I thought when NXT moved to Tuesdays, the war was over?
Anecdotally at least, it actually seems like things have heated up between AEW and WWE since the end of the so-called Wednesday Night War. Perhaps because the perception has shifted and now partisans on both sides see the competition as being between Dynamite and Raw?
Whatever the reason, this week’s ratings and the differing reactions to end of The Pinnacle’s victory over Inner Circle in Blood & Guts have really ramped up tensions between the camps. Tweets from WWE wrestlers like Shotzi Blackheart and Shayna Baszler were seen by some as fanning the flames.
Not a veteran who’s been on lots of different sides in lots of different wrestling battles...
AEW & WWE are competitors, shots & jabs are to be expected. I don’t have a problem with jabs, as long as they’re not in poor taste.— MATT HARDY (@MATTHARDYBRAND) May 6, 2021
It’s a savvy take. Hardy reinvented himself in Impact with the meta “Broken” character that included lots of winks to his past incarnations, and references to other company’s real and perceived shortcomings. Being The Elite does it every week. Matt would be a hypocrite if he cried foul about any jokes about the competition.
Those jokes are also something most fans really like. Trash talking is part of wrestling’s DNA, and one layer of kayfabe involves giving the audience little glimpses of the behind-the-scenes. As long as I’ve loved wrestling, I’ve loved a well-honed jab from one promotion to another. They’re the “smart” equivalent of a good insult in a promo.
So bring on the jokes, but keep them as the occasional extra garnish. The main focus should be on producing good wrestling shows.
And amidst all the banter - between companies, wrestlers, and fans - let’s remember a different Shotzi Blackheart tweet from Wednesday night...
I love wrestling! ❤️— Shotzi Blackheart (@ShotziWWE) May 6, 2021