On the final AEW Dynamite before Full Gear, New Japan star Rocky Romero took on AEW star Bryan Danielson in a losing effort. In an appearance on the Battleground Podcast, Rocky Romero talked about how the match came together and gave his feelings to how the match turned out.

“It was really cool. It was really cool,” Romero said. “Because it kind of happened like short notice. I think I got the call on a Friday and I showed up on Dynamite on that Wednesday. Tony (Khan) called me and was like ‘hey, I was talking to Danielson and I was just thinking it be cool if we had some Forbidden Door action this next week on Dynamite. Danielson’s been getting ready for the PPV, it might be the perfect opportunity to do something with Danielson.’ So I was thinking ‘who are they going to be interested in? Maybe someone like Juice or Finlay or somebody.’ And then he goes ‘Yeah, we’re talking maybe Rocky Romero vs. Danielson.’ It took me a second cause I was like ‘wait, what? Me?! You want me?!’

“I was like ‘oh, that makes sense.’ Cause obviously Danielson and I have so much history going back to the original LA Dojo, training together, and making our debut in New Japan in October of 2002. Just two young kids, you know? So why not? That’s kind of cool, that’s a really cool thing. And I was just really happy with how it turned out. I thought the match was really cool. First time being on Dynamite and being on TNT was awesome. To be doing it against somebody with who I have that kind of history with and obviously, he’s a huge freaking superstar now. Getting to go toe to toe with him and showing what I’ve got was amazing.”

The Rocky Romero-Bryan Danielson match was only possible thanks to the opening of the Forbidden Door earlier this year, leading to an alliance between AEW and New Japan. Romero described how the thing came together, crediting Tony Khan, Chris Jericho, and Jon Moxley for getting things rolling, and Kenny Omega for ultimately reaching out to New Japan to seal the deal.

“Tony’s always been cool,” Romero said. “He’s kind of always, I feel like, been open to the idea, right? And then you have Jericho who has always been somebody who’s wanted to make it happen ever since he went over for New Japan to wrestle Tanahashi. That was kind of the beginning of it, with Tony giving the okay for Jericho to bring the AEW belt and all that. So it kind of started with Jericho, obviously with Moxley being important to both companies and Moxley always wanting to do something and kind of being that main focal point because obviously he wasn’t really mixed up into the drama of what was going on between AEW and New Japan and the wrestlers.

“And then the third big component I feel like, besides Tony, was obviously Kenny (Omega). Kenny being a part of it and Kenny was one of the ones who reached out first and just said ‘hey, I know Moxley and KENTA have this thing.’ And obviously, he had a big rivalry with Moxley as well. Moxley being the focal point I think had something to do with it. Obviously, Kenny and New Japan had their issues, from when Kenny left New Japan to join AEW. So I think that was a big step in the right direction. And obviously, Kenny is incredible at what he does. He’s literally one of the best, he’s a true pro. And he was, obviously, to see the grand picture, he was the one who helped facilitate that. At least among the EVP’s.”

If you use any of the quotes in this article, please credit Battleground Podcast and provide an h/t to Wrestling Inc. for the transcription

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