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5 wrestlers who could be the first AEW Champion

Paul Benson
ANALYST
Top 5 / Top 10
23.47K   //    09 Jan 2019, 23:17 IST

Cody Rhodes is running the show
Cody Rhodes is running the show

All Elite Wrestling is a thing. On January 8 2019, AEW rally delivered shocks as longtime WWE legend, Chris Jericho, signed on the dotted line to join the fledgling company.

Also joining was another WWE alumnus, PAC, known in WWE as Neville.

Word is out that the signings are not going to end there. AEW have been linked with the likes of Japanese legend, Shinsuke Nakamura, their Elite comrade, Kenny Omega, who is no longer affiliated with New Japan, and many others.

Some will sign, some will not.

AEW has announced its first show; "Double or Nothing" from Las Vegas, Nevada. The event will take place on May 25 2019 from the MGM Grand Arena, home to many a UFC show over the years. The capacity is over 17,000. If AEW can pull that many fans, then its future is very bright.

Trademarks have been filed for "All Out" which sounds very much like a sequel to last September's mega successful event, "All In". AEW have already announced that their second show will be emanating from Jacksonville, in the Jacksonville Veterans Memorial Coliseum; home to many a WWE Raw show, and WWE pay per views.

Will AEW also secure a show at Madison Square Garden, following in the footsteps of Ring of Honor who will promoting an event in WWE's spiritual home on WrestleMania weekend, the first time a wrestling company not named WWE has done so in over 50 years?

Anything seems possible right now, and there is one more question yet to be answered -

Who will be the first champion of the AEW brand?

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As yet no announcements of titles have occurred, but it seems more than likely that the company will have at least a heavyweight champion as its figurehead, as it seeks to build on the fantastic momentum it has already.

Who exactly should the first champion in AEW history be? We look at five possibilities and analyse each.


#5 CM Punk

CM Punk: Has been absent from wrestling for five years
CM Punk: Has been absent from wrestling for five years

Despite CM Punk calling himself a retired pro-wrestler, there are those who believe a wrestling return in some form is inevitable.

After his MMA career spectacularly yielded two heavy one sided losses at UFC 203 and UFC 225, Punk was left without a clear career path.

Punk is currently working as a commentator for Cage Fury Fighting Championships, but that does not appear to be a long term gig for the "Straight Edge Superstar".

When confronted at why he did not appear at All In, an independent wrestling show held in his home state of Illinois by the AEW squad, Punk said that the Elite boys had sent feelers out to him, but not made a firm offer.

Might Cody Rhodes and The Young Bucks do just that for AEW?

If so, there may be no better candidate in wrestling to be the figurehead for the fledgling company than the man who reigned as WWE Champion for 434 days between 2011 and 2013.

Surely Punk would love to stick it to his former employers by becoming the top star of a rival promotion, particularly one backed by a billionaire.

Still seems like a long shot though.

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