wrestling / News

Tony Khan Says Christian Cage Called Him About Joining AEW, Says Women Will Main Event Dynamite Soon

March 8, 2021 | Posted by Joseph Lee
Christian Cage AEW

AEW President Tony Khan took part in a post-show media scrum following AEW Revolution where he spoke about Christian Cage signing with the company, the growth of the women’s and more. As noted, Khan said that the explanation for the ring explosion not happening as fans expected was that Kenny Omega, the heel, designed it and failed. Here are additional highlights from the call (video provided by Fightful):

* Agreed with what Darby Allin said about coming up with 90% of the street fight and noted that Darby “really was effectively co-directing this.” He praised Darby’s filmmaking skills and Sting doing well after coming back from a long layoff.

* He praised Hikaru Shida’s work for AEW and her work as the AEW Women’s Champion.

* He said he hopes Maki Itoh will appear for them often. He mentioned the six-woman tag team match on Wednesday’s Dynamite (Itoh, Britt Baker & Rebel vs. Shida, Ryo Mizunami, & Thunder Rosa) and said that Rebel may be trying to get out of it again.

* Going back to the main event, he said AEW tweaked it from what was done with Atsushi Onita in Japan. He said they conducted several tests and got clearances from the fire marshal. He noted that they had a lot of rehearsals but there’s “only so much you can do with explosions” without actually hurting someone. He implied the storyline of Omega building the explosives in storyline gave them an out.

* Khan said he met Christian Cage seven years ago and they’ve been friends “for a long time.” He said he’d liked him as a person but before that was a huge fan of him as a wrestler, calling him “one of the great wrestlers of the last couple of decades” and “one of the best minds in wrestling.” He noted that Cage was “in great physical condition.” He noted that Cage’s last appearance on PPV (at the WWE 2021 Royal Rumble) “generated a lot of interest”, but that Cage called AEW because he was interested in wrestling on a regular basis. He said that he kicked himself when he saw Cage back but was “not aware” that he wasn’t under a contract (with WWE). The deal was made in the last few weeks and came together “pretty quickly.” He said the younger wrestlers will get to wrestle someone who is “not a selfish person at all, who is looking to share their knowledge.”

* Khan said the plan during the pandemic was to “take it every few months at a time.” He said they won’t be going on the road any time soon and noted they’ve had live crowds for seven or eight months, socially distanced and there’ve been “zero known transmissions” of COVID-19 at the outdoor events. He said when he attended events that were outdoors and socially distanced, he felt safe. He added they are not in a rush to return to indoor venues but that it will happen eventually. He said he wants to slowly increase capacity but not put the pods close together yet, but Double or Nothing was “maybe too soon.”

* When asked about when The Young Bucks vs. PAC and Rey Fenix will happen, he said that both teams are “beat up” after the PPV, but noted that Matt Jackson will face Fenix on this Wednesday’s Dynamite, noting that Nick Jackson vs. Fenix was “one of the best matches we’ve ever had on Dynamite.” He added that the match will be “well before Double or Nothing” in the next several weeks.

* He once again noted that this year they will continue to expand their television with AEW Dark: Elevation on Youtube and an extra hour on TNT.

* He praised Red Velvet and said one of the benefits of Dark is seeing the development of younger wrestlers who find their way to Dynamite, like Red velvet, Will Hobbs, The Acclaimed and Lee Johnson. Noted that a lot of people want to work with recent Dark wrestler JD Drake.

* He said that women will main event AEW Dynamite “very soon” and hinted that there’s a “good chance” it’ll happen “in the next several weeks.”

* He said the main event will be a “tough match to top”. He noted that while he doesn’t like the wrestlers beating themselves up like that and he’s a “wrestling purist at heart”, he said that matches like the exploding barbed wire death match are “cool”, “fun” and “different.” He said that they have more fun things planned in the future.

* He said that he was excited to bring in Ethan Page and noted the roster was short on heels after the babyface turn of the Dark Order. He praised Page’s promos and said he’s a “great heel”. He added that Page will “be here for a very long time” and they had been planning it for a while.

* Khan praised Big Swole and said that she will “continue to get better.” He noted that she hasn’t been wrestling a lot this year because she’s been sick with Crohn’s Disease. He said that she was still out when they started the Women’s Eliminator tournament.

* He said the cinematic street fight was something he had in mind when he first started talking with Sting. He said he gave Darby Allin the idea and they worked on it after that. He noted that Allin planned shots and storyboarded the match. He said that he doesn’t have much in common with Darby but he knows when Allin has “something that’s cool” in mind. He added that Sting will probably be in cinematic matches going forward but suggested that Sting could still wrestle in the ring because he’s “very capable of that” and “has a lot left in the tank.” He praised both Sting and Team Taz for their work in the street fight.

* He said this year’s Revolution was different to last year’s due to the circumstances but thought the support of the fans they had in Daily’s Place was “tremendous.” He added that he can’t wait to get back to packed arenas.

* He was once again asked about the end of the show and what he thought about fans who thought about the explosion not delivering. He thinks that the majority who watched will likely watch Dynamite and they will address it then. He once again brought up that Omega’s plan to blow up Moxley as failed and really hammered home that storyline aspect.

* Khan said that preliminary streaming numbers for Revolution were a “record high” and he thinks it will be one of their most-ordered PPVs. He said he thinks it will be a “big success.”

* He concluded that he has more “aces” up his sleeve and fans will see things they don’t expect this year. He said as they expand their television, having familiar faces (like Sting, Christian Cage and Paul Wight) will be important to draw attention to their product and younger wrestlers. He promised more “crazy stuff” this year and they will work hard for their fans. He thanked everyone for supporting the company.