During the Monday Night Wars, both WWE and WCW filmed their respective shows in large arenas that held tens of thousands of people. With these new Wednesday Night Wars, it will be a different dynamic as AEW is using large arenas but NXT is still filming at Full Sail University, which holds over 400 fans.
Ryback said this makes a huge difference to the viewer and he talked about why he preferred AEW's setup when Wrestling Inc's Raj Giri joined his Conversations With The Big Guy podcast.
"I believe, and again, I have to watch the AEW product when it comes out so I can't say until I do see that and give it a little bit of time. But watching NXT on TV I can tell you, and this is just me watching as a pro wrestler, and it's not because of the talent necessarily even though they are in developmental - it was a developmental league and for good reason because of the psychology and not because of moves - but I feel like I am seeing an old FCW [show] when I was in FCW. Even though it is better produced because of the way it is filmed in a small arena, I believe [WWE] are going to run into a huge problem if AEW kills it with those large crowds. If AEW does what they are supposed to and have good crowds in different arenas I will tune into that all day long," said Ryback.
In addition to the visual of a larger arena, Ryback also says the types of moves and matches that NXT wants out of its Superstars isn't enough of an appeal to keep viewers from watching AEW.
"If that is what I am watching with NXT - because I can tell you straight up there is a reason why you have promos and storylines in pro wrestling and this is me who loves pro wrestling and enjoys watching wrestling - I get very bored with what NXT is putting in front of me because I am not intrigued with just moves. And when I see that Donovan Dijak and Keith Lee do a move that is technically supposed to kill somebody and Keith Lee just kicks out and is back in the match and wins moments after, they should not be allowed to do that" said Ryback. "To me it is the sh*ts because to me there's no reason to do that and then go do other stuff and do a sh*tty finish and then watching that is just match, match, match, okay.
"In that arena I'm telling you that is not going to appeal to the masses when you have Raw, SmackDown, AEW going into those bigger arenas. I'm going to watch AEW and I'm not completely down the middle on that, nothing on WWE, but I don't know. I can see that getting old very quickly because of that atmosphere where they're going to have to go, s**t, we have to go into bigger arenas."
AEW Dynamite will debut tonight in the Capital One Arena in Washington, D.C. which will be seating over 14,000 fans. WWE says they have no plans to leave Full Sail any time soon as they recently extended their partnership, which first began in 2012.
If you use any of the quotes in this article, please credit Conversations With The Big Guy with a h/t to Wrestling Inc. for the transcription.
Peter Bahi contributed to this article.