As noted, the controversy surrounding Tony Khan and Big Swole was a hot topic this weekend. It began with an episode of Big Swole’s “Swole World” show that aired on Call-In. During the episode, the former AEW star pointed to a lack of diversity in the top spots of the company as one of the leading factors in her departure in 2021.
Tony Khan responded in a single tweet, pointed to how other people of color have succeeded in AEW, and then said he let Swole’s contract expire because her wrestling wasn’t good enough.
“The top 2 @AEW execs are brown (me & Megha)!! Jade, Bowens, Caster, Dante, Nyla, Isiah & Marq Quen all won on tv this month. The TBS Title Tournament has been very diverse. I let Swole’s contract expire as I felt her wrestling wasn’t good enough. #AEWRampage Street Fight TONIGHT!,” he wrote.
Swole continued to retweet posts throughout the day yesterday, but it wasn’t until this morning that she finally posted a tweet of her own. In it, she implored the wrestling community to listen intently to her podcast because she believes her words are being misunderstood.
“It’s Sunday, take time to actually listen to the podcast instead of reading headlines and excerpts. Understand diversity isn’t just a statistic, counting us/POC isn’t the mindset,” she writes. “Not one time did I ever mention anyone as racist. Comprehension is key.”
One AEW star that quickly reacted to the situation in frustration was Lio Rush, who demanded that Tony Khan apologize for his statement to Big Swole. But since that transpired, it looks as though Rush had a heart-to-heart with Tony Khan and has more optimism toward their process.
“I want this to be clear… I do not consider this to be a diversity issue, and I at no point have thought or said that AEW or Tony is racist,” Lio Rush writes. “We can all clearly see that wrestling as a whole and the AEW roster is perpetually diverse. The issue at hand was a racial insensitivity issue.
“Having spoken to Tony and Megah, we have discussed the endeavors to further understand the struggles of the black community. I am grateful to be able to understand more about Tony and Megah’s own ethnic backgrounds and glad that they are actively seeking input from an African American perspective. I am proud to work for a boss and company that try to make these strides in social equality,” Rush continues. “I look forward to working with Tony to keep making steps towards positive change. I pray that 2022 is a year of positive change in all aspects. Happy New Year and GOD BLESS. #BeTheChange”
Other AEW stars like Powerhouse Hobbs, Jade Cargill, & Shawn Dean also made statements concerning this ordeal. You can see their various statements at this link.
You can see the full tweets below:
It’s Sunday, take time to actually listen to the podcast instead of reading headlines and excerpts.
Understand diversity isn’t just a statistic, counting us/POC isn’t the mindset.
Not one time did I ever mention anyone as racist.
Comprehension is keyhttps://t.co/p5bpFdq8dI
— Swole One 💪🏾 (@SwoleWorld) January 2, 2022
— Lio Rush (@IamLioRush) January 1, 2022
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