Rumors that WWE may be developing a Facebook-exclusive weekly show have now been confirmed with the announcement today of Mixed Match Challenge, a single-elimination mixed tag tournament, in which six teams from Raw will face six teams from Smackdown.
The matches will happen live, and will air exclusively on Facebook Watch (Facebook, basically) at 10 p.m. ET, beginning January 16. WWE hasn’t commented on what this means for 205 Live, which usually airs in that time slot. Mixed Match Challenge is only going to be 20 minutes long, so maybe 205 Live can just start slightly later, or maybe a separate announcement about 205 Live’s schedule is coming soon, especially since the timing of this tournament corresponds with the upcoming 205 Live tour.
In their announcement post, WWE also says that storylines for the tournament will play out in other Facebook videos and posts throughout the week.
Which women will team with which men has apparently not been decided yet, and the GMs asked for fan input on the pairings they’d like to see. Each roster also has one male slot open for fans to vote on. The Smackdown position is limited to members of the New Day (which, let’s be honest, isn’t much of a limitation), while the Raw position is entirely open. Here is the list of participants as it stands now:
Monday Night Raw
(Fan Vote Slot)
(Fan-Chosen New Day Member)
We don’t really know yet how much influence the fan vote will have, or if that’s just a work, so it’s interesting to note that there are some obvious pairings, starting with actual married couples Lana/Rusev and Jimmy Uso/Naomi. Nia Jax teaming with Enzo Amore also seems likely, given their recent onscreen connection. But let us also not rule out a team of Nia Jax and Braun Strowman. Never rule that out.
Just off the top of my head it’s also easy to imagine Alexa Bliss with the Miz (the Egotists), Bobby Roode with Carmella (the FabuGlorious Team), or Natalya with Sami Zayn (the Canadian Jerks). And if this provides another opportunity for Bayley and Finn Balor to dress up like each other and be adorable, I don’t think anyone would object.