Things don't seem like they've improved between MJF and All Elite Wrestling.
In April, Fightful Select reported that Tony Khan and MJF had a heated discussion that left both been frustrated for different reasons. MJF wasn't happy about his contract situation and the pay scale as of that conversation, and we're told the situation left him soured on many things. On the other end of things, Tony Khan was more concerned with MJF doing a high profile interview with Ariel Helwani without informing AEW PR prior. We've not heard of any outward frustration since then from Tony Khan's side of things.
Though the two talked out their issues in the following week, we're told that sentiment hasn't necessarily lasted with MJF. Fightful has heard that MJF's sentiments about possibly going to WWE when his contract are up are not in character, and it's a subject he's already weighed. There has been at least some progress on his future in AEW, as we're told their have been open ended mentions about him possibly gaining an extension. However, many don't believe that MJF and Tony Khan are as close as they were prior to the reported discussion.
MJF is said to be leaning towards leaving AEW as of now when his deal is up. As with anything, plenty can change as he's got two years remaining on his contract, and contract negotiations have been mentioned to him. However, we're not sure if that's necessarily a renegotiation of his current deal or an extension after the fact. We haven't been told he's 100 percent on leaving the company.
Fightful has reached out to Tony Khan and AEW reps for more, but haven't heard back.
In a follow up to the MJF-AEW story, we've learned more.
Thus far, we've not heard of any outright negotiations between the two sides. We haven't heard of a specific contract being offered to MJF, or MJF angling for anything particular. Anything else implying otherwise seems to be conjecture at this point. However, there have been overtures made towards MJF to launch contract talks that MJF hasn't seemed to outright address. There has been no indication of formal talks actually happening to this point, only that MJF continued to be frustrated after the initial heated conversation. Those that we've spoken to say that MJF doesn't typically speak about this interpersonally backstage, and that Tony Khan plays a lot of stuff like that close to the vest for obvious reasons. However, one talent indicated that Tony Khan claimed to them that he would obviously be willing to pay MJF comparable to other top stars.
There are plenty of differing opinions within the company on the situation. There were some that we spoke to that believe MJF outperformed his contracts, and others that believe it sets a bad precedent for the company to rework a deal. It's worth noting that several deals there have been reworked, but have also added time. We also have confirmed that from MJF's side of things, the effort isn't to gain more money without an extension because "contracts don't work like that."
Any time we've reached out to AEW and gained a response on matters like these, we're told that AEW does not discuss talent contracts publicly.
To clear up misconceptions, we've not heard of Cody Rhodes reaching out to AEW talent to bring them in, and we have no report of any kind in the works, contrary to online rumors.
This article first appeared on our premium service, Fightful Select and was republished here on Fightful. If you complain about it being "old news," you have to buy Sean Ross Sapp a Jeep. Subscribe to get exclusive news every day, and a half-dozen weekly podcasts.
To directly support us and our continuing breaking news, interviews, and the like, subscribe to FightfulSelect.com. You'll get exclusive news sent to you directly before anyone else, and dozens of podcasts monthly including Alex Pawlowski's Sour Graps, Sean Ross Sapp's Q&A, Retro Reviews and more