Darby Allin wants to do things his own way. The current AEW TNT Champion is one of the top pro wrestlers in the world due to his persona and athleticism. Allin signed with AEW when the promotion launched last year and has competed in memorable matches with Cody Rhodes and former AEW World Heavyweight Champion Jon Moxley. PopCulture.com caught up with Allin, who revealed why he joined AEW.
"Creative freedom of everything," Allin said to PopCulture. "I kind of saw the writing on the wall. ...Once I heard AEW is starting and throwing around creative freedom and how people can write their own destiny, I'm on that because if I'm ever going to be able to show my body of work, it's got to be at a place that's gonna let me be me."
Allin worked in various promotions such as Progress Wrestling and World Wrestling Network before signing a deal with AEW. Recently, one of the biggest moments in Allin's career happened when he stood in the ring face-to-face with WWE Hall of Famer Sting on AEW: Dynamite. Sting has reportedly signed a multi-year contract with the company.
"That was another one of those surreal moments," Allin said when talking about his encounter with Sting. "When he was walking past everybody as he was getting to me, I didn't know until the last second I was going to stand up or not and look at him face-to-face. As he was walking towards me, I was like 'Alright, I'm standing.' They didn't tell me what to do. I needed to do that for many reasons. The big reason was I believed I was meant to be in that spot.
"My whole life, I was used to people saying just be grateful for everything you get," Allin continued. "Expect the bare minimum in life. I was like 'I'm so sick of that.' I have high expectations for myself. So when he came, I was like 'Dude, it's on, man.' That was a surreal moment for sure. Totally lost in that moment. It was insane."
The fact Sting went face-to-face with Allin shows the respect he has for the 27-year-old pro wrestler. Allin has made a name for himself in AEW by winning the TNT Championship and competing for the AEW World title multiple times. The goal for every AEW wrestler is to win the World Championship, but Allin is looking to do big things as TNT Champion.
"I'm 100% focused on that TNT Championship," Allin stated. "To even think about that right now, it's so up in the air in my mind. My goal is to make that TNT Championship as important as it can be. My focus is 100% on that TNT Championship, growing what, and having that main event in a pay-per-view."