3 first time champions for AEW in 2024

AEW's stacked roster creates an opportunity for several stars to be champions for the first time under the promotion.
Daniel Garcia Jan.jpg
Daniel Garcia Jan.jpg /

With almost half a year gone in 2024, All Elite Wrestling has seen a host of new first-time champions being crowned in recent times.

From the current list of champions on the AEW roster, Adam Copeland, Willow Nightingale, Roderick Strong, and Kazuchika Okada hold gold for the first time and Swerve Strickland is holding singles gold for the first time - as AEW World Heavyweight Champion.

If we want to dig further deep into this trend, Sting held half of the Tag Team Championships for the first and last time during March whilst Julia Hart held the TBS title for 155 days as the youngest champion in AEW history.

In essence, there are two takeaways from this: the company are not afraid of a fresh look and show faith in those outside of the ‘premium’ names to carry programming. Sure, some of these names like Copeland and Okada are seasoned veterans who do not need cementing as stars, but the focus should be on the likes of Willow, Julia, and Swerve who have captured the hearts of the AEW crowd and Tony Khan has given them the ball to run with it.

With this in mind, here are three wrestlers who should win gold for the first time in the second half of 2024:

Daniel Garcia

Here is one dancing king who is well overdue for some gold in AEW. The 25-year-old first debuted for the company in 2021, joining the Jericho Appreciation Society a few months later.

Often competing as a trio with ‘Daddy Magic’ Matt Menard and ‘Cool Hand’ Angelo Parker as 2point0 and Red Death came together, Garcia was the star in another team simultaneously.

As Garcia became the breakout star of JAS as time went on, the ball was dropped in late 2022 when he was poised to join the Blackpool Combat Club but ultimately continued on as a heel. All momentum was lost and the creative ball was dropped. It was a real clanger for AEW TV to not have Daniel Garcia do his thing on national television.

However, 2023 was a great source of revival. The dancing gimmick was something that the fanbase rode with as time went on, but the biggest moment of this current surge was during the inaugural Continental Classic, won by Eddie Kingston. Garcia only won once, but his consolation victory over Brody King would seriously get things moving in the right direction for him.

Since then, he has mingled with Adam Copeland, House of Black and later Christian Cage at AEW Revolution for the TNT Championship. One of the most underrated catalysts has been having Matt Menard on commentary and really putting Garcia over as a serious deal. It was not meant to be in March at Revolution, but the first gold around Garcia’s belt looks like it will be a singles belt; a bit later down the line this year - perhaps against Adam Copeland (TNT Championship) or Roderick Strong (Intercontinental Championship).


In July 2023, Rush signed with All Elite Wrestling over WWE. It was a major coup for the company to bring incredible talent and marketable face from Lucha Libre to a full-time contract with the promotion, following the footsteps of the likes of Penta Jr, Rey Fenix, Bandido, and Komander.

As has been the issue with many talents as of late, visa and injury issues have severely hampered Rush’s appearances as an AEW wrestler this year. Before his return earlier this month on Collision, Rush had not been seen since his impressive run in the Continental Classic that was held in December. It provided fans with a relatively deep look at Rush, as he finished behind Jon Moxley, Jay White, and Swerve Strickland in his bracket. Yet the hard-hitting bouts gave fans wanting so much more.

Even before that, some of the content he was able to produce with his faction LIJ - particularly the vignettes - presented him in the fold of a Final Boss character without having to get into the ring.

The former AAA star is back on TV, and whilst he will have to maneuver his momentum in a deep roster, he can be one of those wrestlers who can truly capitalize on the heap of injuries that many of AEW’s biggest stars are sidelined with. Realistically, it could serve him well to win a title in Ring of Honor first, but his chances of winning gold in 2024 are probably limited to the Continental or International Title as he builds up good grace by becoming more available than he has been able to be in recent months.

Skye Blue

In late December last year, Skye Blue aligned with House of Black’s Julia Hart as she embraced her dark side and shelved her bubbly persona in pursuit of evil. It capped off a year that saw Skye become a prominent feature on AEW TV and progressively get better in the ring as the year went on.

At just 24 years old, she has been around the block in several promotions before even making her name in AEW. Since being signed, she has featured on Ring of Honor as well - and already has two world title challenges on her resume against Athena and Toni Storm, despite being so fresh to the scene.

Professional wrestling can sometimes be about being in the right place at the right time. For Skye Blue, it may be the right time if she is positioned right in the next few months.

Julia Hart’s unfortunate injury last month during a taping for Rampage means that she will be out of action for the foreseeable future after undergoing shoulder surgery. This will naturally mean that Skye will be focusing on a singles run once more, but this time with a much thicker layer to her character.

From a company standpoint, it may well make sense for Mercedes Moné to win the TBS Championship as early as Double or Nothing, but AEW could take a totally different direction. Mercedes does not need gold to add to her credibility, and a lengthy Willow Nightingale run with the title is something that many would like to see anyway. Given the history between Willow and Skye as associates once upon a time, having Skye Blue take the crown could be something that could really establish the 24-year-old as a mainstay in the women’s division.

It would certainly be a great reward for the women who wrestled the most AEW matches in 2023 from the entire roster.