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TRIPLE H DISCUSSES NXT MOVING TO THE USA NETWORK, HOW IT CHANGES NXT CREATIVE, THE FUTURE OF 205 LIVE AND MORE

By Mike Johnson on 2019-09-11 13:23:00

WWE's Paul Levesque sat down with Newsweek to discuss WWE NXT's transition to the USA Network.  You can read the entire interview at this link, but here are some highlights:

Whether he was prepared for NXT to move to the USA Network when it was confirmed: "It's one of those things when you're doing it, it's taking forever. Like I said, we've been talking about NXT moving to cable television in a bigger way for a year and a half, two years. It's been brought up, we've had people talk to us about it and the timing wasn't right or we couldn't come to the right terms to it. This year the stars started to align, but it still felt like it took a long period of time. And then suddenly you get a call that "hey, here we are and it's happening."  And then it's like "oh my god, I wasn't ready for this to happen quite yet." [Laughs]  Like I said, thrilled to do it, talent is chomping at the bit to get out there and, not only are they happy to have the opportunity, but they get to show the world what they can do and who they are and keep that NXT brand out there for everyone to see."

How This Changes WWE NXT Creative: "In that manner, it's not really going to change how we approach the writing of the program. I don't intend for it to speed things up. I don't intend for it to now all of a sudden you're going to see the same talent more often because they are on the same show and it's two hours instead of one.  I see it as opening a door. The biggest challenge for me in the last two years or so has been not having [time]. With the show being one hour, not having the ability to get talent out there. To continue to tell the story that needed to be out there [and] to continue to tell the story that will take you to the next Takeover or whatever it was. But to have the availability and opening to say, yeah I want this person on TV, I want to debut this talent. I want to move this person into something big. And you just run out of time and space. This really opens up that opportunity and will allow for a much more diverse grouping of talent to be shown.  There's a lot of talent chomping at the bit for the last year saying "put me in coach," you know? And we haven't had it. Now we have that space and time and, trust me, they are going to be there to be the top players on the brand and that's the competition that will breed success."

Takeovers Going Forward as Standalone events: "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."

Whether NXT on the USA Network Means Main Roster Talents Can Move to NXT more Freely: "Yeah 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.  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."

The future of 205 Live: "You'll start to see 205 begin to. 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."

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