AEW President Tony Khan Responds to WWE's Reported Interest in Collaboration With Other Wrestling Promotions (Exclusive)

Wrestling has more than one... wrestling company.

Wrestling has more than one... wrestling company. 

After decades of operating like the only show in town, WWE has begun to loosen the locks on its forbidden door. While WWE has name-dropped promotions like Ring of Honor and New Japan Pro Wrestling on television before, it was only in the 2020s that WWE began to have deliberate collaborations with other companies. Karl Anderson was allowed to defend his NEVER Openweight Championship in NJPW while under WWE contract. Shinsuke Nakamura stepped inside a Pro Wrestling NOAH ring during The Great Muta's retirement tour. TNA Knockouts Champion Jordynne Grace entered the Women's Royal Rumble. Shayna Baszler was permitted to compete at GCW Bloodsport during WWE WrestleMania 40 weekend.

Sporadic as they might be, these crossovers are sewing the seeds for WWE to set up longer term working relationships. Sports Illustrated reported that WWE President Nick Khan is especially keen on this, as contacts surrounding him have indicated that he is looking "to engineer a collaboration with other professional wrestling promotions." Khan was named as the one to green light WWE's recent one-off crossover with TNA, which saw WWE Chief Content Officer Paul "Triple H" Levesque and then-TNA President Scott D'Amore work out Grace's aforementioned WWE Royal Rumble appearance.

One infinity stone missing from WWE's crossover gauntlet is All Elite Wrestling. Launching in 2019, AEW immediately established itself as the second-largest professional wrestling company in the world and quickly rose from an alternative option to a challenger brand. 

(Photo: AEW, WWE)

Speaking to, AEW President Tony Khan responded to the report that WWE was open to collaborations.

"If WWE came calling to you to do, not even necessarily a collaborative show, but just share talent, share promotion, would you consider AEW to be open for business with WWE?"'s Liam Crowley asked Tony.

"It's an interesting thought," Tony responded. "It would depend on the circumstance."

While outright crossovers have yet to happen, WWE and AEW have done business together before. Billy Gunn appeared and spoke on stage during D-Generation X's televised WWE Hall of Fame induction in April 2019, three months into his AEW contract. Tony granted Bryan Danielson, Chris Jericho, and Paul Wight permission to send pre-recorded videos in to WWE Monday Night Raw for John Cena's wrestling anniversary special. 

Things have stalled since, as AEW did not allow Billy Gunn to participate in a D-Generation X reunion on a Fall 2022 episode of WWE Monday Night Raw. AEW reportedly requested that WWE acknowledge Gunn's status as a member of the AEW roster on the broadcast, and when WWE refused, AEW pulled back on allowing the appearance. It's as to how much communication there is between the two companies today, but its worth noting that WWE did not even reach out to AEW for a potential Jon Moxley appearance at WWE WrestleMania 40 during The Shield reunion moment in the main event.