Former AEW Star Reveals Company’s Gigantic Wage Bill

AEW logo and roster graphic

The incredible size of AEW’s roster has been a topic of conversation for years, but a little less is known about how much those stars are being paid.

However, former AEW star Joey Janela has now given an insight into how much stars who aren’t even on television are earning. Janela signed with the company in 2019 but had been related to appearances on AEW: Dark by the time he left in May 2022.

Speaking on Keepin It 100 with Konnan and Disco Inferno, Janela said that he believes AEW has too much talent to use properly across Dynamite and Rampage. The former AEW star also claimed that every wrestler with the company is being paid at least six figures, with those at the top being paid millions.

“Some people are just happy to be there and part of something. My thought on it was always, Tony Khan, he’s trying every week to do a little mini-pay-per-view. Back in the day with Nitro, they had it right. You’d have great matches in under six minutes. He has two hours to pull off a TV show and he has a lot of people, a lot of pieces to that puzzle and a lot of guys that he has to try to satisfy and he’s booking 30 minute matches every week.

You do a 30 minute match and a 20 minute talk segment, what else is left? Other people have to go to Dark and they’re wrestling twice a month in Universal Studios in front of a lukewarm crowd and they have some Florida jabroni for three minutes.

That’s why wrestlers are regressing in ability because they don’t care, they’re getting paid, they don’t want to go hustle. A lot of guys don’t want to go back to the Indies. You have that choice in AEW to go wrestle on the Indies. All those guys are getting paid six figures. Bottom card to top of the card. Top of the card, seven figures. T

he whole company is getting paid six figures. Unless the pay scale has changed. Of course, there was some kind of tiered deal where you’re paid by appearance when they’re just kind of feeling someone or testing them out. Some people, they don’t want to go back on the Indies. You make more on the Indies.”

Continuing on, Janela broke down how his own performances suffered due to a lack of matches during the ‘COVID era.’

“I saw it myself during COVID because there weren’t Indies running. I would get in the ring, wrestle a couple of times a month in these four minute matches, and I saw my talent regress. I needed that oil. That’s why I was botching left and right. That whole 2020 year wasn’t good for me because these guys have to wrestle. It’s not like WWE. If you’re not on TV, you don’t have to come. You can sit home and jerk your cock to whatever.”

AEW Recently Announced A Brand New Show

On the February 22nd episode of Dynamite, it was announced that a new reality show titled AEW All Access is on the way. The new series which will premiere in March will give a look behind the curtain at All Elite Wrestling and some of the company’s biggest stars including, Dr. Britt Baker, Sammy Guevara, Tay Conti, The Young Bucks, Saraya, Wardlow, Eddie Kingston, and Tony Khan.

H/t to Fightful