You just need to take one look at the current roster and pretty much everyone you love is a product of NXT. There are very few superstars who are currently active who are not NXT alumni. So, what’s the magic sauce? How is NXT consistently churning out world-class talent for RAW and SmackDown?
The answer to that is two-fold. Firstly, they are creating new talent. Like the old-school music labels, they have scouts who are going all around the world and are discovering new talent. They bring them to the Performance Center, train them, invest in them, help them discover their characters, and they are literally creating new talent.
And secondly, they are taking the best in the world from various other companies and independent wrestling promotions, bringing them to the PC and are teaching them the WWE way. How to craft promos, how to work the camera and audiences, be safer in the ring. Basically, everything you need to have a successful long career. They’re taking really good talent and making them even better.
I know a lot of you feel that once some of the NXT talent come over to the main roster, they kind of fizzle out, but I believe it just takes time. Look at Roman Reigns for instance. He is the man in WWE. Look at Seth Rollins, Sasha Banks, Charlotte Flair, Becky Lynch, Bayley, The Fiend, Alexa Bliss and so many other main eventers.
They’re all NXT products. Did they all turn into stars overnight? No. Even the current crop, whom we now just take for granted, took a while to find their footing.
I’m sure some people will get lost in the shuffle or will not see their full potential for a while or maybe never, but I think it also has a lot to do with them and not just the system.
The current crop of NXT graduates on the main roster
Let’s look at some of the best new talent from NXT to the main roster and some who are still in NXT who I think could be the next big thing.
I think Ricochet is one of the best athletes I’ve seen in WWE or any other company for that matter. I think he is just scratching the surface of what he can do. I would love to see him grow bigger in the years to come.
Riddle is brilliant. I love his laid-back attitude outside the ring, but once the bell rings, he can really tear it down.
It took me a while to warm up to Keith Lee but now, I absolutely love him. I see the hype, and it is legit. I think he’ll be a major player post WrestleMania.
Another major rising star is Rhea Ripley. Right after appearing on the main roster, she has been thrust into the title picture with Asuka at WrestleMania. I can't wait to see how big she becomes on the main roster.
And speaking of someone from NXT who is on her way to becoming big, how can I not mention Bianca Belair. She is one of the best pure athletes I’ve seen in all my years of watching WWE. She too has her own title match at this year's Wrestlemania. The sky is the limit for these two superstars in my opinon.
The next batch of NXT stars
Then there’s the talent that is still on NXT. Here are five names I’d love to see on the main roster soon.
Adam Cole…bay bay! Without a doubt, he is a main event star no matter where he goes. I can’t wait to see what he does once he comes on the main roster. And another member of the now broken-up Undisputed Era that I’d like to see move up is Kyle O’Reilly. His matches with Finn Balor in the last few months have been mental.
Shotzi Blackheart could really do well. She has a unique look and character, and I can see her instantly get into the title picture on RAW or SmackDown.
Io Shirai is stunning and I love that superstars like Asuka and Io have stuck to doing most of their talking in their native languages. It makes them more authentic and believable. I think she could take on anyone on the main roster.
I think that Karrion Kross and Scarlett Bordeaux could truly be the next big thing. I don’t think I’ve seen a more impressive couple in WWE ever. Scarlett is more than just a valet. She’s an integral part of the Karrion Kross persona; Like Paul Bearer was with The Undertaker. And I know I said five names, but I actually consider Karrion and Scarlett as one entity.
These are my predictions for this year. I think post WrestleMania, we could see a lot more of all of them in WWE.