Hangman Page returned to AEW after two months off to be there for his wife, giving birth to his first child and defeating six other men to win the Casino Ladder Match on AEW Dynamite Second Anniversary Show. Page now has a guaranteed shot at the AEW World Championship and can finally claim a shot at the title that has eluded him since the beginning of the promotion.
The storyline and saga of Hangman Page has been talked about a lot and considered by many fans to be the best in wrestling. Other fans have questioned if the new arrivals to All Elite Wrestling would prevent him from completing his story arc. However, his return to AEW Dynamite put a lot of those questions to rest with the reception that he received in Philadelphia.
With a title shot for Hangman Page on the horizon, there are many things that show AEW fans that he will be the next man to add to the lineage of the top prize in the company. In this article, let's take a look at the five reasons why Hangman Page should be the next AEW World Champion.
5) Kenny Omega's reign on top is approaching a year and primed to be dethroned by Hangman Page
Hangman Page has let his anxiety stop him from challenging for the AEW World Championship, especially since Kenny Omega won the gold. Omega defeated Jon Moxley to win the title on The Winter Is Coming episode of AEW Dynamite. His reign has seen The Cleaner become a belt collector, also holding the AAA Mega Championship and IMPACT World Championship at the same time.
Kenny Omega has overcome the challenges of Rey Fenix, Rich Swann, Jon Moxley, Orange Cassidy, PAC and Christian Cage over the past 10 months. In September, Omega officially became the longest reigning AEW World Champion in company history. He has also avoided the challenge of Hangman Page after the Dark Order helped their friend finally get the confidence to challenge Omega.
The Super Elite defeated Hangman Page and the Dark Order in a 10-Man Tag Team Elimination Match that prevented him from getting a shot after becoming the Number One Contender. However, Hangman now has a guaranteed title shot after winning the Casino Ladder Match.
With the next pay-per-view Full Gear in a month, Kenny Omega's AEW World Championship reign is approaching a full year. If Omega can win at that major show, he will hit a year with the top prize, but it might be the right time for a new champion to be crowned. The right man for that spot seems to be Hangman Page for other bigger reasons.
4) Hangman Page is the biggest homegrown babyface in AEW
As previously mentioned, there was a section of fans who became skeptical of whether or not AEW was moving away from Hangman Page with the most recent acquisitions for the promotion. The signings of CM Punk, Bryan Danielson and Adam Cole made fans believe that they would be a bigger priority in main event plans than their favorite cowboy.
The Philadelphia crowd at the AEW Dynamite Second Anniversary Show greeted Hangman Page's return with a loud roar. They showed just how over Page still remained despite being away from television for the past two months. He has fostered an organic connection with the fanbase that is undeniable.
The lineage of the AEW World Champions has seen Chris Jericho, Jon Moxley and Kenny Omega hold the top prize for the promotion. Jericho and Moxley were established major stars from WWE, while Omega gained notriety from his time in New Japan Pro Wrestling. Despite his time on the independent scene and NJPW, Hangman Page feels like a homegrown star for AEW.
Page gained popularity from his time in The Elite stable and on the Being The Elite weekly YouTube series, but he has created a new unique character in All Elite Wrestling as the Anxious Millennial Cowboy. His journey has captivated the fanbase and allowed the emergence of a babyface that many people relate to.
3) All of his failures have prepared Hangman Page for this title change
Hangman Page's evolution into the Anxious Millennial Cowboy started at All Out 2019. Page was the upstart babyface looking to defeat grizzled veteran Chris Jericho to become the first AEW World Champion.
Many fans felt that the fledging All Elite Wrestling promotion needed to crown the young star, but Jericho won that night, which gave the bonafide legend the honor of being the first champion.
This failure led to a crisis of confidence for Hangman Page that made him feel like he let the fans and his friends down. Despite The Elite wanting to be there for their fallen friend, Page didn't feel worthy of being in the stable any longer. He turned to alcohol to hide his anxiety and insecurities.
Hangman Page aligned with Kenny Omega as a tag team and gained a great deal of success, becoming the AEW World Tag Team Champions. The success didn't make him any more confident though. He still held animosity toward his former friends and even cost the Young Bucks a title shot, which led to his official ousting from The Elite.
Hangman Page and Kenny Omega lost the AEW World Tag Team Championships to FTR at All Out 2020. Page was left hanging by Omega despite wanting to get a rematch. They faced each other at Full Gear 2020 in the World Title Eliminator Tournament Finals, which Omega won. Following Kenny Omega's title win, Page wanted to avoid his former tag team partner at all costs.
Hangman's issues with the Elite made him not want to get close to the Dark Order, but they all eventually became friends and talked Page into going after his ultimate goal. On the Fight For The Fallen 2021 episode of AEW Dynamite, The Super Elite defeated Hangman Page and the Dark Order in a 10-Man Tag Team Elimination Match to prevent him from getting a title shot against Omega.
All of these failures in AEW have allowed Hangman Page to grow as a person and a character. The slow-burn nature of this storyline has crafted a genuine connection between Page and the fanbase. They have rallied behind him and wanted to see him finally achieve his destiny.
2) Hangman Page's history with Kenny Omega makes their match mean more
Hangman Page and Kenny Omega were among the first signings for AEW along with the other members of the Elite. Despite lofty goals and potential for each of them, they both experienced several setbacks and failures in the first few months of the promotion. These mutual difficulties led to the two men deciding to team up and become part of the tag team division.
Hangman Page and Kenny Omega defeated SCU to become the second AEW World Tag Team Champions on the January 21st, 2020 episode of AEW Dynamite. They went on a very successful run, beating the likes of Best Friends, Private Party, the Lucha Brothers and The Young Bucks.
After mind games by the challengers befriending Hangman, FTR defeated Page and Omega to win the AEW World Tag Team Championships at All Out 2020. Instead of staying together to get a rematch like Page wanted, Kenny Omega left his tag team partner hanging and set his sights on the AEW World Championship.
Kenny Omega defeated Hangman Page to win the AEW World Title Eliminator Tournament to become the Number One Contender at Full Gear 2020. He then aligned with IMPACT Wrestling VP Don Callis to help him beat Jon Moxley to win the AEW World Championship on The Winter Is Coming episode of AEW Dynamite.
The history of Kenny Omega and Hangman Page make their eventual showdown feel like the biggest match in AEW history. The partnership and friendship between the two men holds a lot of meaning and makes the fans want to see them clash with the AEW World Championship on the line. No matter when it happens, many fans will be begging to watch it unfold.
1) Hangman Page has been building to this title since day 1 of AEW
Hangman Page has developed one of the greatest character arcs in wrestling history. At the very first pep rally for All Elite Wrestling, Hangman was one of the first signees for the promotion. He spoke about what his intentions and goals were for the brand new company. Page said that he wanted to become the first AEW World Champion.
On the first AEW pay-per-view Double Or Nothing 2019, Hangman Page drew the Joker card in the Casino Battle Royale and won the contest to earn his spot in the first AEW World Championship Match. In the build-up to AEW All Out 2019, Page started cutting promos that fostered the building blocks to his relationship with the fans.
Hangman Page first uttered his signature "Cowboy Sh**" in the buildup to All Out 2019. Fans loved the brash, no-nonsense demeanor and wanted to see him win the AEW World Championship. However, Page came up short and lost to Chris Jericho. This hurts Hangman more emotionally than physically.
Hangman's crisis of confidence led to him wanting to leave the Elite stable with his friends because he no longer felt worthy. He lost a series of bouts against PAC, which sank his confidence again. Hangman Page started drinking alcohol to hide his anxiety and insecurities about his failures and lost friendships, but he soon found himself in a tag team with Kenny Omega.
Omega and Page found success together as AEW World Tag Team Champions, but it never felt like they were quite on the same page. Kenny Omega was still in The Elite, while Hangman Page was drifting further away from his former friends. Hangman was befriended by FTR into a false sense of security that led to him being ousted from The Elite after costing The Young Bucks a title shot.
FTR beat Kenny Omega and Hangman Page to win the AEW World Tag Team Championships at All Out 2020. Page then lost to Omega in the World Title Eliminator Tournament Finals at Full Gear 2020. It pushed his dream of becoming the AEW World Champion further away than it ever was.
A friendship with the Dark Order was then developed and helped Hangman Page to once again find a sense of friendship and acceptance. His Dark Order friends helped him defeat Matt Hardy at Revolution 2021 and rooted for Page when he beat Brian Cage at Double Or Nothing 2021. With a run of victories, Hangman found himself back in the Number One Contender spot.
Hangman Page finally had the confidence to confront Kenny Omega and challenge him for the AEW World Championship. However, the 10-Man Tag Team Elimination Match at Fight For The Fallen 2021 led to another huge loss for Hangman Page and prevented him from challenging for the title. Page once again didn't want to let his friends down and asked for space from the Dark Order.
Hangman Page's return and win in the Casino Ladder Match to earn an AEW World Championship shot felt cathartic and like a moment long overdue when he finally arrived. It gave the fans the realization that they will finally get the Hangman Page vs. Kenny Omega showdown that they have always wanted. That's why Hangman's journey is the biggest reason why he should be the next AEW World Champion.