After an extremely positive reception to his recent match against Cody Rhodes, Eddie Kingston has signed with AEW, the company announced on Twitter Friday. Kingston had most recently been working for NWA, which shut down temporarily following a top executive resigning from the company in the wake of #SpeakingOut allegations. Kingston joins an already stacked AEW roster, which has continued to grow even during the coronavirus pandemic.
Kingston made his AEW Dynamite debut on the July 22nd episode, coming out at the start of the show as a surprise challenger for Rhodes's TNT Championship open challenge. Kingston cut a promo before the match, comparing his tough background to Cody's privileged one. He followed that up with an excellent hardcore match that ended with the use of thumbtacks. The episode was AEW's highest-rated in months and was widely praised by fans.
In contrast to their main competitors, WWE, AEW has not laid off any workers during the coronavirus pandemic despite suffering from a lack of ability to put on traveling live events with crowds. They've also continued to feature indie talent on their shows, including inviting Warhorse to compete in another TNT Championship open challenge last week and continued to expand their roster. As it stands, AEW's roster is so large that it's impossible to feature all of their talent on a given episode of Dynamite, which may work out in the company's favor since it keeps the show and matchups feeling fresh. Even so, AEW is looking to add a third hour of wrestling to its weekly lineup; a move announced when they renewed their deal with TNT earlier this year, though the pandemic has slowed the execution of those plans so far.