By Jason Powell, ProWrestling.net Editor (@prowrestlingnet)
Paul “Triple H” Levesque spoke with Justin Barrasso of Sports Illustrated and was asked whether NXT would be holding the Great American Bash if AEW wasn’t running Fyter Fest. “It absolutely is part of healthy of competition,” Levesque said. “Anyone that thinks it isn’t, to a degree, is being naive to the situation. You saw that back in the day when Clash of Champions was counter-programming [to WWE’s WrestleMania IV in 1988]. At the same point, it can’t drive your booking decisions. Obviously there are counter-programming decisions, but I can tell you exactly how this came about. Almost all of these storylines were headed where they are now. There was a gap, timing wise, between In Your House and what will become the SummerSlam Takeover, and you need a halfway point and a build. This is that halfway point. So it doesn’t change our decision-making process. I don’t counter-book, I book what’s right for NXT.”
Levesque was also asked how wrestlers can stand out without a crowd present. “By not being safe, and I don’t mean not being safe in the physical sense, but rather in their creative decision-making process,” he said. “Without a crowd, you have to look at it as a little bit of freedom. It’s really easy to be an older talent and want to try something different. But when you’re in front of a crowd, they want to see you play your greatest hits. That gets the biggest reaction. When there is no crowd, you have that ability to be less safe in your decision-making process. Reactions are less immediate so you can experiment a little more. And when crowds come back, and the excitement level is contagious, my hope is that the talent keeps some of that freedom to experiment.” Read the full interview at SI.com.
Powell’s POV: It will be interesting to see if NXT opts to counter next week’s AEW Fight For The Fallen themed edition of Dynamite with another theme. Levesque also spoke about Adam Cole, Keith Lee, Mia Yim, Candice LeRae, knowing when the time is right for a title change, and why fans should watch tonight’s show. Join John Moore for his live review of NXT Great American Bash night two tonight at 7CT/8ET.