Tony Khan Comments on Signing CM Punk to AEW Deal
A recent episode of the Le Batard & Friends – South Beach Sessions podcast had AEW CEO Tony Khan as the guest. One of the topics discussed included Khan’s thoughts on signing CM Punk to a contract with AEW.
“I wasn’t surprised by how many shirts we sold. I had said it needs to be all hands on deck printing shirts and they printed, I think, as many as they could as quickly as they could, and we will continue putting lots of merchandise out to make sure everybody can get their CM Punk merchandise. We have, in fact, for the ringer tee, the blanks, we bought out the entire country’s supply of that style of t-shirt because that’s how big the demand is for CM Punk merchandise right now. When I say that everything is clicking so well, it’s an understatement because to set your merchandise record, your attendance record, and then have Guinness World Records today chiming in saying they think it might be the loudest applause, the biggest pop any wrestler has ever gotten, that’s pretty cool, too. So in terms of fan satisfaction, to all of our great fans and the merchandise sales, I think for our TV audience, this is going to be really, really great for us. As we continue to grow, I just think for the fans, if you wanted to find a reason — if you’re looking for something to motivate you to get back into wrestling, this was it. This is it.
I believe this was one of the best deals I’ve ever done in my life. I don’t think it was really all about money. You know, if you listen to what he and I had said, on the press conference we did, we did a scrum that was like 50 minutes and he gave so much of his time, he was so generous with really everybody that night, in terms of, obviously, wanting to spend time with the fans, but then creating this great moment by buying thousands and thousands of ice cream bars, so that everybody at this United Center was able to go out and get their free ice cream bar. That was pretty amazing. That’s something that people always remember and it was just a really cool thing for him to do for the fans.
He was also really cool about going backstage and offering really, really kind advice, being really good with his time with the wrestlers, and [is a] super friendly person. I just think some of the stuff he did in terms of helping our young wrestlers become stars at the next level, it’s really, really, really significant and it’s going to help us grow the business, but sustain AEW for many, many years to come. So I think it was one of the best deals I’ve ever done. In so many ways, it wasn’t about money, like he and I said in the press conference, it was really a lot about getting to know each other. That was one of the side effects of the pandemic was people had a lot of time indoors, and I spent a lot of time talking to him on the phone getting to know each other better, and building trust with each other. So this was a long time coming. We’d been talking a lot for about a year and a half.”
Khan also stated that Punk’s deal has already paid for itself just from the reaction and results from his debut this past Friday.
“Yeah, I mean, I do think so I think in terms of what this has done for our business, I really believe that as soon as we saw the results from this before we even got started, I knew this was the best deal we could have possibly done.”
Transcript h/t: Fightful.com
AEW Announces Second Saturday Dynamite Show for October
As noted before, AEW announced that they will be airing a special episode of AEW Dynamite on Saturday, October 23rd in Orlando, Florida. The reason for the Saturday date is due to TNT’s NHL commitments for that week’s Wednesday.
AEW recently announced that they will actually be airing two episodes on Saturdays during the month of October. The other Saturday show will be taking place on October 16th in Miami, Florida. Tickets for this show was announced to be going on sale starting on August 27th.
The Wrestling Observer reported that TNT will also be airing an NHL game on that week’s Wednesday as well during AEW’s regular timeslot.
Cash Wheeler Injury Status Update
As noted before, Cash Wheeler has been out of action since suffering a serious arm injury during the July 28th episode of AEW Dynamite.
During Wednesday’s episode of AEW Dynamite, a promo video aired featuring FTR’s Dax Harwood and Cash Wheeler revealing that Wheeler will be returning to action in a tag match against Santana & Ortiz on next week’s show.
Wheeler recently provided an injury update on Twitter stating that he has lost grip strength and feeling in his right arm since his injury but still wants to wrestle one more time.
Graphic Images:— CASH (@CashWheelerFTR) August 26, 2021
August 28th I had a hook stab into my arm and rip it open. For almost a month I’ve been dealing with loss of grip strength, loss of feeling/nerve damage, and wondering if this is even worth it anymore. If this is the end, we’re taking a pound of flesh with us. pic.twitter.com/A0xpLkX8zG
More AEW News & Notes
During Wednesday’s episode of AEW Dynamite, AEW announced that Julia Hart, Big Swole, The Bunny, Thunder Rosa, Nyla Rose, Red Velvet, Tay Conti, Penelope Ford, and Diamante are the first eight competitors for the Women’s Casino Battle Royale match at their upcoming All Out 2021 event on September 5th in Hoffman Estates, Illinois.
TNT reportedly will be airing the countdown show for AEW’s All Out 2021 event on their network this Friday starting at 11PM EST, according to the Wrestling Observer.
AEW recently announced that they will be making their Virginia debut for an episode of AEW Dynamite on November 17th at the Chartway Arena in Norfolk, Virginia.
Chris Jericho announced that Britt Baker, Orange Cassidy, Christopher Daniels, Frankie Kazarian, and Colt Cabana will be appearing at his next Rock N Wrestling Rager cruise, titled “Rock N Wrestling Rager Triple Whammy Cruise”, which takes place from October 21st to October 25th.
AEW recently released a behind-the-scenes production video of the opening segment from this past Friday’s episode of Rampage, which featured the official AEW debut of CM Punk.