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Tony Khan on why AEW Dark shows are so long, how he first met Sting six years ago, why he didn’t like Matt Hardy’s teleportation

Chris Jericho welcomed Tony Khan as his guest last week on “Talk Is Jericho” to talk about the booking in AEW, how he got Sting to sign with the company, mistakes that have been made, what AEW Dark has done for independent wrestlers, how things have changed because of the pandemic, the future of the company, and more.

Jericho talks about AEW Dark: “I really want to express that if anybody watches Dark, which always does a strong rating, a strong number, sometimes people will say it’s two hours long or two and a half hours long. I want to tell everyone the reason for that is, and I’m not just saying this, but, Tony Khan is such a good hearted person that you (Khan) want everybody backstage to have a match and you want everybody backstage to get a payoff.”

Tony Khan added: “We bring in people to give them tryouts and we are giving a lot of independent wrestlers work in addition to the tryout people that we want to get a look at and put in specific matches. There’s other people, we are trying to put the top people from Dynamite in get over matches on Dark. You want to get some local people and keep them working because there’s no independent shows for all these people around Florida and Georgia like there used to be.”

Tony Khan said he met Sting six years ago: “I had a prior relationship with Sting.  He didn’t reach out to me until his agreement expired.  I knew him and he has a great son, Steve Jr, who is a great tight end at Kentucky.  He is a really nice young man. He tried out for the Jags.  He had a knee injury and I don’t think they utilized him enough at Kentucky because he was a good player and definitely someone who deserved a look in the NFL.  He had a great tryout with us.  I think if he came in healthy, I think he could have had a good chance at being a good NFL person.   I talked to Steve (Sting) back then, over five or six years ago.  I’ve known him a long time.  He’s a great person.  When he became available, it made all the sense in the world that I thought it would be great to sign Steve to an agreement to come in.  We talked and now we’re doing exactly what I wanted to do and what he wanted to do.  I think it’s worked out great.  It’s great for us and he’s really happy too.  He’s been really optimistic.  I think he’s having a really good time.”

Chris Jericho asked: “Has there been anything as a booker you look back on and wish that you hadn’t done? I know you didn’t like the Matt Hardy teleportation. That was my idea.”

Khan said, “Those are the things I tried to do a lot less of this year.  That’s a good example.  Stuff like where somebody has something and I knew I was skeptical of it going in and I talked myself into it and I wouldn’t have done it and it’s not against you or the idea.  It’s just the way it was executed and the way we were talking about it.  I had a feeling it wasn’t going to work.  That’s a perfect example.  We didn’t do very many of them this year.  We made mistakes this year, but I tried to cut down on that this year.  That’s a perfect example of something that I wish we hadn’t done, but it was my fault.  If I really believed it that strong, I should have stood up and said it.”

If you use any portion of the quotes from this article please credit AEW Unrestricted with a h/t to WrestlingNews.co for the transcription


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