WWE executive Nick Khan discusses big changes coming to NXT, whether WWE is pursuing a sale, his role in the talent cut process and why there have been so many cuts

By Jason Powell, ProWrestling.net Editor (@prowrestlingnet)

The following are some of the highlights of the interview that Ariel Helwani conducted on Saturday with WWE President and Chief Revenue Officer Nick Khan, which can be viewed in full below or via the BT Sport YouTube Page.

Whether he is involved in the talent cut decisions: “There’s a collective of us. And keep in mind at WWE, as you know, there’s one boss, that’s Vince [McMahon], as we all know. So between Bruce Prichard who oversees the entire creative process, between Kevin Dunn who oversees all of our production, between Stephanie McMahon, Paul Levesque, all are involved in these decisions, with ultimately Vince making the final decision on everything.”

On why there have been so many talent cuts: “I don’t know that there’s one explanation for it. I think ultimately what’s looked at is is this person is for us going to move the needle now or in the imminent future. [Khan mentioned the signings that came out of the Las Vegas talent tryouts]… We’re always looking for what’s next. We live in the present, we live in the future, we don’t live in the past. So when people leave and they move on with their life and their career, that’s good by us. For us, it’s what works for us and our product at that moment in time and again, what’s going to work down the road, and largely, in part, the existing roster is based on that.”

-On saying WWE is “open for business”: “When I say we’re open for business, that means if someone credible calls with anything, NFT’s, trading cards, international rights, we take the call. We are inherently sales people… If you call and you want to pitch us something and you’re a credible company, we’re going to hear the pitch. But we’re an entrepreneurial company that Vince and others built over the last 35 years or so. And we always want to stay fresh and entrepreneurial in our minds. When I say open for business, if somebody calls, credible, asking, hey, are you guys are for sale, it’s what’s your offer, what are you thinking. We’re not trying to sell it. That’s not our intent. There are no internal meetings about trying to sell this company. The internal meetings are about growing it and the ability that we think we collectively have to tremendously grow what the value of the company is now.” [Khan added that they are not in any active conversations about selling.]

On NXT changes: “We’re doing a complete revamp on NXT led by ‘Triple H’ Paul Levesque, who is really one of the architects of the original NXT. So what we found, it’s kinda why we did the tryout yesterday, what we want to make sure is easy for folks who want to be WWE Superstars, is figuring out how to become WWE Superstars… We want our system to be an easy system where people who want to be superstars, they know how to get to us and we can get to them. In terms of an NXT rebrand, look for it. In the next couple of weeks, it’s going to have a whole new look, it’s going to have a whole new feel. And we believe because a lot of the indy wrestlers if you will, have come through our system and are in our system with Smackdown and Raw now, we don’t want to just keep doing that same thing, we want to look elsewhere for great young talent.”

Powell’s POV: Khan added that the look and production of the NXT show would change over the next few weeks. NXT is taping multiple shows this week and then they will be making studio shows, so I assume the changes Khan referred to won’t start until after the shows taped this week air. Khan also spoke about his pro wrestling fandom, attending Paul Levesque’s birthday party and how it played a big role in him going to work for WWE, the past year of working for WWE, the company moving forward during the pandemic, former WWE talent moving to AEW, working with Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson, whether pay-per-views will move to Saturdays, the length of Raw and Smackdown television shows, and more.

Readers Comments (12)

  1. No wonder the Internet hates this guy, he makes too much sense for them.

    Imagine that, a guy running a business like an actual business. WWE had a bloated roster that needed to be trimmed. It sucks for anyone to lose their job but there’s no Red Cross on top of Titan Towers you can’t pay everyone just to keep them away from other company’s

    • It feels like Vince initially was keeping people, and even signing some to bigger deals, just to keep them locked up. Bringing in Nick Khan gave him someone other than family and yes men to offer a perspective from the real business world and it seems he’s made a difference.

  2. So, a guy like Bray Wyatt wasn’t moving the needle? Sure, that Fiend nonsense was total crap even though for reasons only known to Vince, Bliss has carried on with an even shittier version of that nonsense. That’s a really stupid explanation.

  3. By the way, what’s the point of signing more indy guys when they’re just gonna end up getting cut. The only people who benefit from this kind of stupidity are the competition because they get to sign these guys after they’ve gained exposure from being on NXT. So NXT is basically a developmental territory for rival companies. What a way to screw up something as good, no, great as NXT, no wonder most people don’t take this brand seriously, this explains the poor ratings.

  4. Wow a guy who comes in from business to run it like one

  5. For people who “don’t live in the past” they sure don’t waste time bringing back guys like Cena or digging up old relics like Goldberg to headline Major ppvs.

    • THANK YOU!!! I was gonna comment that same thing. “We Don’t live in the past”………that has to be the funniest thing WWE related that I’ve heard all year.

  6. Oh great, now all the WWE bootlickers are congratulating Daddy Business treating this company like a bloodless venture capitalist.

    The mask is off, Nick. WWE won’t get another penny from me until this guy moves on to ruin the next company he can “streamline” (fire the people with actual talent while the c-suite execs laugh through fake tears about all the “tough decisions” they have to make.

    Just eff off, dude. You and everyone like you.

  7. You can tell which commenters are grown adults who have actually done something with their lives and which ones are 35 year old losers who live in their mom’s basement and can’t handle the real world and cry about “duh capitalisms” while they fail every day.

    • So anyone who dares to offer an opinion that differs from yours is immature? Oh, the irony. From one who sounds like a petulant 9 year old while reviewing AEW shows.

    • I actually pay a mortgage and property taxes, is that enough real world experience to satisfy your elitist gatekeeping?

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