Everyone is talking about the Wednesday Night Wars, but how does Triple H see things?
The Game recently spoke to The Sporting News where he took a shot at the idea of there being any “Wednesday Night Wars.” You don’t say the same thing with sitcoms when they’re on at the same time, so why is pro wrestling so special?
Then he explained what brought NXT to the USA Network and they are seizing the opportunity. Anyway, Triple H isn’t even sure that AEW will be competition. He’s apparently seen what they’ve produced so far, but he considers them “one-off” shows.
“It’s a funny thing. I don’t hear anybody going the Tuesday night sitcom wars are off the chart. It’s just a genre of entertainment in a way and to say there’s this war, first of all, for me, it comes down to putting on the best show and I’ve been saying this over and over. Since day one, we’ve been on Wednesdays on the network. Since day one, I have thought about trying to make each show better than the one before, trying to raise talent to another level, trying to make this product the best product it can be while embracing its difference from RAW and from SmackDown and everything else that’s out there.”
“We have the opportunity five years, in or whatever it is, to stay in our time slot, go to the No. 1 cable channel on television and expand it so there’s more opportunity for everybody, but the goal is the same. It doesn’t matter to me if there’s another show on that night. It doesn’t matter to me if there’s somebody else in the space. I’m not concerned with that, especially not yet given the fact that so far, they’ve held four, five shows. And they’ve been great. But they’re one-off shows.”
“Fifty-two weeks a year, two hours live every week is a different animal. Totally different animal. So, until that’s started happening and happened for a while, because an immediate splash … People have asked me right now, we had tremendous success last week (the Wednesday, Sept. 18 edition) with the rating for NXT, over a million people watching. The rating was great. A 200 percent increase in the 18-34 demo. On every level. I’m happy with that, but to me, this is a marathon. It’s not a sprint.”
“When we got this opportunity on USA, it was an opportunity to stand at the starting line of a marathon. I’m interested in the long haul. I’m interested in what this company has done for 50 years, with that they’ve done for 30 (years) with “RAW, what they’ve done for 20 (years) with “SmackDown” which is what this company does better than anybody else on the planet: week in, week out, live sports entertainment and doing what we do. And it doesn’t matter what’s out there.”
“There’s competition that we’ve dealt with for years. You can look back and say a brief period with WCW, but the competition we’ve dealt with for years is the NFL, is Major League Baseball. It’s large scale sporting events. It’s political debates. It’s everything that is out there and that’s what we deal with. So, my goal is to put on the best show possible every single week and we’ll see what the future brings because right now, it’s just a bunch of speculation over two-week programming that hasn’t even started yet and there’s no track record of success long-term of a two-hour, weekly live event in any way, shape, or form.”
WWE seems to be playing the card where they are doing a lot of things to put up hurdles for AEW, but they’re not acknowledging a competition exists. To admit that there is competition would be a win in itself for AEW, but that won’t keep the Wednesday Night Wars from raging, no matter what Triple H says.