Tony Khan Debunks Speculation That He Is Buying NJPW, Won’t Clarify ‘New Era’ Comments

Tony Khan debunks the speculation.

On the September 23 episode of AEW Collision, Tony Khan did the voiceover for an AEW WrestleDream video package. In it, he stated that a chapter in wrestling history would end at the pay-per-view, and a new era in AEW history would begin. These comments seemingly prompted unfounded speculation that Khan would announce that he had bought NJPW.

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At the AEW WrestleDream media call, Sean Ross Sapp of Fightful asked Khan whether he could confirm or deny the rumors, or otherwise shine a light on the situation. Khan noted that he was surprised at how the speculation picked up, and he made it clear that he wants to keep working with NJPW.

"I’m a little surprised at how that speculation picked up and the, specifically, the transactional nature of it. We have such a great partnership right now and we’re doing such great things with New Japan Pro Wrestling. I was a little surprised to see that. Overall, I’ve really enjoyed working with New Japan since nearly two years. We’ve had two great Forbidden Door events and we’ve sent a number of top AEW stars to Japan to wrestle on Wrestle Kingdom and top shows. We’ve worked together in the US. There are people in AEW who have helped develop New Japan and people from New Japan who have helped develop AEW or Ring of Honor. I want to continue that partnership for a very long and right now we have something very good going. I’m a little surprised by the speculation, I don’t know where it came from. It’s probably a good time to have a lot of speculation on the eve of WrestleDream, and I’m glad we got a lot of people talking, certainly that one video, with all the great clips of Mr. Inoki and top stars of today, I thought it got people talking and it was a positive thing," Khan said.

Bill Pritchard of WrestleZone then asked Khan about the "end of an era" comments and whether he could elaborate on them. Khan didn't provide more details, as he noted that he wanted fans to buy the pay-per-view. But he debunked the speculation that he was implying that he bought NJPW. He stated that 2023 has been an adventurous year for AEW, and he wants to keep doing adventurous things.

"I definitely have no intention of clarifying those comments. I want people to order the pay-per-view. I think the internet kind of ran away with the speculation based on, I don’t know what. I’d love for somebody to go back and look for the first person to say that was and track back where the speculation came from. Certainly, I don’t know if that particular aspect of it is very credible. There are dots you can connect in wrestling and there are things I’m very excited about that we’ve been doing, and I’ve made bold proclamations before and I felt I’ve been proven right by them. We’ve come a really long way, we’ve taken big swings at doing new things this year, in particular, 2023 has been our most adventurous year and I want to keep doing adventurous things and make fan talk about AEW and hopefully making new fans of AEW. I think we’ve debunked some speculation and I’d be happy to debunk the speculation that is what I was implying because I don’t know where that particular rumor got started. I think this year, we’ve also built our reputation in a really strong way. Without completely spilling the beans of everything we’re working on, I really do think it is going to be the start of a new era of what we’re doing in AEW and I’m very excited about that," Khan said.

Khan also noted that the family of Antonio Inoki, the late founder of NJPW, will be at AEW WrestleDream.

Fightful will provide more information as it becomes available.

Check out the card for AEW WrestleDream here. Fightful will have live coverage of the show as it airs on October 1.

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