Ever since Kenny Omega snatched the AEW World Championship from Jon Moxley just a month ago, AEW’s relationship with Impact Wrestling has been the talk of many wrestling fans. For starters, the invasion angle has seen Omega make weekly appearances on Impact Wrestling, which led to a six-man main event this past Saturday at Hard To Kill with a victory over the Impact World Champion Rich Swann, Moose and Chris Sabin with the help of his Bullet Club allies and the Impact World Tag Team Champions, The Good Brothers (Doc Gallows and Karl Anderson).
Not only has Omega been featured on Impact, but so has President & CEO of AEW Tony Khan, and head commentator Tony Schiavone, who promote their weekly show, Dynamite, by buying paid advertisements.
In his interview with Renee Paquette on Oral Sessions, he explains whose idea it was in the first place to create this AEW – Impact invasion angle and where he sees it going in the future.
“It was Kenny’s idea,” Tony Khan announced. “He asked me about it, and I love good ideas. I don’t do every idea. But this is something that Kenny brought up that I thought was a great idea. He put a lot of thought and time into this. I give 100 percent of the credit to Kenny.
“Don Callis and Kenny have a very close relationship and, you know, I think that was behind it, but I also think Kenny believed that Don would be a very powerful advocate for him; the role of a really, really strong heel manager for Kenny as the top heel in the territory. Really, I think Kenny is the top heel in wrestling right now. I think that’s what people wanted to see… I think people were really ready to see this Kenny Omega. He was excited to present it. He put so much thought into innovating and changing. That’s why I think the two best wrestlers in the world are Kenny and Jon [Moxley].”
Khan admits that he was surprised how enthusiastic fans of both Impact and AEW were to see him and Schiavone’s paid advertising segments on Impact each week.
“People seem to like them, and that’s why we kept doing them,” he said with a chuckle. “It’s great because it promotes our show, and it also keeps the storyline with them going. When we first did it, I didn’t know that people would enjoy them as much as they did. I didn’t plan on doing them for as long as we have. They’ve gotten a great reaction, and it’s good for both companies.”
For fans expecting Khan to play a more vital role as an on-air talent in AEW, don’t hold your breath. He officially announced on Renee’s podcast that he has no intentions of becoming an on-air talent or general manager soon.
“No, it’s not,” he informed. “I made a big exception coming out, and I thought it was the right thing to do for the company on how much Brodie [Lee] meant to us. I wanted to pay the highest respect I could to him and his family and be there for them. But other than that, I’ve never come out and done that in that role. Occasionally, because of the story with Impact, it makes sense…But I don’t want to do that. We have a limited amount of TV time, and we have a great roster that needs to be featured. The character of the general manager does not need to be featured a lot.”
You can listen to Tony Khan’s full interview here. If you use any of the quotes in this article, please credit Oral Sessions w/Renée Paquette with a h/t to Wrestling Inc. for the transcription.