Wednesday Night War: AEW Dynamite vs. WWE NXT Review (January 8, 2020) | Smark Out Moment

Wednesday Night War: AEW Dynamite vs. WWE NXT Review (January 8, 2020)

Posted by Dallas Allsopp Thursday, January 9, 2020
Welcome to another edition of Wednesday Night War from Smark Out Moment, where we compare this week's episodes of AEW Dynamite and WWE NXT and determine which one of the two was the better show.

which wrestling TV show was better this week NXT vs AEW




AEW = AEW's match quality wasn't as consistent as it perhaps should have been, although there were some mitigating reasons for this. Kris Statlander's match against Riho for the AEW Women's Championship wasn't anywhere near as good as it should have been, but this can be attributed to the interference by Nightmare Collective. Both wrestlers are capable of much better, and you would have to believe that a clean match between the pair would have been much better received.

On a positive note, Kenny Omega and Adam Page defeated Private Party in an exciting match, which was improved by the fact there is a slow burning Adam Page heel turn being developed. It was a great way to open the show, with Omega once again looking solid in the smaller role he has taken on for himself in AEW. Cody and Dustin Rhodes also had a solid match against The Lucha Bros, which reiterated just how talented all 4 men are.

NXT = Every single match on NXT was a hit this week. From a frenetic opener in which the women shone, to an amazing main event that once again underlined how strong Keith Lee is, it was a good night for matches on NXT. Rhea Ripley continues to be highlighted as perhaps the strongest woman in the NXT women's division, whilst fans are happy to bask in the glory of Lee, who once again looked like a real star. The manner in which he won the fatal 4 way also helped cap off a solid main event as he hit a truly devastating Spirit Bomb on Cameron Grimes.

Special mention needs to be made for The Undisputed Era’s victory over Gallus, as this was an incredible first round Dusty Rhodes Tag Team Classic match. The Undisputed Era are perhaps the strongest team in NXT, yet the match was laid out in such a way that you believed Gallus had a chance.



AEW = Last week Chris Jericho offered Jon Moxley a position within Inner Circle, and he hoped to sway Moxley with the promise of a new car that everyone in the stable had chipped in to buy, in addition to 49% of the company. This led to Moxley being asked for his answer this week, and he did not disappoint as he initially appeared to join Inner Circle, only to turn on Jericho and smash a bottle of bubbly over his head. Both Moxley and Jericho performed well on the microphone, which made the promo come off well. Moxley gave fans a reminder of just how talented he is on the microphone, with his actions underlining just how dangerous he is.

NXT = Rhea Ripley opened the show with a heartfelt promo, only to be interrupted by a number of the strongest faces from the NXT women’s division. Each of them delivered their own promo to say how strong they are, and most importantly, how much better they are than the rest of the division. This was a great segment to highlight the strength of the NXT women’s division.

Johnny Gargano and Finn Balor superbly exchanged words as they confirmed they would compete against each other at NXT TakeOver: Portland. Gargano sounded passionate and justified in his hatred of what Balor claims to stand for, whilst Balor was able to weave a cold threat into his promo. This was a great segment that whets the appetite for their titanic clash.



AEW = Chris Jericho vs Jon Moxley automatically became the biggest storyline in AEW following Moxley's eventual refusal to join Inner Circle, noting that the only thing Jericho has that he wants is the AEW World Championship. They feuded in WWE, but were restricted by WWE in what they could actually do, however with no restrictions in AEW, their feud should reach new heights that increase the prestige of the fledgling AEW World Championship. Both are skilled talkers, and despite Jericho getting older, he can more than hold his own against Moxley. The build to their match will be compelling viewing, and I cannot wait to see how Moxley takes on Inner Circle.

I cannot get behind Dark Order and Nightmare Collective however, especially as their respective segments feel like a blight on AEW's overall product. Neither group has an interesting storyline that benefits the show, and their constant interruptions are actually detracting from the quality of each AEW Dynamite they appear on.

NXT = NXT is typically lighter on storylines than AEW, and this was the case this week. Other than highlighting the Johnny Gargano and Finn Balor feud, the show featured matches that either didn't feed into overarching storylines, or were part of the Dusty Rhodes Tag Team Classic.

One slight storyline development was Keith Lee becoming the number 1 contender to Roderick Strong's NXT North American Championship, as they have feuded in the past. This should ensure that when they face off for the championship in a few weeks, we are guaranteed a great match with an intriguing storyline to go with it.



AEW = Aside from a few moments that dragged, AEW was exciting to watch this week. The only issues on the show that brought down the overall quality of the show were the segments including Dark Order and Nightmare Collective, which is fair as neither group is truly over with fans. These issues aside, it was a good show which felt important thanks to the Inner Circle and Jon Moxley segment which closed the show.

NXT = NXT never dragged once, which was helped by a show with no bad matches at all. NXT was interesting from start to finish, with promo segments interspersed logically between matches to ensure there was no burnout. NXT has established a consistent product since moving to 2 hours, and this week was yet again another great show.



AEW gains points for subtely implying that Britt Baker may be turning heel, as she sat and watched as Kris Statlander was being beaten down by Nightmare Collective. This potential change to her character may be required in order for her to win the AEW Women's Championship.

AEW loses points for pushing Dark Order and Nightmare Collective, as fans are yet to fully get behind these stables. Neither of them truly add something positive to the show, which is a real shame to see.

NXT gains points for revealing that KUSHIDA's tag team partner for the Dusty Rhodes Tag Team Classic is none other than Alex Shelley, his former Timesplitters tag team partner. This was an announcement that no-one had predicted, which threw fans into an immediate frenzy.

NXT also gains points for the continued push of Keith Lee. They have a real star on their hands, and it is important to slowly build him up to become the face of NXT once Adam Cole makes the move to the main roster.

NXT loses points for the Robert Stone and Chelsea Green partnership. It is not something that I can get behind at the moment, especially as Green was poised to be a main roster regular.

POINT ADJUSTMENTS: AEW (+1 / -1) / NXT (+2 / -1)


With a score of 3 to 2, NXT just edges the Wednesday Night War this week. NXT featured better matches, whilst also ensuring the show didn't feature the same issues that AEW had, namely the involvement of 2 stables that fans have no interest in. The Dusty Rhodes Tag Team Classic is a great tournament to allow NXT to feature consistently high quality matches, whilst surprises such as Alex Shelley making his NXT debut keep the product interesting.

AEW was not a bad show however, with the Inner Circle and Jon Moxley segment actually coming off as one of the best segments in AEW's admittedly short history. It was played perfectly, with Moxley looking even stronger now than ever. The Wednesday Night War continues to be a compelling narrative within the wrestling industry, with both shows delivering quality content in spades.

That's my pick for the better show of the week, but how do YOU stand?
Which was better, Dynamite or NXT?
Let us know your thoughts in the comments below!

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Dallas Allsopp is a writer with two main interests, Pokemon and wrestling. He has been writing for a few years for his own personal blogs and is now taking his passion for wrestling and putting it into his writing. You can follow him on Facebook.


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