WWE Hall of Famer feels that established stars appearing on AEW Dark is a demotion

Apr 24, 2022 - by James Walsh

This past week, Matt Hardy responded to a fan in regards to him and brother Jeff competing on an episode of AEW Dark: Elevation. Matt shot down the idea that him and his brother were being “demoted” by appearing on Dark.

During his podcast, Booker T was asked about if established stars such as Jeff Hardy and Paul Wight appearing on AEW Dark could be seen as a demotion…

“Hell yeah, it’s a demotion. I know that’s going to get picked up, but hell yeah it’s a demotion. Damnit, I’m not working on Dark. For me, working on Dark, which is a show that is only on the internet should be for the young guys coming up. I didn’t come from the big show, no pun intended, which I am talking about WWE, I didn’t come from WWE to come to AEW to work Dark. I don’t even know what Dark is, I don’t know who’s on it, I don’t know when it’s aired or anything like that. So, for me to be on Dark, it would make me feel a certain way, me personally.”

“If Vince [McMahon] came to me and said, ‘hey Book, I need you to work the Velocity show, we need to bump the ratings on that show, we need some star power on it, do you think you can do it?’ What do you think I am going to say? I am going to say, ‘yeah.’ But my boss, he respected me enough not to put me on those shows. He respected me enough as far as to keep my star power at a certain position. He kept me working around the main event guys. If I wasn’t with the main event guys I was doing something.”

quotes credit: WrestlingInc.com

4 Responses

  1. Kyle Christie says:

    I agree with Booker here. Dark is just enhancement matches. All the younger guys getting more experience with more established stars. If they have all the top names at Dynamite each week, why not use them for Rampage? Beef that show up a bit as the ratings are not the best. I remember Big Show signing with AEW and I was shocked as hell but they’ve done nothing with him of importance. Apparently he does commentary on Dark and occasionally wrestles there too. I sure hope he is helping the talent backstage with training, promos etc as I would imagine his salary is not cheap.

  2. What? says:

    The “beefing up” that’s happening on Dark and Elevation is for AEW’s at-best-semi-serious “rankings” system. The established stars can’t rack up impressive win-loss records if they’re always facing each other on Dynamite and Rampage, so they get their easy wins on Youtube, and if nothing else the up-and-comers get more hands-on experience with people who could teach them something in the process. Whether all that makes it worth it to have your top guys on the internet version of a house show is another argument, but I have to imagine that’s the reason for it.

    On the other hand, Kyle is absolutely right about Big Show. Sure, it’s great that he’s there to teach the new talent, but you’d think they could toss him a Dynamite-sized bone every once in a while like WWE did every year or two when they remembered he existed and gave him a mini-program. (Hopefully more often than that, but you get the point.) Of course, that assumes that the reason isn’t that his body just can’t take even a semi-regular wrestling schedule anymore, which is well within the realm of possibility, but even then they could use him in other ways.

  3. Disgruntled Jobber says:

    Booker needs surgery to get his head removed from his ass. You need established stars working the so-called “B level” shows. No one is watching Dark to see Arn’s kid wrestle. Put the Hardy’s against local talent? You’ll get eyes on the product. Having the younger local talent against the established talent helps them in their knowledge. Builds for the future.
    And I’ll call BS on Booker being willing to work Velocity when it was around. I just get the feeling he believes anything below the “A-Show” is beneath him to work.

  4. Rob Dam Van! Shirt Typo! says:

    @Disgruntled wasn’t Booker’s main home the B show for his WWE run?

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