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AEW Battling Backstage Negativity Despite Financial Success, Says Dave Meltzer

All Elite Wrestling (AEW) has been a trailblazer since its inception, providing an alternative to WWE’s dominance in the wrestling industry. However, recent reports have highlighted not everything is smooth sailing behind the scenes. Wrestling journalist and insider Dave Meltzer, on Wrestling Observer Radio, has brought attention to a “lot of negativity” permeating the company, despite its financial gains.

The sense of dissatisfaction isn’t baseless; AEW has experienced lower attendance and TV ratings compared to 18 months ago when the promotion was more competitive with WWE. This declining trend has not escaped the notice of those within AEW, especially as the expectation of ‘being number one’ looms large over the company.

Yet, on the financial front, AEW is seeing more incoming revenue than ever before. “They’re grossing a lot of money… the company’s grossing more money by far than it ever has the last couple of months. It’s been very, very successful in that sense,” Meltzer acknowledged. But when it comes to profits and the long-term future, the story isn’t as rosy, with upcoming shows not expected to pull in large crowds—a key indicator of success and brand health in the wrestling industry.

Compounding these concerns are recent shake-ups in the AEW management. The backstage firing of Kevin Sullivan, the head of postproduction, has sent ripples of unease throughout the company. Sullivan was a pivotal figure in AEW since its early days, and his sudden departure is seen as a significant change in the company’s direction. Meltzer pointed out that there’s a prevailing sentiment that the company is becoming something it wasn’t, with concern over changes and WWE personnel gaining influence in AEW’s operations.

Recent boasts from AEW’s head Tony Khan about the successful sale of tickets for AEW All In contrast sharply with the struggles of Ring of Honor’s (ROH) Final Battle event, which distributed fewer than 1,000 tickets. These numbers paint a complex picture of both AEW’s internal morale and its external challenges in a fiercely competitive wrestling market.

As AEW grapples with this internal negativity and strives to maintain its identity amidst corporate shifts and industry rivalry, the company’s true challenge lies ahead. Will they be able to restore the initial feel and passion that once captivated fans worldwide? That remains to be seen.

For the latest on this ongoing story and more updates from the pro wrestling world, stay tuned to our channel and join our newsletter. This has been another insightful scoop from the wrestling ringside – where the battles behind the scenes are just as fierce as those within the ropes.

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