Part of the reason that NJPW doesn’t have a relationship with AEW is due to NJPW working with ROH as they have had an agreement in place for years now. The other part is the fact that a few top stars jumped from NJPW to AEW including the likes of Kenny Omega, the Young Bucks, and Cody Rhodes.
Meij did so during a recent interview with FOX Sports where he noted that while New Japan Pro Wrestling is open to working with any promotion, it does take time to create a trust for both sides.
“We’re very open to working with anyone, we don’t exclude anyone,” Meij said. “But it does take time to create that trust between companies. And right now AEW is still in the exploratory phase; they’re trying to establish themselves as a brand, what is that brand? They’re about one year in, and we’re starting to see what their brand is all about. Then we’ll have to see if that brand fits our brand of course. At this stage, they still have different styles than we do, and that’s the only thing. We’re looking at what their brand positioning is and whether it complements ours.”
Meij also talked about just because Omega left the company to go to AEW, that wouldn’t matter to a potential future partnership.
“No. It’s a business, at the end of the day,” Meij responded. “The wrestlers we hire, we work with on a contractual basis for a certain period of time. Obviously we would’ve loved to have kept having them here but I can understand that if there’s in their minds a bigger and better opportunity, well then that’s just a natural way for competition to move forward. It’s a natural thing. I do also believe the likes of AEW is good for the industry, because it puts a lot of new money into the industry, and a lot of people might be getting more interested in pro wrestling – people who might not have been interested if AEW hadn’t been established. So it can only be good for the industry.”