During tonight’s post-show media scrum, Tony Khan confirmed Cage had been signed since January and that the company had been paying him while he rehabbed an injury. Cage has been out of action since January with a torn bicep, which is when he left IMPACT Wrestling.
“It’s true. Brian signed and he was injured when he signed. People were like ‘it’s crazy that you would pay this guy good money and this whole time he’s hurt. He didn’t get hurt in your company.’ But I really like Brian and I really believed in him. I had plans with Brian and I wanted to do this with Brian and Taz all along; there was a method to it. He wasn’t going to be ready to go until around Double Or Nothing but I always knew Brian was going to factor in to [the PPV]. I always knew he’d show up here and he expected to be cleared in May, so we signed him and he rehabbed and got ready. He had no idea what he was coming in to do—we totally kayfabed him—but he’s great and I really, really believe in him. We strapped a rocket to him, you could say, and I think he’s awesome.”
Khan added that he was really glad that he and Taz were able to have that moment finally, but this was always the ultimate plan.
SoCal Uncensored originally reported Cage had signed a multi-year deal with AEW, with the news breaking during his match against Rob Van Dam at IMPACT’s Hard To Kill event. Cage’s wife, Melissa Santos, quickly shot down the report, and Cage later posted a video claiming that he wasn’t signed anywhere.
At the time, Cage said IMPACT did make him an offer to stay but so did multiple other companies. He added that he was “not technically with any group right now at all” and said he hoped those offers were still available once he was healed up.
Cage debuted with Taz as his manager and won the Casino Ladder Match and title shot, which we now know will take place against Jon Moxley at AEW Fyter Fest this summer. In another interesting note, Khan revealed that Fyter Fest was originally planned to take place in London before the COVID-19 pandemic stopped that.