Following a brutal women’s street fight in AEW where plenty of blood was spilt, WWE have reacted to the match by saying they are a “very different business” to their competition.
AEW Rampage presented a special New Year’s Smash edition to see in the new year, and the ‘TayJay’ combination of Tay Conti and Anna Jay teamed up to face Penelope Ford and The Bunny. Although the quartet had been feuding over recent weeks, few expected the kind of violence which took place in this encounter.
There were chairs and thumbtacks used in the ring, and a piledriver from the apron through a table on the floor. The finish eventually came when Anna Jay locked the The Queen Slayer on The Bunny, whilst she had barbed wire around her arm.
Although this wasn’t the first time an AEW women’s match was so brutal, it was a shock to many quite how much blood was spilt on this occasion.
WWE may have had plenty of hardcore matches in the past, this seems very much in the rear view mirror given the current product they are presenting. A statement to the Toronto Star has seen the company further attempt to distance themselves from these kinds of matches.
A WWE statement embedded in the article classed the match as “gory self-mutilation” and questioned why it would be appealing for fans and commercial partners.
If you look at the gory self-mutilation that bloodied several women in the December 31 event on TNT, it quickly becomes clear that these are very different businesses. We had an edgier product in the Attitude era and in the 2022 world, we don’t believe that the type of dangerous and brutal display is appealing to network partners, sponsors, venues, children, or the general public as a whole.
— All Elite Wrestling (@AEW) January 1, 2022
In another example of WWE keeping distance from blood-soaked action, Vince McMahon openly questioned on the Q2 earnings call in 2019 whether TNT would tolerate the product.