WWE should extend NXT to two hours every week
With dozens of talents in the developmental system, one hour of programming each week just isn't enough.
Over the past few years, NXT has become one of the hottest brands in pro wrestling. The show has been great for grooming talents for WWE's main roster and giving fans an alternative to Raw and SmackDown, but with only one hour of programming each week, many NXT stars end up sitting on the sidelines for several shows in a row.
It's time to extend the program to two hours.
Unless you are Samoa Joe, Shinsuke Nakamura, Asuka or Bobby Roode, your chances of being on the show two weeks in a row are slim to none. While it might seem beneficial not to overexpose a lot of the top names, it's would be even more beneficial if WWE had greater opportunities to get Superstars ready to be called up.
Take Aliyah for example. When she was first introduced on Breaking Ground on the WWE Network, she came across as being greener than grass and unsure of herself in the ring. In the second half of 2016, she made great strides and became one of the more promising rookies on the roster.
Had she been given more time in front of the camera to deliver promos and work matches, she might be even further along in her progression, but with the current schedule, she is only appearing on television once in a month, if at all.
An even bigger victim of the lack of time given to NXT Superstars has been Tye Dillinger. He has arguably been one of the most underrated talents in the entire company for well over a year, but he has only just started getting a real push from management, while more recognised indy stars are pushed ahead of him.
The list of people who could have benefitted from having more opportunities to appear on camera extends even further. Just look at Apollo Crews to see how not having enough time in the developmental system can hinder someone moving to Raw or SmackDown.
He is talented between the ropes, but the WWE Universe didn't have nearly enough time to connect with him because he was called up so quickly. If he had more appearances on NXT in the months between his signing and his debut on the main roster, people might have invested more in his character.
Not only would extending NXT to two hours solve the issue of talents not getting more screen time, but it would give WWE more opportunities to test out Performance Center recruits before deciding who is ready for their first push.
What some fans might not realise is WWE has more people training at the Performance Center for a future in WWE than it has active members of the NXT roster. The company recently touted seven new recruits being signed from China and four women being plucked from the indy scene, but you probably won't see any of them on TV for several months, if at all.
We have to assume a few guys from the recent United Kingdom Championship Tournament will be offered developmental deals, so there will be even more competition between the main roster hopefuls to make it on television.
By extending NXT to two hours, WWE will be able to feature the major storylines a little more often, give deserving talents a chance to shine and test more recruits on a regular basis to see if they are capable of being given more responsibilities.
The only possible downside to adding an hour to the schedule is fans becoming burnt out from watching so much of wrestling. Raw, SmackDown and 205 Live add up to over six hours each week. Most fans don't even bother watching the extra hour of NXT, so it is less likely they would turn out for another hour on top of it.
However, NXT was never meant to be a rating’s juggernaut. WWE uses it as a platform to introduce new talents, and as long as the subscriber count for the network keeps going up, management will continue to nurture the developmental system the way it has been for the past few years. Adding another hour benefits everyone in the end.
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