AEW President Tony Khan does not envision a collaboration between his company and WWE any time soon, despite the recent leadership shift at the latter organization.
In a Thursday media call, Khan fielded a question on whether the corporate changes within WWE would enable the production of a Forbidden Door-style event similar to the one staged in June between AEW and NJPW.
“I was pretty optimistic when they first made the change,” said Khan, referring to the resignation of Vince McMahon in July and his replacement as chief executive by Stephanie McMahon and Nick Khan, who is not related to the AEW CEO, and by Paul “Triple H” Levesque has head of creative, a decision that has already led to the return of multiple former WWE stars. “But I’m less optimistic now, given how they’ve treated me.”
Khan did not elaborate on the nature of the treatment he received from WWE. However, Fightful Select recently reported that an unnamed talent under contract with AEW received an unsolicited inquiry from WWE to join its roster. Two other AEW performers later confirmed that WWE contacted them. Chris Jericho hinted that he was the performer contacted by WWE, responding to a fan on Twitter who envisioned him in the ring with Kevin Owens and Sami Zayn by saying, “Some higher ups want that to happen sooner than later!”
Meanwhile, PWInsider reported that AEW’s Chief Legal Officer, Megha Parekh, sent an email to the new co-CEOs at WWE warning them “not to tamper” with his talent. It’s not certain how or if the WWE hierarchy responded to this warning.