Tony Khan will have to work very hard to keep his top stars in AEW with a new report suggesting that WWE could have some top talent in Khan’s company in its sights.
Since its formation in 2019, AEW has become something of a refuge for former WWE stars that have either left that company of their own volition or have been released. Matt Hardy, Brodie Lee, FTR, Miro, Malakai Black, Andrade El Idolo, Claudio Castagnoli, Bryan Danielson, Jeff Hardy, Buddy Matthews, Samoa Joe, Adam Cole, Christian Cage, Ruby Soho, Swerve Strickland, Saraya, and Keith Lee are among the names that have become All Elite over the four years of AEW’s existence that used to ply their trade in WWE.
On the other side of the fence, Cody Rhodes made a splash in early 2022 when he made the move to leave AEW – where he was an Executive Vice President – and rejoin WWE. But the movement of traffic remained very one-sided but that has slowed down recently.
Speaking on Wrestling Observer Radio, Dave Meltzer noted that WWE could become more aggressive in their pursuit of AEW talent with some big contracts – including The Young Bucks – expiring this year:
“It’s gonna be a real interesting year for Tony (Khan) because a lot of key deals are gonna be up this year, and WWE’s gonna go hard for almost everyone good and also there’s gonna be WWE deals up as well.”
“He needs to make the product and the perception of the product look attractive enough to where guys on the other side will go ‘you know what? they’re solid, they’re financially stable, they’re doing good, the schedules easier’ you know what I mean? But right now I don’t think perception of people in WWE is to go there.”
Ric Flair has already called for The Bucks and Kenny Omega to sign for the opposition should the opportunity present itself.