Reports from Fightful Select this afternoon (Feb. 23) indicate two prominent names could be All Elite very soon. The site says one is definitely joining AEW, while the other’s status is unclear, he is in Bridgeport, Connecticut — the site of tonight’s Dynamite.
The guy who will be at Webster Bank Arena is Ring of Honor World champion Johnathan Gresham. Fightful’s AEW sources don’t know if he’ll make an appearance, or if he’s just visiting. If it is the former, Gresham has been defending his version of the ROH belt all over during that company’s hiatus. It’s conceivable a defense could take place in an AEW ring... especially considering Ring of Honor just announced two wrestlers employed by Tony Khan for their Hall of Fame.
Fightful’s sources have more concrete information on another star, telling the site that Shane “Swerve” Strickland is signing a contract to start with AEW next month. It’s said the deal has been expected since January, and will go into effect the first week of March — before the Mar. 6 Revolution PPV in Orlando.
Also of note in the report on Swerve: the company was immediately interested in the former NXT North American champion after WWE released him last November because they see him as “a potential crossover star”. It’s not a lock that Swerve’s House will replace Rhodes to the Top on TNT’s schedule or anything, as multiple wrestlers are said to have been discussed for WarnerMedia properties over the past year. But it’s got to be a good sign for Strickland’s prospects in All Elite.
Both men are booked for Gresham’s Terminus promotion in Atlanta tomorrow night. Gresham is set to defend the ROH title against AEW’s Santana on the card, and several other members of Tony Khan’s roster (Jay Lethal, Serena Deeb, Daniel Garcia) are in the line-up for Terminus 2.
Will we learn more about that, or see Gresham or Swerve, on Dynamite tonight? Join us in our live blog and we’ll find out together!