Kevin Owens has admitted that NXT has changed so much that the show barely resembles the brand he was once such a huge part of.
When Kevin Owens signed for WWE in 2014, NXT was a completely different animal to what it is now. During his time on the black and gold brand, Owens tangled with the likes of Finn Balor, Sami Zayn and Samoa Joe, three men already recognised as stars of the independent scene and known across the world.
Fast-forward to 2021, and NXT 2.0 is a very different multi-coloured proposition. Gone are the established veterans, replaced with fresh-faced talent such as Bron Breakker.
Appearing on the Les anti-pods de la lutte, Kevin Owens said that the brand has changed so much, it bares little resemblance to the show he was so heavily involved in.
“Today’s NXT is very different than the NXT I was part of, to the point I believe it should have a totally different name,” he said. “And I don’t think it’s better or worse, but it’s just too different. So when I’m watching NXT, I don’t see the NXT I was part of. It’s not the same thing.”
“I don’t even consider that to be the same show,” he added. “I don’t really feel any attachment to NXT now.”
Owens explained that he still keeps an eye on the show and the talent involved, but he’s not interested in a return, as he feels he no longer fits what the brand has become.
“I don’t think I fit in the new NXT as I was fitting in the NXT I was part of, with guys like Sami, Finn, Samoa Joe and Nakamura. When I watch NXT now, I don’t feel the same thing I felt when I was watching NXT two years ago.”
Speaking in November, Kevin Owens revealed that there were plans for him to return to NXT full-time in 2019. In the end he only appeared at WarGames before resuming his role on the main roster.
Kevin Owens had been the subject of increasing speculation in recent weeks and months with the end of his WWE contract in sight. However, the former Universal Champion chose to re-sign with the company in a deal believed to be worth between $2 and $3 million per year.
H/t to SESCOOPS for the transcription.