At last night’s Southside Wrestling Ninth Anniversary show in Stevenage, UK, AEW Executive Vice President Cody Rhodes announced to those in attendance that the company had signed former Olympic and professional boxer Anthony Ogogo.
I’m thrilled about this signing. Anthony will be our first developmental project as a company. For those who followed his boxing career and saw his Olympic acumen, you’ll be happy to see he’s now applying that passion and work-ethic to pro-wrestling training. Welcome Anthony! https://t.co/QLARQOTbof
— Cody Rhodes (@CodyRhodes) October 26, 2019
Agogo, 30, won bronze in the middleweight division at the London 2012 Olympics and has a professional record of 11-1. He was at the show having a war of words with AEW resident loudmouth MJF.
Friedman then dared Ogogo to put his money where his mouth is, and punch him. Which Anthony duly did, laying him out flat in the ring and then took a selfie. He then said that he would be seeing him on Wednesday nights.
Anthony Ogogo lays out MJF at SouthSide Wrestling
— Straight Edge Wrestling (@SEW_Podcast) October 26, 2019
Cody and his fellow All Elite Wrestling cohorts MJF and Shawn Spears were in the UK helping Southside Wrestling go out with a bang. The show would be their last as Southside before being absorbed into Revolution Pro Wrestling. This show made the news when WWE pulled NXT UK talent from the show just a few weeks before, and after promotional material was made and sent out.
Cody Rhodes himself said he would help out by sending the above AEW talent over to help plug the gaps from the lack of NXT UK talent. And by all accounts, it worked. A packed house, great card, and huge news came out of the event.
As for those that think that AEW are trying to steal WWE’s thunder by signing a professional boxer of their own, let’s go back a few months.
In June of this year, Ogogo spoke with the Eastern Daily Press about his passion and desire to get into pro wrestling:
“I’m seriously considering becoming a professional wrestler, I may join one of the big companies and do some wrestling because it has always been something I’ve enjoyed. At first, it was a bit of a guilty pleasure because most kids get to an age where it’s all glitz and glam and the wrestling if you’re a kid, is exciting as you don’t know it’s scripted. It’s an amazing show and as a kid, I fell in love with it. As I grew older, I thought I would grow out of it but I never have—and if anything it’s the opposite, I love it even more.
“I think for me it would tick so many boxes. I have been a massive fan of it my entire life, I’m physically—other than my eyes—in the prime of my life. I want to utilize all the years of hard work, all the time in the gym, I’m very fit, very athletic and I think I’m going to give it a go so watch this space.”
Blake’s Take: Well that’s news that came out of left field! It’s well known that he had been training at World Association Of Wrestling (WAW) in his hometown of Norwich, but to make the jump from a local UK indy to arguably the second biggest company in the world right now is a HUGE step. Yes, he is going to be a developmental project but he will have some expectations to live up to. He won’t be the only Brit on the roster though. Along with Kip Sabian and Jamie Hayter, he won’t be alone.