What Do the Latest NXT 2.0 Releases Indicate? - Triple Threat POV | Smark Out Moment

What Do the Latest NXT 2.0 Releases Indicate? - Triple Threat POV

Posted by Dallas Allsopp Friday, January 14, 2022

Welcome to another edition of Triple Threat from Smark Out Moment, where three of us get together to discuss three questions based on one big topic going down in the week of professional wrestling.

This week, Dallas Allsopp, Tony Mango and Bodeen Green discuss NXT 2.0 and it's recent releases.

NXT 2.0 is constantly evolving, but have the recent wave of releases marked a turn too far?

Question 1: Samoa Joe has now been released by WWE for the second time. What is his next logical step?

ALLSOPP: If Ring of Honor weren’t going on a hiatus, I’d have pegged him to start a nostalgia trip to his earlier days. As it is, I feel he needs to go to Impact Wrestling. Not necessarily because it’s the best option overall, but perhaps the best option for him to be a force on the show.

MANGO: It has to be AEW. He's far too big of a name and way too talented to be elsewhere. Impact, NWA, MLW, GCW, etc are just too low on the totem pole for someone of his value. New Japan would have been a good spot for him if he were younger and healthier, but that's not a feasible option anymore. Give us the remaining dream matches that are possible in All Elite Wrestling and, when it's time to hang up the boots, call it a career there.

GREEN: Samoa Joe is a rare talent who can do anything. As we saw in WWE, Joe can make a great authority figure as well as a great commentator. Of course, Joe’s health is a big concern, and it’s hard to tell how healthy he truly is. If he only has a few matches left in him, I would love to see him go to AEW and simply tick off a few dream matches with the likes of Kenny Omega and CM Punk. However, if he has a few years left in him, I would also love to see him join Impact Wrestling and hopefully provide a much needed boost. Even if he can no longer medically compete, I would love to see him in a commentator role in Impact Wrestling and serve a role similar to Taz.

Question 2: Is there anyone who is a part of NXT 2.0 (either in an active wrestling or backstage role) that you feel is at risk from the next imminent set of releases?

MANGO: Everyone who remains from the previous era is a potential risk to be released. Dakota Kai, Io Shirai, Grizzled Young Veterans, Matt Bloom, etc. Any one of them could go at any moment and at this point, I wouldn't be shocked.

GREEN: Of course, the original talent and backstage crew will keep being in the firing line of the releases. However, I do feel new NXT 2,l.0 talent (mostly cannon fodder jobbers) will be in the firing line as well. It seems WWE have a revolving door of jobbers getting put on television for a few months and then are released, and I can easily see that trend continuing in 2022.

ALLSOPP: I will echo Tony’s thoughts, as the OG NXT wrestlers are in a very precarious position, especially as WWE seems hell bent on making NXT 2.0 a vastly different product. I’m the grand scheme of things, NXT wrestlers and producers are not financially valuable or difficult to release.

Question 3: How detrimental to WWE is the release of William Regal? What does it suggest about NXT 2.0 moving forward?

GREEN: William Regal is easily my favourite authority figure in recent history across any brand. The man’s role was simple, as he’d interact with a wrestler, make a match, and leave. Even when he got involved in storylines, he was never put in the spotlight and never stole the heat from the wrestlers involved. Whilst I can understand WWE’s desire to start afresh and rip everything old out, at the end of the day, some things are not worth changing. Regal could have still made for a great general manager under the new NXT 2.0, and I would have loved to see his interactions with the likes of Joe Gacy, Tony D’Angelo, and more. Without a proper authority figure making matches, I feel NXT 2.0 may lose a sense of direction it once had with Regal.

ALLSOPP: I am devastated that William Regal has been released. Not only is he a long serving star for the company, but it truly demonstrates how no-one in NXT is safe. Triple H’s baby has all but been replaced with a teenager that I cannot relate to. The reboot is a disaster for a fan like myself, after devoting so many years to the product Triple H created. I can see NXT 2.0 become ever more sterile and without creativity that I just lose all interest as a fan.

MANGO: This whole NXT 2.0 reboot idea is coming off more and more like an emotional response rather than a business strategy. It's giving me vibes of people you see on Facebook who go through a breakup and decide to cut their hair, change their job, move, and act like they need to change "everything" just to reboot their lives. All or nothing. It's destructive and rarely ever as helpful as thinking things out, deducing problems and coming up with the solutions to fix those issues. WWE is too focused on NXT being a failure and wanting to cleanse the company of that toxin, so to speak, than anything else. Regal is part of that collective and "everything must go" because it's easier to just cut it all. Think of it like chopping your whole hand off because you have a splinter in your thumb. WWE isn't thinking about how losing Regal is a loss because they won't look back on "what if we kept Regal?" and how beneficial he could have been, since in their minds, Regal's representative of "the wrong strategy" and a failure. This means NXT 2.0 is going to be the total opposite.

It's similar to when you go from Democrat to Republican in elections. People think "the last 4 years caused X problems, so that must mean we need the opposite party in power and they'll fix everything" and the cycle repeats. Since NXT focused on indie stars, people who could wrestle, and valued in-ring talent over size and mic skills, NXT 2.0 is going to actively look for just large "personalities". It's the end of looking for an Adam Cole and Shawn Michaels and the beginning of going back to looking for a Harland and Hulk Hogan.

Those are our thoughts on the issue, but where do you stand?

Let us know your answers to these questions in the comments below!

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Dallas Allsopp is a writer with two main interests, Pokemon and wrestling. He has been writing for a few years for his own personal blogs and is now taking his passion for wrestling and putting it into his writing. You can follow him on Facebook.


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