AEW World Champion Jon Moxley recently spoke with Justin Barrasso of Sports Illustrated to promote tonight's Dynamite Anniversary episode on TNT, where he will defend the title against Lance Archer in the main event.
Moxley praised Archer and commented on how he will make tonight's show a memorable one. He also commented on one year of Dynamite and how this is a landmark moment for the company.
"One year of Dynamite, this is a landmark moment," Moxley said. "At first, it all sounded too good to be true. But I think back on that first night, doing a live show on TNT. It actually happened, we did it. Then we built momentum, which was shut down like everyone else's during COVID, but we're surviving and thriving despite all that's been put in front of us.
"That's a credit to our talent and crew, suffering through horrible Jacksonville humidity all summer, so it's going to be a celebration this Wednesday. And the lights are going to be bright this week. With an opponent like Lance Archer, you can imagine the lengths I'm going to take to make this a memorable night."
The pro wrestling industry took a hit from the COVID-19 pandemic this year and Moxley sees himself as the AEW talent that has been carrying the torch during the pandemic, and that's what he wants to be. Moxley said it's vital for the industry that AEW succeeds.
"I'm the guy carrying the torch during a pandemic," he said. "It's a weird time, and COVID is f------ up the bookings every week, but I want to carry the torch through tough times. Even though I didn't originally picture myself in a good-guy, protagonist role when I first came here, it's the way it happened. I can send a message of perseverance and picking yourself up after you fall down. People have lost their jobs, lost their business, and I can project strength, with no fear in the face of adversity, for those watching our show.
"I want to give stability in an unstable time. I need to give AEW some stability as we build a secure future for this brand, because it's vital for this industry that AEW is a success."
Before becoming the top star in AEW, Moxley was known as Dean Ambrose in WWE, where he made an impact with Seth Rollins and current WWE Universal Champion Roman Reigns as The Shield. He was asked if he ever compares his work to Reigns.
"I don't pay much attention or compare myself to anybody else," Moxley responded. "For me, it's all about visualizing what I want in my head and then actualizing it in the ring. I just want to create my own vision, so I'm not comparing that with anyone else."