Arn Anderson On AEW Being Called An ‘Alternative’ To WWE, Taking Time To Thank The Fans

Photo Credit: Bill Pritchard

Arn Anderson spoke with the media following his ‘Arn’ panel at Starrcast, and the wrestling legend was asked about All Elite Wrestling being marketed or labeled as an alternative to WWE, citing his employment with WWE for the past several years. Anderson believes being an alternative is the only way to go to make AEW stand out, and says there’s a lot of new faces on the roster that should excite people.

“I think the alternative is the only way to go. Don’t copy anything those guys do, be your own product,” Anderson said. “They have a really fresh approach right now. They’ve got a cast of characters—I don’t really know a lot of those guys. I’ve never seen a lot of those guys, but if they were hand-picked, they’ve got to have some talent. And for me being on the inside, anticipating I’m going, ‘These guys got to have something to be on that initial first roster. They had to be hand-picked.’ So that alone gets me excited, and that alone should get the audience excited. Nothing better than seeing a guy you’ve never seen before and going ‘Jesus Christ, where’s that guy been?’ It’s been a while since that’s happened.”

Throughout the weekend, Anderson said he was taking some time off to spend time with his family, but also to do the convention circuit and see fans. He says he’d be open to taking on a mentor role or something less formal than a full-time producer, but right now he wants to give back to the fans that made his career.

“Not to say on a part-time basis if the schedule was relaxed enough, I wouldn’t say I couldn’t still do a producer job, sure. I just need some time to recharge, relax, let my head clear because guys doing as much TV as I’ve done in the last 18 years, you can only come up with so many ideas. You can only come up with even fewer great ideas,” Anderson said. “The fact is it’s a lot of television. I think I could still contribute to the business in some fashion. What that is, I’m not quite sure. Right now I want to spend some time to thank the fans, which I’ve never had an opportunity to do. They followed me my whole career, they made my career possible and I was never in a position to just say ‘hey guys, I’m here for you. What do you want to talk about? Thank you for allowing me to do what I wanted to do my entire life being in the wrestling industry.’”

Related: Arn Anderson On Wins And Momentum Mattering In Wrestling, A Revived Emphasis On Tag Team Wrestling