Tony Khan sat down with Mike Johnson of PWInsider today to discuss all things AEW. When the subject of Shaq's ambulance disappearance came up after his tag team match with Jade Cargill against Cody Rhodes and Red Velvet, Khan gave one of his trademark, descriptive answers.
"He disappeared because he wants to come back. Shaq, I said this the other day, and quotes get pulled out without context, and I'm sure this one, you know, an aggregator might take this one to pull it out of context, but I said Shaq is the greatest celebrity wrestler ever when you look at all the factors. His performance was huge. He did box office for us because he moved the ratings in such a massive way and pulled one of the biggest quarter hours we've seen, not just since a pandemic but ever for AEW. He generated a massive amount of mainstream interest absolutely brought in people who hadn't seen the show before, but moreover, the amount of respect the level of respect he showed to the craft of wrestling to the wrestlers, he spent months getting ready for his match."
Khan made a real effort to put over just how unselfish Shaq was during his time with AEW and how excited he is to work with him again in the future.
"He was the opposite -- I can't say enough about it, I'd be underselling if I said he was the opposite of greedy. The opposite of trying to look out for himself. He gave back to the business, and he was so respectful to the other wrestlers he went around to every single person and said to them, you know, I have so much respect for what the wrestlers do. I just wanted to make everything look good, and I didn't want to embarrass anybody with my performance or what I was doing out here, and I hope I hope I did okay. And he was just so great. I've never seen anybody non-wrestler, let alone one of the biggest stars in the world, come in and act the way he did, and he did it as a friend. That's the amazing part. And so he came, and he was so kind and then on top of it all before he went out he's like 'This is great. I'd like to come back.' And I was like 'I would kill to have you back, that is amazing, what do you want to do?' he's like 'Well, this ambulance. Just when you load it up, I'll be gone. And then nobody knows where I went, I'll come back, and I was like, 'Sure, that's great.'"
Shaq will return to AEW down the line
Khan is pleased with how it all worked out because people are still talking about that moment with Shaq a month later.
"So I was like, 'That is going to be exactly what we're going to do for you.' And so that was it I was in his trailer, he told me, he's fine going into the ambulance he was going to do everything we talked he had worked so hard on all this, but then when it came time to show the ambulance when they go and look inside it. I don't want to be there; I want to be gone. I left the ambulance. Nobody knows where I'm at. I am going to leave, and someday I'll come back. And that was a pun intended, that was a slam dunk idea that was a brilliant idea, and people are still talking about it, which proves it was a great idea, and it opens the door for him to come back. He wanted to leave. He left on his own volition. He left on his own power. He got up and walked out of the ambulance, and by the time they came to interview him, he was gone because he didn't want to be there anymore."
So this once and for all solves Shaq's disappearance on AEW Dynamite last month. And while the explanation is a bit odd, it's tough to argue with Shaq about something so trivial when he already wants to come back and do more with AEW down the line.
What did you think of Shaq's AEW in-ring debut? Are you excited to see Shaq come back in the future? Let us know by sounding off in the comments section below.
If you use any quotes from this article, please credit PWInsider with a link back to this article for the transcription.