Photo Credit: World Wrestling Entertainment | All Elite Wrestling

Wednesday Night War Preview (5 February)

It’s another Wednesday, and so it’s another skirmish in the ratings war between NXT and Dynamite, as both move towards their next PPVs, including 10 lashes on live tv, a huge 8-man tag match,and a WrestleMania 36-level confrontation.

Here’s a preview for both shows.

Tonight, Cody answers the first of his stipulations so he can face MJF at Revolution– well, technically he’s been abiding by the “can’t touch me” stip since day one– and that’s bearing ten lashes live on Dynamite. Honestly, it’s a pretty unique stipulation, and biblical at that, but now it seems a little anti-climactic after Daniel Bryan and “The Fiend” competed in their vicious Strap Match at Royal Rumble… almost as if WWE cut this off at the pass? Regardless, it’s unique and will undoubtedly build heel heat for MFJ and sympathy heat for Cody, although he doesn’t necessarily need it.

In a match that will likely open the show, as the members of The Elite tend to do to get the crowd hot off the jump, the AEW Tag Team Champions Kenny Omega & “Hangman” Adam Page team with The Young Bucks to take on The Butcher & The Blade and The Lucha Bros. The Butcher & The Blade– and The Bunny–  are now all but officially aligned with MJF and Wardlow, and seem to being booked as the next contenders for the Tag Team Championship. This match is basically a huge showcase of what everyone loves about AEW: the tag team division. This will be fast-paced, high-flying (and probably incoherent), but it will be interesting to see what during divisions we see between Adam Page and the rest of The Elite, and if The Butcher & The Blade are, in fact, the next contenders for the titles, if they’ll look out of their depth a little when in the ring six veteran grapplers.

And in the last match that’s been announced, Jon Moxley takes on a member of AEW World Champion Chris Jericho’s Inner Circle, Ortiz as Moxley moves forward with his single eye on Jericho’s title. This match should be standard fare as the #1 Contender continues to build his heat, either beating Ortiz cleanly or Jericho and the rest of The Inner Circle interference and beat Moxley down.

On the NXT side of things, the lead storyline heading into tonight is the winner of the 2020 Women’s Royal Rumble winner Charlotte Flair is set to confront NXT Women’s Champion Rhea Ripley, after the champion appeared on Monday Night Raw to offer herself and her title defence for Flair’s right to challenge for championship at WrestleMania 36. This is clearly the match that fans want to see, as it’s both fresher than another Becky Lynch or Bayley feud and lends even more legitimacy to promoting NXT as an official third brand. With the glow of WrestleMania gracing the Black and Yellow brand, and having Flair appear once more in Full Sail is a major move to shine some more mainstream light on the Wednesday night, and potentially pull some eyeballs away from TNT.

But before WM36, Ripley first has an NXT Championship title defence against Bianca Belair at TakeOver: Portland, and the #1 contender is also set to confront the champion tonight. It will be interesting to see what sort interaction the three women have, and how Belair factors in for the longview championship picture.

New NXT Cruiserweight Champion and NXT UK roster member Jordan Devlin is set to appear in Full Sail. With the former champion Angel Garza now apparently called up to the Monday Night Raw roster, this will likely be the setting up of a new program with someone new, whether it’s Lio Rush once more setting his sights on reclaiming the title he lost to Garza, or if the push for Isiah “Swerve” Scott continues and he gets a one-on-one opportunity to win that fancy new championship belt.

NXT Champion Adam Cole and the rest of The Undisputed Era have also vowed to get revenge on #1 Contender Tommaso Ciampa, after “The Blackheart” attacked the champion last week during their contract signing for TakeOver: Portland, and signed said contract in his own blood. This is surely to result in some sort of gang-style mugging, that might bring out Johnny Gargano to help out his #DIY tag team partner. Either way, this will be more heat-building as Tommaso looks to regain his precious “Goldie.”

The BroserWeights, Matt Riddle and Pete Dunne, fresh off their Dusty Rhodes Classic win, and earners of #1 Contender’s status for Bobby Fish & Kyle O’Reilly’s NXT Tag Team Championship at TakeOver: Portland. Perhaps they get involved in a Ciampa beatdown, kick-starting the feud as they head towards the PPV on Sunday 16 February.