AEW Executive Vice President Cody Rhodes has addressed the potential working relationship between AEW (All Elite Wrestling) and NJPW (New Japan Pro Wrestling).
He did so when he recently spoke with The New York Post to promote this week’s AEW Dynamite Anniversary Show.
The working relationship between the two sides has been discussed since the launch of AEW last January. Although Jon Moxley and Chris Jericho are working for NJPW, they have separate contracts with NJPW aside from their deals with AEW.
Cody Rhodes Addresses Partnership
Rhodes started out after being asked about Jericho making it known that he thinks there should be a working relationship. Rhodes thinks it was strange that fans are asking for the partnership because he doesn’t know what a partnership would look like other than what you saw already.
He brought up Jericho and Moxley working Wrestle Kingdom 14 this past weekend.
“They both were successful. What did he call it? The forbidden door?” The forbidden door. It may be forbidden, but clearly the door is opening and closing and opening and closing. It’s public knowledge that some guys here, myself included, have exemptions to work New Japan Pro-Wrestling. But I know that New Japan Pro-Wrestling’s focus is New Japan and AEW’s focus is AEW.”
Rhodes continued by noting that it’s a partnership if made would see them share talent and creative but wouldn’t go down the path of an event like Super Clash III where Kerry Von Erich and Jerry Lawler were fighting over the title in 1988.
The reason for that belief is due to him being hesitant to combine banners versus just respecting each other’s banners.
“But I like how it’s referred to as the forbidden door. I don’t really think it’s forbidden at all.”
Rhodes stated that many people have the exemption to work there and praised NJPW for putting on a great Wrestle Kingdom as he thinks NJPW has amazing talent, particularly Will Ospreay.
“So, we’ll see where that goes. I know everyone pretty much feels the same about it. I think it’s something in the next year that we will hopefully all explore. We’ll explore on our end, they’ll explore on their end and we’ll see if it works.”