Chris Jericho signed a contract extension with All Elite Wrestling (AEW) to keep him with the promotion through December 2025.
AEW CEO Tony Khan made the announcement on Tuesday:
“Chris Jericho long ago cemented his legacy as one of the greatest professional wrestlers of all time, and we’re fortunate to have his skills, charisma, knowledge and insights in AEW for years to come,” Tony Khan, CEO, GM and head of creative of AEW, said in a statement. “Chris has discovered a fountain of youth this year, and he’s having some of the very best matches of his legendary career against some of the top names in wrestling.”
Jericho was an integral part of the launch of the company in 2019. With legacy runs in both WCW and WWE, he gave the promotion a mainstream face from the start. This prompted Khan to book him as the first AEW World Champion.
Jericho has taken on more of a leadership role of late. The locker room has turned to Jericho for guidance amid backstage chaos involving CM Punk and The Elite (Kenny Omega and The Young Bucks) last month.
As a result, Jericho will increase his role backstage as part of his new agreement. He will now serve as a “producer and creative advisor” in addition to his on-air role.
“In expanding his responsibilities, he’ll continue to serve as a valuable leader with our roster having the opportunity to utilize one of most creative minds in the history of wrestling,” Khan added.
The signing also keeps Jericho away from WWE, AEW’s primary competitor. AEW over the past month re-signed both Jericho and Jon Moxley, two of its biggest stars who previously performed for WWE.
AEW can use these extensions to show its locker room that big-time stars are not aching to switch brands, as wrestling blogs report.
It’s also possible that AEW extended MJF beyond 2024, the expiration date of his original contract. The on-air storyline says MJF leveraged his way to an industry-shifting raise without having to sign for more years. The storyline plays off MJF’s worked-shoot from June in which he called out Tony Khan for being “a mark.” AEW continues to play up this storyline on its programming, leading to speculation that MJF re-signed for multiple years.
Khan re-signing his highest-paid stars suggests he’s confident that television partner WarnerBros. Discovery will extend or increase its broadcast agreement with AEW. Khan and Discovery, a company in deep cost-cutting mode, plan to negotiate new terms at the start of 2023.
“Things have been going so well in the company, and I really do feel that this is my company.,” Chris Jericho said o his new AEW contract. “It’s tattooed on my heart, so to speak. I’ve been here since day 1, & there’s really no reason not to be here continuing forward.”