Why Kevin Sullivan Says AEW Star MJF Needed To Turn Babyface

MJF fans are still getting accustomed to him as a babyface, but former WCW head booker Kevin Sullivan has a completely unique take on the AEW World Champion's character transformation. Sullivan believes AEW had no choice but to turn "The Devil" into a fan favorite after the likes of Bryan Danielson and Adan Cole went down with injuries, and CM Punk departed from the company following his backstage fracas with Jack Perry.


"How easy was it for MJF to turn babyface? Because they [AEW fans] didn't have anybody else to root for," Sullivan said on "Tuesday with The Taskmaster." "They didn't have anybody to root for. I hate that [Bryan Danielson got injured] since he's one of the reasons why I watch AEW. It really bothers me to see him get banged up so often."

MJF's babyface turn began during his rivalry-turned-friendship with Adam Cole earlier this year, which culminated with their main event match at AEW All In 2023. Since then, MJF has stopped relying on underhanded tactics to win his matches, has gone from a cowering champion unwilling to wrestle on TV to a fighting one taking on all comers, and has even turned down the volume on the insults reserved for "the poors" in the audience. AEW further established MJF's babyface turn by having him suffer a backstage beatdown at the hands of a group of masked assailants, and by having him hug Kenny Omega after his hard-fought title defense against "The Best Bout Machine."


As with all things MJF, it'd be premature to rule out the possibility of him reverting to his old self in the near future. In the meantime, MJF is set to receive a hero's homecoming when AEW travels to Long Island, New York, for the Worlds End pay-per-view, where the hometown wrestler defends his AEW World Championship against Samoa Joe.