Triple H talks potential changes to NXT.
NXT founder Triple H is gearing up for the brand's big move on Sept. 18 when they shift from WWE Network to USA, go live every week, and add an extra hour of television. The entire WWE schedule is set to shift the first week of October as not only will NXT be running two hours on USA against All Elite Wrestling, but SmackDown will move from Tuesdays on USA to Fridays on Fox. With the change in schedule, the brand that could be most affected is 205 Live, which runs Tuesdays after SmackDown.
"I think you'll see that RAW will become very much distinctly its own brand as well as SmackDown on Fox. And NXT will be its own. The ability, as time moves on, for people to move from RAW to SmackDown, and NXT to RAW or SmackDown, but also RAW or SmackDown to NXT," Triple H told Newsweek. "NXT UK will sit under that NXT banner as well, probably 205 too breathing some life into it a little bit. That creates three distinct brands that talent, over the course of their career - which hopefully is long - where they can migrate from one to the other and be reinvigorated and have fresh starts and have longer, more meaningful and lucrative careers while staying within the same company."
When asked to clarify 205 Live's status, Triple H said, "You'll start to see 205 begin to [sit under the NXT umbrella]. I think it always existed as an island onto itself, a little bit, and it's become lost in this limbo. You'll begin to see it move more towards the NXT banner and the talent there. We have a lot of talent. For them to begin to compete either open against anyone or in the cruiserweight division, but have that title sit under the NXT brand is more meaningful. It creates more opportunities for more people. As for RAW and SmackDown, it's an open division for them. When you're on both shows, everybody is competing against everybody."
With NXT becoming a third brand more than a developmental brand, there will be a shift in the TakeOver schedule as well. WWE is advertising Worlds Collide for the night before Royal Rumble 2020, a day usually reserved for NXT TakeOver.
When asked about a change in the TakeOver schedule, Triple H said, "I think you'll see some changes there, but the other thing I don't want to do, also, is flood the fanbase or overexpose the brand either. I want things to build organically and we have had success. We have the formula, the pacing, the timing and when the Takeovers take place that allows us to have more opportunities for a slower build. And when Takeover is done, we get a little bit of relief to promote the next thing. It allows you more chance to build and create epic stuff. To me that is the goal. I don't see it changing dramatically. This past year we had five Takeovers with the brand here and two in the U.K. I think you might see that go up to six in the U.S. and we'll continue to monitor the U.K. to see what we can add there."
The next TakeOver is scheduled for Nov. 23 in Chicago, the night before WWE Survivor Series. It will be the third annual TakeOver: WarGames.
In other NXT news, it was announced on Sept. 9 that Full Sail will remain the home of NXT as the two parties extended their partnership. You can view the press release by clicking here.