According to The Wrap EVOLVE’s 10th anniversary show EVOLVE 131 will stream live on the WWE Network. EVOLVE’s official twitter retweeted this report and some leading sources have also confirmed the report leading most to believe it’s true. EVOLVE 131 is set to include an NXT Championship match between Adam Cole and Akira Tozawa while Cruiserweight Champion Drew Gulak takes on Matt Riddle.
With Seth Rollins leading the charge in WWE’s war on AEW and NJPW this news can be seen as another shot in the war as EVOLVE 131 airs against AEW’s Fight For The Fallen. Fight For The Fallen has been the least hyped AEW show so far as it is a charity show which will be streamed for free but WWE airing content against it may be the first of many attempts at getting the edge on their competition with AEW and EVOLVE presumably drawing from similar fanbases.
Another view to take is that this is the next step in WWE adding independent wrestling content to their network. It’s long been rumored that WWE wanted to add independent wrestling companies such as EVOLVE, PROGRESS, and Westside Xtreme Wrestling (wXw) who they are notably partnered with. At their recent Business Partner Summit WWE announced their plans to re-roll out the WWE Network in late 2019 which would include various price tiers, one of which has long been rumored to include independent wrestling content. Could EVOVLE’s show be the first step on EVOLVE joining the WWE Network? Or is it just WWE attempting to sabotage AEW? Either way, this is a big development in the relationship between WWE and it’s independent partners
Update: This has now been officially confirmed by WWE
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