When Eddie Kingston made his debut in AEW and challenged Cody Rhodes for the TNT Championship in July, “The Last of a Dying Breed” filled the pro wrestling fandom with ablaze of excitement after his appearance. Fans who followed his career over the years wanted him there, and newer fans wanted to see more of him. It was the AEW officials’ call on whether or not the indie sensation would join the roster. On July 31, Kingston was “All In,” which jumpstarted a new era in the company.
But before he officially decided to join AEW, he had a lot of thinking to do, especially since WWE was trying to sign him as well. In his interview with Renée Paquette on Oral Sessions, Kingston explained in great detail who it was that helped him make the rational decision to join WWE’s biggest competitor in North America.
“Well, actually, I talked to Christopher Daniels,” Eddie Kingston mentioned. “So, they offered me the deal. I listened to the other side [WWE], I guess as you call them, and I was waning [my] options. But my mother was the final nail. She goes, ‘You won’t be happy over there. Trust me.’ The bottom line of the whole thing is: I know more people in AEW. And I know there’s a lot of heart there. I think for her, that’s what she thought. She thought I was going to be around people who love it just as much as I do.”
Looking at the grand scheme of things, Kingston would like to see himself as the top guy in AEW. Although fans would argue that he’s already there, he would like to continue to prove himself through his rankings this year.
“Professionally, I want to be the top guy. There’s no other spot anyone should want the most than that,” he declared. “I want to entertain and tell good stories and all of that. Speaking of fighting, I want to get at least two more Muay Thai fights in. I already have two amateur fights in.”
Once it’s safe to travel again, Kingston told Renee he still has a lot to accomplish before he hangs up his boots. One of those things he’d like to check off his bucket list is to travel to Japan and compete against the grandest names in New Japan and All Japan Pro Wrestling.
“Of course, New Japan. There are certain guys I would like to get in there with,” he began. “Tanahashi is number one.’Stone Cold’ Steve Austin is my favorite American wrestler. So, to me, Tanahashi is ‘Stone Cold Steve Austin’ of New Japan. He saved that company.
“I want to step into an All Japan Pro Wrestling ring because I loved All Japan Pro Wrestling in the ’90s with the Four Pillars, Misawa, Taue, Kawada, and my personal favorite of all time, Kenta Kobashi. But I need this. It’s not even a want. I need me vs. Jun Akiyama. That would be the cap on everything.”
When asked who and where would be the perfect scenario for him to win the AEW World Championship, Kingston replies with a subtle yet “Match of the Year” worthy idea.
“It has to be Jon [Moxley], he quickly replied. “It has to be Jon, and it has to be in New York at Madison Square Garden. You talk about perfect; that’s what it is. Realistically, me and Jon at the Hammerstein Ballroom.”
Just as fans were ready to close the hard-hitting chapter on what was 2020, the wrestling community found itself in another tragic position when the passing of Brodie Lee was announced. With many different promotions coming together to pay homage to the former TNT Champion, AEW put together a Celebration of Life episode to honor Brodie Lee and his family. A week later, Being The Elite put out a video, which showed Kingston delivering a powerful, yet tear-jerker speech to commemorate Lee’s presence in the industry.
Kingston admits that when he gave the speech, he wasn’t sure it would go anywhere. But after seeing it in its entirety, he was glad to be the man to do it.
“Homicide makes fun of me now and says, ‘Ah, so you’re the locker room leader now?’ I told him, ‘Leave me alone,'” he joked. “What was weird was that I had this overwhelming feeling of energy after the show was over. I was like, ‘No, no, no. I need people to understand why I’m getting this energy.’ I started yelling ’cause I was like, why can’t we do this every week? Why does it take one of our fallen brothers to pass away for us to be this emotional in the ring and to bring it out in the ring so the people can feel us?
“And then, I’m going on and on, and I’m like,’ Oh man, this is really embarrassing; people are looking at me. What the f–k is going on?’ And then, you can see the camera, and then you can see me actually see the camera, look at it, and go, ‘Ok, we have a camera,’ and I run away as fast as I can because it’s not about that. I get why they put it up. It was cool. I’ve done a lot of bad in my past that I don’t think me doing this stuff now is like, ‘Oh, look at me. I’m a good boy. I’m a good guy.’ I could give a f–k less. As long as my family knows I’m good, then that’s all I care about.”
You can listen to Eddie Kingston’s full interview here. If you use any of the quotes in this article, please credit Oral Sessions w/Renée Paquette with a h/t to Wrestling Inc. for the transcription.