Lucha Brothers & Young Bucks the biggest match that has been announced for Double or Nothing in May is the second meeting between Alpha & Omega. That's right! It's been officially announced that Chris Jericho will face Kenny Omega for the first time since they met at Wrestle Kingdom. In my opinion this is really making the new promotion seeming more like a reality and not so much of a pipe dream like it had been to start.
Overall there is no doubt that All Elite Wrestling has ton of momentum and has used that momentum to earn a sell out of the MGM Grand Garden for Double or Nothing. Early on some might point out that Cody, and Young Bucks got lucky in September, but they have proven all those critics completely wrong. Now the only question is can they live up to the expectations that everyone is building up for them like they did the first time around.
Early last month we got the massive announcement that All Elite Wrestling is the newest company in the wild world of pro-wrestling. One of the major stories of the early days for AEW was the fact that a number of top New Japan stars left the company to form All Elite Wrestling. However, even though Cody, Young Bucks, and Hangman Page left New Japan one name was still unaccounted for was Kenny Omega. For the longest time there was a question of where he would go it didn't matter if it was WWE, NJPW or AEW with most people wondering how long it would take for him to sign with All Elite.
Anyone who missed the recent press conference in Las Vegas not only did they announce the ticket sale for Double or Nothing at MGM, but they announced a new signing. Fact is it is now official that Kenny Omega has signed with All Elite Wrestling. In my opinion this is a fantastic signing for the new company as it gives another international star to hold down the fort and help build the foundation for the promotion.
Overall in the last two years I am not sure if anyone has gained more traction or risen up the ranks in the world of wrestling then Kenny Omega. From his classics with Okada to reforming with Ibushi and the tension with the Bullet Club it has been an incredible few years for Kenny Omega and things wont stop just yet. In my opinion the build to May 25 will help all those involved especially if they are staying out of the ring until then as it would let them all unwind, heal up and get ready for the biggest event in recent memory. Now I wouldn't think that Kenny immediately becomes a favorite to be champion, but he is definitely an interesting member of the roster as AEW continues to shape the promotion.
The weekly series continues where we focus on everything All Elite Wrestling. However, before we look to this week I do need to explain that instead of doing it to two times a week like I earlier thought I will be switching to once a week instead. At least for right now, because at this time I just don't feel like there is enough to write about for the company to write two times a week so instead of reaching for ideas I will just do one a week and maybe alternate the days.
At this point I've not spoken about any of the release requests that various WWE talents have put down to make the move AEW. Though some might question the legitimacy of the reports, but based on recent bookings of certain talent it is clear that the company is trying to protect talent and stop them from moving on and leaving. In my opinion I do think that the company could let some talent go just to move in a real fresh direction creatively; but also this would allow talent to get a fresh start and a new direction.
Either way WWE is officially aware of the newest promotion, and are really trying to do everything they can to stop any and all talent from leaving the promotion. Now this doesn't mean that the company is shaking in their boots at this point with All Elite Wrestling just yet and the reason is because it is way to early in the process to think that AEW could be in a position to compete just yet. Right now I believe AEW is focused on bringing together a roster and setting up a card for their first official event in May. I just think that this is more about AEW putting WWE on notice and forcing them to really change how they look at certain talent; which is the most in part about this new promotion coming together.
One of the biggest parts of the recent press conference held to announce the newest wrestling promotion All Elite Wrestling. At the conference Cody made reference to the fact that anyone getting injured in an AEW ring would be protected and have medical expenses paid for by AEW. This has lead some believe that AEW & Tony Khan could be providing employees of the promotion health insurance. In the last decade we have seen numerous cases and questions about the idea of a union in the wrestling business or insurance for the promotion.
Based on research financial backer and owner of the promotion Tony Khan is currently worth 4.5 million dollars and his father Shahid Khan is worth 6.8 billion. Now I don't think his father has anything to do with the promotion, but it is possible that his family could help similarly to Panda Energy & TNA Wrestling. Either way though Tony has even put on record that he would treat his new employees as actual employees which would mean he would provide to them the same connections that most employees do.
Overall there isn't much known at this point about this aspect of what the promotion could provide, but I do think that this would help draw some talent to AEW. In my opinion it would help benefit the wrestlers take a step forward, but I do think it could hurt the smaller promotions due to the added expense of the union fees. However, hitting the mark with this would be if the AEW does make the move to set up health insurance for some of the workers it will be interesting to see where this goes and if they can actually set up something that has really never even come close to becoming a reality.
One thing that we learned from the press conference last week is that the former IWGP Intercontinental Champion will be joining All Elite Wrestling. Jericho lost his Intercontinental title at Wrestle Kingdom 13 to Tetsuya Naito and at the time most fans questioned what the future could hold for the former champion. At this point it is clear that Jericho is at the point in his career where he can really do anything he wants to do. Based on what Jericho has said so far since his contract was signed the purpose behind him signing was due to him wanting to bring more attention to the new promotion. Currently his contract with AEW allows him to compete with other promotions mostly notably New Japan.
Another interesting note that began to surface very early on due to the association the promotion has with super agent Barry Bloom there is a question if Goldberg will find his way to the promotion. Dating all the way back to his time in WCW the former Universal Champion has been associated with Barry Bloom which opens the door for something very interesting. Especially when we note that company owner Tony Khan has mentioned that nothing is set in stone as of now but he does like Bill and would be open to discussing brining him into the promotion.
Overall I know some fans might think that the last thing that the new promotion is Goldberg or Jericho, but those people would be ignoring the positives that both men bring to the table. It is fair to say that at for Goldberg his best days are behind him, but to say that he doesn't have value to a promotion would be a lie as a lot of fans from the past will recognize the name. Either the way though the focus should be on the name that actually has signed with the promotion and that is Jericho who based on his run in New Japan has proven that he still in fact does have a lot left in the tank. Jericho will bring value to the upstart promotion as they build a foundation and look forward to the future the only question really is how long Jericho will remain in the promotion and where he will go next.
Though the rumors for months have pointed to the start of a new wrestling promotion and even if it became more of not a matter of if but when the promotion would come together. On the first of the day the announcement officially came down from all those involved in the company. Cody, Hangman Page, and the Young Bucks were the first official signings for the company as expected. But now we have a little bit more information that has come out about the company and in the coming weeks we will be slowly breaking down the new details about the company piece by piece to make sure we get to everything.
I also want to make it clear that starting next week I will be doing weekly updates for the promotion on Tuesday's and Saturday's with one day set aside for actual news & the other day for roster announcements. More than likely I will go for news of Tuesday and roster updates on the weekend just to keep things sorted and together. As there will be a lot of news coming out from week to week and this is the best way to keep organized in my opinion.
The one main thing I wanted to focus on in this article is the announcement of the first event for the company. Right now the date for the event is May 25, 2018 in the MSG Grand Garden arena which is also an 18,000 seat arena. It is interesting to note that they have moved up from a 10,000 seat arena to the next stage and it will be something to watch for in the build for the event. Adding new talent like Jericho, Pac, Janela, and MJF as some of the new signings for the roster and it just makes things all more interesting for the new promotion.
I've seen some people put over AEW as a company that bring out the better side of the WWE well all say to that for now is let's allow them to form the foundation for the promotion before letting our hopes get in the way of what is really going on. It will take time and they are off to a great start, but we just need little bit of patience and I am sure we will be rewarded in the future.
Last year I took a few weeks to put together a top 10 list going through the top wrestlers from the previous year. The list really broke down exactly why in my opinion these wrestlers actually belonged on the list or fell where they did on the list. Some names will show up on both this list and last years list and it is really possible that they are in the spot as last year too. Let's get to the list:
Since his departure from WWE we have seen a different side of Cody Rhodes one that I think some people didn't even know existed. Cody has become an international superstar in the last two years and his association with The Elite/Bullet Club has only helped make him a bigger star. In reality New Japan gave him the stage and The Elite gave him a new identity. Starting a Wrestle Kingdom 12 with his underrated match against Kota Ibushi and then moving ahead to the developing rivalry between Omega & Cody. The first half of 2018 was a great year for Cody and then moving onto the second half of the year that is when it became very different.
For the most part the last decade or so the WWE has been the only game in town for talent to be featured on a large scale. However, last September something happened that hadn't taken place in the world of wrestling since the days of WCW. On September 1, 2018 an independent wrestling event not only drew 10,000 people but sold out a 10,000 seat arena which is incredible. For Cody's part in that alone he belong on this list, but also the fact that he became NWA Worlds Champion at that event is another reason for him to be here. Also pointing out that for a time Cody was a double champion holding the IWGP United States Championship and NWA Worlds Heavyweight Championship at the same time.
Now with the announcement of All Elite Wrestling it is clear that 2019 will be an even bigger year for The Elite than 2018 was and the real question what can they do next. Cody has shown that you don't need to be in WWE to be a major star anymore and he's taken advantage of the opportunity he was given & ran with it. Considering I will be talking about AEW a lot more in the coming weeks and months I thought that kicking off this section of the site with anything else would've been criminal as this is the perfect way to kick off the new section. Welcome to the age of "All Elite Wrestling!!"l