Tony Khan stands by his decision to hire Jade Cargill despite the TBS Champion not having much wrestling experience before becoming All Elite.
During a recent appearance on the Swerve City Podcast, AEW President Tony Khan spoke to Swerve Strickland about what he looks for when signing talent to AEW. He specifically called out former NBA star Satnam Singh and current AEW TBS Champion Jade Cargill as being impressive athletes who were fantastic athletes and worth hiring despite their lack of experience in professional wrestling.
“Well, there’s a lot of things. First of all, when you look at their body of work coming in, sometimes you get athletes, like Satnam Singh is a great example or Jade Cargill, where they didn’t have prior experience in pro wrestling, but they were great athletes, actually both of them played basketball at a high level. I thought they were worth a gamble.”
Tony Khan continued, noting that Singh and Cargill were exceptions rather than the rule when it comes to his hiring practices, because in contrast to the WWE Performance Center model, he’s not interested in training wrestlers from scratch.
“We typically don’t take people in who don’t have a lot of prior wrestling experience. We don’t train wrestlers from scratch here. It’s a different business model. There are a lot of great people, but for us, we kind of pick our spots when it comes to that thing, because we’re not as much about centralized training all week long.
“We come together like locusts in a different city every week and then we go our separate ways. I think for us, having a lot of prior wrestling experience is really important.”
Prior to joining AEW, Cargill tried out for WWE at the Performance Center in 2019. Her former trainer, Mark Henry, was influential in getting the tryout to happen and whilst it resulted in Cargill being offered a contract, Cargill turned down a ‘100 page contract’ and joined AEW instead.
Jade Cargill made her AEW debut in November of 2020 and became the inaugural TBS Champion when she defeated Ruby Soho in the finals of a tournament.
h/t Ringside News