AEW vs WWE will happen in the future

As collaboration in professional wrestling grows, the two biggest companies will eventually come together to battle and benefit.
Friday Night SmackDown
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This is a compelling time in professional wrestling. Collaboration isn’t new but seeing it at this level is off the charts. AEW x NJPW Forbidden Door III is a few days away. Jordynne Grace, Joe Hendry, and other TNA performers are showing up in WWE NXT. Iyo Sky and AJ Styles are heading over to Japan for two big matches against Utami Hayashishita and Naomichi Marufuji, respectively. Partnership is happening at a new level in professional wrestling. The final question is whether WWE and AEW will find a way to work together in the future.

This thought isn’t about fans booking super cards that feature their favorite performers and dream matches. Yes, in the end, fans would win with some of the excellent matches to see. But this is more about the real reason these organizations function as they do – the bottom line.

At first glance, it makes sense to think that AEW and WWE partnering for a crossover show or angle would never happen. The WWE has long attempted to hinder opposition in all forms, whether it's through hoarding talent, spreading false information, or even contract tampering. Tony Khan openly talked about some of the initial issues he faced from the largest promotion in the business.

“I got a lot of wrestlers come to me and allege that WWE reached out to them to tamper with their contracts and ask them to break their contracts,” Tony Khan said on the Dan Le Batard Show. “I can’t confirm that specifically. I can only tell you what the wrestlers have come to me and said. It was very disturbing, and I’ve had to go out and try to put on good shows despite this alleged tampering, stuff like that. But frankly, I don’t think it’s stopped us because the quality of the product and the quality of the shows is at an all-time high right now.”

Are those times over? There isn’t a clear-cut answer to that, but what is true is that the reports about contract tampering or outright interference have changed. Are the two companies competing for top-name free agents? Sure. Based on the perception of the conversation, it’s understandable why some would see either side as winning in that debate.

But as collaboration happens more across professional wrestling, there’s a wonder if AEW and WWE could ever come to the table. Khan even spoke about that topic.

“It’s something I would certainly be open to, and I think it’s an interesting thing for the future,” Khan said on WTF with Marc Maron. “It’s not something that’s ever really been done. They’ve kind of existed in their own space. We are working with a lot of wrestling promotions, and at times they’ve done stuff like that. But it would be a really interesting thing to see.”

That was in 2023 and in a year things have changed. WWE is openly working with GCW, NOAH, TNA, and AJPW, and looking to work with other organizations. AEW is continuing to partner with NJPW, CMLL, AAA, and other companies as well. The more these two groups expand to partner, the closer their circles become.

When it comes back to the bottom line, there’s so much money to be made with a partnership between AEW and WWE. Fans will get those dream matches, but both organizations are powered by the revenue they bring in year after year. As metrics and expectations continue to rise, one way to top all of that would be to find a way to work together for a massive show. Every measure metric would explode the second something like this started. Even the media entities that cover professional wrestling, those groups would benefit as well. It’s a massive win for all parties and the tangential groups at the same time. As some would say “It’s what’s best for business.”

Professional wrestling is in a place in 2024 that no one saw coming. Partnerships are growing. Surprise appearances are happening. There’s no telling where this will lead. But if it brings AEW and WWE together, then everyone in professional wrestling wins.