In the latest edition of the Wrestling Observer Newsletter, Dave Meltzer details an interesting reason for why NXT entrance times have apparently been reduced on television.
“One of the reasons the ring entrances have been cut back on as far as time on the NXT TV show is Shawn Michaels felt that long ring entrances gave the viewers more time to check out AEW. Even though that’s no longer an issue, because Michaels is Paul Levesque’s main guy, they have done it with the idea of getting more time for in-ring and angles. Whether this is true or not, within the company the story that has gone around is that it was Rebecca, Shawn’s wife, who was watching the show and told him she thought the ring entrances were too long and giving people too much time to switch stations, and he brought that up to Levesque.”
As I have detailed here for years, there is definitely a trade off between entrances times and match times on a wrestling show. If the idea is to increase total match time on a wrestling show, one of the best ways to accomplish that goal is to cut down entrance times.
The bigger thing that stands out to me here is NXT decision-makers (and Shawn Michaels’ wife) possibly concluding that long entrances presented an opportunity for viewers to change the channel and deliver their eyeballs to AEW Dynamite.
I’m not sure if there is merit to that idea. So I’ll pose the following questions to you, Cagesiders. Are you likely to change the channel during a wrestler’s entrance? Is the entrance a crucial element for conveying that the wrestler is a big star, is it skippable filler that you’d rather not sit through, or is it something in between those two extremes?