Following his defeat of Samoa Joe to regain the NXT Championship in Osaka, Japan, Shinsuke Nakamura takes a moment to soak in both the road he has traveled and the roots that laid the foundation for his championship successes.12/03/2016 - 09:45
WWE Legends discuss the WWE NXT season finale
The WWE NXT finale will change one young hopeful's life forever, as Wade Barrett, Justin Gabriel or David "A-List" Otunga will win season one of the competition. One of these three NXT Rookies will become WWE's next breakout Superstar, earning a championship match on pay-per-view.
Before the winner of WWE NXT is chosen by the final Pros' Poll, some WWE Legends talked to WWE.com about what it'll take one of these NXT Rookies to become a successful WWE Superstar.
"It comes down to three things; can you impress the WWE Pros in the final poll and win NXT and the pay-per-view title match?" hypothesized Michael Hayes. "Then on top of that, can you make the right choice when picking a champion to challenge? Then the third and final, hardest achievement or obstacle to overcome, can you beat that champion for his title at the pay-per-view?" (PHOTOS: Hayes inducts the Von Erichs into the WWE Hall of Fame)
WWE Hall of Famer Ricky "The Dragon" Steamboat pointed out that the winning NXT Rookie earns a championship match in mere months -- something it takes many WWE Superstars years to accomplish.
"Seize the moment, you know go for it because there is obviously going to be a lot of eyes watching this particular match, from CEOs on down," Steamboat told WWE.com. "If you make that first big impression being a NXT Rookie, going out there and entertaining the people by challenging a champion, seize the moment." (Visit Steamboat's WWE Hall of Fame page)
Arn Anderson said many athletes would give anything for an opportunity to play in the NFL, the NBA, NHL or MLB, and that's similar to what the winning NXT Rookie will earn.
"The guy that wins that contest is going to get launched in one of two shows -- SmackDown or Raw. It's a free pass, but once he gets the free pass in the door he's got to earn his keep. Then the shoe's on the other foot. We'll see what he's got," Anderson said.
"The only way to test your mettle is to actually be in there week to week, day to day," he explained. "Getting in the door is not the big challenge. It's being able to stay there. It's what it's going to be all about." (Visit Anderson's WWE Alumni page)
As for predictions about which NXT Rookie these WWE Legends believed would win WWE NXT, only Hayes offered his input. While he said Barrett is quite accomplished in the ring, he has his money on Tuesday night's "A-Lister."
"My choice would be David ‘A-List' Otunga, and the reason for that is pretty simple. I think David Otunga will sell more tickets in the long run -- and maybe in the shorter run --and selling tickets and putting butts in seats, that's what it's all about," Hayes said.
"Take it from somebody that knows a little something about selling tickets. Otunga has charisma, Otunga can talk, maybe Otunga is a little bit privileged because of his relationships due to his marriage to Jennifer Hudson, nevertheless when he does something, it's followed by mainstream media. He's going to get more attention."