AEW media call report: Tony Khan speaks with the pro wrestling media ahead of Sunday’s AEW Revolution pay-per-view


By Jason Powell, Editor (@prowrestlingnet)

AEW President Tony Khan spoke with the pro wresting media on Thursday, February 29, 2024 to promote Sunday’s AEW Revolution pay-per-view.

-Tony Khan opened the call by noting that it’s Leap Day and said he looked forward to answer questions.

-Khan was asked about his thoughts on what Sting has meant to AEW and pro wrestling. Khan said Sting has been a big part of pro wrestling for his entire life and a hero since Khan was young. He said Sting is an incredible pro wrestler and an incredible man. Khan said giving him a proper sendoff is important to him. Khan said he feels the Greensboro Coliseum is the perfect place for the final match to occur. He also said he felt they had a great go-home show and Sting coming down from the rafters was the perfect way to end his final appearance on TBS.

-Khan was asked about the hiring of Jennifer Pepperman and her role in the creative approach. Khan said it’s another person in what he feels is a good process. He said she has a great wrestling mind. Khan said he was in the office very late last night. He said there are often different crews at Dynamite and Collision. Khan said Pepperman has been at both shows and she was there late last night along with Will Washington, Bryan Danielson, Jimmy Jacobs, and Mike Mansury. He said it’s really nice to have someone who has experience in pro wrestling and television. Khan said she is fitting in great and a lot of people who worked with her previously had great things to say about her. Khan said Pepperman has been very excited about what she’s seen in AEW thus far. He said she is learning AEW more and more. He said Pepperman is doing a great job of catching up on everything.

-Khan was asked if he’s had conversations with Kamille. Khan said she’s a great free agent and you never say never. He said they have scouted her and he has a lot of respect for her. Khan also said he enjoyed when he met her and he feels she would be a great fit in the company. Khan said she is someone they would keep under consideration.

-A caller asked if Sting will be involved with AEW in some capacity after his retirement match. Khan said he hopes Sting will remain with them in spirit forever. He believes they will be affiliated with the company. He said Sting joked that he would put on the headset. Khan said he would love that. Khan said that when Sting came back in 2020, he didn’t need the money. Khan said Sting is well off and has made great investments. He said Sting wrestles because he loves it and the fans. Khan said he would love to have Sting back in AEW and Sting said he would like to come back. Khan said they haven’t locked in any dates or contracted him. Khan said now is a great time for Sting to take time for him and his family.

-Khan was asked for projections for updates on television negotiations. Khan said it would be an exciting year for the company. Khan noted that this will be the fifth Revolution. He said it’s a big year for them when it comes to media rights. He said it’s important to keep performing and producing strong results. He said they have done really well compared to other sports leagues and noted that there have been times when they have topped the NBA in viewership and demos. Khan said the media rights will be negotiated this year and said they have been a great performer for TBS and TNT. He said he is a loyal person and he is grateful for the opportunities they have been afforded. Khan noted that there have been a lot of changes at Warner Bros. Discovery in recent years. Khan said the changes have been for the better when it comes to AEW, because they were able to expand under the current regime by adding Collision. Khan praised Collision and said it’s given the network a lift on Saturdays. He said they have a great relationship that has only gotten better and better. He said he is very optimistic about this year for AEW. Khan said he has something very exciting for the fans in Atlanta. He said people are buzzing about Big Business in Boston, and they are also headed to Toronto.

-A caller said there seems to be a new emphasis on the women’s division. Khan was asked if Jennifer Pepperman was brought in to work on women’s stories. Khan said the women’s locker room has never been more energized. Khan listed some of the other people who help in the process and then said Pepperman has great ideas regardless of whether it’s for men or women. He noted that she’s an Emmy award winner and called her a unique hire when she joined pro wrestling. He said she’s learned the wrestling business and she’s a popular hire. Khan said he brought Pepperman in to help with AEW across the board.

-Khan was asked about working with Daniel Garcia. He said it’s been about three years since Garcia started working for the company. He said he paired up Garcia with Matt Menard and Angelo Parker. He said he didn’t want people to think they were a team, so he didn’t go with the name 3.0 even though Menard and Parker went by 2.0. Khan said he feels the sky is the limit for Garcia. He said Garcia has evolved and improved each year. Khan said he’s built up his body and his character, and has a connection with the fans.

-A caller asked about the AEW World Championship match with Samoa Joe vs. Swerve Strickland vs. Hangman Page. Khan spoke about the storyline involving the three. Khan said they have the most professional, dominant, and high quality champion that they could have in Joe.

-The subject of the Meat Madness match being pulled from the Revolution lineup. The caller noted that the three advertised wrestlers for that match are in the scramble match. Khan said he thought of the Meat Madness match based on fan feedback. He said he tries to listen to the fans and the fans were telling them during All Out’s Miro vs. Powerhouse Hobbs. Khan said it exemplified the spirit of the All Out card, which he said was one of the best reviewed shows of the year. Khan recalled the “meat” chants in Chicago and then elsewhere. Khan said some of the wrestlers he wanted to use were injured. He said Miro and Keith Lee are both out and unavailable. He said he wants to have the depth in the field to do the match he envisioned. Khan said he switched the match to an All-Star Scramble, but he hopes to bring back the Meat Madness concept.

-Khan was asked about the first time Sting made an impression on him. Khan recalled seeing Sting at the first WCW SuperBrawl event in 1991 when Sting teamed with Lex Luger against Rick Steiner and Scott Steiner. Khan said it was a hard hitting babyface match that made an impression on him. He also recalled Sting challenging Rick Rude at the Clash of Champions event that same year. Khan also recalled that on his sister’s fourth birthday, he was getting yelled at for watching Sting’s tag team match on a Clash of the Champions show. Khan spoke of wanting to make this weekend special for Sting.

-The next caller asked about the number of pay-per-views they intend to run and also asked about goals for 2024. Khan spoke about expanding their pay-per-view calendar last year and recapped how they got to number of pay-per-views they ran in 2023. He said going to eight events worked well and he believes they have the capacity to increase. Khan said he could see the company running nine to ten pay-per-views in 2024. Khan said nine feels like the sweet spot. He mentioned that ROH has three streaming events, which he noted are not pay-per-views. He said they get an increase annually and a big bump will come in 2025. He said the rights renewal deals will put them over the top in many ways. Khan said expanding was bold and now they have confidence to expand. Khan said he feels the pay-per-view events are a great value and they have a history of delivering great shows. Khan also said they took a leap by adding AEW Collision. He said he thinks Collision has produced great moments, great matches, and has some of the best all around shows in pro wrestling. Khan said he expects big increases for television rights and he believes that 2025 (when the new media rights deal will begin) is when they will take the leap from being a startup company to becoming a challenger player for decades to come.

-Khan was asked if there will be a women’s Face of the Revolution match or a women’s Continental Classic tournament. Khan said it took them years to get to the point where they could have a Continental Classic. He said the women’s division has taken the leap too. He said he thinks they’ve been getting better and better. Khan touted a couple of their recent women’s television matches as well as the work of the women in ROH. Khan said he would love to expand to those match types once the consistency is there from a week to week basis.

-The final caller asked if Khan would name the members of the discipline committee and whether they have the training to deal with sexual misconduct issues should they arise. Khan said they do. He said they have two attorneys and Bryan Danielson. He said they want people to have common goals for the wellbeing of the wrestlers and to also have strong integrity. Khan said they would look out for all misconduct claims and they do their best to train them.

-Khan closed the show by saying that he thinks Revolution is the most special event in company history. He said it feels personal to have Sting’s final match take place in AEW. Khan once again raved about Sting as a person and called him as one of the all-time great wrestlers. Khan said the run that Sting has had in AEW will always be remembered by his loyal fans and he thinks it will culminate with a great match at Revolution. Khan spoke about the other matches on the show and said he feels it’s been their best built pay-per-view because the focus for weeks has been on the pay-per-view matches. Khan said he’s never been more excited for a Revolution or any show as he is for this Sunday’s event.

Powell’s POV: My apologies for not being able to do my usual live updates, but I had a previously scheduled appointment right in the middle of the call. One thing that stood out is that Khan is committed to giving Sting a great sendoff. Here’s hoping they can pull it off. Jake Barnett and I will be discussing the notables from this media call and sharing our AEW Revolution predictions during today’s Dot Net Weekly audio show for Dot Net Members (including our Patreon patrons). Be sure to join me for my live review of AEW Revolution on Sunday night.


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