WWE NXT media call: Live notes on Shawn Michaels speaking with the pro wrestling media ahead of Saturday’s NXT Vengeance Day


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

WWE executive Shawn Michaels spoke with the pro wresting media on Thursday, February 2 to promote Saturday’s NXT Vengeance Day premium live event. Refresh the page for the latest updates.

-Michaels was asked about ticket sales and said things are going well and they hope to do more events on the road.

-Michaels was asked about how he feels Dakota Kai is doing on the main roster. He praised her and said he thinks she’s getting what she deserves. Michaels spoke highly of the Damage CTRL trio.

-The next person asked about William Regal returning. Michaels said it’s great to have him back and said he got to see him at Raw XXX. Michaels said that Regal hasn’t been at the WWE Performance Center much since he returned, but he’s always welcome and it’s good to have him back “where he belongs.” Michaels said Regal is considered an OG in WWE. He said they are looking forward to having Regal at the PC on a more regular basis, but he’s still getting his feet wet in his new position.

-Michaels was asked about the women in the Royal Rumble and how that was decided. Michaels said it was determined by “the guys upstairs.” He said he offers his opinions and recommendations. He said sometimes it matters a great deal and other times it does not. Michaels said he thinks they had a pretty good idea of who they wanted. He said there were also a couple of backups who served as alternates.

-It seems the next question was about Grayson Waller (momentarily distracted). Michaels praised the person the question was about.

-Michaels was asked about Ilja Dragunov and Meiko Satomura. He said he would love to have them back. He said there are some visa issues with some talent, but they are also waiting for a long term commitment from some people and said he understood that it’s not an easy decision to make.

-Michaels was asked about having New Day and if he wants to do more of that. Michaels said he wouldn’t be surprised to see more of it happen and they want synergy between the brands.

-The next person asked about Alba Fyre. Michaels said he is a fan. He said there was a name and a character change. He said there’s typically a rough period that talent go through when that happens before things are smoothed out. He said he knows fans can get impatient when it comes to call-ups. Michaels said time doesn’t always make a person a better worker. He said there has to be a spot or an opportunity or a storyline. He said he hopes that works out for her. Michaels said he has his fingers crossed that they will be having talks around WrestleMania about call-ups.

-Michaels was asked about NXT Europe. He said they are moving forward and are putting the infrastructure in place. He said they are looking at venues and dates. Michaels said he hopes there will be an announcement with more details in the next couple of months. He added that they are having meetings about that this week.

-Michaels was asked if he is having conversations with Paul Levesque about main roster call-ups at this time. He said that’s something for down the line. He said that he and Levesque have texted just a couple of times due to their busy schedules. Michaels said he hopes there will be call-ups around WrestleMania, but he hasn’t been told anything. He said he knows the pressure that Levesque is under and so he’s doing his best to stay out of his hair and manage the ship in NXT.

-Michaels was asked more about the women in the Royal Rumble and whether there was any truth to the talk that they didn’t do more with Roxanne Perez because she will be defending her title at Vengeance Day. Michaels said he doesn’t have any information when it comes to how the match was laid out.

-Michaels spoke encouraging wrestlers to push the envelope and said he will pull them back when he needs to. He said the talent knows that he wants what’s best for them. He said he is open and honest with them about what he did during his career, why it can’t be done now, and how it could hurt their careers if they did what he did. Michaels said there were plenty of people who drew more than he did who weren’t as uninhibited as he was. He said you can have more success financially on the other side, so why not take that approach.

-Michaels was asked about Mandy Rose’s departure and how they adapted. Michaels said it obviously was not the ideal situation. Michaels said that he did not fire her and can’t fire anyone. He said Rose was fantastic for NXT and he enjoyed working with her. He said he wished things could have gone different so they could have built her story with Roxanne Perez. Michaels said he’s learned that nothing comes before the brand. He said moving the title to Perez happened a couple weeks before they planned, but now they are on track with it. He said Rose was a terrific champion and they miss her, but they are moving forward with Perez as champion.

-Michaels was asked if he’s involved in informing talent that they will be getting their shots on the main roster through WWE Main Event. Michaels said Drake Maverick handles the Main Event show. He said that Maverick and Paul Levesque spoke and decided they wanted to have more NXT talent on the show. Michaels said the head writer gets to inform the talent. He said he thinks it encourages the talent to keep working. He said you feel like a wrestler in the wrestling business when you get to get on a plane and play to a big crowd. He said it’s a huge opportunity for the talent and a huge encouragement, and called it a huge plus for them to have over the last couple of months.

-Michaels was asked if Vince McMahon has any input in the NXT or main roster creative. Michaels said he has not and doesn’t think he will because he has bigger fish to fry than what they are doing in NXT. Michaels said he doesn’t ask all the questions because sometimes there are things he doesn’t want the answer to. Michaels said Vince was good to them when he was around. He said they laid out the plan of where they wanted to go and then took a hands off approach. He said the same has been true with Paul Levesque since he took over.

-Michaels was asked about the match he’s looking forward to most (I believe, it was tough to hear the caller). Michaels said the Carmelo Hayes and Apollo Crews stands out to him. He spoke highly of other matches on the show.

-Michaels was asked about Duke Hudson. Michaels said Hudson “is quietly one of my favorite guys.” Michaels said he’s a “big, impressive, handsome son of a gun.” He said it’s been hard for him to get some traction, but it was just a matter of finding the right fit for him. Michaels said there seemed to be some trust issues for him when it came to having some creative that he could sink his teeth into. Michaels said he hopes he’s earned Hudson’s trust and said that he’s a guy who always makes him smile or laugh. Michaels said they have some good things planned for him. “We’re very excited about Duke and what he’s been doing with Chase U,” Michaels said.

-The final question regarded surprises at NXT Vengeance Day. Michaels said the obvious in that he couldn’t say anything if they had any or they wouldn’t be surprises. He said it’s WrestleMania season for everyone in WWE and it’s an extremely exciting time. He spoke about taking the show on the road for the first time in three years. Michaels said he thinks everyone will enjoy all of the WWE products over the next few months.

-Michaels said he liked the new video aspect that was used for this call even if he said he was sweating in his suit and hat. He said he hoped they could do an in-person version at Stand & Deliver over WrestleMania weekend. Michaels said he gets the cynicism in wrestling, but he tries to be honest. He said with that, he avoids asking certain questions so that he doesn’t have to life. He also said he enjoys the honest feedback and hopes that the Vengeance Day event will go well.


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