WWE Executive Vice President of Talent, Live Events, and Creative Triple H had a media call to promote WWE’s developmental territory NXT, and their ongoing tour of the United Kingdom, which will culminate in a live WWE Network special this Wednesday. During his talk, Triple H said several things that might be of interest to wrestling fans, regarding the future of NXT, the problems with the main roster, and why Raw continues to be a three hour death march into oblivion.
On the common complaint of three-hour Raws being too long:
“I’ll be the first one to admit, when I’m going to a movie and it runs over two hours, I’m looking at my watch. I don’t care how good it is.”
On a potential solution of cutting Raw by an hour and moving NXT off the WWE Network and onto TV:
“As successful as the WWE Network is as this time, when you compare it to cable television, the viewership is much lower. One of the cool things about having it on the network is that it’s special and it’s episodic programming that makes you want to stay on the Network and stay a part of the Network. Look, the Sopranos were on a pay channel and it certainly didn’t hurt them long term. It was the biggest show in television. Now if someone internally here is in a different mindset, our financial people or marketing people, decides that this was the right move, I would support it 100%.”
On the differences between WWE and NXT:
“I think in some ways, the way we handled the women. Sometimes the disconnect in the way that they are handled or, you know, it’s tough to make that shift. It’s tough to oversee every component of the show for anybody. And so even if you want to change things, there are certain things that fall back to the old way we used to do things and there are certain pieces that change. Even with talent, their mindsets change. ‘Okay, I did this here, but now I’m on the main roster so I have to do this differently.’ They perform differently. They’re intimidated sometimes. It takes times to change. Even back in the day when talent came from WCW and they would make the jump over, or vice versa, and you’re thinking ‘Wow, it’s the same guy, but something about them seems different.’ Over time, they went back to their normal self. But even those changes affect talent.”
On whether there’s anything NXT is doing that he’d like to do with the main roster:
“Sure, obviously, if I’m utilizing them, I think they’re right. Otherwise, I wouldn’t be utilizing them. There is a stark difference of what works in NXT from what works in the larger arenas in front of the world. In some ways, and I’ve used this analogy before, it’s different musical styles. If the WWE is more pop music, then [NXT] is a bit more alternative rock, or something like that, where there’s a bit more niche to it. But yeah, there are definitely some things that I see that could move up and be utilized. I think you see them happening, slowly but surely. Over time, I think you see things that we started in NXT or little bits and pieces of the way that we’ve handled certain things boiling up. But like I say, it’s chocolate and vanilla. You don’t want to change the chocolate over to vanilla! It’s a fine line, let’s just put it that way. But there are a few things that could boil up.”
You can listen to the entire media call on SoundCloud right here.