Kenny Omega: AEW Was ‘Meant For’ Hangman Page, We Always Knew He Would Be ‘Elite’
Photo Credit: All Elite Wrestling
When Kenny Omega defends his AEW World Championship against Hangman Page at AEW Full Gear on November 13, it will arguably the biggest match in the promotion’s relatively short history. Page and Omega were once friends and partners, but they have become bitter rivals over the course of the last year-plus. The bout is widely expected to be Hangman’s crowning moment, but no matter what happens, Full Gear will likely cement his status as a top star one way or another.
In an interview with Justin Barrasso of Sports Illustrated, Omega described how he knew Page was special, even before the latter joined Bullet Club, because he had plenty of “raw talent.” To the reigning AEW World Champion, these skills, paired with his genuine personality, made it clear that AEW was “meant for” Hangman.
“If there is one area where the Bucks and I have really honed in, it’s realizing the types of people that have potential for greatness in professional wrestling,” said Omega. “This industry has no set of rules or a template for what creates a star. All you need is that raw talent, and it was clear Hangman had that.
“Hangman had a never-say-die attitude, incredible athleticism and a very clean slate in terms of major injuries. He had this southern cowboy-ish nature, and a personality behind the scenes—one that people now see on camera—of a very lovable human being. We knew this guy was going to be an elite performer. And once AEW came along, we knew this company was meant for him.”
The heated long-term rivalry between Omega and Page is the talk of the town heading into the pay-per-view on Saturday, and “The Best Bout Machine” emphasized the personal nature of this storyline. Rather than writing out the segments, Omega stated that, for the most part, they’re basing the program off of “real-life emotion.”
“Both of us have put a lot of heart and soul into this,” Omega said. “We haven’t been handed scripts or sat in production meetings to build this story. A lot of this comes from reality. Maybe we’ve sensationalized some of the details, but there is a lot of truth to the story we’re telling. There is real-life emotion attached to this clash.”
With the feud set to culminate at AEW Full Gear, it’s fair to wonder where this storyline will fall on Omega’s all-time list. He’s had remarkable rivalries with Kazuchika Okada, Koti Ibushi, and Jon Moxley, among others. As a result, Omega expressed his hope that this program will rank among these other storylines after the pay-per-view.
“Can I hang the ‘Hangman’ story on the mantle alongside the Okada story, the [Kota] Ibushi story, the Moxley story, The Elite story and the Bullet Club Civil War? Will the ‘Hangman’ story belong there? My hope is that it will,” said Omega.
Fans will just have to wait a little bit longer to see how it all unfolds on Saturday night.