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Is the empire crumbling before our eyes?


C.S.
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Yes, this is a riff on @flyonthewall2983's WWE thread of the same name, but it's also become kind of necessary.

I am rooting for AEW and hope most of this is a clever work designed to get everyone talking and/or these situations can be resolved. I'll certainly be tuning into Dynamite this week, that's for damn sure!

With that said, there's a ton of drama going on right now.

- MJF no-showing a fan-fest, cutting a heated promo on Dynamite, missing months of action.

- Eddie Kingston and Sammy Gueverra getting into a physical altercation backstage after Sammy body-shamed Eddie during a promo.

- Punk and Scott Colton's long-standing litigious issues.

- Punk and Hangman Page "going into business for themselves" in promos and Hangman feeling he doesn't need to take advice from veterans.

- Punk's belief that the EVPs (Kenny and Bucks) are leaking salacious stories to Meltzer and other "journalists" (quotes intentional) with Jericho also openly criticizing these leaks.

- Punk (and maybe Ace Steel) reportedly getting into a physical altercation with the EVPs (the Bucks and maybe Kenny) while the scrum was airing, and Tony not finding about it until after. (Someone somewhere compared this to the famous clip of George W. Bush reading a storybook to an elementary school classroom while the towers collapsed on 9/11.)

- Malakai Black possibly asking for his release and/or walking away.

- Heat in the women's locker room involving Thunder Rosa, and Tony openly burying Rosa with an ill-advised and irrelevant comparison to Punk.

- Tony sitting there numbly at the media scrum looking like he's ready to burst into tears at any moment while Punk happily munches on delicious pastries and I raid my own empty fridge desperately looking for a midnight snack.

And I'm probably forgetting a few.

Oh boy...

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Just now, SirEdger said:

Maybe that Cody was the glue that kept this locker room together after all. Might not be a coincidence the drama started shortly after he left in February.

I was openly mocked here on PWO for saying that letting go of Cody was the worst mistake AEW ever made and would have disastrous consequences.

Granted, I never envisioned all of this, but I knew it was a massive error in judgment for Tony to let go of someone that valuable, that good, that business savvy, and that media savvy. Cody >>>>>>>>>>>>>>> Kenny and Bucks on every conceivable metric, and it has never been close.

Six months later, I have been proven right and then some.

I'm not patting myself on the back. I fully realize what Cody's downsides were in AEW, but all of those could have been rectified with stronger leadership. 

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28 minutes ago, C.S. said:

And I'm probably forgetting a few.

Oh boy...

Don’t forget Bobby Fish apparently having some sort of meltdown behind the scenes, which results in his supposedly getting dropped from future plans as well.

Buddy Mathews was also supposedly suspended for a couple of weeks recently, although in a shocking break with AEW tradition it was mostly kept under wraps.

There are also rumours Andrade wants out as well.

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23 minutes ago, The Thread Killer said:

Don’t forget Bobby Fish apparently having some sort of meltdown behind the scenes, which results in his supposedly getting dropped from future plans as well.

Buddy Mathews was also supposedly suspended for a couple of weeks recently, although in a shocking break with AEW tradition it was mostly kept under wraps.

What are the stories here?

If Fish had a meltdown, letting him go must've been the easiest decision Tony Khan ever made.

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LOL at this thread's title.

 

Also, regarding the women's roster:

  • the whole debacle revolving Swole, who got thrown under the bus for reasons I'm still trying to understand;
  • Ivelisse basically pouting during her match against Thunder Rosa
  • Britt Baker, Jamie Hayter et al having beef with Thunder Rosa, allegations of sandbagging and other instances of unprofessionalism running wild

We also got

  • FTR essentially saying YB are ducking them
  • Miro laughing at Punk's pro-wrestler's unison tweet
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1 hour ago, KawadaSmile said:

LOL at this thread's title.

Haha, Bubba, I couldn't resist! :D

1 hour ago, Jmare007 said:

There's no empire to crumble though...

It's a riff on the WWE thread of the same name, but if we're being technical, the combined wealth of Tony and Shad Khan and all of the sports and entertainment properties they own make Vince, Trips, and Steph look like street cart vendors in comparison. The Khans have much more of an "empire" and it's not even close. 

"I have a lot more fucking money than Jim Crockett did, and I'm serious, I’m not going to sit back and take this shit!"

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2 hours ago, C.S. said:

What are the stories here?

If Fish had a meltdown, letting him go must've been the easiest decision Tony Khan ever made.

A lot of this is secondhand information and speculation but some of it sounds plausible at the very least, and some of it has been confirmed.

Apparently Fish has been a bit of a handful backstage. I guess he is one of the guys who hates Punk and was apparently talking shit about him on Twitter, making fun of his worked kicks, etc. Fish has also given a couple of interviews recently talking about much he loves Triple H and would go to war for him and run through a wall for him. That seems like an odd choice to make, openly criticizing the guy who is the top guy in your company while praising the guy who is now running the competition.

I have seen it speculated that Fish had substance abuse issues or even possible concussion related mental health problems, but whatever it is the bottom line is I guess he is making a bit of a spectacle out of himself.  He has also started a podcast and was threatening to drop some sort of bombshell on his newest episode, but I don’t know if he has or not and I have no interest in listening to his podcast to find out.

News broke a couple of days ago that Fish’s contract was only for one year, and it is now up and AEW has no interest in resigning him, so he is basically gone. Also Kyle O’Reilly is apparently out indefinitely with a neck fusion so that is basically the end of ReDragon in AEW.

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If this whole story that Punk attacked The Young Bucks and Ace Steel hit one of them with a chair and knocked one out… I don’t see how you can avoid firing Steel never mind having him criminally charged, and quite honestly Punk should be suspended at best, if not fired as well. And I say this as somebody who is actually sympathetic to Punk’s position in this situation up until now.

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18 minutes ago, sek69 said:

Wasn't there stories of Fish being kind of a weirdo in NXT (other than him supporting the orange racist ref)? I seem to recall some murmurings of that. 

I had never heard anything negative about him before this stuff. I was kind of surprised to hear about what has come out lately, but if he really is getting dropped already there pretty much has to be something to these rumors. It’s not like TK is quick to get rid of people…plus you can’t help but wonder why he only got signed to a one year deal to begin with because O’Reilly supposedly got a 5 year deal.

11 minutes ago, Zoo Enthusiast said:

With KOR having had neck fusion, they can just wait a year and sign Roddy and have a far better version of UE without the headache of Fish.  Not like you can do anything with a solo Bobby Fish for a year.

You have to wonder now that Trips is in charge, if his “guys” will be as quick to jump ship. Especially if AEW is getting a rep for being a chaotic place to work.

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Next steps really depend on who threw the first punch and/or instigated. I can’t imagine the Bucks or Omega having the chutzpah to throw the first punch, but I can imagine them shoving or grabbing CM Punk when he blew them off and him responding with a punch, then the others trying to restrain Punk and Ace Steel throwing the chair to try and even things out. Not a good look by any measure, though. I’m sympathetic to Punk in the sense that I can imagine the Bucks and Omega being really annoying to try and deal with as bosses and creatives, but if he started a fight after that rant at the press conference, he prob should just leave AEW.

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Honestly the most likely scenario I see now is Punk just taking himself home.

He's old, he doesn't need the money, he hates everyone he works with, and after all this, his on-screen stuff will be hijacked by too and he can't even just wrestle and make money.

That's the dumb fuck part from him here - whether he's right or wrong, him blowing up means THIS is the story now. He will be hounded by "COLT CABANA" chants for months. The one thing he didn't want to deal with or mention in AEW. And to everyone's credit - it was working! Nobody chanted Colt's name at him, nothing came of them being on the same roster, nobody even slightly mentioned it (apart from that cryptic Page line that everyone had forgotten about). He's now made it a thing.

That plus the actual physical fight now. Tony can't let this all go without punishing Punk (assuming he started the fight), especially after the precedent set with Kingston recently. But he can't quietly suspend Punk. He's the World Champion. And the minute Tony tries to punish Punk, I'm sure Punk would most likely just go home.

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It’s a damned if you do, damned if you don’t situation. I still don’t get why the fans feel they deserve an answer about what happen with Colt Cabana and CM Punk. Like it’s absolutely ridiculous to think we deserve an answer about why two guys aren’t friends anymore. Like it’s really nobodies business but the parties involved. I mean if I had to tell everybody why I wasn’t friends with people I grew up with I would be pissed as well. It’s so weird to me. Also the whole EVPs leaking information is no surprise at all. Everybody is leaking information. 

The main person to blame is Tony. He should have nipped this in the Bud when Hangmen went off script and then went off when Hangman said he doesn’t need to learn from anyone. Cause in case anyone forgot. Hangman is now the greatest wrestler on the planet and can work circles around everybody. Like what the hell? How is this even remotely allowed. This would never happen in WWE cause VKM would fire or fine so fast that he would never speak in public again. Hangman made the whole company already look terrible and that’s your former champion. 

I use this analogy. What if Kobe Bryant said you know what I don’t need to learn from Hakeem and all the other greats. Im going to do it on my own. He would NEVER get better. Instead Kobe worked with Hakeem on his post game and many other legends. Iron sharpens Iron. It’s that simple. 

This is why you can’t be an active wrestler and an EVP. Just doesn’t work. I would tell them either be EVPs and don’t wrestle or Wrestle and don’t be an EVP. It’s really that simple. Also I know he wants everyone to not be scripted but he has to at least make them have bullet points or something cause this Wild West type booking is awful. 

TK needs to get guys that will put people in line. Last night the more I think about it all was easily avoidable but instead he let it be and look where we are at. It only gets worse before it gets better.  

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Yeah, that’s the latest story going around all over.

Punk finished his rant at the press conference and heads back to his dressing room where his wife, wife’s friend and his dog are waiting. Punk had Steel with him. 

Kenny and The Bucks show up and barge in, cussing Punk out for what he said about them at the press conference. Things get heated.

The commotion is freaking out Punk’s wife and her friend, and his little dog. Punk orders them out, they won’t leave, he shoves one or both of The Bucks.

The debate is who threw the first punch, some say Punk, some say Matt Jackson. But once punches are thrown, Punk clocks Matt Jackson. Steel throws a chair which knocks Nick Jackson out.

Consensus seems to be that The Bucks entered the dressing room uninvited, and refused to leave and that’s when things got physical.

Everybody seems to agree Kenny didn’t get physical but once the fight broke out, he tried to get in the middle.

Some people are now claiming Kenny bit Steel, not the other way around.

The only thing that has been confirmed is that the fight broke out in Punk’s dressing room, Matt Jackson has a black eye, and Nick Jackson got knocked out.

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