Tony Khan Bashes WWE's Underhanded Business Practices

Posted By James Walsh on 06/09/24

On a recent episode of Wrestling Observer Radio, Dave Meltzer reviewed the weekend ratings for WWE and AEW. During the discussion, Meltzer brought up the low ratings for AEW Collision on Saturday, suggesting that WWE is behind releasing AEW ratings whenever Collision does poorly.

"On Sunday, I started getting texts from people who were just like 'did they really only do 222,000 viewers and a 34,000 18-49 for Collision.' This was a number supplied by WWE and for those of you who feel like WWE isn’t concerned about AEW or it’s a one-sided thing. AEW is in a war with WWE and it’s a pro wrestling war, ok? These pro wrestling wars are insidious, they are brutal."

"They’re both in a public relations war... one side obviously is far more effective as far as getting news out there and controlling the media... a lot of the media... because they’re afraid of not having access or whatever they’re afraid of. But anyway, WWE, obviously whenever AEW has a badly rated show, WWE makes sure that the fast nationals get out."

"Now in this case, I don’t know how that number got out because that was not the fast nationals number for Collision, ok? Again, the fast nationals are not exact but they’re not far off. So there's no way that the fast national numbers, especially because it was a show that was in its regular time and it was a staggered feed."

Meltzer noted that the original figure that was "leaked" was not accurate and instead he reported what he said was the correct audience, which led to people calling him out on X. Meltzer doubled down, which perhaps predictably brought out AEW CEO Tony Khan, who took the opportunity to indirectly accuse WWE of "predatory business practices" that he feels he and others have faced over the years.

"Sorry, but the ratings I listed were accurate. The others were not. They were supplied by WWE to the reporter. Sorry for people mad because everything I stated was correct, and this is not a new story. It's a story that dates back many years and has been talked about and…"