WWE and AEW’s Wednesday Night War started in October 2019 as AEW Dynamite and NXT went head-to-head every week in order to see who would come out the better show. AEW Dynamite would win in the ratings war for the majority of the time. The Wars finally came to an end in April after NXT moved to Tuesday nights. People like Jim Ross believed it was cop out.
For 76 weeks the war between the two brands raged on and only on one occasion did AEW lose in the key 18-49 demographic rating against NXT. This was seen as a shock to many but AEW bounced back.
WWE COO Triple H was blamed for NXT losing the Wednesday Night Wars, and from the looks of it, many people backstage are trying to ensure he doesn’t take over the company once Vince McMahon retires.
While speaking on a recent episode of Talk Is Jericho, Adam Cole stated that he believed NXT 2.0 was caused due to AEW Dynamite defeating NXT in ratings during the Wednesday Night Wars.
“This is all just me guessing. I think, for sure, (AEW beating NXT) played a part (in the rebrand). I also understand the thought process of…there were so many guys in NXT who were presented a certain way and then they’d go to Raw or SmackDown and it was a complete 180. I see the standpoint of, if I am Vince McMahon, him looking at NXT as this breeding ground for guys on Raw and SmackDown, he wants his hands in it a little bit more and he wants bigger guys. Not saying everyone is going to be big, but more guys who are geared to be ready to go for Raw and SmackDown.
I understand that. When I was there at NXT, it was treated as a third brand. We got on television because of it, we had the big Survivor Series month, which was really cool. It was the more athletic pro wrestling storytelling and style. Them going back to this, certainly, AEW has to play a factor in my mind. It just has to. More important, I do think it’s so they don’t have to change a thing about guys when they are in NXT now.”
NXT 2.0 so far has received mixed reception so far, so it remains to be seen whether the product will improve in good time or not.
h/t to Fightful for the quotes.
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