Whether you’re an AEW fan or a WWE fan, you cannot deny Eddie Kingston is one of the top stars in the wrestling industry at the moment.
From selling his wrestling gear to get through the pandemic to main eventing AEW shows for the AEW Championship, Eddie Kingston’s rise in AEW has been nothing short of meteoric. To go from unknown to a fan-favourite in no time at all is a testament to his incredible skill and work rate.
However, Eddie Kingston was not always destined for AEW. Like many, Eddie Kingston’s dream was to be in WWE (as well as in AJPW, the company which inspired him to become a wrestler). Now thinking about Eddie Kingston in WWE seems like a pipe dream, but it actually nearly happened just a few years ago.
Just not how you’d think…
Eddie Kingston WWE
Eddie Kingston came close to joining WWE after he appeared on AEW Dynamite. In July 2020 he was a surprise opponent in Cody Rhodes TNT Championship open challenge, and wowed the crowd with his pre-match promo and accompanying match.
Eddie Kingston revealed on Chris Jericho’s Talk is Jericho that after the match, he received two phone calls offering him work – from Christopher Daniels (AEW’s Head of Talent Relations) and from WWE (or as he called them, “the competition”).
He later clarified about the offer and revealed why he turned down WWE in a later interview with Swerve Strickland. On an episode of the Swerve City Podcast, Eddie Kingston spoke about being offered a job as a coach at the NXT Performance Centre and revealed why he turned down WWE.
“I didn’t want to collect the paycheck I didn’t earn, you know what I mean? Because I knew if I was there, if I was there, and I had that resentment of ‘I know I have ten more good years, I know I’m better than what, they’re not giving me a chance, let me go.’”
“If a football player or amateur wrestler walks in and the machine (WWE) is behind them all the way, and they want me to help him and teach him, I’m not going to. But if I do, if I do, I’m going to be a piece of s—. Cause I’m going to be resentful of him.“
Thankfully, Eddie Kingston ignored WWE’s contract offer and stuck with AEW, where he could showcase his skills and be respected as the veteran wrestler that he is.
He stuck to his guns and became the Eddie Kingston in AEW we all know and love. In WWE Eddie Kingston would be nothing more than a behind the scenes figure and would not be getting the big matches in AEW and Japan that he deserves.
Would you have liked to see Eddie Kingston in WWE? Let us know in the comments or click below to read more
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.