In the early days of NXT being a television brand, wrestlers would often come in before being cycled out and up to WWE Raw or SmackDown.
The philosophy has changed over the years with more talent staying with the brand, with Adam Cole, Johnny Gargano, and Tommaso Ciampa being the top examples. Those who have moved from NXT to the main roster in recent years have often come under criticism for "not being what they were in NXT," with fans pointing to the NXT and main roster differences between talent such as Shayna Baszler and Keith Lee.
During Thursday's NXT TakeOver media call, Dave Meltzer of the Wrestling Observer asked Triple H about fans being frustrated with following the NXT product, seeing their favorite talent being misused on the main roster, and how it affects the fans enjoyment of NXT.
"One way of looking at it is 'misused' and the other way is that things don't always pan out. There are players that play in the NFL, they play college football and people can't wait for them to get to the NFL and when they get to the NFL, it doesn't work and doesn't pan out. You can say a team misused them or mismanaged them or the coach of the team they played for didn't put them in the right role. It could be a million reasons. It can also be that sometimes talent doesn't fit in a particular place or talent got to a particular place and that was the end of their growth curve. Sometimes, it doesn't work. There are a lot of factors," began Triple H.
He continued, talking more directly about the frustrations of the fans and how they watch NXT, saying, "As NXT has grown, one of the things that has changed....people say, 'What is NXT?' Is it strictly developmental and you are looking for everyone to move on? Or is it its own brand?' It'll be an interesting place, the criticisms a year or two in, that was a heavy knock on NXT. It was always said, 'How can I get into this brand? Whenever I get excited about a talent, they move on. It kills me for the brand and I don't like it.' It was a heavy criticism. That was the first three or four years. Then it switched and the brand changed again. There will be some talent that is in a position for a long time and they might not fit different places or might not go different places. Some talent don't want to leave and expand beyond. Maybe the schedule doesn't work for them physically, whatever it is. It's funny to me that everyone is so worried about where everyone is going to go or land or how it'll play out long-term. How about watch it? Do you like it or not like it? Do you have to say, 'I like it, but I like this other thing more'? Watch it or don't and stop trying to figure out where everything goes. Fans ruin their own stuff half the time trying to figure out where everything goes and how and then search for the thing to find out what it is that can ruin it for them so they are not surprised when it happens. I don't understand that. I'm thrilled with what the brand is and where it is. Do I want it to get better? Yes. Do I want it to grow and expand? Yes. People will take this line and use it out of context, but it's a marathon, not a sprint. I'm not here to make a brand that is around for a few years or a few minutes. i want it to be long-term. How is it long-term? It morphs and evolves. It shouldn't be the same. If it's the same three or four years from now, then we made a mistake. It's just like people, you grow."
NXT call-ups have been less frequent during the pandemic era with Rhea Ripley, who was moved to WWE Raw ahead of WrestleMania, being the last major call-up.
Elsewhere during the media call, Triple H discussed the possibility of WWE doing another all-women's event. You can find his full comments by clicking here.
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