Indefinite hiatus; Rivalry renewed with former WWE Champion - 5 Reasons why Jon Moxley lost the AEW World Championship at Full Gear pay-per-view

What's next for Jon Moxley after losing the AEW World Championship?

Jon Moxley is no longer the AEW World Champion. After a banner year in which the Blackpool Combat Club member became a three-time holder of the company's most prestigious prize (including an interim title reign), Moxley has managed to steady the ship during AEW's most tumultuous period.

Jon Moxley faced MJF in the main event of AEW Full Gear 2022 and took a pinfall loss, cementing the young wrestler as the new face of the promotion. He didn't accomplish this without help, however, as William Regal shockingly turned on his disciple and cost the Cincinnati-born grappler his championship.

Now that the Salt of the Earth is the reigning champ, what's next for Mox in AEW? Here are five reasons why Jon Moxley lost the AEW World Championship.

#5. Jon Moxley can finally go on vacation

Jon Moxley: "I was going to be gone and off TV for six weeks. It wasn’t that I needed a vacation. I was feeling good and feeling hot, but it had to do with what we were going to do for a story... That vacation lasted about 30 minutes."…

It's common knowledge that Jon Moxley was supposed to go on vacation after dropping the AEW World Championship to CM Punk back at All Out 2022.

The former WWE Superstar held down the fort for the promotion when the Straight Edge Superstar initially dropped the belt due to an injury. Moxley would become the Interim Champion, defending it against Hiroshi Tanahashi at Forbidden Door in June.

He even defeated Punk on Dynamite to unify the belts before ultimately dropping the title back to the Second City Saint in his hometown of Chicago. Mox was due a well-deserved break afterwards, but the ensuing fallout from Punk's press scrum put a stop to that. In an interview with Sports Illustrated, Mox revealed:

“I was going to be gone and off TV for six weeks,” Moxley says. “It wasn’t that I needed a vacation. I was feeling good and feeling hot, but it had to do with what we were going to do for a story."

Those plans changed when CM Punk launched into his now-infamous tirade at the post-All Out media scrum. AEW was suddenly left without a world champion as both Punk and The Elite were stripped of their titles and suspended.

“Going into All Out, I was thinking, ‘After I get through this match, that’s it for a while.’ I wrestled the match, and we kicked each other’s a**. I was happy, Chicago was happy, and everybody was happy. I went outside to smoke a cigarette with Eddie [Kingston] in celebration. That vacation lasted about 30 minutes. By the time I went to bed that night, I was pretty sure we were going to pretend that vacation was never going to happen. But it’s all good; you just roll with the punches.” (H/T Sports Illustrated)

Ever the company man, Jon Moxley soldiered on, carrying the title for another two months heading into Full Gear.

The 36-year-old is already a made man and has nothing left to prove in AEW. Given the fact that he is a new father, it would make sense for him to pass the torch and take a short hiatus to rest and recharge in the meantime.

#4. Jon Moxley was always supposed to be a transitional champion

FIRST. TIME. EVER.@The_MJF is your new AEW World Champion #ANDNEW

If things had worked out as planned, it would have been CM Punk dropping the AEW World Championship to MJF. The two wrestlers had an epic feud earlier this year, trading a victory apiece. It made sense to have a rubber match, with Punk giving the ultimate rub to The Salt of the Earth.

However, given the circumstances, it was Jon Moxley who had to shoulder the burden of anointing MJF as the next top star. It was never part of the plan for Mox to have a lengthy reign with the title.

If Punk hadn't gotten injured shortly after winning the world championship at Double or Nothing, it's doubtful that Moxley would even carry the title this year. Instead, the BCC leader had a chance to add on to his pandemic reign and perform as the top guy in front of the AEW faithful.

It's clear that AEW President Tony Khan trusts Jon Moxley to be one of his top stars who can slot into the main event anytime he is in need of one. But it's clear that Jon Moxley's role has always been a transitional champion in 2022.

#3. The Blackpool Combat Club is set to disband after William Regal seemingly aligned with MJF

After MJF big win, the Blackpool Combat Club - Claudio, Wheeler Yuta, and Bryan Danielson, came over to comfort Jon Moxley and explained to him what had happened. #aew #andnew #aewfullgear

With William Regal's shocking betrayal of Jon Moxley, the future of the Blackpool Combat Club is up in the air. Could Mox's title loss be the beginning of the end for the popular faction?

Some may argue that joining up with MJF is a swerve for the sake of it, but Regal has made it clear from day one in AEW that he isn't to be trusted.

After Full Gear went off the air, fellow Blackpool Combat Club members Claudio Castagnoli, Wheeler Yuta, and Bryan Danielson came down to the ring to console the former champion.

How the group reacts to their namesake manager's actions will make for intriguing entertainment going forward. This could also be a good excuse to take Moxley out of the title picture as he feuds with his former mentor or the rest of the BCC members eventually.

#2. Jon Moxley needs a character reset

The fans booing Moxley better not forget how the man carried the company on his back through the pandemic & the CM Punk situation.#AEWFullGear #AEW #JonMoxley

It was recently announced that Jon Moxley had signed a new five-year deal exclusively to All Elite Wrestling until 2027. During a subsequent interview with Sports Illustrated, Jon Moxley revealed his motivation for sticking with his current employers:

"I don’t plan on going anywhere else. It’s the best job in the world, and I’m very lucky to have it. In AEW, all I worry about is wrestling... For me, it’s a perfect fit... A year ago, I wasn’t in the same headspace. I was all f*cked up. I hated travelling. I was living in Vegas, felt like I was always in an airport, flying coast to coast, and I was sick of leaving my family. I thought about freelancing when my deal was up," Jon Moxley said.

It's clear that Jon Moxley has benefitted from a short break earlier this year as well and has come back refreshed and motivated. He did a brilliant job representing the company as AEW Champion and the long-term contract shows that the former WWE Superstar is in this for the long haul.

However, if he wants to enjoy longevity in the business, Mox should consider freshening up his character or risk staleness. He would absolutely excel as a heel and that is one dynamic that hasn't been explored in his AEW run thus far.

His match against MJF at Full Gear showcased how comfortable he was portraying the bad guy, just like he did against CM Punk at All Out. Why not fully lean into that character? It would add an edge that's missing from Jon Moxley's persona right now.

#1. MJF is the right man to carry the AEW World Championship going forward

MJF’s media scrum message. We are already in the MJF era. #AEWFullGear

MJF is a generational talent and easily the best homegrown star that AEW has produced. It was only a matter of time before Maxwell Jacob Friedman would hold the AEW World Championship and lead the brand into a new era.

It's just a matter of bad timing that Jon Moxley was the one who had to do the honors for The Salt of the Earth. It has been a long time coming and fans have been clamoring for the 26-year-old to become champion.

While Jon Moxley has had a commendable reign, he is already a made man and is in a great position to use his star power to create another main-eventer. He would do just that at Full Gear, helping to usher in the Long Island Loudmouth's coronation.

Whether MJF can now pick up the ball and run with it is up to the young champion. But, with regards to Jon Moxley, he has already done his job. It's time to let new faces run the main event scene.

With Winter Is Coming on the horizon, we could see either Ethan Page or Ricky Starks challenge for the world title next. Moxley can go ahead and feud with other opponents now.

A former WWE star told us why William Regal may have left AEW here

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Edited by Jacob Terrell
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