All Elite Wrestling is coming off one of the most successful episodes in the history of its flagship show, AEW Dynamite. Their Grand Slam event was a financial and critical success, despite so many recent setbacks for the three-year-old organization. While some sideline hecklers may have been snickering at some of AEW’s recent faults, AEW General Manager, CEO, and Owner Tony Khan decided to volley back with an event to remember. Five huge title matches made this week feel like the U.S. Open of pro wrestling. There was plenty of coveted hardware on the line at Arthur Ashe Stadium.
This, coming off a couple of weeks where it seemed like Khan and Co. couldn’t keep things in bounds. Following the disastrous news conference after All Out, many critics and observers were questioning whether or not All Elite Wrestling was falling apart. The chaos of the evening, and the suspensions that followed, may have crippled any other promotion. But, at least this week, AEW came up with aces.
Thank you everyone who watched Grand Slam tonight + every fan here in New York City tonight for the first @AEWonTV $1 million gate!
— Tony Khan (@TonyKhan) September 22, 2022
Tony Khan and AEW Are Holding Serve
AEW Dynamite Grand Slam served up a winner when the promotion desperately needed it
This entire show definitely deserves a huge round of applause, as the performers truly brought their A-game. Jon Moxley’s AEW World Championship win over Bryan Danielson and the debut of Saraya (WWE’s Paige) were the highlights of the night.
However, there was also a terrific Ring of Honor world title match that saw Chris Jericho take the title from Claudio Castagnoli. The Acclaimed scissored their way to the tag team belts, much to the delight of the audience on hand. And a mere appearance by MJF drew an explosive reaction from the audience.
Overall, the night was a real…. well, Grand Slam.
It was an evening that showed the depth of the company. For all the backhanding that fans sometimes do about AEW having too much talent on its roster, they lobbed it right back at us on Wednesday. They showed that the roster could still smash it, despite being short of some of their biggest names. They proved that they can be winners without CM Punk or The Elite because the promotion itself is now bigger than that.
Tony Khan scored a point by proving that he can rally back, even when he’s down 40-LOVE
It’s been a tough summer for Tony Khan. It was as if he was standing on the hard court, as the sun beat down and caused the heat to radiate off the ground around him. But he has survived the sauna and is turning the corner as we close out 2022. Perhaps Khan drew inspiration from the man who the arena was named for, the great Arthur Ashe.
An athlete and advocate, the late tennis legend was always hailed for his bravery in adverse conditions.
“Start where you are,” Ashe once said. “Use what you have. Do what you can.”
That’s exactly what Tony Khan did this week. He took what he had, and he did what he could. The end result was a huge win for both him and All Elite Wrestling. For this one night in New York, they stood center court, blew kisses, and were handed their bouquet of flowers. Under the lights of one of the most famous tennis stadiums in the world, AEW fired the perfect passing shot.
Game. Set. Match.
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 Dynamite Wednesday nights at 8 PM ET on TBS and AEW Dark: Elevation (Monday nights) and AEW: Dark (Tuesday nights) at 7 PM ET on YouTube. AEW Rampage airs on TNT at 10 PM EST every Friday night.