As he is wont to do, last night (Mar. 17) Tony Khan was online and looking for ways to hype an upcoming episode of AEW television.
Earlier in the day, AEW’s head honcho teased one of his announcements for this week’s pre-empted edition of Rampage. For whatever reason, Khan instead announced the dream match he had been teasing via an afternoon tweet. Luchablog then posted something about fans who will complain online about not knowing who one of the men in that dream match — AAA Grand champion El Hijo Del Vikingo — is. TK used that as an opening to bring up his ongoing beef with an anti-AEW “army of bots”:
They aren't doing it to be genuine.— Tony Khan (@TonyKhan) March 17, 2023
A large % of those replies aren't from real people, a lot of them are accounts that upon inspection seem to only exist to question and rip AEW and most of their other content seems to be a cover story to justify the existence of these accounts.
One of my favorite bits they do is when they claim they used to love AEW in the old days, but not anymore, yet when you dig into their old posts, there's nothing positive on AEW ever. Yes, I'm sure you all used to be great fans despite no evidence of that whatsoever.#AEWRampage— Tony Khan (@TonyKhan) March 17, 2023
In between those tweets, Tony also engaged with the account of Wrestling Observer’s Dave Meltzer. The information he dropped there was more interesting, because it’s new and more positive. Khan revealed that unlike other wrestling companies (of course it was still wrestling war-adjacent), AEW pays for wrestler travel and accommodations:
That's false Dave. Your statement's true about other companies but doesn't apply at all to AEW— Tony Khan (@TonyKhan) March 17, 2023
AEW invests millions of dollars every year on very good quality hotel rooms + safe transport to take care of our wrestlers.
It's a huge investment I make on hotels weekly#AEWRampage https://t.co/bXPGVTSt51
Several AEW talents responded to confirm — and praise — this policy:
No company, wrestling or other, has taken care of me the way AEW has. First class. Ill never forget that.— Uncle Dax FTR (@DaxFTR) March 18, 2023
Speaking from a female perspective, this is so much appreciated. Showing up to a hotel where our security team is always nearby, being taken to and from the arenas and having peace of mind that our safety is of the utmost importance speaks to the integrity of AEW leadership— Madison Rayne (@MadisonRayne) March 18, 2023
I’m a non contracted wrestler and they (AEW) have always taken care of me— Billie Starkz • ビリー・スタークス (@BillieStarkz) March 18, 2023
It was the Tony Khan experience in a nutshell. We got something that’s pretty undeniably good for the industry, along with some behavior that will draw more fire from his critics (and even some eye rolls from neutral parties and even a few of his supporters).
Give the guy this, he comes by it honestly:
I've been online since the Grandstand Wrestling Forum on dial-up America Online.#AEWRampage tonight— Tony Khan (@TonyKhan) March 17, 2023
TK was forged in the fires of the wrestle web.