Tony Khan dropped the ball with Konosuke Takeshita's momentum

Konosuke Takeshita is one of the best young wrestlers in the world and it is time that AEW does a better job to feature him as such.
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Konosuke Takeshita 9.png /

It’s a fac that All Elite Wrestling has a roster that’s stacked with young talent that will be the foundation of the business in the future. There are several names that can be mentioned as performers under 30 years old with the potential to be breakout stars. But Konosuke Takeshita stands out among that list. There was a time when it looked like he was destined for big things in the company, but that momentum has stalled. His booking in the second half of 2023 and to start 2024 doesn’t look great and many are declaring that Tony Khan has dropped the ball on this fan favorite.

With Takeshita, AEW has a competitor that can do it all. He’s the type of in-ring athlete that can get all the stars in any match against any opponent. He exudes character, even when it’s not in physical action, in a way that highlights his talent. And don’t you dare point out the potential “language barrier” as a hesitation, as he’s continued to show personality whether it’s the beloved babyface or the heel role he’s playing today. Takeshita is the perfect type of performer that AEW should lean on as it returns more toward its “professional wrestling-first” roots.

Look at his resume if you need a refresher on how great he is in the ring. His matches against Bryan Danielson, Jon Moxley, MJF, and Mike Bailey in 2023 were some of the best in the industry. And he has a catalog full of matches from his time in Japan if you need further evidence. Takeshita deserves to be considered one of the best young names in professional wrestling today.

Fans were ready to see Takeshita get a push to at least the mid-card level, and that looked like it was coming. He picked up two big victories over Kenny Omega within a few weeks, and that seemed to be the signal he was headed up the ladder for bigger things. But suddenly, that momentum crashed to a halt, kicked off by a questionable defeat at the hands of Chris Jericho. Two months since that defeat and Takeshita has had one singles match in the company, a victory over Darby Allin on the January 3 edition of AEW Dynamite. A win that was immediately negated the following week when he and Powerhouse Hobbs lost to Allin and Sting.

To many, it’s surprising that Takeshita hasn’t held or been involved in any long-term feuds around AEW Championships. This current angle as a part of the Don Callis family isn’t working to elevate him nor Powerhouse Hobbs, another name that fans want to see higher up on the card. It’s time to get him out of the sports entertainment style booking that AEW must rid itself of, and instead slot in as a showcase athlete on the card.

Imagine Takeshita in the 2024 AEW Continental Classic. Pit him in great matches against Orange Cassidy for the International Championship and have him defend against men like PAC, Lance Archer, Kyle Fletcher, and several others on the roster. There are so many ways AEW can improve on its current booking, that it seems criminal to keep him where he is. Takeshita is a name that fans should know now and be prepared for his greatest for decades to come. All Elite Wrestling must do better with his booking this year.