During a recent interview with Newsweek, NXT Champion Adam Cole opened up about several topics as we look ahead to the next major NXT TakeOver event. Cole has been riding a strong wave of momentum over the course of the last few weeks, and it seems as if that’s going to continue now that NXT is set to make a full transition over to a live product when they debut on USA Network.
On going from North American Championship to NXT Championship:
It moves so fast. Being in the wrestling business, my concept of time is completely thrown off. It’s crazy. I was talking about it the other day. I can’t believe I’ve been wrestling for over 11 years, and it doesn’t feel that long. Time flies.
You mention being in professional wrestling for 11 years. You’re now at the top of arguably the best in-ring promotion, how does it feel?
It’s cool, man. I’ve said this before. I’m so proud of the product we put on. I’m proud of the roster that we have. And I’ve said before, and I stand by it, bell to bell NXT is the best wrestling show on the planet. I really feel strongly about our crew, and our Takeover events are always super exciting wrestling shows. To be on top of a brand that I feel so strongly about is a really cool feeling. It’s a lot of pressure, but it’s also very rewarding at the same time.
On his feud with Johnny Gargano:
I’ve known Johnny Gargano for 10 years and before this feud, this trilogy. Johnny and I hadn’t touched at all in NXT. We knew that someday it was going to happen, and when it was going to happen we would make the most out of it. The way, and the time that it happened was not what we expected. But getting the chance at WrestleMania weekend, and to have that match that so many people revered and enjoyed so much, and then turning it into a trilogy that many people are saying is one of if not the best trilogies in NXT history was really cool.
Gargano is a really talented guy and without question we bring the best out of each other. Getting the chance to wrestle him on such a big platform like NXT Takeover was really cool.
On NXT going live on USA Network:
It’s awesome. I’ve said countless times that if more people got to see and experience NXT they would be fans for life. And now we have this whole new avenue and outlet. So many new people get to check out NXT, and I’m convinced that a lot of people will watch this show on USA and go “I have to watch this every week” just for the shows that we do deliver and put on. Going live on television is a lot more of a high pressure situation, but it’s something our team is ready for.
We’ve done the Takeover events, which are live. Feeling the energy of that crowd and knowing we have a weekly live show, I’m excited man. Of course there are nerves and pressure, but more than anything else I’m excited.
On whether things will change in NXT:
I don’t think so. I think we’re going to continue to do what we’ve done. I think it’s important for what we built with this brand, delivering exciting match after exciting match, week after week and that’s the game plan. Our crew is very passionate, we know the style of wrestling that we like, and we love the energy the NXT fans bring to the table. I can tell you this: we will bring the most exciting show we can every single week. That’s most certainly is the game plan.
On NXT being the third brand:
We’ve called it this for awhile, but we look at NXT as the third brand. And now I feel this move to USA just solidifies it. Instead of calling it “moved up” it’ll just be “moving.” Some guys may move to RAW or SmackDown. Some guys on RAW or SmackDown can move to NXT. To me, this move to the USA totally solidifies NXT as the third brand. I’m sure you’ll see lots of guys moving to different brands as time goes on.
On NXT going against AEW:
First and foremost, it’s an exciting time to be a wrestling fan. I think it’s so cool that fans have so many different options that they can watch wrestling all over the place.
But I will say this. As far as the “wednesday night wars” or AEW or anything like that, NXT got to the USA Network because of NXT. We’ve been focused on making sure NXT is the most exciting brand in pro wrestling and not just in WWE.
We’re going to focus all of our time and energy on making sure our show, week to week, is the best it possibly can be. Our roster and our guys are so ready for this opportunity. Ready to knock it out of the park and focus solely on what we can do to make sure this weekly TV show is the best one possible.