AEW President Tony Khan was asked about the possibility of AEW programming moving to FOX during a media call to promote the 2023 AEW WrestleDream PPV event.
Khan’s response was as follows:
“I don’t think it would be fair to talk about possible bidders or outright speculation. Right now, we’re on Warner Brothers Discovery and I find that in the entertainment business, there is not a lot of loyalty at times, and there should be. This is a family business, we’re not a public company. Even if I get punched in the face with circumstances, it doesn’t mean that I’m going to take it out on staff by cutting 100 staff or laying off 30 wrestlers. I really care about the people here and I would do anything I can to protect the jobs and livelihood of the people who work here. That’s a family business, and that’s the difference between a family business and a public company in a lot of ways. Not every family business has those principles, but we do, and that’s how I was raised. I feel there is not enough loyalty in the entertainment business. Yes, it’s no secret, and it is a business. We’ll be up at the end of 2024 and I would love to stay at Warner Brothers Discovery forever.”
“It’s great for the fans to have wrestling on TBS and TNT. I do think there will be a lot of potential bidders. [FOX] would make a lot of sense in the future, but I don’t think it’s right for me to speculate right now because I’m at Warner Brothers Discovery, I love it here, and we’re going to be here for a while, and hopefully a really long time. They have given us these great opportunities. I see it all the time, and sometimes I’m on the other side of it as the promoter, on the other side of the negotiating table, and I really appreciate everything they’ve done for me and it would not be right to speculation on other networks or people in the wrestling business. I have a great relationship with the people you named [Fox] because we worked together on the NFL and that’s a great place for sports and wrestling, but I’m really happy at Warner Brothers Discovery and my goal, all things being equal, would be to keep AEW here forever at WBD. Mr. Zaslav [WBD CEO David Zaslav] has been really kind to me and given me great opportunities and all things being equal or even a couple cents difference, I would take a penny or two less to stay at Warner Brothers Discovery. You don’t see that in media businesses very much, that kind of loyalty. I really appreciate everything they’ve done for me and continue to do.”
(h/t to Jeremy Lambert for the transcription)