NXT's Great American Bash vs. AEW Fyter Fest Night One: Which Should You Watch?

Over the next two weeks AEW and NXT will ramp up their weekly head-to-head competition by putting on pay-per-view quality shows with the Fyter Fest and Great American Bash specials. The first night will take place on Wednesday night from Daily's Place in Jacksonville and Full Sail Live in Orlando respectively. AEW has loaded up its first night with three championship matches, while NXT has promoted some intriguing bouts like Io Shirai vs. Sasha Banks (non-title), Timothy Thatcher vs. Oney Lorcan and Roderick Strong vs. Dexter Lumis in a strap match.

We've assembled ComicBook's team of wrestling writers to answer the big question — which show should you watch tonight? Let us know your pick down in the comments below!

Connor Casey: For the first night I'm actually going with NXT. I think when all is said and done Fyter Fest will be the better event overall, but the first night of matches doesn't excite me quite like what NXT is offering. Omega and Page vs. The Best Friends will likely be fantastic and MJF/Wardlow vs. Jurassic Express looks intriguing but I have zero interest in Rhodes vs Hager (blame the latter, not the former), Shida isn't dropping her title this early and Private Party vs. Santana & Ortiz feels like filler.

On the other side, you've got what should be a killer non-title match between Io Shirai and Sasha Banks, a No. 1 contender's match with four women who always deliver and an Oney Lorcan vs. Timothy Thatcher match that should make for a technical clinic (and provide so many slaps). That's all before mentioning Roderick Strong vs. Dexter Lumis, the latter of whom might be my favorite character on Wednesday nights right now.

Matt Aguilar: Both lineups are strong, but for Night 1 NXT has the superior card, and aside from one match there isn't anything on the card I want to miss. While I will definitely be bummed not to watch Jurassic Express vs. MJF and Wardlow and Cody Rhodes vs. Jake Hager live, those are the only two matches that really have my attention in any way.

By contrast, Great American Bash features a card with a much higher ceiling. Io vs Sasha is going to be great, simply because of the talent involved, and the same goes for the Fatal 4-Way match that has title ramifications between Dakota Kai, Tegan Nox, Candice LeRae, and Mia Yim. The sheer delightful lunacy of Dexter Lumis will make his match against Roderick Strong can't miss TV, and that same level of comedy and unpredictability also makes the Handicap Match between Rhea Ripley and Aliyah and Robert Stone worthwhile too. Night 2 might definitely go to AEW, but Night 1 is all NXT.

Evan Valentine: I always look at both NXT and AEW as the "college sports" of the wrestling world, where the wrestlers in each are giving that much more to make names for themselves but when all is said and done, I always find myself gravitating toward All Elite Wrestling. Fyter Fest is shaping up to be quite the two-night show and the main hook of bringing in one of Lucha Underground's finest, Brian Cage, really clinched it for me.

It really comes down to personal preference but if you're looking for my opinion on it, I always think that AEW should get that extra bit of support as it's the major competition to the monolith of the WWE and could always use more eyes in establishing an empire of its own.


Ryan Droste: I always tend to side with AEW on these types of questions because as the upstart company, they need our support if we want to see two viable national wrestling companies in the U.S. I usually watch AEW live and go back and watch NXT after the fact.

However, looking at this one objectively and trying to make a decision based solely on the cards...I'd still go with AEW. I do believe NXT has the best singular match tonight, as the Sasha Banks vs. Io Shirai bout is easily my most anticipated viewing of the night. When it comes to the rest of the cards, though, I'll give the nod to AEW for a better list of matches from top to bottom.

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