Ex-WWE female star on her love for Jeff Hardy; former tag team champion praises Tony Khan

In this week's edition of the AEW News Roundup, former WWE Superstar and current AEW female wrestler talks about her love for Jeff Hardy growing up and the former tag team champion praises AEW president Tony Khan.

The young star has also gone on record to give credit to MJF for getting him noticed by All Elite Wrestling in the first place. Catch up on all the latest AEW news here.

#5. AEW star Toni Storm talks about her love for Jeff Hardy

AEW star Toni Storm has revealed that she was a huge Hardy Boys fan growing up, especially Jeff Hardy. The Charismatic Enigma was one of her biggest inspirations for getting into pro wrestling.

The 26-year-old now shares the same locker room as her one-time idol and revealed the first time she interacted with the former WWE Champion in an interview on the AEW Unrestricted podcast:

“Nothing much to report, I just said hello I didn’t want to act like a crazy fan or nothing but it is cool, it’s cool like I have mad respect for Jeff Hardy I just think he’s incredible and he’s been going so long and he’s still taking crazy bumps, he’s just crazy man it’s awesome.” [5:59-6:19].

Storm also stated that she is wrestling on the same show as Jeff, proving that her career is on an upwards trajectory.

“It’s pretty cool yeah. I had my match with Jamie Hayter right before him and Darby Allin which was cool. Yeah really cool, makes me feel like I’m doing the right thing if I’m rubbing shoulders with people that I grew up watching it’s pretty cool that I get to share the same locker room and yeah I must be doing something right.” [5:04-5:25].

While both stars were part of WWE previously, they have never appeared together on television or have had any public interactions. Storm and Hardy would debut within weeks of each other in AEW. Both wrestlers have taken part in the Owen Hart Cup Tournament but only the New Zealander is still left in the competition.

#4. Former AEW Tag Team Champion Kazarian praises Tony Khan

Frankie Kazarian has come to terms with AEW for a new deal.

- PWInsider

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Frankie Kazarian has come to terms with AEW for a new deal. - PWInsider https://t.co/ZYeW4RNuuk

Former AEW tag team champion Frankie Kazarian said kind words about Tony Khan, especially regarding the treatment of his wrestlers. The former SCU member praised Khan for treating AEW wrestlers like actual athletes. As one of the first signings to All Elite Wrestling back in 2019, he would be well-placed to share his opinion on the matter.

Speaking on GAW TV with former IMPACT Wrestling colleagues Mickie James, Victoria, and SoCal Val, Kazarian said:

"This is kind of like the second company that I’ve been part of almost since day one. TNA/IMPACT, I joined, you know, ten months, a year into its existence. With AEW, I was around before day one. I was involved in meetings the summer before, real clandestine-type stuff, discussing what we wanted AEW to be and to see where it’s at right now is...it’s really mind blowing."

Kazarian praised AEW President Tony Khan and his father Shahid for how their NFL background has seen them treated like legitimate athletes and not like "cogs on the wheel."

"One of the main things I think that sets AEW apart from at least any company I’ve been a part of is the fact that the Khans and the management team come from the NFL and they’re dealing with high dollar athletes. So we are treated very much like athletes."
"We are not just cogs on the wheel. They realize that the athletes are the lifeblood so the way they take care of us medically, the way they take care of us in terms of travel, the way they take care of us in terms of checking in on our mental health." (H/T: POST Wrestling)

This is an encouraging statement which shows that Tony Khan takes his wrestlers' welfare seriously. There have been too many unfortunate stories of promoters taking advantage of wrestlers to the detriment of their health.

#3. Varsity Blondes member reveals the effect MJF had on his career

Fun Fact! MJF has never wrestled on dark!

Also Fun Fact: MJF did actually wrestle a pandemic era dark match vs Griff Garrison but it never aired because Tony was so impressed by it and decided to do it on dynamite the next week instead

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Fun Fact! MJF has never wrestled on dark!Also Fun Fact: MJF did actually wrestle a pandemic era dark match vs Griff Garrison but it never aired because Tony was so impressed by it and decided to do it on dynamite the next week instead https://t.co/NMGVIDCdX7

Griff Garrison, who wrestles in AEW as part of the Varsity Blondes tag team, has credited MJF for getting him signed into the company. During Garrison's latest interview with Chris Van Vliet, the star recalled how a single dark match he had against MJF was received favourably by Tony Khan:

"I did a dark match and it was actually against MJF. We came to the back and Tony was like ‘that was so good’ and he loved it. We did it again for the next night, and they taped it for Dynamite for the next week," Garrison recalled. (17:30)
"So instead of being on DARK I got to be on Dynamite after like my second trip down there. So that was like cool. And against Max! You know, him? So that was really cool, for him and Tony to appreciate my selling and everything I did in that match," the star revealed. (17:41)

While The Salt of the Earth is one of the most hated stars on the roster, Garrison has no problem thanking Friedman for helping pull off an impressive match, to the point where he could showcase himself next week on Dynamite. While the young wrestler is lower down the card, he is still new to the business and will improve with time and experience.

#2. Matt Hardy reveals why Vince McMahon didn't consider Bray Wyatt a top guy

Matt Hardy has revealed that WWE Chairman Vince McMahon never saw Bray Wyatt as the top guy, despite the fact that he was a former Universal Champion and one of the biggest merchandise sellers for the company before he was let go last year.

The AEW star worked with the Eater of Worlds as both an ally and adversary. Together, they formed the Deleters of Worlds in 2018, shortly after Ultimate Deletion, their cinematic match at the Hardy Compound. They even won the RAW Tag Team Championship together at one point and Hardy used the momentum to capture that year's Andre The Giant Memorial Battle Royal trophy.

On the latest episode of the Extreme Life of Matt Hardy, the tag team legend said:

"Because ultimately Vince didn't see him as such. You know if you're a guy like you know Undertaker you're going to be treated differently when you're older, obviously, you know someone like John Cena, obviously Roman Reigns is the tippy top guy then you're gonna have other guys who like cycle in and out of those things. You know Cesaro got close there at the end, you had times where Braun Strowman was up and down." (1:06:45)

It is such a shame that Wyatt was not seen as a main eventer and he was one of the most popular superstars on the WWE roster. Despite his poor booking, the second generation star managed to reinvent his character multiple times. His latest incarnation, The Fiend, was well-received by fans but sadly his momentum was affected by Vince's inability to push him properly.

#1. Will Ospreay explains why he and Kenny Omega are not on good terms

Former IWGP World Heavyweight Champion Will Ospreay has revealed that he is currently on bad terms with AEW star Kenny Omega in real life.

During his time at New Japan Pro Wrestling, Omega was arguably the hottest gaijin wrestler in the company as the former leader of the Bullet Club leader and one-time IWGP Heavyweight champion. Since leaving for AEW, Ospreay has taken over the position as the top foreign star in the company.

During a recent interview with Wresthings, Ospreay said:

"Obviously, people want Kenny Omega, we're not on good terms right now. When you leave the building and leave New Japan and pull me aside and say, 'You need to step up for this company, I believe in you,' and gas you up and gas you up hard, and you put your heart and f**ing soul in trying to make this...the bar was high. For both myself and [Jay White], the bar was high. I actually care and want the fans who watch New Japan to be like, 'this is professional wrestling.' I'm doing it and destroying my body to do it, and then you cut me off online? What type of a c**t is that?"

It seems that Ospreay has taken issue with some of the comments Omega that posted on social media about his younger counterpart. He continued:

"I look at you and actually hold you in high regard, actual high regard, and I respect everything you've done. Even when you did the barbed wire exploding match that went to f***ing shit, I actually was the type of guy that was like, 'I hope they're alright.' The bombardment of tweets, I was probably the only guy that did that, and instead you retaliate by burying me to your shi**y fans. I'm literally doing my f***ing best."

Ospreay would go on to criticize Omega further, calling him "two-faced":

"That's why me and Kenny don't get along. I'm sure he has something else to say, but it's one of those things where I prefer him to stay away from me at this point. It's not even funny. You can destroy guys like that. You're saying this and you're saying that, I don't like two-faced people. Be real, just be real, that's all I ask for," (H/T: Fightful)

With the Forbidden Door PPV on the horizon, many wrestling fans are starting to fantasy book dream matches between AEW and NJPW stars. Omega vs. Ospreay is unlikely to happen unless the two stars work out their apparent issues.

Is Roman Reigns vs. The Rock likely to happen? We asked Paul Heyman himself here.

Edited by Neda Ali

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