AEW World Tag Team Champion and Executive Vice President Kenny Omega recently spoke with Sports Illustrated and explained his long-term plan for his character in the company. Omega said he wants to be a force that helps introduce new stars to world, and to magnify the work of those around him.
It was noted how Omega recently defeated indie talent Alan Angels on Dynamite, and how the match was textbook Omega in that he always wants his opponents to shine. That mindset is not on display by Omega because he’s an AEW executive, it’s just his nature and another example of how he’s bringing his own unique psychology to the mainstream world of pro wrestling.
“Not everyone who watches AEW is familiar with my work in Japan,” said Omega. “I’m not sure everyone knows ‘The Best Bout Machine.’ So the question was asked, is the best way to introduce this character by giving him the world right off the bat? Maybe that could have worked. To me, I would rather take more unknown names, guys that don’t have that big reputation yet, and show there is something special about them. I want to be a force to help introduce new stars to the world and magnify the work of those around me.”
It was noted that Omega’s current goal is to show different sides of his personality, and to continue to spark interest in fans, keeping them tuned in each week. Omega also talked about how it doesn’t matter that he’s not in the main event picture right now.
“One of the last things I said when I was leaving New Japan after my match with Tanahashi was to Will Ospreay,” Omega said. “I told him there is no one with a larger tool box and set of tools than him, and it was just a matter of getting his s— together and figuring out how to use those tools properly instead of just doing s— just to show people you can. And to his credit, Will’s figured it out. He’s regarded by a large chunk of people as the best in the world. But the thing is, as soon as you’re injured or people decide you’re not the best in the world, then what? How do you keep that passionate fan base with you?
“For me, through the way I tell my stories and the way I value my fans from around the world, who mean the world to me, people have stuck with me even though I’m not in the main event picture. And it doesn’t matter if I’m not in the main event picture, I am performing my ass off to deliver main event level performances. I understand that you can’t just be a dude that has long singles matches with the same people over and over. You have to challenge yourself in all match types, including TV matches. Guys that think they’re great in the Wild West where they can do whatever the fuck they want, sure, they’re great. Not to sound egotistical, but putting on great matches, that’s the easiest part for me. Try to do it when you have to hit a hard eight minutes, and still blow the fans’ socks off.”
Omega said he wants to be a true “best in the world” performer. Challenging himself to become that multi-faceted performer is Omega’s top priority these days.
“I want to be a true, all-around, real ‘best in the world’ performer,” he said. “That means singles matches, tag matches, mixed tags, battle royals, you have to be able to do it all. With AEW, I’ve been allowed the creative freedom to develop myself as more of an all-around performer.
“I had incredible chemistry tagging with Ibushi. I asked myself, can I do it again with Hangman? I believe I can. Can I do mixed tags with Riho? How about a hardcore death match with Mox? That’s the type of wrestler I want to be. And no, people have not got my absolutely strong suit yet, my forte, the main-event style singles match. It’s not that I’ve lost it, it’s that I am building a tool chest from the ground up for a new audience. I want to do the hard work, setting the table for everyone to accept new faces.”
Omega said he will soon remind fans why he’s the best in the world. He is a confident performer who truly believes is his work, and it was noted that he knows no one can capture fan’s attention like he can, whether he’s going up against an opponent like Angels, or if he’s headlining a pay-per-view.
“When it’s time, which is sooner than people think, I’ll remind people why I’m the best in the world,” Omega said. “And it’s coming. It’s not a matter of if it’s going to happen, it’s just a matter of when.”