All Elite Wrestling's plan to become the next major professional wrestling promotion might have hit its first snag.
Shortly after Cody Rhodes, The Young Bucks and Adam Page announced on New Year's Day that they would be starting their own wrestling promotion, a report from Wrestling Observer's Dave Meltzer came out stating that the company was in negotiations to work with both New Japan Pro Wrestling and Ring of Honor on sharing contracted wrestlers for events. Nothing had been set in stone as of the announcement, but Meltzer followed up that report on Monday by saying New Japan had decided to continue their current partnership with Ring of Honor over AEW.
The effects from NJPW's decision have already been felt, as Meltzer indicated it led to Kenny Omega leaving the company.
"New Japan has made the decision that they are going to work with Ring of Honor, which means... right now, at least for now, they're not working with All Elite, which is a really interesting dynamic because I know that even as late as a couple days ago All Elite was thinking maybe Kenny Omega would work for New Japan and All Elite both and they would be able to... Elite wanted to keep their talent working in New Japan and wanted to partner with New Japan on events, and that's not going to happen, at least for right now," Meltzer said on Wrestling Observer Radio. "Who knows what happens in the future but that's the thing right now. It may have cost them Kenny Omega."
Omega has been a member of The Elite wrestling faction since its inception, but wasn't directly tied into the launch of AEW given his status in New Japan. He entered the company's biggest show, Wrestle Kingdom 13, as the IWGP Heavyweight Champion and has been the biggest non-Japanese star in the company for a couple of years. But shortly after losing his title to Hiroshi Tanahashi in the WK13 main event and not appearing at the New Year's Dash show the following day, news broke that Omega was leaving the promotion.
"There is no real place for me to fit, so it's best for me not to be in (NJPW)," Omega said in an interview with Tokyo Sports. "I can't be there working under Tanahashi. I don't think he's surpassed me, don't think he's better. If we can, I want to face him again. But I need time away, and not just from New Japan."
Not having access to New Japan wrestlers could force AEW to look elsewhere for more talent to add to the roster. As of Monday AEW's roster consisted of Rhodes, Page, the Bucks, Christopher Daniels, Scorpio Sky, Frankie Kazarian, Brandi Rhodes and Britt Baker.0comments
Where Omega goes next is now up in the air. WWE reportedly offered him a massive deal, but he has yet to sign with them. There was also a tease on the latest Being the Elite that Omega could be joining AEW.
"If I go to WWE, the fans there will be pleased, and the fans will be pleased if I go to AEW. I want to be in a place where I'm going to be happy," Omega said.