Kenny Omega was interviewed on Wrestling Observer Radio to talk a variety of topics.
Omega said he stumbled on the whole “Belt Collector thing” on promos and he knew the schedule would be taxing emotionally and mentally but he wanted to show what can happen when promotions play nice with each other.
He said, “I really wanted to kind of wanted to open the floodgates and show what it’s like when people play nice with one another…I really think this is a situation where only the fans win.”
“The one huge crossover – will you ever see WWE team up with anybody, who knows? I feel as the world evolves and changes and time goes by, people become more open-minded to everything, whether it be the wrestlers themselves, people in the office, the fans. I wouldn’t hold my breath but at the same time I would never say it’s impossible…”
Omega also talked about AEW Rampage and the lack of women’s wrestling on Dynamite:
“I feel like the content I think we’re lacking in is our women’s division. I would love to see Rampage be home to more women’s wrestling and I want people to see and appreciate and enjoy some of the talent that we have to offer and I hope that we can get out and show some of these matches that are perhaps aren’t seen by enough people. We’ve got a lot of great talent on Dark and people maybe don’t want to watch our YouTube channel. Maybe they just want to watch Dynamite and they wanna see a television product and I get that. I think the extra hour on Rampage, I feel that rather than just give them more Chris Jericho, more Kenny Omega, more MJF, I’d rather give them all of the extremely talented individuals that maybe you can’t see that week and especially for me, I feel that we got incredibly gifted female wrestlers that have been working really hard fighting for a spot. Maybe it’s time for them to get some more. I think that would count as a variation in my pocket, more women’s wrestling.”
Omega said that AEW should be kept as a variety show where fans get a little bit of everything.
More notes from the interview (thanks to cactusmaac on Reddit):
- the videogame is coming along well and they are hoping it will be very well-received. No firm date for release. He hopes to work in videogames if his wrestling career winds down as he is really passionate about them.
- he has been hurting, he is seeing small improvements on a weekly basis. He is being motivated by all the different styles he is wrestling and is learning something from all of them whether it be the Mexico matches or the no DQ with Sami Callihan or the Jungle Boy match which he was very proud of for showing JB’s potential to be a future world champion. Is really looking forward to the 5 v 5 next Wednesday.
- he modelled his performances for American TV by studying a lot of Curt Hennig performances where he would be wrestling Bret Hart in classics while also doing angles with Texas Tornado, Hulk Hogan and Ultimate Warrior. Also his relationship with Bobby Heenan for his work with Don Callis.
- puts over Don Callis for his promo ability, knowledge of the business, how to work as a face or heel and knowing what works and what doesn’t in different countries.
- says similar to Shinsuke Nakamura having interests like MMA and surfing, people like Don are able to bring something unique and fresh to wrestling due to a different perspective from having non-wrestling interests and exposure.
- puts over Jade Cargill as someone potentially having extreme star power, Penelope Ford for her improvement as a worker, Britt Baker for showing she can be a huge star. They knew they would get there with Britt but it took trial and error to find what it would take to get the crowd invested in her.
- has been studying TV wrestling and is wondering how you can keep viewers in the right frame of mind for say a street fight, even if it’s in picture in picture when the commercials are goofy Doritos ads.
- would rather see Rampage used to feature more women’s wrestling as opposed to bigger stars you already see on Dynamite like him, Jericho, MJF. Thinks the variety of what you see from AEW is more important and would like to see Rampage feature more of the under-exposed acts.
- says booking creative now is more of a set of mini-meetings through the week where you work on the storyline with the other guys involved and then get Tony Khan’s input
- his character in Impact is purposely more confident and self-assured than his AEW character. He has been planting seeds of his AEW character possibly being lead on by Don Callis, lacking in confidence, projecting a facade of thinking he can beat anybody when he’s really not sure if he can. As he is on Impact a lot less that character is kept much simpler.
- Dave comments the Bucks\Kenny\Hangman storyline is definitely the longest he has seen in pro wrestling and it stretches back about four years while most wrestling stories are two weeks, two months etc. Kenny says he is inspired by long, open-ended episodic story-telling as on television and feels he has stories he can go back to with AJ, Tanahashi, Jay White etc which can build on all their past histories. Both he and Okada had a lot of cool moments planned for Omega-Okada V at MSG which hopefully they will get to. Even the match with Jungle Boy, there were seeds planted for future matches which Kenny is keen to revisit.
- says his goal in past G1 matches was to change perceptions of the guy’s he was working with. For example, showing Goto could potentially win the big one. That Ishii (who Kenny puts over as someone who never takes a night off) could pin the champion clean in the middle of the ring. That Naito was perceived by the office as being a very compelling chaser but less interesting when he has won what he was chasing for. This he tried to fix by having the fans ecstatic that Naito would be going to the Tokyo Dome. Says Naito is super-shy in real life.
- Kenny says G1 is tough but BOLA is also one of the most demanding events in pro wrestling.
- his proudest moments in AEW are the Revolution 2020 tag match, Stadium Stampede, the matches against Moxley, matches with Sydal, Jungle Boy and Ray Fenix, the triple threat at DoN 2021, the Iron Man match against PAC. For the triple threat he is very happy he had the crowd thinking Orange Cassidy could win. He is also proud of the Riho v Nyla match to crown the first women’s champion as it was his first big test as an agent.
- puts over Daniel Bryan as someone who was able to get the WWE fanbase into the palm of his hand with one word and force his way into winning the championship at Wrestlemania. No one else in WWE history apart from Austin with What was able to do that.
- says wrestling during the pandemic was a whole different art-form as it demanded wrestlers show a whole lot more animation and energy in the ring when they could not rely on crowd noise and reactions.
- Garrett thanks Kenny and says he really appreciates the thoughtful answers Kenny gives to a wide variety of questions. Dave says like Bruno Sammartino, Kenny is a great interview. Kenny says unlike Bruno he has never wrestled a gorilla or bear but has wrestled a blow-up doll and a girl which he is reminded of on a daily basis (all laugh). He says the interviews are good because of how Dave and Garrett phrase and ask their questions which elicit answers he has to think about.
Kenny says he is very conscious of the responsibility that has been given to him by the companies who have made them his champion. In the case of AAA, he hopes to show the appeal of lucha libre and how someone versed in that tradition will eventually beat him for the title.