Ari Daivari tells all about his experience(s) with AEW.
The Trustbusters in All Elite Wrestling consists of Ari Daivari, Parker Boudreaux, Sonny Kiss, Slim J and Jeeves Kay. The group started out on AEW Dark and made their way to ROH Death Before Dishonor and eventually AEW TV.
The formation of The Trustbusters was discussed in-depth by Ari Daivari while he was on AEW Unrestricted. He touched on how Tony Khan presented the group idea to him and as he was talking, Daivari confirmed that he is full-time with AEW.
If some people remember, on a few episodes of AEW Dark, I was wrestling with another guy named Invictus Khash. He’s actually from your area, the Seattle area.
Very good wrestler, he’s a fellow Persian man just like me. We kind of got put together randomly as a tag team and we’re doing a couple Darks together and it was going great. I actually really enjoyed tagging with him, he’s a bright, young kid. He’s from Iran originally, he speaks very good Farsi which is kind of cool. I thought that was a cool thing going for us and then just extremely talented in-ring. But apparently, Tony wasn’t really feeling that for me and I showed up one day and I found out that I’m tagging with a guy named Slim J. I said, ‘Okay. That’s interesting’ and that day, me and Khash actually had matching gear because we tagged a few times together, we finally went and got matching gear. Like, all right, we’re gonna be a tag team, let’s do this for real and I showed up and I said, ‘Slim J? Where have I heard that name before?’ And I was like, all right, whatever and then he comes up to me. He’s like, ‘Hey, I’m Slim. We’re working together’ and I’m like, okay, this is interesting. Me and Khash have singles matches and then Tony shows up later and I kind of talk to him a little bit and he just lays this whole idea on the line for me with The Trustbusters and Parker Boudreaux and he has all these ideas for other members which turned out to be Sonny Kiss and V.S.K. and it all just kind of happened one day. But that’s what led to me getting my full-time job so, you know, that’s what the boss wants, that’s what the boss gets. I think it’s always been a very simple thing in wrestling… and I really enjoyed tagging with Khash and who knows? Somewhere in the future, maybe he can come join The Trustbusters but it was just Tony’s idea, something he wanted to do and it was just kind of presented to me and the funny thing was, a lot of it was just kind of some last minute stuff. Just, ‘Hey, this is what I want you to talk about, this is your new name, you’re in The Trustbusters’ and this was like minutes before I was about to go out there and part of me took it as a test. I get all this information and he’s like, ‘All right, go do it!’ And I go like, ‘No problem. I’m gonna knock this out of the f*cking park first try’ and I feel like I did and I got to the back and he was like, ‘Hell yeah. That’s exactly what I wanted… Let’s f*cking go!’
That full-time offer from Tony Khan came after Khan broke down his idea of what he wanted The Trustbusters to be.
Ari recalled chatting with Tony about the group and internally, he was saying to himself that he hopes all the ideas and requests that Tony was making would come with a job.
That was the other thing too. He started laying out all this creative and you know, ‘This is what we wanna do with this and this guy’ and go on and on and this is before I was working full-time with AEW and I remember, as he was laying all this stuff out, in my head I’m like, I hope this is coming with a job because this is a lot of creative. He had a lot of plans he’s telling me and things he wants to see.
So the whole time he was talking, I just kept going like, I think a job’s coming out of this and I really hope it is and then later that day, that’s when he made the offer and everything so, it was a good day. Good day in Florida.
On top of Daivari being an active in-ring talent for AEW, he is a producer for the company as well. He discussed how he picked up knowledge from Shawn Daivari, his brother and recounted taking in information that his brother passed along from the likes of Eddie Guerrero, The Undertaker and Shawn Michaels.
Daivari made mention of his trial run as a producer in WWE. He feels that in AEW, part of the role of a producer is to reign talents in a bit and remind them that this is weekly television and they do not need to go to the max every outing.
One thing I really like to pride myself on in my wrestling career and I give a lot of credit to my older brother Shawn . He got signed young, so he was getting tons of advice from these legendary performers and then he would come and tell me about it. ‘Eddie Guerrero told me this, Chris Jericho told me this, The Undertaker told me this’ so I was getting all this information about psychology before I even got into wrestling and then I started wrestling, I always kind of kept those things in mind. So I really feel like I have a good grasp on that just because I kind of had a leg up. So, while I was in WWE, I was always thinking about different ideas and watching people’s matches very closely and I knew it was something I wanted to do. He eventually became a producer at WWE so I started talking to him more and more about the process and all that stuff and eventually, I started doing it as a trial run there as well too before I started with AEW. Pat Buck was one of our producers here, he spoke to Tony Khan about it and Tony even mentioned to me, ‘I’ve seen what you do in WWE. I think you’re a good veteran leader for some of our younger wrestlers’ and like I said, Tony’s really good about developing the younger wrestlers, younger talent and asked me and even said that about Parker, you know? Parker Boudreaux who’s in my group, he’s like, ‘I think he’s really good. He’s a young guy.’ He goes, ‘I think he’ll do great kind of learning from you and stuff like that.’ I said, ‘No problem’ and I kind of mentioned that, ‘I’d like to do that for all your talent. I would love to help out.’ So that’s kind of how that came about and then I started working with the girls and a big part of this job, I was kind of thinking about this earlier when you said this question was gonna come up. A big part of this job, especially here in AEW, we have such a talented roster that maybe back in 2004, 2007 when there’s some wrestlers on TV, like some of those who were brand new, didn’t know anything about wrestling, a producer or an agent or whatever you like to call it, coach, they would have to take those guys by the wrist and plan spot by spot, plan exactly what they’re doing because they needed that kind of help and without an agent, they were screwed. Here in AEW, we have an extremely talented roster and I’m not just saying that… So a producer here, I feel like is almost sometimes reigning talent back a little bit for their own good. For their own good because we got some wild, crazy guys who are dedicated — and girls who are dedicated to this business and if you don’t reign them back a little bit, they’re gonna go out there and potentially kill themselves for the love of the business which ain’t a bad thing to have that mentality but sometimes you just kind of want to reign it back a little bit and be like, ‘Hey, we got week-to-week TV. I need you here next week. You can’t kill yourself on this show because we need you here next week and the week after and the week after and the pay-per-view after’ and all that kind of stuff so, being a producer, you just sometimes wanna help instill the psychology, make sure some of the old school rules live on while still adding a new school flavor to it.
One talent that Daivari highlighted when speaking about producing was Britt Baker. He feels she has a good understanding of her character and that makes it fun from the producer aspect.
Britt’s very in tune with her character so I can think of things or I feel like this is something Britt Baker would do, this is something Britt Baker would say and we’d sit there and we’d kind of chop it up. She gives her insight, I give my insight so, I really enjoy how in tune she is with her character. It makes it very fun for the producer aspect.
Daivari is full-time with AEW and the latest addition to the team is Jeff Jarrett, who appeared on the 11/2 Dynamite and was hired to be their Director of Business Development.
If the quotes in this article are used, please credit AEW Unrestricted with an H/T to POST Wrestling for the transcriptions.