All Elite Wrestling is moving forward, but WWE and Triple H tried to sign the brains behind the operation beforehand.
Cody Rhodes and The Young Bucks are set to run AEW with the help of the Khan family, which owns the NFL’s Jacksonville Jaguars.
They will be joined by several well-known wrestlers, including fellow Elite member Adam “Hangman” Page.
According to Dave Meltzer of the Wrestling Observer Newsletter, Triple H made some “unique” contract offers to members of The Elite.
Triple H reportedly offered Page “main roster money” to work in NXT and be one of the top stars for the yellow-and-gold brand.
The Young Bucks were reportedly offered three-year contracts for the same amount that AJ Styles makes (if The Young Bucks’ deals were combined). They were also offered an out after six months if they were unhappy.
Rhodes was also offered a strong deal to return to WWE.
Meltzer added that part of the contracts would have included Being The Elite airing weekly on WWE Network.
While Rhodes and The Young Bucks talked with Triple H for 12 hours and praised him for his efforts, they ultimately decided to start their own company. Had they accepted the offer, the trio would have debuted at the Royal Rumble and gotten involved in a significant storyline that would lead to WrestleMania 35. There are people in WWE in who were certain they’d all accept Triple H’s offers since they felt it was too good to refuse. When The Elite didn’t, people in WWE remarked that it was mind-boggling.
“Those who work in WWE with knowledge of the deal were certain they wouldn’t turn it down, and outright told me that they would be debuting at the Rumble, and had a Rumble-to-Mania significant storyline. When they made the decision to go to AEW, they remarked that it was mind-boggling that they would ever get an offer at that level, and even more that they were turning it down,” Meltzer wrote.
“But they did roughly 12 hours of talks with Levesque, who they heavily praised in how he handled everything, in particular seeing the comedy aspect in the skit they did where they superkicked Kazarian dressed up as him over-and-over in what was the public turning down of the offer on BTE.”