MJF’s ongoing drama with AEW appears to have settled into the territory of a wrestling storyline. Whether it began as a legitimate issue between Friedman and the company or not, the story will now play out on-screen and in the ring. The confusion about what’s real and what’s make-believe hasn’t just spilled over to the fans.

AEW’s locker room was largely kept in the dark about the MJF situation. Tony Khan refused to talk about it with the media after the Double or Nothing pay-per-view. Khan was reported to have promised in the past to never work the talent, and that has some backstage frustrated.

In the latest Wrestling Observer Newsletter, Dave Meltzer compared the MJF situation to what Brian Pillman did to WCW in the 1990s. Pillman famously convinced Eric Bischoff to cut him legitimately as part of a worked shoot storyline, but then bailed and signed with WWE. Dave pointed out that some AEW stars are very unhappy with the games they believe Tony Khan is playing.

“Due to the nature of the business, many wrestlers in the company, including key people, believed it to be a work, even from the start. Some just played it off like it’s wrestling and whatever, but others weren’t so happy about it. One noted being very unhappy about it believing that playing games with talent and keeping executives in the dark on key issues was something they had hoped this company would never do, and one called it a sloppy work that in the long run will benefit nobody.”


The world of professional wrestling is unlike any other in that even these reports could be part of the storyline. The best stories are told when fans are given pause about whether what they are seeing is real. That said, it does appear at least some AEW talents are upset with the way things have played out.

Tony Khan has earned a reputation as a trustworthy promoter both for his fans and his employees. The MJF situation has blurred those lines of trust, as was evidenced by the fans cheering for Max when he called Khan out on Wednesday’s Dynamite. Time will tell if there is a long-term effect from the fallout.

What do you think of this story? Let us know in the comments!

Tags: MJF
Michael Perry

Michael Perry is a news contributor for Ringside News and Thirsty for News. Michael has an M.A. in Communication Technology from Point Park University in his hometown of Pittsburgh, PA.

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