AEW, now in its fourth year of existence, owes much of its success to the legendary Chris Jericho, who has been a constant presence throughout the company’s journey. Jericho, once the face of AEW, understood that he couldn’t shoulder that responsibility indefinitely. He believes that the company’s blazing start played a pivotal role in its continued success in 2023.
Reflecting on AEW’s early days, Jericho shared his insights during an interview on “Insight with Chris Van Vliet.” He pointed to a crucial turning point when AEW secured its monumental TV deal with TBS just a few months into its inception.
According to Jericho, the rapid development of several talented individuals within the company contributed significantly to securing such a lucrative television deal, a deal that proved vital to the company’s longevity.
Jericho himself played a pivotal role in this process. He became the inaugural AEW World Champion and collaborated with a diverse range of up-and-coming stars, including Jack Perry, Orange Cassidy, Darby Allin, and Adam Page. This collaboration helped introduce these talents to a national audience that might not have been familiar with them.
“I knew I had a very short window of being ‘the guy’ to elevate as many of our talent as I could,” Jericho acknowledged. “Those are all guys that I worked with in the first six months of the company and did everything I could to get them to the next step, and that worked really quickly.”
Jericho believes that in 2019, there was a palpable appetite for an alternative in the world of professional wrestling, a yearning for the creation of new stars. AEW embraced this challenge during its early days, providing the platform, storylines, and spotlight necessary for emerging talents.
“There was this whole collection of guys who had made big names for themselves everywhere around the world except for on national TV in the United States, so they were ready,” Jericho remarked. “They just needed the platform, and the storyline, and the spotlight, and they got it.”
Chris Jericho’s strategic approach to elevating new talent, combined with AEW’s unique vision, played a vital role in the company’s rapid rise and continued success in the wrestling industry.
How do you think AEW’s approach to nurturing and elevating new talent, as exemplified by Chris Jericho’s efforts, has contributed to the company’s success and longevity in the wrestling industry? What other factors do you believe have played a role in AEW’s rapid rise? Leave us a comment.