It only took him sixteen long years to get there but Samoa Joe is finally in the WWE. Joe debuted at the conclusion of the NXT Unstoppable Network special, confirming numerous reports throughout the week that predicted Joe would debut at the event.
[adinserter block=”1″]Joe came out following the Kevin Owens vs. Sami Zayn match. Owens had Zayn laid out and started attacking him with a chair when Joe’s music played. Joe walked out and got into the ring going nose to nose with Owens. The fans ate it up chanting “Holy Sh*t!” and “Joe is gonna kill you.” The confrontation ended with Owens walking away and Joe looking strong to close the show.
According to a report on F4WOnline.com, Joe has a “Rhyno-like” deal in which he will work independent shows as well as NXT dates. Ironically it was announced this past week that Joe just started booking independent dates into the summer, leading many to believe that Joe was not coming to NXT. My hunch and it is only a hunch is that Joe is in, and those dates were a ruse. Joe will probably honor those dates, but I would not expect to see more announced elsewhere.
As big as this is I am left with more questions about NXT, specifically its purpose. Is NXT a developmental program or is it competing to be the number one branded independent promotion in the United States? Signing Joe is great and I am excited for him and his fans, but bringing in Joe and Owens in recent months and shooting them straight to the top isn’t necessary developing anyone.
Samoa Joe is 36-years old and should be on the main roster if he is being considered for the future. Having Joe spend any time in NXT is a wasted investment in my opinion…unless the goal here is to brand NXT and not necessarily build to the future. I think the mission and goals around NXT really need some serious re-evaluation at this point.
It also makes me wonder in the world are they bringing Owens up for a match with Cena at Elimination Chamber? Owens is clearly sticking around NXT, with programs against Joe, Zayn, and Balor in play or upcoming. Again what is the goal here? Is the goal to build Owens up for NXT or the main roster? Bringing Owens up to lose to Cena and go away will do Owens no good when the time comes for him to move up to the main roster. I am just scratching my head here trying to come up with a logical game plan here and I can’t.
[adinserter block=”2″]Again don’t misunderstand me. I thought it was great to see Joe and Owens have their confrontation and it is nice to see Joe finally get a shot in the big league. That said I just have to wonder if the NXT Triple H is running is what Vince McMahon had in mind when he signed off on the $2.3 million investment.