We couldn't wait to tell you what the Executive Vice President (Talent/Live Events/Creative) had to say about Sami Zayn and Hideo Itami, but those guys' medical status was far from the only interesting stuff Triple H was talking about on his conference call today.
- road shows will continue, with some festival dates and international travel currently under consideration.
- his plans to have NXT on the road three days a week by 2016.
- they'll keep two touring schedules, because he doesn't want to lose their connection to the homegrown Florida fanbase.
On becoming its own brand and competing with other promotions:
- reiterated his goal to be a "full brand" by next year.
- his plan from day one was always to have NXT be an individual brand, he just didn't tell anyone right away.
- as WWE's "third brand", there are acts and gimmicks that will work for them that won't work on the main roster - and just because something works on Raw or Smackdown doesn't make it right for NXT.
- even as their own brand, the goal is still to get people ready for the main roster. That said, they know there are talents in Developmental who will never appear on Raw or Smackdown.
- he doesn't know if NXT will end up on cable television, but he's happy on WWE Network and thinks they're a major selling point for the service.
- he mentioned liking Ring of Honor (ROH) and Dragon Gate, and he's not trying to make NXT direct competition for them. He thinks if NXT's business grows, so will indies like ROH.
Potential new signings:
- while he's not competing with ROH, his goal is to make NXT's roster the best it can be.
- it's not a requirement that signees have indy experience, but any experience is a plus.
- he said Samoa Joe is a "phenomenal talent" who was at the Performance Center a month or two ago. They only spoke for a few minutes and he doesn't know if they'll do business together.
- asked about talents who say they've turned down NXT contracts because they can make more on the indies, Hunter said they haven't spoken to those talents "on any level" (when fans suggested to The Young Bucks that he must have been talking about them here, Matt Jackson tweeted that they turned down a tryout in Orlando).
Evaluating his roster & training staff:
- Matt Bloom is officially the head trainer on a permanent, ongoing basis.
- Sara Amato is still working as a road agent in addition to serving as a trainer at NXT.
- he singled out Zayn's development working without a mask and Baron Corbin in general as guys who've made a ton of progress.
- he thinks Becky Lynch and Sasha Banks could steal the show tomorrow at TakeOver (he also touted Charlotte & Banks headlining in Philly last Thursday and talked about changing people's perceptions about women's wrestling. Said there are no plans for a women-only series or event, but he's not necessarily against it).
- he said it's "more than possible" that Emma could find herself back in the NXT title picture.
Vince McMahon's knowledge of an involvement in NXT:
- Vince sees "bits & pieces" of NXT
- Triple H didn't know he was coming to the San Jose show until the last minute
- Vince and all of the WWE officials were very excited by what they saw WrestleMania weekend and want to do a lot more with the brand.
There you have it, Cagesiders. What jumps out at you - good or bad - from his comments?