After an apparent shift in recruitment policy, WWE may have softened its view on independent wrestlers with some invited to an upcoming NXT tryout.
With Triple H at the helm of NXT, the brand became one of the hottest properties in wrestling with many of the finest independent wrestlers getting their WWE break there. Sami Zayn, Kevin Owens, Seth Rollins, Samoa Joe, Malakai Black, Jon Moxley, Bayley, Sasha Banks, and Becky Lynch are just a few of the stars that entered WWE via NXT after plying their trade outside of the company.
Things looked to have shifted in the company’s recruitment policy as Triple H’s era of black and gold NXT was swept away by NXT 2.0. WWE apparently shifted its focus away from independent wrestling and instead focussed on athletes from other sports for its next generation of stars.
Indeed, the company set up its Next In Line recruitment drive, taking advantage of NIL deals that can be signed by college athletes. The first star to sign such a deal was Olympic gold medallist Gable Steveson.
Writing in the Wrestling Observer Newsletter, Dave Meltzer reported that while that still may be the long term plan for WWE recruitment, some independent wrestlers have been contacted for a tryout over SummerSlam weekend:
“While the idea is still to recruit good-looking college or other athletes and train them to be wrestlers, they have contacted some indie talent for tryouts in Nashville over SummerSlam week.”
After some months away from official duties following heart surgery, Triple H recently announced to those at the WWE Performance Center that he’s back.