WWE’s McMahon and Triple H begin Wednesday war with NXT going head-to-head with AEW – The Sun
WWE have declared war on All Elite Wrestling after announcing its highly-acclaimed NXT show will go head-to-head with their rivals.
Vince McMahon’s company confirmed the news today – with the new two-hour long format of the Triple H led show due to start airing on the USA Network from Wednesday 18 September.
And they have stolen a march on the Tony-Khan backed-promotion AEW in the Wednesday Night War, with the latter not due to be screened from October 2.
Billionaire McMahon, who crushed WCW before buying them after successfully leading WWE to victory in the infamous Monday Night Wars in the late 90s, said: “The move to USA Network provides an opportunity to deepen our relationship with NBCUniversal and further build the NXT brand.
“Over the long term, our goal is to develop a following that can be monetized to the same level as our flagship programs, Raw and SmackDown.”
The current format one-hour format of NXT launched in 2010 and has risen to become WWE’s third largest brand, hosting around 200 events across the globe each year.
It has previously been a WWE Network exclusive – but now thousands will have the choice to tune in to that or their AEW competition.
NXT was taped at Full Sail University near to the WWE Performance Centre in Orlando, Florida.
And the company have confirmed it will still be held at its spiritual home.
USA and SYFY president Chris McCumber said: “USA Network and WWE have one of the longest and most successful partnerships in television history.
“As the #1 cable entertainment network, we're excited to add NXT to our weekly line-up alongside powerhouse flagship Raw, and to bring a new generation of Superstars to a wide audience.”
STOPPING THE RISE
AEW was launched earlier this year with former WWE star Cody Rhodes, The Young Bucks and Kenny Omega all handed top roles within the company.
They immediately snapped up WWE legend Chris Jericho, and followed that up by adding Jon Moxley, aka Dean Ambrose, to its roster in April.
AEW has already proved to be a big hit wrestling fans and has sold out its arenas for three pay-per-views and the upcoming TV tapings.
They launch their weekly AEW Revolution show on the TNT on Wednesday 2 October.
WWE’s decision to move NXT from their Network to cable TV is a shrewd decision from McMahon.
And it is clearly a major shot fired towards AEW.
NXT was devised and is still ran by former WWE champion Triple H – who is married to Vince’s daughter Stephanie.
He is now the company’s executive vice president of talent, live events and creative.
This is the first time since 2001 that WWE has had to battle directly with a rival wrestling business on national television.
WCW beat them for 83 weeks straight at one point in the ratings battle, but the emergence of stars such as Stone Cold Steve Austin and The Rock eventually helped McMahon put his opposition out of business.
Jericho recently appeared on Busted Open Radio and insisted Vinnie Mac has made a mistake this time by starting a war with AEW.
Y2J said: “There’s too much WWE as it is.
“Adding another two hours is a reactionary move that dilutes their product.
“It’s done by a guy who wants to start a war. There’s no war for us.”
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