In a number of hours, Chris Jericho will defend his AEW World Championship against his biggest rival to date, Jon Moxley. This, however, it not the first time that they have met each other. The tale of their rivalry is really two completely different roads, with the first encounters being mostly comedy with a side of psychotic. The current run between these two is about betrayal. Jericho made it clear when he asked Moxley to join The Inner Circle that their relationship started as somewhat of a student and teacher relationship. Fast forward and these two may go to hell together if that means being the AEW World Champion at the end of Revolution. Let us explore this rivalry that was once about a plant and has developed into the biggest and best feud in pro wrestling today.
Minor Meetings and Teaming
Chris Jericho and Jon Moxley, formerly Dean Ambrose, first met as members of the WWE roster. The first time they ever stepped inside the ring together saw Moxley as a member of The Shield and Jericho teaming with Ryback and Sheamus in 2013. Two years later, they teamed up as Jericho teamed with Moxley and Roman Reigns against The Wyatt Family at Night of Champions 2015. These could be seen as the years that Jericho was more of a teacher to Moxley, as their rivalry finally started in 2016 following WrestleMania.
A Jacket, Plant, and entering an Asylum
The basis of the rivalry between Jericho and Moxley, while they were members of the WWE roster, was something unique that only two talents like them could manage to deliver. It was a lot of comedy, as Moxley destroyed the famous light-up jacket that Jericho used during his entrances. Jericho has not stopped demanding him to pay for the jacket, with him bringing it up well after their rivalry came to a close. But what made it so incredible was the fact that Jericho continuously changed the amount of money as he yelled his demands at Moxley. They had two PPV matches, with the first coming at Payback 2016 simply because he replaced Jericho’s highlight reel with “The Ambrose Asylum” talk show. In a 20 minute battle, Moxley walked out victorious. This did not mean Jericho was done with him.
— Glenn Rubenstein (@GlennRubenstein) January 9, 2020
During this time, Moxley introduced us to a plant which he named Mitch. That was essentially his co-host on “The Ambrose Asylum.” But Jericho went overboard, smashing Mitch the potted plant over the head of Moxley. With a jacket and plant destroyed, there was only one place for these heated rivals to go. The first and only ever Ambrose Asylum match. Weapons hung from above, as did a plant, as these two went to war one final time. After almost 30 minutes, Moxley walked out as the winner again while Jericho had to pull out 69 thumbtacks from his body.
This was essentially the big culmination of the feud, but they did trade wins on Raw and SmackDown afterward. They were also both featured in the Money in the Bank match (which Moxley won) and a Survivor Series match when it was brand vs brand. People were left wanting more.
Double or Nothing – An Unscripted Rebirth
Jon Moxley’s rebirth is a story that will go down in wrestling history. At the first AEW event ever, all anyone could talk about was Mox. And on that very night, he established his first and second feud. Even if no one remembers the second. Chris Jericho won the first main event in AEW history at Double or Nothing, pinning Kenny Omega. As he attempted to celebrate, a paradigm shift occurred through the masses when Moxley showed up. He and Jericho had a staredown before Moxley dropped Jericho, making his prescence felt.
A rivalry that happened three years earlier and left fans feeling empty instantly felt fresh and more anticipated than ever. But Moxley instead set his eyes on someone else in Omega, so it was time to wait. Jericho, of course, went on to win the AEW World Championship. Mox went all in, took the double or nothing bet on himself. Now almost one year later, he’s the biggest babyface in wrestling and facing a former foe in a brand new feud.
Le Champion Offers Inner Circle Ownership
This is a story that is going into its third month of being told. Following Full Gear, Jon Moxley established himself as the unquestioned No. 1 Contender for the AEW World Championship. And the smart and witty world champion knew that. Instead of having his toughest test to his throne establish himself as the official challenger, he instead offered him an offer most would not refuse. 49 percent of The Inner Circle leadership and a special Ford GT. Something Chris Jericho should have realized in his time with Moxley is that he is no normal cat. Instead, he was beaten down as Moxley would not be bought. This meant The Inner Circle needed to get retribution, which is where “an eye for an eye” came into the picture. Jericho gashed the eye of Moxley as payback.
— 𝙈𝙅𝙁'𝙎 𝙎𝘾𝘼𝙍𝙁 🧣 (@MjfScarf) January 16, 2020
Main Event Worth Watching
Moxley and his unscripted persona had no problem continuing his fight against The Inner Circle, with one eye or even none. Moxley defeated PAC in a one-on-one No. 1 Contender match with the one eye and clinched his opportunity. It was then time for payback. Santana received a stab in the eye via the Ford GT car key for his trouble. The challenger is sitting at an 11-0-1 record and is the favorite going into Revolution. Jericho knows that. At the official weigh-in, Jericho continued to push off the weigh-in off himself and got in the face of Moxley instead. Mox gave him a headbutt, brutally busting him open and setting the stage for Saturday night. The Inner Circle beat him down, Jericho got his payback, but Jon Moxley is in the head of the AEW World Champion ahead of his biggest defense yet. No plants, no jackets, no asylum, just a veteran champion clinging to his title against the hottest guy in the company.
It’s funny to think that Jon Moxley’s first night on the job in AEW saw him attack the only man he had any prior history with. The moment Mox stepped into AEW, there was a mountain of new possibilities. But almost one whole year later, he’s fighting Chris Jericho for the AEW World Championship. Going through their history, it’s not like it was brief. Yet, this rivalry somehow feels fresh, new, and a whole lot better than it was when it focused around a plant. The night of Double or Nothing was an “I’ll see you later” statement from Moxley when he planted Jericho with the Paradigm Shift. It was the DDT heard around the world. Moxley, Jericho. Two men who made their names in the WWE, now heading into AEW’s Revolution PPV with what could be the biggest match of their AEW careers to this point. Sure seems like that “Paradigm Shift” Moxley talked about on night one has come into existence. A win will firmly set him atop the wrestling universe. A universe that he has formed in his vision since night one. A full-circle moment between these two men.
Stay tuned to the Last Word on Pro Wrestling for more on this and other stories from around the world of wrestling, as they develop. You can always count on LWOPW to be on top of the major news in the wrestling world, as well as to provide you with analysis, previews, videos, interviews, and editorials on the wrestling world. You can catch AEW Revolution tonight at 8 PM ET, internationally on Fite TV and in the United States and Canada through B/R Live.