AEW has presented itself as the alternative to WWE and in many ways, it is doing exactly what it intended to do. It has been ahead of NXT in terms of ratings during the Wednesday Night Wars, barring this week. With a product that consistently delivers, AEW has certainly taken the wrestling world by storm and WWE notices that.
Steve Austin is one of the best minds in the business and according to him, AEW’s inception is a good thing for WWE. While speaking to Sports Illustrated, Steve Austin said that competition is what helped define his career and improved it.
“Without competition, who knows what would have happened in my career—who knows what will come out of Wednesday nights, but I believe in competition. I know AEW is doing their thing and they say they’re not competition, and WWE might say it’s not competition, but if it’s on across from each other, it’s competition.”
“I remember when WCW’s Nitro kicked our ass for two years in the ‘Monday Night Wars.’ I couldn’t believe it, I thought our show was better, but they kept winning. Finally, we started turning the tide when everybody got so hot. The fact that we had competition, man, that made everybody push the envelope. I certainly wasn’t afraid to push the envelope, and I did. I’m thankful for the ‘Monday Night Wars.’ They helped define me. They helped Vince, and it helped us go out on a limb with some of the crazy stuff we did in our feud that became water-cooler talk and transcend the business.”
The landscape of professional wrestling is undergoing changes and it will be interesting to see what happens next. Competition breeds success and fans would want nothing more than for WWE to improve its product.