While Sting’s move and subsequent appearances with AEW may have set the imagination of wrestling fans racing, the same man has been front and centre with the master of the Scorpion Deathlock every step of the way, and that man is Darby Allin.
The current AEW TNT Champion overcame Brian Cage in a brutal contest on Night 2 of AEW Dynamite New Years Smash with a little assist from Sting, and will now join forces with the WWE Hall Of Famer as he returns to active competition for the first time since 2015.
However, what marks Allin out from the likes of Sting, Chris Jericho, Kenny Omega and Jon Moxley, is that he made his name in AEW. As a result, he has become something of a major success story for the company, becoming their first homegrown champion when he defeated Cody Rhodes for the AEW TNT Championship at Full Gear in November 2020.
Speaking to the Total Slam podcast, Darby Allin described that feat as “amazing” and feels that he is the poster child for creative freedom.
“It feels amazing… When i set foot in AEW, and i saw what they had to offer, in my mind, i felt like i was the poster child of creative freedom. Of being somebody that ‘oh you’re going to let me have creative control, freedom’ i’m going to show you everything i can do, that i wouldn’t be able to do elsewhere. I feel like they realised that, gave me the opportunity with all of the videos, and even how i put my matches together, i have a lot of freedom with things. It feels really good, feels really good, and it feels like i definitely belong in that spot.”
Allin was then asked about whether he saw his time limit draw against Cody Rhodes at Fyter Fest in 2018 as a career making match, before explaining that he felt he wasn’t being taken as seriously on the indies as he should have been.
“Oh absolutely. I went into that match 100% with that mindset. I was so pissed off, and bitter and jaded about my independent run. On the independents i was, i’m going to say like, second match, card guy, i’d always wrestle the second match, and i always felt like, i would always see these ‘main eventers’ on the independents and in my mind i was like, there’s no reason i shouldn’t be up here, i’m just not being taken seriously like i want to be taken. So give me the opportunity against Cody like we did at Fyter Fest, and i’m going to show everybody just like i showed them last night [against Brian Cage on Dynamite] that if you give me that ball, you’re never going to get it back.”
During the conversation Allin also discussed his future in AEW, his relationship with Cody and working with Sting amongst a whole range of other topics.
Darby Allin will team with Sting at AEW Revolution against Team Taz members Brian Cage and Ricky Starks.
You can watch the full episode of Total Slam here.
AEW Revolution takes place on February 27th via Fite TV. Tune in to AEW DYNAMITE on TNT or Fite TV next week to see the fallout from the announcement of Sting’s first match since 2015.