AEW launched Collision in June 2023 as its third show on TNT/TBS and originally plans centered around the comeback of CM Punk.
CM Punk had been missing from AEW since his backstage fight with The Elite at All Out 2022. Punk had also suffered a torn triceps on that show which kept him on the sidelines before his return to action was tied in with the launch of Collision.
With The Elite seemingly not willing to talk to Punk, the decision was made to have a soft split in the roster with Punk heading up the new Collision show that frequently has featured the likes of FTR, The House of Black, and Powerhouse Hobbs, among others.
However, CM Punk was publicly fired by AEW just a few weeks into the experiment following another backstage fight, this time with Jack Perry at All In. Since then, the company has been forced to change tact with Collision with more matches that might seem one-sided on paper but have been receiving rave reviews from those who watch the show.
Bryan Danielson Leading AEW’s New Direction On Collision
Speaking on Wrestling Observer Radio, Dave Meltzer noted that Bryan Danielson is leading the charge on Collision to help younger stars get over with great matches to help make new stars:
Well, the thing with Bryan Danielson is that like he’s….a lot of things the guys on Collision, with a lot of the guys, is there’s a mentality on that show with the guys who were you know if you want to call them the booker’s of the show or assistant booker’s because Tony’s the booker, but the assistant booker’s of the show, and their mentality is 100% ‘let’s get other people over but we still have to win’ because they’re key guys. Whether it’s Eddie Kingston, Bryan Danielson, can’t lose to hatch Hechicero. But he’s trying to get these guys, whatever it is, a job or whatever.
Bryan Danielson recently took on Mexican star Hechicero on Collision in a match that received a lot of attention for its quality afterward. The bout was part of AEW’s new relationship with CMLL and it looks like more luchadors could be featured on AEW TV in the future.
On the same edition of Collision, AEW Continental Crown Champion Eddie Kingston defeated ‘Bounty Hunter’ Bryan Keith. After the match, there was good news for Keith as it was revealed he was being officially signed to AEW.