Jon Moxley – “We Don’t Want To Be Jacksonville Championship Wrestling”

Jon Moxley

Jon Moxley has spoken on the importance of AEW’s roster performing in front of global crowds, noting that the company doesn’t want to be known as Jacksonville Championship Wrestling and saying the UK will be the company’s first stop when they can take their show outside the United States.

Speaking with Inside The Ropes‘ Lead Writer Gary Cassidy, the well-travelled AEW and NJPW star – who is set to release his first book – opened up about All Elite Wrestling’s pre-pandemic touring plans.

“You know, the European fans are a special type of fans and we had plans to do UK tour and a tour of Europe and get over there in 2020 but obviously the pandemic changed that as well as many of the things that. As the world goes back to normal and things logistically become easier as far as travel and doing tours, either domestically or internationally as soon as possible, we’re going to start looking at how we can bring AEW live back to its fans all over the world, man.”

Jon Moxley noted that a United Kingdom tour is high on the list, naming Glasgow, London and Leeds as some of the cities he’d envision a multi-date tour reaching.

“Number one, high on the list, is the UK. We haven’t been able to bring AEW. anywhere internationally, and I think it’s going to… That’s still going to be our first stop, I believe. I can’t put a timetable on it, that’s way above my pay grade, but I would think we would hit multiple cities in the UK – be it Glasgow, London, Leeds or whatever, the many places that have been and many memories I cherish over there in the UK and I will be on that trip 100 percent, so I can’t wait.”

When asked why it’s so important for AEW’s younger roster members who haven’t competed in the UK to make the journey across the pond, Moxley noted variety – pinpointing the “football game atmosphere” that makes UK shows in particular so special.

“I think you get a different personality with different crowds all over the world, obviously fans in New York are different from fans in Tokyo, are different from fans in the UK and, you know, you kind of always have that sort of football game atmosphere over there when you go over to to the UK and European crowds, and they’re just really excited to be there and really kind of appreciative when stars from the United States or around the world come right to their backyard.”

The former AEW World Champion noted the “symbiotic relationship” between performers and British wrestling fans due to the rarity of UK tour.

“You know, when we go to Chicago multiple times a year, those fans get used to seeing us – it’s not as rare a thing – but being is that we don’t get over there as much as I think when you go international like that, fans are really excited that you’re not halfway across the world, you’re right in their backyard and when fans are appreciative to have you there, you’re happy to be there, and it’s this great symbiotic relationship.”

Speaking from an AEW standpoint, Moxley noted how the bang wants to be a “global competitor” – and said they want to be “all over the world” in order to do so – saying they can’t just be Jacksonville Championship Wrestling.

“You get to learn when you wrestle in front of different crowds, and it kind of helps you up your game and give you different looks and helps you grow as a performer and that’s really beneficial, so we definitely want to make AEW not Jacksonville Championship Wrestling, we want this to be a global big competitor brand, so we need to get all over the world and be in front of all these crowds.”

One of the cities Jon Moxley noted as being memorable beforehand, from his time wrestling at WWE Live shows in the SSE Hydro, SECC and Braehead Arena, is Glasgow. Moxley also tried his hand at learning some Scottish insults, before divulging that all of his memories of Scotland have been “overcast and rainy” – but noted the connection with fans he seeks whenever travelling.

“It’s definitely usually overcast and rainy, every memory I have of Scotland. Most of my memories, you know, I’ve got to see so much of the world but I’ve got to see so much of it through bus windows and car windows. Land and go right to signing appearance and then go right to the building and then wrestle and then you’re on to the next one but throughout that whole process, it’s about connecting with the fans, whether that be at an appearance or the arena or whatever and they bring a certain energy. I’m not going to make a trip across the world to go see a bridge or a statue, but to go connect in person and perform and see those fans is the important part – so that the fans are what I remember from everywhere.”

Jon Moxley also opened up about the hardest part of being a wrestler being the travel, and his own journey from watching tapes to being at the summit of the industry. You can read that here.

Thank you so much to Jon Moxley for taking the time to chat, and to AEW and BBC The Social for facilitating the chat.