ASK TITO: Young Bucks Worth in AEW, Vince McMahon Shares, Kenny Omega, Hardys, Jinder, and More

The EXCELLENCE IN COLUMN WRITING is back in your face and with a brand new column after not writing any columns for 5 days… And yet, only Demarco has posted a column here at NoDQ since. What’s the matter, AEW fans? Did Kenny Omega’s honest confession about AEW catch your tongue? Did he reveal the truth of how dysfunctional the daddy subsidized organization really is?

Kenny Omega’s words proved WHO has been the internal problem at AEW all along and that is Matt and Nick Jackson aka the Young Bucks. While Kenny admits that he shouldn’t have been an EVP, the Bucks have been mad with power by controlling the talent and meddling with wrestlers whom they personal dislike. Hence why they attacked CM Punk.

When Adam Hangman Page began shooting on CM Punk during that Dynamite show, who put him up to it? The Young Bucks. Who was leaking stuff to the dirt sheets to spread lies about Colt Cabana being terminated or demoted to ROH? The Young Bucks. Who stormed into CM Punk’s locker room after the Media Scrum? The Young Bucks. Kenny Omega was there, but all he literally did was get Larry, CM Punk’s dog, out of the way and then gets bitten on the arm by Ace Steel because of that. Omega got suspended briefly due to that “brawl out”, too. Omega had nothing to do with the Wembley Stadium stuff, as Jack Perry was a Young Bucks disciple and flunky and would have returned had Tony Khan wanted him back (that was leaked to the dirt sheets, too).

Many of you AEW fans need to tell me what VALUE Nick and Matt Jackson have to AEW. Make sure you present facts in terms of their in-ring work and also their executive decision making. I’ll be here all day waiting for you.

YES, what happened with the All In 2018 event was magical, as it was an Independent show that drew 10,000 fans and helped convince a younger Tony Khan to use his Trust Fund money to start-up All Elite Wrestling (AEW). But we’re approaching that show becoming 6 years old soon… Both guys are older and neither is even close to ever trying their hand at singles competition. What value do either guy bring to AEW, at least through 2024? We’ve seen them wrestle on big event and already be AEW Tag Champions. What else is there to accomplish as a tag team?

As executives, why isn’t the tag team division any better than it was when AEW started? I’d argue that Tag Team Wrestling has remained the same or possibly regressed in AEW’s 5 year existence. Furthermore, the Bucks get to recruit and sign wrestlers to fit that tag team division. Thus, much of the weaknesses of the tag division, including their own participation, is on them.

So again, tell me, what is their value? Do they put butts in seats? Nope, not a shred of evidence on that for AEW. How about viewership? How about merchandise?

CM Punk would STILL be in AEW had the Young Bucks not meddled with his career there and they could have headlined a few shows with him, too… But Punk was a backstage threat to them and remaining in management as EVPs, hence why the sabotage occurred. Had Punk stayed and been successful, he could have helped lure other WWE free agents over to AEW. Instead, the toxic working environment was exposed and Tony’s balls were proven to be tiny or non-existent. The end result is Cody, CM Punk, and Jade Cargill going to WWE and striking it big while no major WWE talents will jump to AEW. Oh, excuse me, Mercedes Moaning (new nickname, thanks to her segment last week) and a much older Adam Copeland.

So again, tell me what value does the Young Bucks provide AEW? What justifies Tony Khan paying both Bucks MORE money during early 2023 and retaining their EVP titles?

I’m waiting…

I’ll be very curious to see what happens with Warner Bros. Discovery and the TV negotiations… Remember, WBD executives were the ones pushing for CM Punk to return and created the AEW Collision show on Saturday night just to feature HIM. Then, weeks later, Tony Khan terminates him and then 7 months later, the Young Bucks use the Wembley security footage of Punk beating up Jack Perry for an angle. Irony would be this TV deal getting killed by a Young Bucks segment, as the began the CM Punk trouble during 2022 and now it may end with them.

Onto your questions.


ASK TITO: Your Questions, My Answers

Vince McMahon’s remaining TKO shares are up for sale… What is he up to?

Weeks ago, I suggested that Vince may begin heavily donating to Donald Trump’s campaign, as both guys are longtime friends and Linda McMahon even worked in Trump’s cabinet. Then, I suggested that if Donald won, Vince would weaponize Donald’s presidency to help conduct a “revenge tour” for anyone who tries to prosecute or sue Vince and to maybe weaponize the Securities Exchange Commission against Endeavor/TKO.

Well, look who won the pony (Jim Cornette phrase)… Reports are showing Vince and Trump have been communicating with each other, and there’s even a belief that if Vince McMahon somehow gets indicted based on any of the NDA claims that Trump would pardon him.

I don’t believe Vince would try to start another wrestling promotion, nor would he help bankroll someone else’s. Projects like football leagues have already been tried… The details of his behavior has forever lost corporate partners. Thus, he’s just sitting on a big pile of money that he’ll either use to fund Trump or payout a big divorce settlement. Without those shares, Linda will have to come for the cash now.


Will there be any ramifications for Kenny Omega speaking out?

Listen, he was just chatting while playing Street Fighter 6. Honestly, he didn’t reveal too much… He admitted that he wasn’t a good EVP and that he wanted to be more of a peacemaker during the All Out 2022 backstage brawl. By all indication, he was there to pick up Larry and did not fight with Punk.

I don’t think so… He didn’t say anything to ruffle too many feathers… Pretty neutral position.

Honestly for me, I liked what I heard from Omega and felt he was quite rational about this whole situation. Kenny has had some weird moments, but his words proved to me that he truly is a veteran and isn’t petty or egotistical like the Bucks. When healthy, he works hard and truly tries to put on good matches while getting along with everybody. Makes me wonder how things could change if he went to the WWE rather than re-signing with the AEW Titanic during early 2023.


Any chance that Seth Rollins, Drew McIntyre, or Becky Lynch leave WWE?

All 3 have contracts expiring soon… Personally, I can see Triple H being loyal to Seth Rollins for having a GREAT Wrestlemania 40… However, the main event scene could get crowded fast there too, especially once CM Punk and Roman Reigns come back. With that, I could easily see Drew and Seth thinking about that AEW money and being a big fish in the smaller pond.

With Becky Lynch, she’s a mom now and the AEW schedule is much, much easier. However, if she works for the WWE, then she can travel with Seth together as parents. I bet it is likely that they’ll stay with WWE together or move to AEW together. Plus, Becky is getting older as is Seth with each being 37 years old. That’s prime years for wrestling, but just a few big contracts left until their mid-40s. However, this WWE gravy train has been good to them and I could see both working in management after both retire.

Drew is in that same boat. Before the 2024 push, which really wasn’t due until CM Punk got injured, he was kind of floundering within the upper midcard. He’s finally found his character but for how long will this momentum last? AEW would sign him and then push him immediately.

Honestly, I feel as though it’s about 70/30 for each of the 3, with 70 = remaining with WWE and 30 going for the cash and easy schedules.

I certainly am of the belief that Seth Rollins needs PAID thanks to his Wrestlemania 40 performance, though. He worked 2 nights with a torn meniscus in his knee and that’s following him returning early from a torn MCL (medial collateral ligament) also in his knee. If I were WWE, there would be NO WAY I’d let Rollins walk and by extension, letting his wife walk either. Reward them for their loyalty, while begin managerial tracks to help join the WWE’s backstage staff too. Rollins and Becky are exceptional workers and minds that you can’t just walk out the door. Both are tough as nails, too, as you can break Becky’s nose or injury Seth’s knee, yet they still keep going and work hard to return timely as well. REWARD THEM.

With Drew, I think he’s found his niche but would that be there without the CM Punk popularity? After that feud and when Punk likely dispatches of him, what does Drew do? And would he revert back to the same character we’ve seen prior to 2024? He’s a good hand, but needs a little extra booking assistance to get him over whereas Seth and Becky tend to make their own luck.


Do you think that the Hardy Boyz will return to the WWE?

At ages 49 and 46, I don’t see the WWE making that kind of investment in them, especially with the controversial exit of Jeff during his last run. Maybe if they join NXT as a veteran tag team for all of the younger teams to work with?

To me, WWE wants to get younger and start to unleash the developmental system. You’ve got to understand that Endeavor, and also the company who just acquired them (holy cow), are going to want to start widening profits to help paydown massive acquisition costs. To my previous point, do they want to pay several millions to wrestlers in their late 30s when they could be paying wrestlers in their late 20s for another 10 years of their peak with lesser risk of injury?

I just don’t see it unless they are used to help with NXT in some way. Wish both guys the best, regardless. Met Matt during early 2003 and he was extremely nice.


Do you believe that AEW is worth $2 Billion?

Well, just remember, Forbes magazine is a company who can be swayed by illegal asset valuations for their richest guy list… Keep that in mind. Forbes valued WWE at $6 billion (which is reasonable, as they are dependent on TV to remain relevant but WWE has a rich history of content and merchandise there too along with the WWE brand) but they valued AEW at $2 billion. This was based on $250 million in revenue, but what Forbes FAILED to take into account was the reportedly high expenses taken on by AEW that wasn’t adding to the value of the company. No, they are just high production costs, high wrestler salaries, and high video game costs that are NOT enhancing the brand.

Trust me, if AEW was up for sale right now, they are NOT getting $2 billion. Compare that to the WWE and they just received between $8 to $10 billion reportedly to merge with Endeavor and UFC to form TKO. They are more TV deal dependent because they have no established brands and their merchandise sales are very subpar. Nobody is clamoring to watch their back catalog, either.

If AEW can somehow swindle Warner Bros. Discovery for a better TV deal for the next 5 years, then maybe I’ll suggest otherwise. But I really worry how WBD is going to respond to AEW when (a) WBD was unprofitable for 2023 and (b) NBA rights are coming due and with high investments in the Inside the NBA crew, WBD doesn’t want to lose it. In other words, AEW is negotiating with a company who is losing money and is willing to burn through more debt to keep something else. Yeah, they are at risk for losing their TV deal.

So, hell no, they aren’t worth $2 billion.


Where will Jinder Mahal go next?

Jinder tweeted (or X’d) “I quit” and then moments later, added “Free Agent – 90 days”. In truth, Jinder was released by the WWE according to Fightful and PWInsider and has the standard 90-day non-compete clause invoked.

He’s another wrestler in their late 30s… It’s that age where you’re in the peak of your career with experience and wisdom, but in 3 years, you’ll be 40 and begin to be rack up injuries. It’s likely that through loyalty, his WWE Title run, and being well liked, he earned a decent coin with the WWE. He hasn’t been used as much lately, though I felt his performance with the Rock during the Fall of 2023 was excellent and WWE may have missed out on something there.

But his in-ring work was just OK… Not terrible, but nothing spectacular. The 2017 stuff is pure cringe to me and I’m still baffled why Road Dogg’s lead writer tenure of Smackdown led WWE down that path. Everything during 2017 was awful, including Bray Wyatt vs. Randy Orton (pure cringe) and then leading into Jinder vs. Randy in that terrible cage match. Jinder was a complete jobber on the RAW brand and then instantly gets a main event push when he joined Smackdown. Why? Because he had veins popping out of his muscles.

AEW and TNA comes to mind as landing spots and I say “good luck” to both, as you can’t call him “Jinder Mahal” due to WWE’s copyrights.

Jinder is a relic of the bad late 2010s WWE and I sense that WWE/TKO may be cleaning up the roster for underperforming wrestlers from that era.


Thoughts on the cryptic videos played by the WWE?

I’m just going to tell you right now… I don’t care. Not at all.

Can we STOP getting weird with wrestler characters, please, WWE? We just had a successful Wrestlemania 40 that was built on REAL PEOPLE acting like they would in REAL LIFE. The Bloodline, the Rock, Seth Rollins (minus the outfits), and Cody Rhodes acted like real tangible people with competitive differences with each other.

Reason why the late 2010s and early 2020s SUCKED was due to the weird stuff tried, particularly with the Bray Wyatt stuff. Rest in peace, Windham Rotunda, but the character ventured into weird territory from 2017 and beyond. The Fiend was the absolute worst, as wrestling is done well when wrestlers SELL and this version of the character sold NOTHING except for that loss to Bill Goldberg. Otherwise, you set him on fire and he came back and performed as a burnt version of himself.

If we’re going with a new iteration of the Wyatt Family with Bo Dallas legitimately going with the Uncle Howdy crap, then it proves that WWE learned NOTHING from the bad storylines of late 2022 and early 2023 regarding Bray Wyatt/Fiend and Uncle Howdy. Go watch the LA Knight vs. Bray Wyatt match from Royal Rumble 2023 and try to tell me, with a straight face, that anything in that match was good. It was pure crap and it reminds of me of the potential that Bray Wyatt had as a character that was ultimately flushed down the toilet since 2017.

Keep it simple… Make it a throwback to the ORIGINAL Wyatt Family that came from NXT and helped make names of Braun Strowman, Luke Harper, and Erick Rowan. THAT was a great team and their feud with the Shield was highly entertaining. When you start venturing into the WEIRD, you’ll lose the audience as the Fiend and Firefly Funhouse stuff proved.

And don’t give me “the Undertaker did supernatural stuff”. Exactly, when he went over the top during the mid 1990s with the dual Undertakers, lightning bolts, and rising from the dead repeatedly, FEWER PEOPLE WATCHED. When he reduced the supernatural nonsense and started wrestling REAL MATCHES with Bret Hart, Shawn Michaels, and Steve Austin, people liked the character more and he drew better.

With due respect to Bo Dallas and I’m terribly sorry that he lost his older brother… But I’m not convinced that he could be the mouthpiece and leader of a group. Instead of giving him a GOOFY name of “Uncle Howdy”, just call him “Bo Wyatt” and let him work with a revamped Wyatt family that includes the returning Braun Strowman and Erick Rowan with maybe Alexa Bliss (though I believe she is better on her own with her original 2016-2018 heel gimmick). Don’t go overboard with the supernatural or it will fail like the previous going overboard attempts with supernatural stuff.


Thoughts on the new WWE Tag Titles?

Unlike the rest of the online population, I kind of liked the 2 trojan head titles and liked them even better when they had a bronze color to them. If I had a vote, however, I’d probably lean towards the Smackdown tag titles due to them resembling the older school tag titles of the 1990s or the Smackdown tag titles that resembled those too. The RAW ones just look like miniature versions of the World Heavyweight Title to me.

Here is what the wrestling fanbase FAILS to realize about Title Belts… Titles mean nothing unless the wrestlers holding them matter. Better yet, they mean nothing unless the division matters.

You may have disliked the 2 trojan head titles, but WWE’s Tag Team Division has literally sucked for most of the past 20 years unless the Usos or the New Day did something reasonable with them. That’s it… We’ve endured lots of BAD tag team wrestling thanks to Vince McMahon’s total dislike of that division and nobody trying to devote time to creating good tag teams. I personally thought WWE had something with the Revival, American Alpha, and DIY, but those teams fizzled outside of NXT.

Thus, when the Tag Team division is boring, the look of the titles are also deemed as boring.

Here’s my opinion on the WWE’s recent titles… The ones with the big “WWE” logo ABSOLUTELY SUCK as title belts. Yet, nobody cared when Roman Reigns held up 2 versions of those ugly titles for the past 3 years, did they? Nobody was disappointed when they were merged into 1 big ugly “WWE” logo gold belt, did they? No, because Roman was a GREAT world champion.

Look at the tiny titles that Bruno Sammartino wore or any WWE title versions before Hogan’s winged eagle belt. Awful belts, but nobody complained because the champions were strong and elite. The spinner title sucked, as did the fixed spinner title that others wore… Fans complained, but the champions were strong like John Cena, Edge, or CM Punk. Then the “WWE” logo title is given to the Rock when he becomes WWE Champion and nobody complains. Why? The freakin’ Rock is WWE champion.

Title belts are irrelevant and you’re a mark if you whine about the design. Complain more about the divisions and the wrestlers pushed.

And focus more of your hatred on the lack of quality towards wrestler THEME MUSIC, which I discussed in my last column. By the way, it’s hilarious how other websites are suddenly calling for promotions to improve their theme music just days after I posted that column. Funny how that works.



Today is 4/20/2024 and it’s usually referred to as a day where marijuana users rejoice. After all, 420 either came about because some college students began smoking it at 4:20pm and that became popular on campuses or that it was a police code associated with marijuana. Regardless, smokers have enjoyed this day… Here in 2024, I’ve become more tolerant of those using, as my older columns during the early 2000s hammered wrestlers who were doing drug references and as a straight-edge person myself, I loathed that kind of stuff. Now, I could care less what you’re doing in your own home as long as it doesn’t hurt others.

Almost 18 years ago, the WWE cared too much about marijuana use. Just after Rob Van Dam won the WWE Title at ECW’s One Night Stand 2006, he was pulled over and arrested with Sabu in Ohio. Ultimately, RVD would be charged with possession of marijuana and speeding. For that, WWE’s new Wellness Policy, which mind you was put in place following Eddie Guerrero’s death of late 2005, struck down on RVD and he suddenly had to drop his recently won WWE Title and recently earned ECW Title immediately. Then, he was depushed to the point where he’d soon leave the company. Mind you, the Wellness Policy was put in place following Eddie’s death and with due respect to the deceased, he didn’t pass away from smoking dope. Eddie passed away due to heart issues arising from an enlarged heart.

Since 2006, several things have happened… WWE no longer tests for marijuana on their Wellness Policy. While it’s not totally encouraged, they’ve moved on. Why? Because 38 states allow medical marijuana, while 24 states allow it to be sold recreationally. That includes OHIO, where RVD was arrested during 2006.

With that said, isn’t some sort of APOLOGY owed by the WWE (now owned by Endeavor/TKO) to Rob Van Dam?

Sorry, but making him job out both his WWE Title and ECW Titles on back-to-back days was highly embarrassing and damaging to RVD’s career. Edge was in the title running, but who wanted to see Big Show as ECW Champion? These reactionary title changes were not just bad for RVD, but the many fans who adored him as an in-ring talent.

So yeah, WWE, apologize to RVD please.

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