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Recently, I had a loyal reader challenge me on writing more All Elite Wrestling (AEW) columns… He enjoyed my many WWE topics covered but as a converted AEW fan, he challenged me to produce more AEW content. Under most circumstances, content providers would mock that request because AEW actually doesn’t draw as well as WWE content… However, as the producer of the Excellence of Column Writing, I have proven this notion wrong and my past 2 AEW columns have been very successful.
Today’s sort of the end of my Trilogy of columns regarding AEW. In case you missed it, here are my previous columns on AEW:
Today, I want to dig deep into Tony Khan, the PRESIDENT of All Elite Wrestling. And not just All Elite Wrestling, but acting as a co-owner in title for the National Football League (NFL)’s Jacksonville Jaguars or Premier League’s Fulham Football Club (soccer)… Excuse me, Premier League no more for Fulham as their losing record, the team may be relegated out of the Premier League. Ah, that makes sense on why Shahid Khan didn’t want to join the “Super League” because they didn’t have much ground to stand on. In fact, Fulham has only been in the Premier League for just 3 seasons out of the 8 seasons that the Khans have owned the team.
The Khans have owned the Jacksonville Jaguars NFL team since the 2013 season and after some initial success with Tom Coughlin in charge, the team quickly fell apart and have had 3 consecutive losing seasons. The 2020 season saw them go 1-15 and the Khans let that happen by trading away or releasing most of their top talent. This terrible 2020 record enabled them to secure the #1 draft pick and with arguably the hottest quarterback prospect in the NFL Draft since Andrew Luck, this helped lure former successful NCAA coach Urban Meyer to Jacksonville. The drafted Lawrence from Clemson and attempted to rebuild a depleted team through the draft that year.
However, Coach Urban Meyer wasn’t done yet with personnel moves… Recently, news broke that the Jacksonville Jaguars are “expected to sign” former NCAA football superstar, former NFL quarterback, and former minor league baseball player Tim Tebow to a contact that would have him tryout as a Tight End for the team. Tebow is 33 years old and shall be 34 years old by the time the 2021 NFL Season begins. He has not played Tight End since High School, on top of that, he hasn’t played a single NFL snap since 2015 when he was trying to be a back-up quarterback for the Philadelphia Eagles. However, he hasn’t played in an official Regular Season game since 2012.
This potential move by Urban Meyer and the Jaguars has been met with backlash, as current Jaguars players have expressed anger to the press and many have argued that there are many younger free agent NFL athletes out there that could have a better chance at succeeding as a 3rd string Tight End than Tim Tebow. Many are highly critical of the potential move, citing Tebow’s age and inability to have staying power in the NFL previously. At the 2010 NFL Combine, he ran a 4.7 40 yard dash. While that time is actually the average time for Tight Ends, this was 11 years ago. On top of that, Tebow has not played the Tight End position since High School and thus he’d lack the proper blocking techniques and hands to execute that position correctly on top of strength needed to block freight trains trying to rush the quarterback. He can’t play quarterback because of that slow throwing motion that he refuses to change.
Many see this potential move by Urban Meyer as showing favoritism towards an older player of his…
Hey, does that sound familiar?
Come to think of it, Tony Khan hired Cody Rhodes, Kenny Omega, & the Young Bucks to be his 4 Executive Vice Presidents of All Elite Wrestling (AEW). Khan trusted each of them to help sign wrestlers to complete the roster. What did they give him?
– The Dark Order
– Joey Janela
– Jimmy Havoc
– The Entire AEW Women’s Division
– The Best Friends
– Orange Cassidy
– Shawn Spears
– The Lucha Brothers
Basically, they signed their good friends from Japan or the Indy scene instead of raiding top talent from many other independent promotions out there who don’t have iron clad contracts.
Now, we have reports that Kenny Omega & the Young Bucks have been in disagreements with Cody Rhodes backstage at AEW. Uh oh… Mind you, Omega and the Bucks have been the the ones signing the majority of the wrestlers above (besides Spears, that’s a Cody guy). Much of AEW’s failings have been caused by a poorly constructed talent roster by these EVPs and there have been nothing but struggles on execution inside the ring or within a storyline with that talent.
You’re starting to see a pattern, here, folks… The Khans have bought up the Jaguars, Fulham FC, and now started up All Elite Wrestling… But the have ZERO clue on who to put in charge of these new realms. See, Shahid Khan made his money from selling bumpers to major automobile manufacturers… Operating 2 major sports leagues on top of having a start-up Pro Wrestling promotion is highly difficult to accomplish even if you found someone qualified in knowing about Soccer, Football, and Pro Wrestling to begin with. Shahid Khan and Tony Khan know NOTHING about all 3 and they are trying to wing it.
If I were Tony Khan, I would be SWEATING about fans returning to the stands and travelling with AEW for television. Right now, being in 1 location at Daily’s Place has made Tony Khan’s job much easier. However, once they are on the road, Tony’s time will be thinned out even further particularly when Fulham or the Jaguars are in season.
Tony Khan is a 38 year old guy expected to run 2 sports league teams and a pro wrestling promotion at the same time. THAT IS NUTS. On top of that, NOTHING qualifies him to run any of those 3. On top of that, he didn’t earn his way into any of those leagues nor did he start up AEW by himself. Everything he has is attributed to his father, Shahid Khan, buying those teams or fronting the money to start AEW. He has a college degree in finance and good for him, but many others do and you don’t see the operating sports league teams or wrestling promotions. Hell, I have a graduate degree in finance and have worked in the private sector longer than Tony and I’m not even close to being qualified to run a NFL franchise, major Soccer league team in Europe, or a wrestling promotion.
The time that the Khans’ succeeded was when they hired Tom Coughlin as EVP of Football Operations during 2016. In just 2 years, Coughlin built a team that was very close to making it to the Super Bowl following the 2017 season. Things fell apart after that when Coughlin’s old disciplinary ways returned towards that great talent that he drafted and signed, thus he was fired before the 2019 season ended. However, the point remains is that old man Coughlin quickly built that team into a powerhouse and things quickly fell apart after they fired him. That or the Khans were purposely tanking to draft Lawrence out of Clemson for the 2021 NFL Draft.
And now, they hired Urban Meyer. Now, at face value, Urban Meyer’s coaching record looks great. He’s a 3-time BCS Champion, he has turned around the fortunes of Bowling Green, Utah, Florida, and Ohio State upon joining them. Those Florida teams were very dominant and he was able to take down the almighty SEC to win another title with Ohio State. Living here in Ohio, many Buckeye fans are appreciative of that 2014 BCS Title win.
However, Urban Meyer has NEVER coached a single game in the NFL in his life. In the NCAA, you have no salary cap (college players don’t get paid) and you can build your team based on High School players available nationwide. In the NFL, however, you are confined to a salary cap and team resources are more evenly divided. Then, you start to look closely at the exits from his previous College teams. He left Florida, citing “family and health” concerns. Yet, after he left, stories came out about many Florida Gator player arrests and a few other player incidents. Then, he joins Ohio State which had its own scandals for him to follow. If you remember, one of his coaches was caught up in an abuse scandal and based on Meyer’s internal actions, he was suspended for 3 games to start the 2018 season. After that season, he left Ohio State due to “family and health” reasons once again.
Are we sure that the Khans have their right guy in Jacksonville? And swing that around to the Tim Tebow signing which has everyone scratching their heads…
I cannot speak to Fulham‘s issues, as I’m not a soccer fan… But again, the Khans have only seem their team appear in the Premier League just 3 out of 8 seasons and I’ve heard stories about Tony Khan and the Fulham coaching staff butting heads on which talent to sign for their team.
As a manager of a company, you need to hire the right people who will hire the right people beneath them. Vince McMahon has the same problem right now in the WWE. Right now, he has trusted family members and his best friends to help him operate the WWE. The story, as seen for the past 20 years, has been a WWE in decline from its Attitude Era peak. Triple H & Stephanie along with Kevin Dunn & Bruce Prichard have not been as good of a support system for Vince McMahon like Jim Ross, Vince Russo, Gerald Briscoe, and Pat Patterson. As seen with Triple H operating the developmental system, it has not produced a legitimate Main Event potential talent for Vince to push to the moon on the male side to the ledger. Is that any different that the AEW EVPs failing to sign the right talent for Tony Khan to push on his television product?
Meanwhile, Tony Khan has Jim Ross RIGHT THERE on his AEW roster. Ross signed a 3 year deal and through the Spring of 2022, it shall expire. You have 1 more year to utilize that great brain of his… After all, Ross restocked the WWE talent roster repeatedly during the Attitude and Ruthless Aggression Eras. On top of that, you have Arn Anderson, Dean Malenko, Diamond Dallas Page, & Tully Blanchard hanging around backstage along with other veterans like Billy Gunn, Paul Wight, Christian, and Chris Jericho to listen to.
Sorry, Tony, but you made a BAD CHOICE in selecting your EVPs for All Elite Wrestling (AEW)… While you were in awe of Cody and the Young Bucks for their “All In” show, you severely overpaid for Kenny Omega. Seriously, do you honestly think that you were in a bargaining war with the WWE over his signing? He was likely to be yours anyway because he already tried the WWE system during 2005-2006 as a developmental wrestler.
On top of all of that, your 4 EVPs have ZERO experience running a company of any magnitude, let alone a start-up pro wrestling venture. None of them have any college education in business or management, nor did they have any experience operating a business or preparing a payroll before AEW. Each of the 4 wrestlers were still in the peaks of their wrestling abilities and that is what they’ve devoted themselves towards for the past decade. The fact is that Tony Khan could have signed all 4 wrestlers to night contracts without making them key decision makers. That talent roster has many issues and the EVPs don’t have the human resource experience to handle under-performing talent or issues among talents.
Instead, Tony Khan has let Cody, the Bucks, and Omega sign whomever they want and he’s been mostly hands-off on their Creative decisions towards their own selves. That’s not the way it should operate… Khan should have better control over that roster, place someone capable in charge of managing that said roster, and reconsider who is EVPs are that surrounds him for decision making.
Tony Khan has:
– Hired wrestlers as EVPs of his Pro Wrestling company. Those EVPs signed their friends to AEW contracts.
– Hired a former college player who just signed his 33 going on 34 year old player that he coached more than 10 years ago in college for his NFL team. To play Tight End, too, something he has never done in the NFL.
– Maybe making a bad decision on Tom Coughlin based on the fining system that he employed. Just when the dust was settling from that culture of fines for petty stuff, the Jaguars go ahead and upset fans with the potential Tim Tebow signing.
– Arguing with his coaches over players potentially joining his Fulham FC soccer club.
Facts are all there… Tony Khan is either spread too thin to manage 2 sports league teams and 1 wrestling promotion, or he’s incompetent to do so… Or both.
What Tony Khan SHOULD DO is demote Kenny Omega, the Young Bucks, & Cody Rhodes as Executive Vice Presidents. AEW has yet to set up any brands that stick and thus you don’t need a “Chief Brand Officer” either. However, more than compensate each of them as TALENTS because each of those 4 are still in their athletic primes and have some value as in-ring performers. Then, begin meeting with Jim Ross and work with him to surround Tony Khan with BETTER wrestling minds to surround himself with instead.
See, AEW has the same problem as the WWE. They have the WRONG people surrounding their company Presidents. Khan has the 4 EVPs that know nothing about management and elevate the wrong talents. Vince McMahon has family and friends as EVPs and they know nothing about management and elevate the wrong talents. It’s the SAME PROBLEM! However, on AEW’s end, they aren’t a publicly traded corporation like the WWE. If WWE were to just demote Triple H, Stephanie, and Kevin Dunn, Wall Street would have a field day with WWE’s stock. You don’t have that public image worry with AEW and by retaining Bucks, Omega, and Cody as higher priced talent, their demotions won’t be largely seen or known by wrestling talents anyway.
As I said in a previous column and also recently at the latest Great Debate YouTube show, the problem with Tony Khan isn’t about his booking but about his moves as President of All Elite Wrestling. He made a huge mistake, from day one, on making Cody and the Bucks become Executive Vice Presidents. You had them anyway as talents! Then, as a crude bargaining chip to avoid the WWE signing him, AEW offered Kenny Omega the title of “EVP” as well. Throughout 2019, the 4 EVPs brought in talents that were friendly to them and not wrestlers who could make this company succeed. On top of that, the 4 EVPs have had a hand in the Creative of AEW. Thus, they’ve ruined the Talent Roster and the Creative Team from the start!
Billionaire sons just cannot be handed a NFL Football Team, Premier League (well, sometimes) Soccer Team, and a start-up Pro Wrestling Promotion and be expected to succeed at operating all 3 at the same time. Furthermore, if Tony Khan needs help with those, HIRE THE RIGHT DAMN PEOPLE to assist you with their operations. Obviously from the Fulham‘s losing seasons and the multiple demotions downward to lower league, something isn’t going right with the soccer team. Urban Meyer even talking about Tim Tebow possibly being signed is a total joke and the Jaguars are the ONLY team interested in Tebow playing another position other than Quarterback. With AEW, full faith was placed in 4 pro wrestlers with ZERO managerial experience to be your Executive Vice Presidents of your start-up company.
Tony Khan, you are IN OVER YOUR HEAD and proving to be a TERRIBLE Co-Owner and President of your companies.
Go find the right people to help your teams and wrestling promotion… Otherwise, the Jaguars will keep losing, you won’t remain in the Premier League, and AEW will be stuck spinning its wheels with a smaller group of loyal fans.
You can take my advice or if you choose, shove it.
So just chill… Until the next episode!
Comments and feedback are welcome. Follow and Tweet me @titowrestling or login in below to post comments.
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