Chris Jericho believes that others in All Elite Wrestling might not realize how special the fans are in Winnipeg to perform in front of.
Former Ring of Honor World Champion Chris Jericho recently sat down with Andrew Paterson of Winnipeg Sports Talk to discuss a wide variety of subjects. When asked about All Elite Wrestling heading to Winnipeg in March, Jericho said he believes the company probably wouldn’t exist if not for Winnipeg.
“Yeah, we’re excited, man. It’s gonna be a great night, and I’m really, really kind of pleasantly surprised, if that’s the right word, that our second-ever Canadian show is Winnipeg,” Chris Jericho said. “I can’t think of a better city to be coming to than Winnipeg; it’s such a great wrestling town. It’s such a great Chris Jericho town.
“And quite frankly, if it wasn’t for Winnipeg, there might not be an AEW because the whole company was kind of kick-started on the headlining match that Kenny Omega and I had at the Tokyo Dome in 2018. That was facilitated by Don Callis. So three Winnipeggers putting together this kind of dream match, which is where Tony Khan got the idea that you could do some good business in the States with a new wrestling company. So that’s kind of where it all started. So it’s very much poetic justice for us to be coming to Winnipeg so early on in our tenure with AEW.”
When asked how long it’s been in the works for All Elite Wrestling to head to Winnipeg, Jericho admits he doesn’t have anything to do with booking the towns, so the announcement came as a surprise to him.
“Well, I mean, I have a lot of influence and a lot of say in AEW, but I don’t have anything to do with the booking of the towns,” Chris Jericho said. “So I was surprised when I was told, and I was like, man, this is gonna be great. It wasn’t like I was consulted about it or anything like that. So anytime you can go to a hotbed of a wrestling city like Winnipeg, whether I was from Winnipeg or not, it’s a bonus.
“But the fact that it’s my hometown makes it even more special. But you know, life on the road, we’ll probably come into town on Monday and be gone on Wednesday. Ships passing in the night, but that’s okay. The show is the most important thing, and it’s gonna be a party. I think anybody that watches AEW can see that and sees the vibe of our show. How crazy the crowds get and how much fun the crowds have. I mean, we were in Dallas last Wednesday, one of the loudest crowds I have ever been in front of in my entire career. So I’m expecting Winnipeg to mimic that.”
#AEW is coming to the home of @TheDonCallis, and the God of Pro-Wrestling, @KennyOmegaManX: Winnipeg, MB on March 14 for a Tuesday Night Special #AEWDynamite LIVE & #AEWRampage at the @CanadaLifeCtr!
?️ Get your tickets NOW! https://t.co/rFcIFV7dXS | https://t.co/ODbXafrOoE pic.twitter.com/aPcNwPPGyJ
— All Elite Wrestling (@AEW) December 23, 2022
Jericho went on to speak about how special of a wrestling city Winnipeg is, and he believes their wrestling tradition trumps everywhere else.
“Well, Winnipeg’s always been a wrestling city. I think it’s one of the reasons why I fell in love with the wrestling so early on with the AWA coming to town so much,” Chris Jericho said. “And then WWF kind of taking that over, and even when I started wrestling in Winnipeg, myself with WWE, you could always go there.
“I think one of the last matches that I had there was against Jon Moxley, and I was a really hated bad guy. And he was a really adored good guy. But the moment I walked out there, I mean, obviously, I’m the hero of the city. So we switched it on the fly; we switched roles. So I think Winnipeg is just one of those cities. I don’t know what it is. It’s like Milwaukee or Chicago or Detroit or Dallas, just kind of rich in wrestling tradition.
“And people talk about Calgary being a great wrestling city, Winnipeg blows Calgary out of the water, and I would say you take our four best pro wrestlers from Winnipeg, Kenny, Don, Jericho, and Roddy Piper, and I think our four best beats any four best from any other city including Calgary, take Owen and Bret Hart out of the equation and Calgary kind of falls by the wayside. Winnipeg has the best wrestlers, Winnipeg has the best fans, and Winnipeg is probably the best wrestling city.
“So that’s why I think it’s really exciting, and I don’t think people realize within the company just how great Winnipeg is going to be, and I think once we go there, the heads of state at AEW are gonna go holy smokes, this city is awesome. We need to come here once a year or whatever it may be. So to me, it’s kind of like this hidden gem on the wrestling calendar.
“Of course, you’ve been to Chicago, a bunch of times. It’s always great. And same with those other cities I mentioned. You ain’t seen nothing til you come to Winnipeg, man. And I know this, and like I said, I don’t think a lot of other people realize it. To them, it might be just another show on the calendar. But when they get there, It’s going to be a different story.”
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What do you make of Chris Jericho’s comments? Are you excited about all the new cities that All Elite Wrestling is heading to in 2023? Let us know your thoughts by sounding off in the comments section below.
If you use any of the quotes above, please credit Winnipeg Sports Talk with a link back to this article for the transcription.