The announcement of Harold Meij’s departure as NJPW President opened the possibility AEW and NJPW working together once more.
The two biggest promotions in the world outside of WWE working together sounds like a no brainer, but only time will tell if this is the case.
Does NJPW need AEW?
Since the departure of The Elite from NJPW, there has not been any major changes in the terms of business and NJPW is doing better than ever in their home country of Japan.
While things are great in Japan for NJPW, the expansion has not been doing well. The loss of their TV show has been a major blow.
Working with AEW would allow NJPW to get back on track on their expansion in the U.S. Using AEW’s platform could also help them get more subscriptions for NJPW World. Another benefit for NJPW could be the fact they could have the best tag team division in the world at their disposable and help improve theirs.
While the positives for “opening the forbidden door” are great on paper, there are several problems of working with AEW. NJPW sees AEW more like a rival promotion than an actual ally to work with. Another negative is the fact both products are very different and it would be impossible to combine both.
Something interesting is the fact most NJPW fans don’t see the idea of NJPW and AEW working together necessary.
Does AEW Need NJPW?
In AEW’s first year, they have seen tons of success for the recently created promotion. AEW’s solid performances granted a great contract renewal with TNT back in January.
AEW having access to wrestlers like Naito, Okada or Tanahashi would be incredible for their TV product. Working with NJPW would also allow AEW to establish itself better in Japan.
AEW, in more than one occasion, has shown they are open to work with any promotion if the opportunity presents itself.
In a similar case with NJPW, while on paper all sounds amazing, there are some factors to consider first. Would TNT executives be happy with AEW working with a promotion that could sign a TV contract potentially with a rival TV station?
Another problem is the fact they have bad blood. The Elite on more than one occasion have talked about the bad blood that exists between both parties. AEW has very little TV time and working with another promotion, while trying to fit their wrestlers into their already limited TV time is a factor to consider. The addition of AEW’s second show could help, but it’s only an hour.
Both promotions working together would be great for the wrestling business, but at the same time it’s not really what both need right now. Timing is everything in wrestling and right now its not the time for a working relationship.
AEW and NJPW have done great business without the need of working with one another. It will likely stay like that for a long time. The forbidden door is not going to be opened any time soon.
NJPW will continue to work with ROH and CMLL, meanwhile, AEW will continue to do their thing and keep growing on their own.