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AEW announced today the signing of Dean Malenko to a multi-year contract to be senior producer and coach. Malenko worked for WWE for years as a producer, working directly with active wrestlers on coming up with gameplans for the story to tell in the match and how to tell that story.
Cody Rhodes, current executive vice president with AEW, touts the signing today. “He’s kept an open mind to our world from Lucha Libre to Japanese pro-wrestling,” Cody said. “He’s the perfect fit for our sports-centric mentality, and his experience will be invaluable for our team. Welcome Coach!”
Dean also commented. “It’s not often you get an opportunity late in your career to be a part of building something from the ground floor,” he said “The freedom to be able to contribute uninhibited will only lend itself to foster creativity and produce an outstanding product. I’m excited about what the future holds for AEW, and I can’t wait to be a part of the journey.”
Malenko is close friends with top AEW wrestler Chris Jericho, who worked together going back to a lot of time together in WCW in the 1990s. When he left WWE, the word was he wanted a lighter schedule. AEW can provide that, at least for now, and can be flexible with Dean if he wants a lighter schedule even as AEW’s schedule picks up over time.
“He was great to work with,” one current WWE wrestler tells PWTorch. “I’m happy for him. He was one of WWE’s top producers at one p0int.” The wrestler notes that Dean was versatile in terms of working with younger and older talent, heavyweights and cruiserweight.
Another current WWE wrestler compliments his experiences with Malenko. “He was always good with me,” he says
“Dry, sarcastic but funny. He collaborated rather than tried to tell you what to do.”
He joins Billy Gunn, Jerry Lynn, and B.J. Whitmer as top agent/producers with AEW.
The following is the press release AEW sent to PWTorch and other media outlets this morning.
Globally Renowned Producer & Coach Dean Malenko Joins AEW
— AEW Signs Malenko to Multi-Year Deal as Senior Producer / Coach —
Las Vegas, NV (May 24, 2019) – AEW today announced a multi-year deal with world-renowned coach, producer and wrestler Dean Malenko. Effective immediately, the former No. 1-ranked wrestler in the PWI (Pro Wrestling Illustrated) 500 will take on the role as Senior Producer / Coach.
Malenko, who spent the past 18 years producing and coaching some of the biggest starts in wrestling, is a second-generation wrestler trained by his father, the acclaimed Boris Malenko. Malenko’s impact will be immediate as he joins AEW this weekend at DOUBLE OR NOTHING, the highly-anticipated event on Saturday, May 25, at the MGM Grand Garden Arena in Las Vegas.
“Dean Malenko has been a massive force behind some of today’s biggest wrestling stars,” said Cody Rhodes, EVP of AEW. “He’s never stopped being a major talent who was part of the ECW revolution as well as a fixture in the cruiserweight movement on Nitro. He’s kept an open mind to our world from Lucha Libre to Japanese pro-wrestling. He’s the perfect fit for our sports-centric mentality, and his experience will be invaluable for our team. Welcome Coach!”
“It’s not often you get an opportunity late in your career to be a part of building something from the ground floor,” said Dean Malenko. “The freedom to be able to contribute uninhibited will only lend itself to foster creativity and produce an outstanding product. I’m excited about what the future holds for AEW, and I can’t wait to be a part of the journey.”
All Elite Wrestling
AEW is a new professional wrestling promotion headlined by members of The Elite (The Young Bucks, Kenny Omega, Cody and Brandi Rhodes, and Hangman Page), and Chris Jericho. For the first time in many years, AEW is offering an alternative to mainstream wrestling, with a growing roster of world-class male and female wrestlers who are poised to bring new spirit, freshness, and energy to the industry. The inaugural event under the AEW banner is DOUBLE OR NOTHING on May 25 at the MGM Grand Garden Arena in Las Vegas, followed by FYTER FEST on June 29 in Daytona Beach, followed by FIGHT FOR THE FALLEN on July 13 in Jacksonville. For more info, check out @AEWrestling (Twitter), @AllEliteWrestling (Instagram), /AllEliteWrestling (FB), AllEliteWrestling (YouTube), and additionally, AllEliteWrestling.com.