AEW News

AEW To Honour Owen Hart With Annual Tournament

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AEW has today announced a partnership which will see the company honour the late Owen Hart with a new tournament, as well as potential merchandise, gaming involvement and even action figures possible for the Canadian fan-favourite who tragically passed away over 20 years ago.

All Elite Wrestling confirmed a partnership with The Owen Hart Foundation via press release, with the main on-screen implication being an annual Owen Hart Cup Tournament within AEW where the winner wins a cup called The Owen – honouring a man rarely seen without iconic trophies in his hands. The deal also includes merchandise/video game involvement.

The press release goes on to say that the alliance “incorporates opportunities to develop Owen Hart action figures” via AEW’s partnership with Jazwares, apparel, posters, and additional collectable merchandise.

“All Elite Wrestling (AEW) and The Owen Hart Foundation (OHF), a nonprofit charity which provides a vast range of assistance and opportunities to individuals in-
need across the world, are collaborating to honor the legacy of late wrestler Owen Hart, a beloved figure in the professional wrestling community and beyond. This collaboration includes launching the annual Owen Hart Cup Tournament within AEW, which will see the winner receive a Cup known as “The Owen,” as well as the production and distribution of unique and original Owen Hart merchandise, including specified retail goods as well as the upcoming AEW console video game.”

For those unfamiliar with the story of the legendary Owen Hart, the former Intercontinental Champion’s life tragically ended following an incident which happened mid-show at WWE, then WWF, Over The Edge ’99. Hart was preparing to challenge The Godfather as the affable Blue Blazer when he fell to his death. Blue Blazer became somewhat of a parody superhero and the use of a “quick release” system saw Hart adopt a new entrance where he used a grapple line from the rafters, only to become entangled and set himself free to fall to the ring from a short height. Sadly, at Over The Edge, the stunt went wrong and Owen Hart fell from around 78 feet above the ring. While the show controversially continued, Hart died of his injuries that night at the age of 34 years old.

Hart is regarded as one of the greatest wrestlers to never hold a world championship but held many titles throughout his career – including the Intercontinental Championship on two occasions, the European Championship once, and the Tag Team Championships on several occasions. More fittingly, though, is that the Owen Hart Cup Tournament showcases one of Hart’s greatest accolades. A tournament specialist, The King of Harts won three knockout tournaments, including the 1994 King of the Ring.

The press release from AEW goes on to outline the impact of Hart’s legacy, which continues not only from his legendary reputation and WWE’s Kevin Owens adopting his name – for both his own ring name and his son’s name – but also via The Owen Hart Foundation. Hart is survived by his wife, who spearheads the non-profit organisation and provides global aid to at-risk communities in the form of scholarships, housing, various forms international assistance, food drives, backpack giveaways and Christmas projects.
AEW CEO Tony Khan said of the partnership:
“AEW’s relationship with the Hart family dates back to our inaugural pay-per-view event, Double or Nothing in 2019, and Owen’s influence is still felt today. To extend his memory and his legacy even further through this agreement is a powerful and meaningful moment for the entire wrestling community.”
Martha Hart is also quoted in the release:
“The Owen Hart Foundation is extremely pleased to partner with AEW in this wonderful joint venture to honor Owen’s substantial international wrestling career and the lasting influence he and his craft has had in the sport. AEW’s Owen Hart Cup Tournament serves as a tremendous tribute to Owen and provides an incredible way for professional wrestling enthusiasts to celebrate his work in a most fitting way. We trust that Tony Khan and his amazing AEW team will do a brilliant job with this highly anticipated project. This OHF/AEW partnership is my special gift to all of Owen’s magnificent loyal fans who forever remember him and his inspiring repertoire of talents.”

For more information on The Owen Hart Foundation, click here.