It seems as if the fate of NXT is a popular topic for my "On The Farm" column in every issue of Inside Wrestling/The Wrestler.
Well, NXT Season 5 debuted last night, and outside of the potentially awesome commentary team of Todd Grisham and William Regal, I find it hard to get excited. Not because I don’t enjoy the Florida Championship Wrestling call-ups, but because we’ve already seen these guys.
Season 5 is sort of an “all-star” format, as six previous NXT contestants (Darren Young, Titus O’Neil, Jacob Novak, Lucky Cannon, Conor O’Brian, and Byron Saxton) are back for a second chance, with the winner earning the right to compete on Season 6...giving him a third stint on the show.
Now, nothing against these guys personally, but they already didn’t win once, so why would the fans want to see them again? Instead, if WWE wants to make NXT something “fresh,” then I have a potentially great idea – an all-second-generation edition.
Right now, FCW has a ton of guys who are part of a wrestling family and haven’t taken part in NXT as of yet. For this endeavor, we can pare it down to these eight: Richie Steamboat, Wes Brisco, Bo Rotundo, Roman Leakee (son of Sika), Donny Marlow (son of Haku), Jinder Mahal (nephew of former Stampede standout Gama Singh), Tito Colon (nephew of Carlos, cousin of Primo and Carlito), and Brett DiBiase. An elite eight for sure, and if DiBiase’s knee isn’t up to it, we can sub in Buck Dixon, whose father is Mark “Henry Godwinn” Canterbury.
All eight (or nine) would kill to reach the heights of their fathers/uncles/cousins/brothers, but here’s the real twist: You pair them all up with multi-generation stars currently on the WWE main roster. See, that’s where the fun comes in, because when it’s matchup time, do you go the natural route, or do you mix it up a little?
You could take the easy way out on roughly half of these pairings. Ted DiBiase and Husky Harris could go with their brothers, The Usos could pair with their cousin Leakee, and Primo could mentor cousin Tito. Harris may be a little soon, but work with me there.
But what if you don’t?
Imagine how Ted DiBiase might feel if he had to help, say, Richie Steamboat – whose father was a thorn in Ted’s father’s side – defeat his own flesh and blood? Or even better, what if he was with Bo Rotundo, whose dad, IRS, was the other half of Money Inc. with Ted DiBiase Sr.? Sure, they’re likely childhood friends because of that connection, but blood is thicker than water, right?
How about Goldust with Marlow? After all, one of Dustin Rhodes’ biggest feuds in the early-1990s in WCW was with the Stud Stable, which included...Marlow’s dad, Meng.
Maybe they could pair Cody Rhodes with Brett DiBiase? Not only would it be a bit of a callback to Cody teaming with Ted in Legacy, but they could explore the until-now buried thought that it was Ted DiBiase Sr. who made Dusty Rhodes’ life a living hell in 1990-91. David Hart Smith and Jinder Mahal, whose relatives waged war for years up in Calgary, could also be another dynamite pairing in that vein.
So many great possibilities, and whether they go feel-good or fireworks, it could be a hit!