Every wrestling fan has a take on WWE moving NXT to Wednesday nights on the USA Network, where it will air at the same time as All Elite Wrestling‘s new show on TNT. (NXT will also be available on the WWE Network twenty-four hours later.) On the latest episode of his podcast, Grilling JR, AEW commentator Jim Ross shared his views on what one could call the Wednesday Night Wars if they were so inclined.
After remarking that he was not surprised by this development and that he knew that Vince McMahon letting “AEW grow independently and freely was never going to happen” because “he feels threatened for some crazy reason,” Ross was optimistic about the two wrestling shows going head-to-head, though he reiterated a point he made earlier that AEW wouldn’t usurp the industry giant. In Ross’s words (transcript from 411Mania):
Competition is good. It’s gonna be like a football scrimmage… We’ll be very happy to compete. We knew it was gonna be a competition all along. We all knew it wasn’t gonna be an easy road.
But at no time in my interview process, or my short experience since March with Tony Khan and AEW, have I heard one person every say that “Oh, we’re gonna get the WWE on this one.” It’s never been brought up! It’s brought up online. It’s brought up in the wrestling media. And I just see that when Vince moved NXT off his own network that’s streaming.
I’ve been a loyal subscriber to the WWE Network since the day it started … but man, I tell you, Conrad, it tells us all we need to know… is WWE aware and cautious about the development of AEW? Well, the answer is obviously yes! Should they be? I don’t really know if they should be or not. Because no one is going to supplant WWE as the #1 sports entertainment company in the world. That’s just the way it is.
While AEW personnel has taken many shots at WWE – from Being The Elite jokes to Cody’s throne bit at Double or Nothing to the Young Bucks talking about what AEW would and wouldn’t do creatively when making their TV show to Chris Jericho’s recent comments about the NXT development – it’s true that they haven’t done anything as dramatic as the move of NXT, though it’s also probably true that they or any wrestling company in the United States besides WWE would be able to make this type of maneuver.