According to a source from Dave Meltzer of the Wrestling Observer, there is an update on the backstage talk on NXT’s move to the USA Network. Triple H was talking to everyone backstage about how “things are changing” with NXT, but that he couldn’t go into further detail. Triple H did mention that they’d have to tune in Monday to find out like everyone else which confirms our previous post about Monday. Meltzer was told that the start date for the new NXT format will begin in September, which puts them ahead of AEW’s October start date.
The rumor through the NXT talent is that they’re for sure going to the USA Network. Meltzer believes that they wouldn’t be withholding information if this was about FS1. There’s the fact that the announcement is being held for RAW on the USA Network, too. Triple H said he wasn’t allowed to give any additional details because of possible leaks. There were a lot of rumors that Vince McMahon would stay hands off with NXT, but if rumors are true that NXT is going to USA Network, there’s zero chance that Vince won’t be very hands on.
There’s a question of how bloated the show will be with current main roster superstars. NXT is currently taped at Full Sail in Florida, but all the RAW and Smackdown superstars are touring. This leaves Meltzer to believe that NXT will either be filmed every other week or will be another touring brand. NXT will likely no longer be strictly a developmental brand.
Meltzer doesn’t believe that NXT will be filmed every other week because the USA Network likes their shows to be “DVR-proof.” They prefer live shows because it gives the show a sense of urgency and a “must see” appeal. There is a lot of pressure on the WWE to make NXT appealing to new and old fans, so Meltzer believes that’s a definite reason we’ll be seeing main roster superstars throughout the show.
FS1 had told affiliates they were definitely getting NXT. The idea was that Fox was going to be the home of pro wrestling to replace the UFC. Fox’s business model relies on sports to keep their other shows marketed. Melter noted that Fox discovered a long time ago that people weren’t tuning into their shows in higher droves until they were advertised during the NFL. They were looking to duplicate those results. With NXT going to USA Network instead, that gives USA RAW, Miz and Mrs, Stone Cold’s new show Straight Up Steve Austin, and now NXT.
We could possibly be seeing the end of NXT as we know it.