Tony Khan must suspend those involved in backstage altercation

AEW, Tony Khan 2019 TM & © Turner Entertainment Networks, Inc. A WarnerMedia Company
AEW, Tony Khan 2019 TM & © Turner Entertainment Networks, Inc. A WarnerMedia Company /

With all the wrestling action coming out of Labor Day weekend, it’s action behind the scenes that has the wrestling community talking. According to multiple reports, a physical altercation between CM Punk, Ace Steel, Kenny Omega, and The Young Bucks occurred after the AEW All Out media scrum. As details of the situation become known, it is becoming apparent that some action needs to occur. And that means Tony Khan must act, which in turn means he will have to take discipline against all involved.

According to Jason Nason of Wrestling Observer, the situation started with Punk initiating the fight, and throwing punches at Matt Jackson. Steel reportedly threw a chair that hit Nick Jackson in the eye. He also supposedly bit Omega and pulled his hair. As comical as this must sound, there’s a deeper situation to pull from this moment.

News reports heading into All Out was that Sammy Guevara and Eddie Kingston were also involved in a physical altercation. One that resulted in their planned match being pulled from the show and Kingston being suspended. If Kingston was suspended for “pie facing” Guevara, Khan must respond to a situation as volatile as this, correct?

Punk had some harsh words for Omega and The Young Bucks during the media call, some of which caught everyone watching by surprise. Even Khan seemed surprised to hear Punk openly talk about it live during the media scrum. The news cycle should have been buzzing about MJF’s return, but that isn’t the matter. In fact, this is the second AEW PPV in a row in which the news coming in or out of the event isn’t about the in-ring action, but politics outside of it.

If Khan doesn’t respond, it sets a bad precedent for the company. Khan’s comments about Thunder Rosa made it clear that he sees wrestlers at different levels, but not acting against Punk, Omega, Steel, and The Young Bucks in this situation sends a worse response. The ramifications of punishing Kingston for his actions and not these individuals for their actions will have long-term consequences. It wouldn’t be a new matter, as unequal punishment is a constant occurrence across other forms of entertainment, especially sports. But AEW was supposed to be the place in wrestling where that was different, correct?

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All Elite Wrestling has some battles ahead, and they all aren’t in the ring. The issues in the locker room were bubbling up and now they’ve seemed to come to a head. With a big AEW Dynamite on the horizon, Khan must not only figure out the show but how to hold these individuals accountable for their backstage antics.