This Saturday at AEW Full Gear, Eddie Kingston will challenge Jon Moxley for the AEW Championship
Kingston, who is well known on the independent scene, featuring in companies such as Combat Zone Wrestling (CZW) and CHIKARA signed with AEW back in July. From answering Cody Rhodes TNT Championship Open Challenge to becoming one of the top heels in the company, Kingston’s hard hitting style and incredible mic skills have landed him with an AEW Championship opportunity.
During an interview with TSN.ca, Kingston spoke about his time on the independent scene and how he nearly retired from wrestling last year
Back in 2019, Kingston came to the decision that he was going to step away from the ring and retire, however due to the birth of his nephew, he changed his mind and is now one of the top heels in the business
“My brother, being my brother, gave me a little speech and he was basically like, ‘Hey man, I need you to help me with my son, with your nephew, and show him how to be a man and everything. And I was like, ‘Yeah, of course. Why are you even asking me this?’ And he just goes, ‘Well, I only have one problem – how can I tell my son never to quit, never to give up when his uncle did?’ I was like, ‘Excuse me?’ and he said, ‘How can I tell him never to quit when you’re quitting wrestling?’ And that just made me go, ‘Okay, well I guess I’m not quitting now,’ and I’m doing it for my nephew.”
Kingston then spoke about working an ICW show in New Jersey in early July, which led to him laying out challenges for some of wrestling’s top stars; NWA Champion Nick Aldis, NJPW Star Jack Sabre JR, and AEW TNT Champion Cody Rhodes.
“It was my first show since the pandemic [started] and I was broke. I had to sell my gear to pay my mortgage. So I was a little angry and I went to the ring and I had the match, then I grabbed the microphone and I said to myself that I’m going to let the world see my frustration.”
“I called Cody out because of the open challenge and I just did it to shoot my shot,” Kingston said. “I didn’t think anything was going to come out of it. I guess Cody got wind of it and Cody accepted. After that, it was maybe two text messages and ‘Can you come in? Yep. ‘Can you fight Cody? Yep. Is two weeks good? Yep.’ And that was it.”
Kingston then spoke about how he still has an independent mindset despite being signed to All Elite Wrestling
‘I’m not going to forget where I came from. When I go on Twitter and see a guy from the independents doing something different and cool, I’m going to tell people about it. One of my main problems with Mox is that he didn’t use his popularity or social media with all of his followers and everything to put over places that he used to be at or people he used to run with. So I still have that outlaw, independent mindset. To me, that’s what AEW was built on. That’s why I think I would be the perfect champion for them because I have the outlaw spirit, just like [AEW executive vice presidents] the Bucks, Kenny [Omega] and Cody do. They did things their way and now look where they’re at.”
Kingston went on to speak about how he empathizes with independent talents and companies who have suffered because of the pandemic
“It’s killing them. Like I said, I had to sell my gear, my wrestling gear, to pay for my mortgage and Lord knows how long that was going to last. I was selling T-shirts and old 8x10s just to make the payments. And when I made the payments, I felt like I was 20 years old again, just eating peanut butter, ramen noodles, white rice and eggs. So it’s really hurting a lot of guys and it’s stopping a lot of guys’ momentum. A lot of these guys are not getting paid well for the one or two shots that they’re doing a month. To survive on the independents when I was making a living off of it, you had to do a Thursday show, a Friday show and Saturday and Sunday shows. You had to do at least four shows a week. So these guys aren’t getting that, and Lord knows that they’re not making a lot of money because the independent companies aren’t making a lot of money, either. It’s really hurting them.”