Tony Khan: AEW Title Shots Are Hard To Come By
The AEW President has an old-school approach to title programmes
Much has been made of Tony Khan’s love and appreciation for old-school wrestling, and it seems he is taking elements of wrestling’s past to shape wrestling’s present.
Whilst talking on The Way of the Blade Podcast, Khan revealed he has taken inspiration from classic Mid-South Wrestling with regards to booking and creating prestige around the AEW World Championship, and how title shots aren't just handed around like sweets:
"I've tried to make it feel that way,” started Khan. “The title shots don't come that easy. If you think about it, like in AEW it's - and I really do love Mid-South and like some of the ideas, some of the show, and in some of the things I've done, I've definitely been inspired, influenced, and I know not everyone loves everything about it. I try to make it a good show, you know, for different audiences, different fans and not - I'm not saying this self-servingly, but I try to create the perception of our title, which is not a coincidence.
“It looks a lot like in terms of being a giant big, giant belt, that is a beautiful belt. My favourite title of the 1980s and my childhood is definitely the North American Title, that 26, sometimes they say 27 pounds of silver and gold, and so I appreciate that the idea of title shots being hard to come by. So I've tried to create that, you know, it's not like everybody gets a shot at the title. If you think about it, people have gone a long time without getting one and you know, so anyway..."
Indeed, AEW’s ranking system has been effectively utilised to determine who gets a sniff at either the AEW World or TNT Title, with only three different World Champions, and four TNT Champions in AEW history.