AEW star and Director of Business Development Jeff Jarrett has addressed Tony Khan’s handling of the recent situation involving CM Punk.
On Saturday, September 2, AEW and Tony Khan announced that Punk had been fired from the company “for cause”.
The initial statement from AEW was as follows:
All Elite Wrestling (AEW) has terminated the wrestler and employment agreements between Phillip Brooks (CM Punk) and AEW with cause, effective immediately.
The termination was confirmed today by Tony Khan, CEO General Manager and Head of Creative of AEW.
The termination follows a weeklong internal investigation of an incident occurring back stage at AEW – All In in London on Sunday, August 27.
Following the investigation, the AEW Discipline Committee met and later convened with outside legal counsel before making a unanimous decision to Khan that CM Punk be terminated with cause.
Khan offered the following statement:
“Phil played an important role within AEW and I thank him for his contributions.
“The termination of his AEW contracts with cause is ultimately my decision, and mine alone.
“Of course, I wish I didn’t have to share this news, which may come as a disappointment to many of our fans.
“Nevertheless, I am making the decision in the best interests of the many amazing people who make AEW possible every week – our talent, staff, venue operators and many others whose efforts are unsung but essential to bringing our fans great shows on television at at arenas and stadiums throughout the world.”
Later the same day, Khan followed up by addressing the situation on TV on AEW Collision, saying:
“Today I had to make one of the toughest decisions of my professional career. Today I terminated Phil Brooks, CM Punk, for cause.
“This stems from a backstage incident at AEW All In last Sunday. The incident was regrettable, and it endangered people backstage. That includes the production staff, the people who help put the show on every week, innocent people who had nothing to do with it.
“I’ve been going to wrestling shows for over 30 years. I’ve been producing them on this network for nearly four years.
“Never, in all that time, have I ever felt, until last Sunday, that my security, my safety, my life, was in danger at a wrestling show.
“I don’t think anybody should feel that way at work, I don’t think the people I work with should feel that way, and I had to make a very difficult choice today.
“It came at the recommendation of a Discipline Committee here in AEW, as well as outside legal counsel, who delivered a unanimous recommendation, and I have followed up on that recommendation.
“I’m sorry to any fans who are upset by this. I’m sorry to anyone who’s upset by this.
“Despite that, we’re gonna have a great show tonight at Collision, and we’re gonna have a great All Out pay-per-view tomorrow here in Chicago.
“Last weekend was the greatest weekend in AEW history, this is the greatest week in AEW history, we’re gonna continue the great momentum here on Collision and tomorrow night on All Out pay-per-view.”
In response to how Khan handled the situation, Jarrett spoke on his My World podcast, saying:
“There were three things done. The social media audience – the discussion in the United Center – the television audience, and the live audience. All of them were addressed head on.
“When I read that release, it was as clear as a legal situation could possibly be.
“I believe my old man (Jerry Jarrett) would have been aligned with it because, get in front of it.
“That’s a hard pill to swallow. The easy one would have been ‘wait until Monday.’
“There are multiple things you could have done. A reconciliation, a cooling off period. We can talk about it ad nauseam, and it has been talked about over and over for months.
“Getting in front of things, with a clear-cut decision made, absolutely was the right thing to do. It’s best for business.
“Your consumers were informed. I just don’t think there are downsides to that.”
Chris Jericho has also passed comment on Punk’s firing, which you can read about at this link.
For the latest update on a potential Punk move to WWE, click here.
For all the latest AEW news, click here.
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