By David Joaqui,
It’s been a few days after Wrestle Kingdom 13 and Kenny Omega is no longer the IWGP Heavyweight Champion. After a brilliant year by the “Best Bout Machine” his contract is up at the end of January with New Japan Pro-Wrestling, making him the biggest free agent in wrestling. Will he resign with New Japan? Will he sign with WWE? Or will he join his fellow Elite members and join All Elite Wrestling?
Omega stated after his loss at Wrestle Kingdom that he could not work underneath, now IWGP Heavyweight Champion, Hiroshi Tanahashi. This narrative seems very story driven. Although Omega did say he needed his time away, this could build to a long term story-line between the two. Which wouldn’t be any different from Omega’s build up with Okada from last year.
On the other hand we have WWE, that has reportedly made a “fantastic offer” to Omega. He’s said before how he would love to work with guys like Seth Rollins and AJ Styles while he could still move. And feels that it might be a missed opportunity if he never ends up in WWE.
And finally we have the newly announced All Elite Wrestling, run by the Young Bucks & Cody. After the hype from its initial announcement on the Being the Elite YouTube channel and Double or Nothing Rally in Jacksonville, this seems like the ideal fit for Omega. Not only would he be “changing the world” by joining AEW, but he’d be doing it with his closest friends in the business.
This next month for Omega is going to be very Lebron-like. Rumors circulating, media trying to get an idea of where his head is at, and so much speculating that it will drive the wrestling community into a frenzy. I don’t think Omega goes back to New Japan. I feel like he’s accomplished everything he could there and it’s time to professionally move on. The question now is what will he chase. The money or his friends? Cody said that AEW will be paying its performers generously, so that might pull Omega towards them. But no matter what that offer is, WWE can probably match it and possibly double it.
When I think of Omega’s pending decision I think of something Scott Hall once said, “In this business, you can make friends or you can make money. And I remember looking at Kev and X-Pac and going, ‘I already got some friends. I’d like the money.'”With that said there’s only one place I think Omega goes to and it’s to the place that will benefit him most financially and professionally…WWE.