AEW World Champion Samoa Joe Talks About The Impact He Wants To Have On AEW

AEW Samoa Joe

The new AEW World Champion Samoa Joe discusses the responsibility he feels as champion and what he hopes to change in AEW.  Two weeks ago Joe shocked the world and defeated the longest reigning AEW World champion of all time, MJF.  Since winning the championship he has collected a list of challengers.

As champion Samoa Joe feels a set of newfound responsibilities to AEW, its wrestlers and their fans.  During a recent interview with Sports Illustrated, Joe detailed what kind of champion he wants to be and what he wants to change in AEW as champion.

“I understand the world of professional wrestling. I’ve seen things work at a very high level, and I understand the type of people backstage that it takes for that to happen. I try to be that person.

As champion, you’re the standard-bearer. I’m more than happy to take up that mantle. I really want to make a focus of getting the fans’ attention back on the conflict in the ring, and a lot of the petty stuff needs to melt away. Let’s get back to entertaining people.”

AEW Samoa Joe
Courtesy of AEW

AEW The Home Of Backstage Brawls

In the past two years or so AEW has had a lot of attention drawn to them for the wrong reasons.  Most recently it has been because of alleged accusations against Chris Jericho’s backstage conduct, but we won’t get into that.  The most rampant problem drawing fans attention away from what was happening in the ring has been backstage brawls.

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The most famous instigator or victim of these backstage brawls or backstage conflict has been CM Punk, but he is in WWE now.  However, he was not the only one involved in these backstage conflicts and a few happened before his infamous ones.  During one of these brawls, Punk was champion and thus set the standard for the entire locker room. 

AEW Samoa Joe
Courtesy Of AEW

Experience And Respect

Samoa Joe has a lot of experience in wrestling and throughout his career he has garnered a lot of respect.  Hopefully he can use his role as champion and show the locker room what a champion should be.

Joe has worked in some big name indies and the biggest wrestling promotion in the world.  He was there in the beginning of Ring of Honor, helped to build TNA into a respected promotion and of course was with WWE although he was released before he could show his full potential.  Now he wants to help build AEW up to its full potential.

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Joe revealed his philosophy when joining a promotion isn’t to collect belts or add to his legacy.  His goal is to add to the promotion in any way he can.

“Any company I join, my goal is to enrich that company. I’ve been with several different companies throughout my career, and when I join up with an organization, I’m not signing up to add to my personal trophy case. I’m there to deliver and show them they made a fantastic investment. I want to ensure they’re getting everything they paid for and more. With that approach in life, you’re bound to find success. It’s not what they’re going to do for me or my legacy, but what I can do for them and theirs.”

AEW Samoa Joe and Tony Neese
Courtesy Of AEW

AEW’s Go-To Guy

Since joining AEW in April 2022 Joe has been AEW’s go-to guy.  He returned to ROH, now owned by AEW, to add a bit of prestige to the promotion.  While there he became the ROH World Television champion.  When no one wanted to work with Punk he stepped up and worked with him on Collision and challenged him for the Real AEW World Championship. He also subbed in for an injured Adam Cole to partner with MJF and defend the ROH World Tag Team Championships.

When MJF needed to drop his AEW World Championship because his contract was expiring it was Joe who AEW chose to be new champion.  Since becoming champion Joe has a big target on his back.  He hasn’t been shy about standing out in the middle of the ring and showing he is a fighting champion.

AEW Samoa Joe
Courtesy Of AEW

In the long list of potential challengers for his championship a few names stand out.  A few old names looking for another shot, but some new names as well.  Joe named some of the names he has taken a special interest in and may be his next challenger.

“Kenny Omega, when he’s healthy, and Will Ospreay. Swerve Strickland and Hangman, they’re both waiting for me. The matchups we can do are infinite. The possibilities going into this year are wide and varied, and it’s going to be very fun.

“That’s another first-time, fresh matchup [Kazuchika Okada] you won’t see anywhere else. He can come get it, too. That’s for anyone. If someone feels like they want it, then show up–and we’ll see what you’ve got. But if you come up lame, I will laugh in your face.”

AEW Samoa Joe and Tony Nese
Courtesy Of AEW

Joe is currently waiting patiently as the AEW wrestlers are fighting over who gets a shot at him first.  The two frontrunners are Hangman Page and Swerve Stickland.  Both men came out on this week’s Dynamite to claim their shot.  Joe is just going to wait as AEW figures out who they want to be his next victim.

AEW Logo
Courtesy Of AEW

Do you think Samoa Joe was the right person to take MJF’s championship?  If not Joe, then who should have taken it off his hands?  Would you like to see Joe vs. Page, Strickland or a Triple-Threat match?  If not either of them, then who should be Joe’s first challenger?  Do you feel like Joe elevated NXT and WWE while he was there?  Let us know on social media if you think Joe has elevated AEW in his time with the promotion.

Sources: Wrestling Inc., Sports Illustrated

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Robert Watson

Just a guy reading comics, watching wrestling, and wondering if aliens exist