“The American Nightmare” Cody recently spoke with App.com to promote the one-year anniversary special edition of AEW Dynamite on TNT, which goes down on Wednesday, October 14, 2020 from Daily’s Place amphitheater in Jacksonville, Florida.
During the discussion, the reigning TNT Champion and the All Elite Wrestling (AEW) Executive Vice President spoke about how he contributed to the tension between WWE NXT and AEW fans, how AEW plans to work with other pro wrestling promotions and other ways the product continues to evolve over time.
Featured below are some of the highlights of the new interview with “The American Nightmare” Cody.
On how AEW’s product continues to evolve:
“I wanted to really promote the brand, I wanted to pound the pavement, but in speaking I kind of confined our product, I tried to give an identity to a product (when the) identity is evolving, its identity is growing. AEW is going to have a different identity in year one than it has in year two, and we want that identity and that flavor profile to improve. But to say it’s one thing would be incorrect because wrestling is something that there’s no one specific way to do it right. There’s many different ways to do it right.”
On his plans on doing a lot less talking as an executive and pushing more action:
“So I spoke too much as an executive in my efforts to promote the brand and a lot of this kind of click-bait journalism (followed) in areas where what I said was taken out of context and might have rubbed people the wrong way or might have created more tension between an NXT fan and an AEW fan. A little less talk from me, a little more action, is one of my goals (going forward).”
On dealing with COVID-19 in the company’s first year on television:
“These are the cards everybody was dealt. I’m just so glad the audience maintained. … I’m so glad we were able to offer live entertainment throughout and not have to switch to evergreen content, that was something we were dreading and couldn’t fathom. You’ve gotta give people that escape and that’s where entertainment and the arts are such a great service.”
On how he believes wrestlers continue to grow, citing Mr. Brodie Lee as an example:
“You don’t put someone in a box based on the beginning of their career, that’s the point of pro sports and the arts. You can completely combine them in this regard: If this is your life’s work, you work on it every day. And the individual that was Luke Harper (in WWE), Mr. Brodie Lee, that individual has grown as a wrestler. He’s better bell to bell, he’s considerably better on the mic. He’s learned more — experience, experience, experience. … It’s weird, in wrestling people like to keep you confined to where you were and I don’t believe in that. I simply believe in growing.”
On working with other promotions:
“I think you’ll never see a full-scale, like, joint-promoted show (between AEW and another promotion). We have too much pride in our individual brand. But in terms of the relationships, we’re never closing the doors and we’re never going to pull up the bridges. I laughed when I heard people talking about a working relationship with New Japan because clearly it already exists — Jon Moxley has been on New Japan, Chris Jericho has been on New Japan. It already exists, the working relationship. The NWA (owner) Billy (Corgan) and Tony Khan are in contact, Thunder Rosa’s the prime example of that. … I loved seeing Tanahashi on TV last week. He’s somebody I really wanted to get in the ring with one time as far as singles and never got the opportunity — and who knows? That might be something that can happen in the future. But our doors are open, our bridges are down.”
Check out the complete interview with “The American Nightmare” Cody at App.com, and make sure to join us here at Wrestling-Edge.com on 10/14 for complete results of the AEW Dynamite one-year anniversary special.
Follow Wrestling-Edge.com reporter Matt Boone on Twitter for additional AEW and pro wrestling news coverage @MattBoone1984.