The Great American Bash vs Fyter Fest - Triple Threat POV | Smark Out Moment

The Great American Bash vs Fyter Fest - Triple Threat POV

Posted by Dallas Allsopp Thursday, July 9, 2020
Welcome to another edition of Triple Threat from Smark Out Moment, where three of us get together to discuss three questions based on one big topic going down in the week of professional wrestling.

This week, Dallas Allsopp, Bodeen Green and Ben Williams will be comparing the success of The Great American Bash and Fyter Fest.

Both WWE and AEW decided to treat fans to a fortnight of pay-per-view quality shows, with WWE's NXT brand presenting The Great American Bash, whilst AEW presented Fyter Fest. However, was the NXT show a response to AEW's already established plans to run Fyter Fest over two weeks? Is Io Shirai now a made woman within WWE? And just how valuable is Cody to the AEW TNT Championship?

Question 1: The week before night 1 of Fyter Fest was due to take place, WWE announced that The Great American Bash would take place over 2 weeks. Is this a sign WWE were worried about the ratings? Would The Great American Bash have benefitted from a longer build?

ALLSOPP: Although not a sign of desperation, it is clear to me that WWE felt threatened enough that they needed to oppose Fyter Fest with a super show of their own. A longer period to build to the matches would have helped, but the beauty of storyline development in NXT means that nearly all of the matches had prior development to make them feel worthy of being on the card. The ratings war seems to have equalised out in a sense, therefore WWE would have been determined to counter top quality programming with their own top quality offering.

GREEN: As the old cliche goes, there's nothing wrong with a bit of competition. Whilst WWE did produce The Great American Bash as a reaction to Fyter Fest, I don't see this as proof of them feeling threatened. Whilst AEW has produced higher ratings on many occasions, both shows have consistent ratings that do not rank up with the ratings of Raw and SmackDown. This being said, I do feel that The Great American Bash could have used a lot more build up, especially as a few matches were just thrown together a week before. In the end, both shows were fun to watch and helped elevate the status of both shows.

WILLIAMS: I don’t think that WWE is worried about ratings. Just look at their main roster product for the best part of a decade to see why. I agree that The Great American Bash was definitely produced to rival Fyter Fest, which was a smart move by WWE in my opinion. However, I don't believe AEW will ever be seen as a serious threat to WWE whilst they remain one of the biggest entertainment companies on the planet.

Question 2: Io Shirai defeated Sasha Banks in a non title match to close out night 1 of The Great American Bash. Was this a surprising result? Is Shirai now a made woman in WWE?

GREEN: Whilst her win wasn't completely clean, Io Shirai beating Sasha Banks definitely elevates her status. Even when she won the belt at NXT TakeOver: In Your House, it felt like she was a transitional champion to give Rhea Ripley the belt back, considering it was Charlotte Flair who was pinned. This win now shows that her title reign may have some more mileage. Both women must also be credited for their brilliant performance, with both women going out of their way to deliver an amazing match, proving that the NXT women's roster is arguably the best in professional wrestling today.

WILLIAMS: This match was sensational for starters, with both women proving why they’re up there with the very best wrestlers in the world today, male or female. Io Shirai having a legitimate pinfall over Sasha Banks (Asuka assisted or otherwise) is huge for her career, and it is certainly a sign that WWE sees value in her as the current face of NXT's women’s division. The result wasn’t surprising to me personally, but who am I to complain about predictability when two women produce a match that good?

ALLSOPP: The fact this was a non title match convinced me that Sasha Banks was winning, therefore watching Io Shirai win was a genuine surprise and a feel good moment. I absolutely love how Banks is being pushed hard at the moment, therefore Shirai has increased her credibility tenfold by winning. Selfishly, I want her to stay in NXT, however if she is tempted to move to the main roster, she would arrive with credibility unseen since Shayna Baszler’s main roster debut. But then again, look how that experiment turned out.

Question 3: Cody successfully defended his AEW TNT Championship against Jake Hager. Did you enjoy the match finish? Is Cody the right man to elevate the title?

WILLIAMS: Cody holding the championship isn't elevating it at this point because Cody has nowhere to go upwards from here. If AEW is meant to rival WWE by doing what Vince McMahon wouldn’t, it makes very little sense to me why the Executive Vice President of the company is being presented above the rest of the roster on a regular basis. The finish to the match wasn’t great, but we’ve definitely seen much worse. Hopefully this will lead to some more character development for Jake Hager, which is something he has always seemed to lack.

ALLSOPP: I enjoyed it. It wasn’t the best finish in the world, but it was more creative than the standard pinfall finish. It worked especially well when you consider Jake Hager’s breakdown after the match, and I hope AEW follow up on that narrative. In terms of Cody, I genuinely cannot think of one man more deserving of the AEW TNT Championship. He has so much credibility in the business from his WWE and independent tenure that he genuinely makes the title seem important. My only wish is that he drops the title to MJF during a classic match on Dynamite. It would allow MJF to shine whilst allowing fans to get behind him as a true star of the company.

GREEN: I enjoyed the match, however the finish drew me out of it a little, which to be fair is more due to a gripe I have with simultaneous tap out, pass out and pinfall finishes. That being said, I do hope AEW continue with Jake Hager's current narrative as it allows Cody and Hager to have another match further down the line, whilst providing time for another person to prove themselves. Whilst Cody is an established name, I hope he loses the title soon to someone such as MJF or another young and upcoming talent, mainly because AEW's goal to have Cody set the prestige for the AEW TNT Championship will eventually grow old.

Those are our thoughts on the issue, but where do you stand?
Let us know your answers to these questions 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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