MJF has made history at Full Gear 2022 when he became the first member of the “Four Pillars of AEW” to become a world champion in All Elite Wrestling. Maxwell Jacob Freidman defeated Jon Moxley at Full Gear 2022 in a historic bout to win the AEW Championship and cement himself as the top star in AEW.
The Four Pillars of AEW is a term coined by MJF in an interview, referencing the four young “home grown” stars of AEW poised to be main event stars in the future. The idea comes from AJPW’s 4 Pillars of Heaven from the 1990s to 2000s being Japanese stars Kenta Kobashi, Mitsuharu Misawa, Toshiaki Kawada, and Akira Taue.
The Four Pillars came through AJPW and became some of the greatest wrestlers of all time. Each man brought a unique style, character and presentation to the show and had incredible matches with each other regularly – whether they be tag team matches or all-time great singles bouts.
They were called the Four Pillars because they “held up” All Japan as the main event on the show. AEW took this and ran with it with the four young stars that took the promotion by storm during their debut year in 2019 and solidified themselves as the future of the business. However, some have managed to move up better than others and the successes of the four young stars certainly differs.
Darby Allin has spent his time tagging with WCW legend Sting. Whilst the pair have taken part in some high profile pay per view matches and have defeated everyone that has been put in front of them, fans have no option but to lament what could have been with the young star.
Coming into the company with a draw against Cody Rhodes put Allin in good stead. Add in some amazing bouts with Jon Moxley, Chriw Jericho and CM Punk, then the future looked bright. After he lost to CM Punk at All Out 2021, many expected a main event push, however he has since floundered and not been pushed into the AEW Championship picture as expected.
Meanwhile, Jungle Boy has gone from strength to strength. An AEW Tag Team Championship run with Luchasararus made him one of the most successful of the pillars. He recently defeated former partner Luchasaurus at Full Gear 2022 and looks set for a singles push going into AEW Revolution, with a possible feud with Samoa Joe coming his way over the TNT Championship.
Sammy Guevara is the most polarizing of the four put holds the most title reigns. He is a three-time TNT Champion but faced rejection from the fans for his pairing with previous fan-favourite Tay Conti (now known as Tay Melo) which led to a forced heel turn from which he has yet to recover. Time will tell what his future holds but he is so far the most lost of the Four Pillars of AEW.
Meanwhile MJF has shown the world that he is the most successful of the four. He is the first to win the AEW Championship, and has solidified himself the the greatest of the Four Pillars of AEW. He was always destined for greatness and known as a future star, although few thought he would dominate the wrestling industry at the tender age of 26.
His future is unclear, with his AEW Contract set to run out in 2024 and if he holds the title until then could walk into the WWE, for the 2024 Royal Rumble, as the AEW Champion and completely ruin Tony Khan and his fledgling promotion’s reputation in the process.
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Hamish is a writer and podcaster and wrestling fan who is a key part of the Atletifo team.
After playing countless hours of WrestleMania X8 on the Gamecube, he discovered Rey Mysterio getting his head crushed by The Great Khali, and thus a love for professional wrestling was born.
He is also a Media Graduate, as well as writing for multiple sites about Premier League football and the culture of Wales – his home country.