Adam Cole has shared his opinion on AEW vs WWE competition, recalling his role in the AEW vs NXT Wednesday Night Wars.
Holding the current record for the longest singular NXT Championship reign at 396 days (recognised by WWE), Cole was one of the brand’s biggest stars before his jump to AEW.
Speaking with Chris Van Vliet, Cole admitted that he has never been particularly interested in viewership figures. Also arguing that competition is good for wrestling as a whole, Cole said:
“So for me personally, and this is always how I have been, being in NXT and being in AEW, I’ve never been someone who is super focused on the ratings war. I was always so focused on, if I was wrestling, I want to have the best match possible, if I’m cutting a promo I want to have the best promo possible… Of course it’s really exciting to hear ‘Hey! 1.3 million, that’s awesome!’ or that I was in the highest rated segment on the show, that’s great. But if my match isn’t good, or my promo isn’t good, I don’t care how many people have watched it, I’m going to be upset.
“It was a really exciting time, really cool, especially in the beginning. It was NXT’s first time on TV, which was really awesome. Now I am on the other side in AEW and seeing the momentum continuing to grow, it’s cool. I think across the board it’s good for wrestling. I think it’s cool that people can watch both shows and stuff like that.
“Sometimes I do think that the fans are a little bit too hard on either side. I was on the WWE side, but I still loved WCW. But I’ve always been someone who is like, man there are a lot of people getting a lot of TV time, or not been on TV before and getting the chance to showcase themselves. I just think it has been great across the board for the industry of pro-wrestling.”
The last half-hour of Friday’s SmackDown directly went up against the beginning of Rampage. Ahead of the AEW show, a Buy-In aired on YouTube, also clashing with SmackDown.
Tony Khan recently noted that he wants there to be competitive spirit between the two wrestling companies.