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Tony Khan Says AEW Is A Legitimate Competitor To The WWE

AEW President and CEO Tony Khan recently spoke with Forbes on All Elite Wrestling and how the company is unlike any other pro wrestling promotion as well as how no other pro wrestling company in the last few decades can compare to what they have done and accomplished in the short amount of time since the promotion was established on January 1st, 2019. Khan also talked about how in the last 20 years there hasn’t been any other pro wrestling company like AEW that actually feels like a legitimate competitor to the WWE.

This is what Tony Khan said:

“The reason that no other wrestling company in the last few decades has had the foothold we’ve had is, in my opinion, two-fold. And it’s kind of a chicken-or-the-egg thing.” “We’ve had the great exposure with the big TV contract that gives us great legitimacy and also gives us great penetration, so it’s a very easy show to find, and it feels like a big event every Wednesday. Because we have this partnership with TNT and Warner Media and went with such a powerful media partner, it makes us feel more legitimate.”

“Which brings me to my other point — none of the other wrestling companies that have come along in the last 20 years actually felt like a legitimate competitor, a real thing. They felt like fun, niche, wrestling products, and if you’re a big wrestling fan, they’re things that you might watch but they’re not going to take households by storm. They weren’t things that were going to win the night on TV. They might, on their night, get some wrestling fans to watch their show, but there hasn’t been anything in wrestling that’s come along in two decades that would be competitive in terms of a second national wrestling company. Where it could stand to be the number one show on cable in its night or even a top-five show. There’s nothing that’s been like that.”

Tony Khan also talked about how people have said startup pro wrestling promotions have also done huge TV audiences in the past, but there is a difference between TV audiences now and TV audiences before. Khan then talked about how there hasn’t been any other pro wrestling company in the last twenty years like AEW who have competed with and gone head-to-head with the WWE in terms of TV ratings.

This is what Tony Khan said:

“People compare numbers from the past, and say, you know, 15 years ago, other wrestling companies that came along as startups were doing big TV audiences. And what I would say to that is, the TV audience was very different as a whole back then.” “There was more viewership, and in terms of demo ratings, there really hasn’t been anything like what we’re doing in terms of competing head-to-head with WWE, week-to-week in the cable ratings, in two decades.”

You can check out Tony Khan’s comments in the video below:

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