Fantasy Booking the Long-Term Outlook of Jon Moxley's AEW World Championship
After Full Gear 2020, the AEW World Championship remains in Jon Moxley's possession. However, as he approaches a full year as champion, the clock is ticking on his title reign.
Eventually, he will have to drop the belt, but how should that happen? Who should be the next in line and how far along can we plan out a possible trajectory for the championship going forward?
Let's fantasy book the next few years of the AEW World Championship.
Moxley's Remaining Time
Moxley has had an impressive reign as champion. He's beaten people more technically gifted than him, such as Chris Jericho, and bigger, tougher opponents like Lance Archer.
Whether it was a brawl with Mr. Brodie Lee or his most recent bout with Eddie Kingston, he found the grit and determination to pull through and retain.
The sun is setting on his reign, though, and it should come soon enough against Kenny Omega.
The Cleaner won the right to challenge for the title by beating "Hangman" Adam Page at Full Gear, and his chance will come on the December 2 edition of AEW Dynamite.
There's a chance that match could end in some kind of shenanigans which would allow for a rematch further down the line. If that happened, Beach Break in January could stage the rematch, or possibly Revolution on February 27.
Ideally, though, the title will change hands in December. That will give Moxley a more relaxed Thanksgiving season when he can finish his feud with Kingston, fight a few stragglers and get set up to drop the belt to Omega.
'The Cleaner' Kenny Omega Sweeps the Competition
Ringing in the new year with a fresh champion worked when Moxley beat Jericho at Revolution 2020 in February, and a similar theory will apply to Omega capturing the title in December.
So far, we've seen more of an edge from Omega since he began reverting to his "Cleaner" character.
He has spent a good portion of his AEW career struggling to be the Omega of old, but he is coming into his own now.
The Best Bout Machine should dominate the main event scene for months, taking out each opponent with his One Winged Angel. He would get cockier as the wins add up, making him more of a heel as time goes on.
The more of a villain he becomes, the more fans will be hoping someone takes him down a peg. Eventually, one person will step forward to do the job: his former teammate.
'Hangman' Adam Page Finally Reaches the Summit
"Hangman" Adam Page came close to being the first-ever AEW world champion in August 2019, but Chris Jericho's experience proved insurmountable on that occasion.
Since then, Page has gone through numerous bouts of doubting his abilities. Even after becoming tag team champion alongside Omega, he lashed out at the rest of The Elite, claiming he was supposed to be making greater strides than he was.
The tension between the group has led to plenty of confrontations, with the most recent being at Full Gear when he lost the No. 1 contender's spot to Omega.
In the first half of 2021, Page should start walking the road toward redemption.
After feuding with some midcard and upper-midcard talent, he should topple a big threat like Wardlow, Archer, Cage or Lee to earn a shot against Omega at All Out 2021 in the late summer.
Two years after he failed to capture the title, he should finally prove himself worthy of the top spot by beating his former teammate.
MJF Proves He's Better Than Everyone
The journey to winning the AEW World Championship will mean more for Page than the actual reign itself.
More often than not, babyface titleholders run out of steam quite quickly, as there is more interest in watching them chase a belt than defending it.
A few months into his reign, rather than some year or so run, Page should drop the title to Maxwell Jacob Friedman.
This booking is largely built on issues that were established in AEW's first year, one of which was Page taking out MJF to get the title shot at All Out 2019.
MJF evened the odds by beating Page for the AEW Dynamite Diamond Ring a year ago, but even a $40,000 piece of jewelry isn't as valuable as the gold belt.
There's no better heel to dethrone the fan-favorite Hangman than MJF. He already has what it takes to be champion, and by late 2021 or through 2022, he'll be firmly established as the company's top villain.
This should come long after he has feuded with Jericho, either taking over The Inner Circle or leaving the group. Hopefully, he'll also have had a TNT Championship reign ahead of winning the world title.
Cody Rhodes Gets Revenge
After MJF has a long reign—defeating the likes of Jungle Boy, a renewed babyface Omega and other viable contenders who can't overcome his dirty tactics—it should be up to Cody Rhodes to step in.
When The American Nightmare lost to Jericho at Full Gear 2019, there was a stipulation that he would never fight for the world title again. The only reason he lost, though, was due to interference by MJF.
However, it would be foolish for AEW to rule Rhodes—one of the company's biggest names and most viable main eventers—out of the title hunt forever. At some point, he will be the only worthwhile option to hold the title.
MJF's bravado should reach peak levels as champion to the point of gloating about Rhodes not ever being able to beat him for the title.
An issue could then arise, though, with consequences that would allow Rhodes the opportunity to challenge for the belt going forward.
The AEW executive vice president could then earn revenge by winning the title off MJF, who thought he'd be safe from his former mentor when he screwed him over in 2019.
Obviously, this would be far from the end of the title's lineage. However, going through this group of stars over the course of the next two years or so would bring things full circle and allow all the top contenders to have had some time as champion.
Anthony Mango is the owner of the wrestling website Smark Out Moment and the host of the podcast show Smack Talk on YouTube, iTunes and Stitcher. You can follow him on Facebook and elsewhere for more.