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AEW - APR 2022


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Have they officially confirmed if these Owen Cup qualifiers are feeding into two  sixteen wrestler brackets in the tournament proper, like in the graphics, or just eight each? I had assumed the former, but that means they'd be running out of time unless the plan is to have some people auto qualify through the ranking system. Any tournament is better than no tournament, but with that roster, and the Full Gear tourney only having eight entrants, something more epic would have been nice.

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22 hours ago, Stefanie the Human said:

Seems unlikely unless Bushiroad forces it. Their only Stardom connection was Riho working there in 2020 and that didn't go terribly well. They have a much better relationship with TJPW (and Hikaru Shida is a bridge to Ice Ribbon, since Shida went to Ice Ribbon on 3/20 and will be back again on 5/4). Also, when AEW did their joshi tournament in 2021, they worked with pretty much everyone except Stardom.

From the Fightful story that was just posted:

Quote

Bushiroad is the parent company of not only NJPW, but STARDOM as well. STARDOM has had a presence in recent years at NJPW Wrestle Kingdom and Ohbari isn't ruling out STARDOM coming to AEW.

“This is an AEW-NJPW event," said Ohbari. “But the key phrase here is, ‘Never say never.’ Really nothing is off the table, and who knows what the future may hold for AEW and Stardom.”

Based on how solid the AEW relationship looks so far, I wouldn't be surprised if Stardom talent just start popping up if the schedule permits.

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1 minute ago, Elsalvajeloco said:

From the Fightful story that was just posted:

Based on how solid the AEW relationship looks so far, I wouldn't be surprised if Stardom talent just start popping up if the schedule permits.

I'm up for any amount of pretense as long as there's a whiteboard at AEW HQ that says "POACH GIULIA".

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3 minutes ago, John E. Dynamite said:

I'm up for any amount of pretense as long as there's a whiteboard at AEW HQ that says "POACH GIULIA".

Shit, Liger (last year I think) straight up asked her when she was signing with WWE....in a goddamn NJPW interview. The man understands how to put on great matches, but doesn't understand contract tampering. Go figure.

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Adam Cole had an interesting line in his promo on Dynamite. "A member of the undisputed elite is going to take the whole damn thing." If Kenny could get back in time for an early squash match for the Owen Hart...

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8 hours ago, EVA said:

Putting Hanger and Jay back together could be dangerous. They had a gonzo match back in 2018. Frightened to think of what they might try to do with higher expectations now.

I'd be fine with Jay taking the belt off of Hangman and then losing to someone else like Mox.  Just to show it can happen.  Jay's not going to hurt the belt's lineage at all.

 

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8 hours ago, Matt D said:

I think Cole wins. He lost the title feud so this is the way to repair him as a top guy in a KOTR 93 Bret Hart sort of way.

Why do you hate the world, Matt?

(I realize you weren't actually advocating for this. But you shouldn't even be putting such horrible thoughts Out There.)

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43 minutes ago, tbarrie said:

Why do you hate the world, Matt?

(I realize you weren't actually advocating for this. But you shouldn't even be putting such horrible thoughts Out There.)

I'm a realist. They should let a Canadian win anyway, so let it be Ethan Page or Evil Uno.

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Christian would be a good pick, he's one of the few remaining active guys who have actually wrestled Owen (and he also checks the Canadian box). You could fold it into the eventual Jungle Boy split (Ex: 'I won the Owen because I out...worked...everyone... but you didnt even qualify!') That said, it really depends on what the identity of the tournament is or becomes. Is it to get a young guy over, is it all juniors, is it all Canadians, is it a KOTR/G1 thing, etc.

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2 hours ago, Elsalvajeloco said:

Based on how solid the AEW relationship looks so far, I wouldn't be surprised if Stardom talent just start popping up if the schedule permits.

It just seems strange to me that Bushiroad would want to shoehorn in Stardom in this situation. They've shown practically no interest in American expansion for Stardom, outside of throwing a bone to English-speaking followers by translating interviews and promos.

Not to mention what I discussed earlier when it comes to the joshi companies AEW's worked with, and how they've specifically avoided Stardom.

I get the whole "never say never" talk, but I'll believe it when I see it.

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2 hours ago, Elsalvajeloco said:

From the Fightful story that was just posted:

Based on how solid the AEW relationship looks so far, I wouldn't be surprised if Stardom talent just start popping up if the schedule permits.

Kidani is the BR guy running Stardom so I would wait for something from him before putting much stock on anything happening. With the plans he and Ogawa seemingly come up with well in advance along with how difficult Riho was to book when she was there as an AEW member I can see it being a long time before there is any interest working with AEW. They are also still focused on domestic advance in Japan, and I suspect AEW women haven't quite worked their value up enough for them to have a super amount of interest booking them in Japan, let alone sending anyone over.

2 hours ago, John E. Dynamite said:

I'm up for any amount of pretense as long as there's a whiteboard at AEW HQ that says "POACH GIULIA".

Stuff like this is another reason they may not have interest in working with them. There was a rumor they may have tried that with Mayu.

13 minutes ago, Stefanie the Human said:

It just seems strange to me that Bushiroad would want to shoehorn in Stardom in this situation. They've shown practically no interest in American expansion for Stardom, outside of throwing a bone to English-speaking followers by translating interviews and promos.

Not to mention what I discussed earlier when it comes to the joshi companies AEW's worked with, and how they've specifically avoided Stardom.

I get the whole "never say never" talk, but I'll believe it when I see it.

The biggest reason nothing happened was Stardom had a relationship with ROH at the time including ROH being the ones who got Stardom talent their visas. That said, AEW's Stardom contacts were supposedly Cody and Brandi so I would continue to expect nothing for a while there though as has been said "never say never" I guess.

Edited by Eivion
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Just now, Stefanie the Human said:

It just seems strange to me that Bushiroad would want to shoehorn in Stardom in this situation. They've shown practically no interest in American expansion for Stardom, outside of throwing a bone to English-speaking followers by translating interviews and promos.

Not to mention what I discussed earlier when it comes to the joshi companies AEW's worked with, and how they've specifically avoided Stardom.

I get the whole "never say never" talk, but I'll believe it when I see it.

I don't think they avoided Stardom as much it's kinda weird to have a talent exchange when you have nothing to offer back really. AEW women's division looks VASTLY different from 18 months ago. We were wondering if they had enough people to have put on decent match semi regularly all of twelve months ago.

And as for shoehorning....hell, that's what AEW does anyway if other talent is available. I doubt besides one or two moves here and there, that AEW had long term plans for anyone they've brought in recently. I get the feeling that we've had many spur of the moment signings.

Based on how AEW's relationship with Impact and Corgan's NWA turned out, I think TK would quickly abandon his relationships with those other companies to work with Stardom if he could. I don't think he's going to stop someone like Shida from working in Ice Ribbon or wherever if she wanted to or could, but the main pipeline would likely be from Stardom. 

 

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1 minute ago, Elsalvajeloco said:

I don't think they avoided Stardom as much it's kinda weird to have a talent exchange when you have nothing to offer back really. AEW women's division looks VASTLY different from 18 months ago. We were wondering if they had enough people to have put on decent match semi regularly all of twelve months ago.

And as for shoehorning....hell, that's what AEW does anyway if other talent is available. I doubt besides one or two moves here and there, that AEW had long term plans for anyone they've brought in recently. I get the feeling that we've had many spur of the moment signings.

Based on how AEW's relationship with Impact and Corgan's NWA turned out, I think TK would quickly abandon his relationships with those other companies to work with Stardom if he could. I don't think he's going to stop someone like Shida from working in Ice Ribbon or wherever if she wanted to or could, but the main pipeline would likely be from Stardom. 

 

I think it's actually the opposite. I'd be very surprised if TK even knows what Stardom is, and books whatever joshi groups Kenny Omega tells him to book, hence why their strongest relationship is with TJPW (since Kenny is close with the DDT umbrella).

Since TJPW and Stardom pretty much don't get along, I don't see them throwing away their relationship with TJPW just to export a match or two on a show that's labeled as "AEW vs NJPW", not "AEW vs NJPW and the women's promotion owned by the same company as NJPW". It's not like AEW gives that much of a damn about women's wrestling to start with, why start now?

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Just now, EVA said:

Ima go out on a limb and say that DVDVR alumnus Tony Khan knows what Stardom is.

Nah, if it's not on a third-gen VHS tape traded to him by John McAdam, he doesn't know it.

That's my headcanon and I'm sticking with it.

(For real though, I was potshoting how little AEW promotes women's wrestling, thus I would not be surprised he would not pay attention to joshi. PUSH AJA KONG! he screams from his Jacksonville offices, SHE BROKE CHAPPARITA ASARI'S NOSE ONCE!)

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30 minutes ago, Stefanie the Human said:

I think it's actually the opposite. I'd be very surprised if TK even knows what Stardom is, and books whatever joshi groups Kenny Omega tells him to book, hence why their strongest relationship is with TJPW (since Kenny is close with the DDT umbrella).

I don't think Omega is that influential to where he can overrule what his boss wants. I get that Kenny has been influential on some of the talent used and agenting, but Tony runs to company overall and Kenny is at best his assistant much like the other current (and now former VPs). Prior to this, I don't think they had much of a relationship with Bushiroad to even float the idea of working with anyone other than what Kenny recommended. Beggars can't be choosers.

30 minutes ago, Stefanie the Human said:

Since TJPW and Stardom pretty much don't get along, I don't see them throwing away their relationship with TJPW just to export a match or two on a show that's labeled as "AEW vs NJPW", not "AEW vs NJPW and the women's promotion owned by the same company as NJPW". 

I think Stardom has their own show that same day as Forbidden Door anyway. I am not talking about just a one off.

Quote

It's not like AEW gives that much of a damn about women's wrestling to start with, why start now?

I mean that's all personal opinion. Could they do much better? I think most people would agree, however, that's the reason why you work with other companies to help improve on some of your weaknesses. That said, I don't expect Britt Baker vs. Tam Nakano or like Julia Hart vs. AZM just randomly anyway. Hell, I think that's part of the reason they haven't really gotten much out of the partnership with the smaller companies. I mean outside of the tournament that mostly happened in Japan, some random stuff on Dark and Elevation with Ryo Mizunami, Mei Suruga, and Emi, and Riho matches here or there, there hasn't been that much to actually justify keeping the current relationships. It's not like Omega is knocking it out of the park for his whole part in this. It's been two and a half years, there hasn't been that much to write home about.

I mean this isn't that much different than like a 17 year old Meiko Satomura and Sonoko Kato wrestling on Worldwide for all of 3 minutes. 

Anyway, whether it's Stardom, TJPW, Marvelous, Ice Ribbon, SEAdLINNNG or whoever, I am for whatever partnership helps get this party jumped off. I have my preferred people I would like to see stateside, but I won't like that get in my way of enjoying AEW.* 

*Various people from DDM and Queen's Quest against former Stardom alum Toni Storm and Jamie Hayter might provoke some "Settle down, Cibernetico" moments within me. I lied so sue me.

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To switch gears a bit, and since Gangrel mentioned this person could sign with AEW (or WWE) - @Elsalvajeloco, any idea as to the other female MMA fighter he's training for pro wrestling? It's not Paige Van Zant, he mentioned her. The way he was talking, it was in secret and wouldn't mention her name until her UFC contract ended or something.

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34 minutes ago, Casey said:

To switch gears a bit, and since Gangrel mentioned this person could sign with AEW (or WWE) - @Elsalvajeloco, any idea as to the other female MMA fighter he's training for pro wrestling? It's not Paige Van Zant, he mentioned her. The way he was talking, it was in secret and wouldn't mention her name until her UFC contract ended or something.

Kayla Harrison based on her contract implosion after the Amanda Nunes loss + her relationship with Dan Lambert. She buried the pro wrestling industry on Renee & Meisha's radio show but I'd bet a fifty it's her.

Edited by John E. Dynamite
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It would be weird if it was Kayla, since Gangrel said this other woman has a great deal of passion for pro wrestling.

Also, what Amanda Nunes loss?

Edited by Casey
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4 minutes ago, Elsalvajeloco said:

snip

Sorry to snip your reply but I didn't want to multi-quote reply and I did want to at least give you the notification that I replied.

So the current relationships that were in place were sort of hamstrung by Japan's covid restrictions, I think. Japan had one of the stricter re-entry policies, if I remember correctly, where if you came back from anywhere, you had to isolate for (I believe?) 14 days. Now, if you're vaccinated, there is no quarantine as of March 1. So basically, all those relationships that were in place pre-pandemic? They either had to bring people over for significant periods of time to make it worth their while, or be stuck flying over to work a show or two, then be in isolation. For example, Maki Itoh came over to work a week's worth of shows, but it was well-timed because it was during a gap in TJPW's schedule because she only missed one show as a result. TJPW runs so frequently that bringing over the folks they had wasn't really an option on a regular basis, so really... do you scrap that relationship by going "well, it didn't work because of a global pandemic and strict re-entry to your home country" now that those restrictions are lifted? Or do you actually give it a shot now that you can?

As far as me saying AEW doesn't care about women's wrestling... I mean, I've been on record stating the problems I've had with the way they promote it. One match per show. Literally in the cooldown slot almost every show. Sometimes it's just a squash match. If you want to disagree with me on that, that's fine, but they have been using the same booking formula for almost two years now. As someone who almost exclusively watches women's wrestling, I'm quite annoyed by that. It almost feels like they have it on the show because they feel it's good for demographics and because one of the EVPs likes it, but given the choice, they'd rather not. There's occasional anomalies, but on a week-to-week basis, the women are an afterthought.

You can dismiss my opinion and say "well that's just how you feel", but seriously, look over the last couple of years of AEW shows and tell me I shouldn't be a little bit miffed at that as someone who watches for the women.

I literally don't think it matters who gets brought in from other promotions, working a seven minute match through a PIP commercial after a 12+ hour flight and dealing with the politics of who's putting who over isn't exactly appealing.

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2 minutes ago, John E. Dynamite said:

Kayla Harrison based on her contract implosion after the Amanda Nunes loss + her relationship with Dan Lambert. She buried the pro wrestling industry on Rene & Meisha's radio show but I'd bet a fifty it's her.

 

Just now, Casey said:

It would be weird if it was Kayla, since Gangrel said this other woman has a great deal of passion for pro wrestling.

I went and searched it, but Gangrel used "MMA" and not the name of an organization. That could be a ton of people.

That said, I don't think anyone he's training has the natural personality to make it work like Kayla Harrison probably could. I think she has some untapped potential.

Outside of girls who have natural charisma like a Joanna Jędrzejczyk (who was a semi contract dispute with the UFC up until recently) or an Amanda Ribas (who I could see being a Brazilian version of Bayley and Kylie Rae), I don't see anyone who make a sizable dent in the pro wrestling world. Valerie Loureda is a name I brought up because her looks alone should get her a big contract. Other than that, I cannot think of anyone else.

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1 hour ago, Casey said:

Also, what Amanda Nunes loss?

I don't know if this is sarcasm or whatever but I'll tell the story since a lot of this subforum doesn't follow MMA.

Kayla Harrison is a two-time Olympic Judo Gold Medalist (Rousey only got Bronze!) and undefeated in MMA. She was at the end of her contract with PFL, the #3 MMA promotion in the US. Amanda Nunes, the greatest female fighter of all time, had wiped out the UFC 135 and 145 pound women's divisions. There was a very popular line of thought that said the UFC would sign Kayla to a big money, short term contract in order to have a superfight against Nunes at 145 because they had nothing else to book.

Then Amanda Nunes got finished by a seven-to-one underdog in Julianna Pena. Kayla Harrison's big money free agency went to shit and she re-signed with PFL (the UFC made it known they didn't want to sign her unless they had to). Bear in mind Kayla showed up on AEW programming before, since she's a main player at American Top Team (Coconut Creek, FLA, only MMA gym to ever exist ever~) and one of Dan Lambert's most prized retainers. I'm not saying she's who Gangrel is talking about, but if betting odds came out today she'd unquestionably be at the top of the list.

Edited by John E. Dynamite
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