12 Things NXT Gets Right About Wrestling
In the aftermath of Takeover: Orlando during WrestleMania 33 weekend, WWE's developmental brand NXT entered into its third generation as the early point from 2012-14 and growth period from 2015-16 came to a close and an almost entirely new field of talent entered the fray. The brand's weekly show had been underwhelming since the WWE Draft left a deep hole in the talent roster and lead writer Ryan Ward was sent up to pen Smackdown Live! However, this new era of NXT, beginning the very week after the festivities in Orlando, would not only soon bring the black and yellow brand back to the feel-good highs of the 4 Horsewomen and Sami Zayn-led period of 2015, but take the brand to even greater levels as the weekly TV program has gradually become better than ever, and every Takeover special appears to deliberately try to outdo the last.
In a modern WWE climate mired by an arguably stale television product, backstage grumblings, geopolitical strife, and unapologetically abhorrent booking decisions, NXT is a breath of fresh air; a true diamond in the rough that has rallied latent WWE fans behind an exciting, visionary product with an identity so distinct from its main roster counterparts that it's a common trope on social media to wonder aloud how the two exist in the same company.
These are the top 12 things NXT gets right about wrestling!
1) Titles with prestige
In NXT, the longstanding pro-wrestling tradition of treating championship titles with the same air of reverence and respect as their combat sports counterparts is perfectly preserved. Titles are rarely ever hot potato'd around (for example, there have only been seven women champions in the titles five-year history) and booking decisions on who will be champion are primarily based on merit, i.e. the best wrestlers win the championships, that simple.
Contrast this with the main rosters treatment of titles as relatively worthless props to be won and lost at whim based on backstage politics (Jinder Mahal's ascent to the WWE title when the company thought he could bring in Indian business, and equally rapid descent when they realized he couldn't) and nepotism and the difference is clear. It also helps that the standard gold plated, blackstrap NXT belts are far more aesthetically pleasing than the less serious-looking main roster straps.