Kevin Kelly Expected To Miss Upcoming AEW Collision Dates

With the first episode of "AEW Collision" in the books, many have already started comparing and contrasting the new weekly show to AEW's flagship program, "AEW Dynamite." Undoubtedly one of the biggest differences between the two shows is the commentary teams, with "Collision" becoming the first weekly AEW show not to feature head commentator Excalibur whatsoever, instead opting for the two-man booth of Nigel Mcguinness and New Japan Pro-Wrestling's Kevin Kelly, complimented by the legendary Jim Ross for main event matches.

However, due to Kelly's commitment to NJPW, he will be missing from the new show's commentary team throughout the summer, according to Dave Meltzer on Wrestling Observer Radio. While this may be shocking to some AEW fans, it was expected by fans of NJPW as the G1 Climax 33 is set to begin next month with full English coverage live from Japan.

Kelly has been doing commentary for NJPW since 2015 and has become the lead English commentator for the promotion in the years since. Meltzer also added that, while it remains to be seen if Kelly continues doing commentary for NJPW past the end of his contract, he will, at the very least, remain on board through NJPW's World Tag League 2023 later this year. However, the tour should not affect Kelly's role on "Collision" as much as the G1 Climax due to English commentary for WTL 2023 being fully remote.

It remains to be seen who replaces Kelly this Summer, but it's hard to imagine AEW's options are sparse. Beyond their large broadcast team that is already regularly featured on AEW and ROH television, previous on-air talents such as Veda Scott have been suggested by fans to temporarily take Kelly's place on Saturday nights.