NJPW/IMPACT star Jonah recently spoke with Inside The Ropes about all things pro-wrestling, including the former North American champion’s current thoughts on the new NXT product, something he believes has drifted far away from the brand he used to love. Highlights from the interview are below.
How he and other top NXT guys always saw it as a third brand rather than just a pure WWE product:
“It’s just not the place it is anymore, that’s from speaking to friends that are still there. They have completely gutted it and made it NXT 2.0, the black and gold is gone. Obviously, you still have some of those same performers, and obviously, it is unfortunate that Hunter has been sick and he hasn’t been able to be there, but it was all Hunter’s vision. It was Triple H’s vision for a wrestling show. I felt that while working for NXT, a lot of the guys that were on the television product, guys like myself, Adam Cole, Ciampa, Gargano, guys that took it seriously, saw NXT as a third brand.”
Says the new NXT is now just a fabricated version of Raw or SmackDown:
“I always saw it as you had Raw and SmackDown as the big entertainment wrestling shows, but NXT was almost the pro-wrestling show for WWE, where you can come and watch wrestling. It was still a little bit different and counter-culture to the other two shows. Now I see it as just a fabricated version of Raw or SmackDown, but in a smaller timeslot.”