Eric Bischoff Addresses Idea Of AEW Going Head-To-Head With WWE

Nobody had WWE on the ropes like WCW did in the late '90s. They never did land the knockout blow, but it was a captivating years-long fight, bringing out the best — and sometimes worst — of both companies. The "Monday Night War" lead to the first big wrestling boom since the "Rock n' Wrestling" era, so when Tony Khan launched AEW, many thought we were due for another. Certainly fans have appreciated having options again, but for the most part both companies have co-existed without much drama — the recent CM Punk saga notwithstanding.


So what would it take to give AEW that shot in the arm some say it needs? One "83 Weeks" listener asked Eric Bischoff if AEW would benefit from programming one of their shows directly opposite WWE, similar to Bischoff's strategy with "WCW Nitro." Once "Nitro" debuted in September 1995, it took just nine months to start topping "Raw" in the ratings.

"It could be a good thing for AEW to go head-to-head with WWE, in theory," Bischoff said. "One of the things that everybody would have to be prepared for is that it would take time. You're not going to be able to achieve what "Nitro" achieved, and that's because things are different now. It's just not possible. ... But there could still be a significant benefit if you had the right people in place, you had the right vision for your brand, and you had the discipline and the patience to achieve it. They certainly have the talent. But we're talking about such a theoretical opportunity that you would need quantum physics-like, mathematical aptitude to even project the odds of success now." "WWE NXT" did air on Wednesdays opposite "AEW Dynamite" from October 2019 to April 2021, but the so-called "Wednesday Night War" failed to generate much buzz.


If you use any quotes from this article, please credit "83 Weeks" and provide a h/t to Wrestling Inc. for the transcription.