In a media call on Thursday afternoon to promote Sunday’s AEW Dynasty pay-per-view, AEW boss Tony Khan did not shy away from the in-the-news questions, like Nyla Rose in Oklahoma and the CM Punk-Jack Perry video footage.

But he didn’t exactly answer them either.

The closest he came was on the subject of Nyla Rose, a transgender athlete, breaking the rules in Oklahoma back in December. A complaint was filed and AEW was warned not to let it happen again with a transgender athlete competing against someone not of their birth gender.

It was the fifth question asked — and all prior were actually newsworthy and not fawning for once.

Khan said that the note from the Oklahoma State Athletic Commission caught him off-guard. “I was really surprised by this,” he said, adding that he was disappointed, and, “I don’t think we did anything wrong.” He was adamant that trans people have “rights” and “I absolutely stand by Nyla Rose.”

“This is wrestling, there’s nothing wrong with it,” he noted. “She deserves the same chances as everybody else.”

Khan also twice made mention that the deal to have Rose host Dynasty on was set up “weeks ago” and wasn’t a knee-jerk reaction to Oklahoma.

A follow-up question asked whether AEW might avoid states like Oklahoma in the future, and Khan danced around, treating it “as a developing story. ” “It’s something we’re going to have to think about,” he admitted.

The actual first question on the media call brought up all the negative online chatter about the decision to air the All In footage of CM Punk and Jack Perry scuffling backstage in London, England. Khan dismissed the online trolling, noting that TBS called him and congratulated him on the high rating for the segment. “That’s the most important thing,” said Khan. To his way of thinking, airing the footage as a way to promote the Young Bucks versus FTR on Sunday  added “a lot of intrigue to this match.”

Punk telling Ariel Helwani that he paid his own medical expenses was questioned. Khan appeared caught flat-footed by such a public accusation by Punk. “We typically do pay those expenses. I’d have to look into that,” Khan said, passing the buck. “It doesn’t sound right.”

When asked about whether Khan would ever consider hiring a booker, he noted that he has many jobs across the companies his father owns, and would be open to change.
“I won’t be here forever,” he admitted.

From there, he turned it into a rave about AEW’s successes.

“I’m having more fun than ever right now,” he said, noting that an unidentified entity put a $2 billion valuation on AEW. “We are a major player in the sports scene.”

Tony Schiavone interviews Will Ospreay at AEW Dynamite at Toronto's Coca-Cola Coliseum on Wednesday, March 20, 2024. Photo by Steve Argintaru, Twitter/Instagram: @stevetsn

Tony Schiavone interviews Will Ospreay at AEW Dynamite at Toronto’s Coca-Cola Coliseum on Wednesday, March 20, 2024. Photo by Steve Argintaru, Twitter/Instagram: @stevetsn

There was a lot of that usual hype.

  • Will Ospreay vs. Bryan Danielson at Dynasty: “I cannot wait for this match”
  • Thunder Rosa vs Toni Storm; “That is a great rivalry”
  • Comparing Q1 2024 vs Q1 2023 income for AEW: “The revenue is significantly up”
  • Booking Sting’s last match was the greatest thing he’d ever been a part of
  • Releasing the PPV schedule for the whole year allows fans to plan ahead; “It seems that it’s been really well received.”

International wrestling was a focus too.

With Jon Moxley as the IWGP World champion, how does that work? Who gets a say in how he is booked? Khan was asked. Khan noted that he was in Chicago when Moxley won the title, and “it’s a great partnership” with New Japan Pro Wrestling. Gedo is the matchmaker, and they share Rocky Romero, who is a VP in both companies. “We work together very closely,” said Khan, and it is mutual decision if the IWGP World title is defended in AEW.

Given that AEW has only held shows in three countries — the US, Canada, and England — Khan wants to expand to other nations. “These are places where we have great media partners” like ESPN in Australia.

The Spanish market is in play a bit given AEW’s deal with Mexico’s CMLL, and Khan noted that signing announcer Carlos Cabrera was a further foot in that growth. And, again, Khan noted that Romero plays a role in these relationships with other companies.

With AEW’s five-year deal with TBS and the Warner-Discovery people coming due, and AEW in its exclusive negotiating window, Khan all but vowed that the next deal would include a place to watch past AEW pay-per-views and shows. “It’s something that I expect to happen” in the next media rights negotiation, he said.

The AEW Dynasty card includes:

  • The Acclaimed (Anthony Bowens and Max Caster) and Billy Gunn (c–AEW) vs. Bullet Club Gold (Jay White and The Gunns (Austin Gunn and Colten Gunn) (c–ROH) – Winners Take All match for the AEW World Trios Championship and ROH World Six-Man Tag Team Championship
  • Adam Copeland, Eddie Kingston, and Mark Briscoe vs. The House of Black (Malakai Black, Brody King, and Buddy Matthews)
  • Hook (c) vs. Chris Jericho – FTW Rules match for the FTW Championship
  • Roderick Strong (c) vs. Kyle O’Reilly – AEW International Championship
  • Julia Hart (c) vs. Willow Nightingale (with Stokely Hathaway) – House Rules match for the AEW TBS Championship
  • Kazuchika Okada (c) vs. Pac Singles – AEW Continental Championship
  • The Young Bucks (Nicholas Jackson and Matthew Jackson) vs. FTR (Dax Harwood and Cash Wheeler) Tournament final Ladder match for the vacant AEW World Tag Team Championship
  • “Timeless” Toni Storm (c) (with Mariah May and Luther) vs. Thunder Rosa – AEW Women’s World Championship
    Samoa Joe (c) vs. Swerve Strickland (with Prince Nana) – AEW World Championship

TOP PHOTO: Tony Khan on Wednesday, January 3, 2024, at the Prudential Center in Newark, NJ. Photo by George Tahinos,