1 of 2 | Adam Cole speaks to AEW fans on "Dynamite." He is teaming up with The Young Bucks to face Jurassic Express and Christian Cage on the Friday edition of "Grand Slam." Photo courtesy of AEW
Sept. 22 (UPI) -- Professional wrestler Adam Cole, the top performer from WWE's NXT brand, has taken his talents to AEW and is competing at the promotion's biggest event ever in Grand Slam, a two-night extravaganza in New York City that will air on Dynamite on Wednesday and Rampage on Friday.
Grand Slam is AEW's big introduction to New York City, a territory normally associated with WWE. AEW, which started in 2019, has made splashy moves on the professional wrestling scene recently by signing former WWE stars Cole, Bryan Danielson, CM Punk and Ruby Soho. Grand Slam is bringing all their new members and top stars together for a loaded event as AEW morphs into a true contender.
"New York, to many people, is the mecca," Cole told UPI. "When you look back on some of the most memorable moments in the history of pro wrestling, you think about New York."
Cole will be teaming up with Matt and Nick Jackson of The Young Bucks to face Jungle Boy and Luchasaurus of Jurassic Express, along with ring veteran Christian Cage on the two-hour Friday edition of Grand Slam, which begins at 10 p.m. EDT.
Cole has history with The Young Bucks and rejoined their group, The Elite, in early September. Cole was a member of The Elite before his time in WWE and is now back with one of the longest running and dominant factions in professional wrestling. AEW World Champion Kenny Omega leads the collective, which also includes Impact World Tag Team Champions Doc Gallows and Karl Anderson of The Good Brothers.
Cole and The Young Bucks, when competing as a trio, refer to themselves as the Super Kliq. The grappler mentioned being excited to face Jurassic Express and a veteran like Cage only weeks after putting pen to paper.
"Everywhere you go there's young talent who are kind of on the cusp of breaking out or becoming something really, really special," Cole said. "When you look at the young talent in AEW like Jungle Boy, MJF or Darby Allin, you see the future of wrestling."
The 32-year-old also described his excitement in facing Cage, someone he says is considered to be one of the best in the industry.
"He delivers every single time, every single night. It doesn't matter who he's in there with. This will be my first time ever getting the chance to wrestle him at all and what better way to do it than on Grand Slam in front of nearly 20,000 people," he said.
Grand Slam on Friday will also feature CM Punk vs. Powerhouse Hobbs; Anna Jay vs. Penelope Ford; AEW World Tag Team Champions The Lucha Brothers with Santana and Ortiz vs. Private Party, The Butcher and The Blade; Men of the Year vs. Chris Jericho and Jake Hager of The Inner Circle; and Jon Moxley and Eddie Kingston vs. Lance Archer and Minoru Suzuki of New Japan Pro Wrestling in a Lights Out match.
"All three of them down and out, with The Young Bucks kissing me on either side of the cheek as we stand over them, would be the perfect ending. The perfect introduction of the Super Kliq. The perfect showcase of what Adam Cole and The Young Bucks bring to the table," Cole said of how he wants his Grand Slam match to end.
"You know what, I'm going to call this a spoiler alert. That's going to happen," he continued.
On the Wednesday edition of Grand Slam on AEW Dynamite, Danielson will wrestle Omega in a dream match. The bout, which almost feels like a crossover between WWE and AEW, will not be for Omega's AEW World Championship and represents Danielson's first match in AEW.
"This is a dream match, not only for the fans, but for a lot of the wrestlers as well. When you look at the body of work of Kenny Omega and when you look at the body of work of Bryan Danielson, you do see two of the best wrestlers in the entire world," Cole said.
Other matches set for Grand Slam on Dynamite Wednesday include AEW Women's World Champion Dr. Britt Baker defending her title against Ruby Soho; MJF vs. Brian Pillman Jr.; FTR vs. Sting and Allin; and Cody Rhodes vs. Malakai Black.
NXT to AEW
Cole competed inside WWE's NXT brand for four years and was a Triple Crown Champion, having held the NXT Championship, North American Championship and the NXT Tag Team Championship.
"I formed a very close, personal bond with the fans, the brand, the locker room and with Shawn Michaels and Triple H," Cole said. "I cherish the four years that I had at NXT and WWE."
Cole said that AEW was something he watched since the beginning and wanted to be a part of.
"Of course, I could not be happier here," he said. "Could not be happier with this decision, but I really do appreciate and cherish my time in NXT."
Cole said he likes the pressure he put on himself by making a big move to AEW and wants to uphold the level of talent that the locker room has, while ensuring that The Elite hold multiple championships.
"I want to get some gold of my own," he said. "Maybe getting the TNT Championship is something that is pretty exciting to me." Cole said.
Grand Slam will air Wednesday at 8 p.m. EDT on Dynamite and Friday at 10 p.m. EDT on Rampage. Both shows will air on TNT.