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AEW's Tony Khan calls Eric Bischoff criticisms 'laughable'

AEW head Tony Khan said that while he respects Eric Bischoff, the former WCW and TNA executive's recent comments about him were "laughable."

On his 83 Weeks podcast, Bischoff said that his advice to Khan would be to "shut up and wrestle," admitting that the comments may seem strange coming from him. Bischoff said the difference is that he was actually going to head-to-head with WWE every week and that Khan was "inventing mistakes" by both comparing AEW to WWE and deriding the competition without actually going head-to-head. 

"That's real competition," Bischoff said, adding that he was disappointed in some of the rhetoric he's heard Khan say. He added that talent should also "shut the f**k up" until they are actually competing.

He also seemed to take offense to Khan comparing this era to 1996, saying he kicked Vince McMahon's ass back then and that it's not "cosplay" competition like AEW vs. WWE.

Speaking on Wednesday's Busted Open Radio, Khan said that was he amused by the comments and that he respects that Bischoff is doing an act.

"I really like Eric and was surprised by (his) comments because they were coming from Eric Bischoff who is probably the last person to say the president of a wrestling company should be quiet," Khan said, later adding, "This is the ultimate example of glass houses considering how he conducted himself as the head of WCW."

Khan said that he is balancing stars like CM Punk and Chris Jericho with emerging TV wrestling stars like Kenny Omega and the Young Bucks and that Bischoff ran out young talents like Jericho and Eddie Guerrero from WCW while he is committed to keeping them.

"It would be naive to look at this and not examine the person talking is Eric Bischoff," he said. He never addressed Bischoff's other criticisms.

Bischoff has made several appearances on AEW Dynamite in various role and Khan has called him a friend in the past.

While not mentioning WWE by name, Khan said he thought it was "aggressive" what WWE came in with on last Friday's extended edition of SmackDown, putting some of their big talents commercial free against Rampage. He contemplated changing up his lineup to have a bigger box office match, but stuck to his guns and worked with TNT to make the Punk vs. Matt Sydal match commercial free, bumping back an ad break.

"I didn't ask for (this head-to-head). Someone came into our time slot aggressively and it wasn't the first time they made an aggressive move like that," he said.

During his appearance, Khan also said that he is planning on doing a college football/AEW Dynamite countdown show Saturday but didn't say when or where it would air.