WWE is sending its main roster stars to NXT next week, seemingly in the hope that the developmental brand defeats AEW Dynamite in a rare head-to-head ratings battle.
AEW Dynamite is due to air on Tuesday, 10 October, rather than its usual Wednesday, putting it in direct competition with the WWE brand. This may explain why the market leaders are sending their biggest star of the past 20 years to NXT for the night.
Last night's episode of NXT brought confirmation that John Cena will be on next week's show. Former NXT Champion Carmelo Hayes took a call from the 16-time World Champion during the broadcast, stating that Cena would be cornering him in a match with rival Bron Breakker.
Cena isn't the only one. Later in the night, Paul Heyman arrived, telling Hayes that he'd be in Breakker's corner for the match. WWE's top babyface, Cody Rhodes, will also be on the broadcast with a "major announcement." Match-wise, the stacked deck continues as Asuka faces Roxanne Perez.
WWE has sent main roster stars like the Judgment Day and Becky Lynch to NXT in efforts to bolster ratings in recent months. This has been largely successful, though Cena, Rhodes, and Heyman comprise the biggest move yet.
NXT and Dynamite were originally in direct ratings competition between October 2019 and April 2021. During these Wednesday Night Wars, NXT outdid Dynamite only once in the key 18-49 demographic, though few would bet against them being successful next Tuesday.