Neville is arguably the best Cruiserweight in the world. I believe, and have believed for a long time, that he is also one of, if not, the best in-ring performer on the planet as well. Neville’s release from the WWE came as a shock to the WWE Universe (Although unconfirmed, many employees have said so), however, friends of his say it was a long time coming. After allowing him to turn heel, Neville flourished and showed his true character along with the addition of the “Rings Of Saturn” submission to his arsenal.
Now, Neville leaving the WWE hurts the Cruiserweight Division very much, but it didn’t kill it. The Cruiserweight’s can survive without him, despite the fact that he was the full package. Here are the top five things that WWE can do to keep the division afloat.
5. Sign Similar Talent
The two superstars featured above are the only reasons why Neville isn’t the undisputed best in the world. Ospreay and Ricochet are two of the youngest and brightest stars in pro wrestling, both beginning to enter their primes. If WWE could snag either of these two men, the division could explode. Both are red hot performers, however, these two aren’t the only options for WWE. Many other Cruiserweight’s such as Jay Lethal, Kota Ibushi, Zach Sabre Jr. and ACH are roaming the world and honing their craft in other places. If WWE could sign just one of them, it could be hugely beneficial.
4. Call Up Current WWE Talent
I think a Superstar like Roderick Strong, who is already signed to the WWE, would be a perfect candidate to be drafted to the Cruiserweight division. Although many of the men in the division are very experienced, having a true veteran such as Strong could benefit the locker room. Besides Strong, Ciampa, Gargano, or even Balor qualify for the division. By putting some serious, established star power into the division, WWE doesn’t make it seem like a separate or lesser section of the company. The Cruiserweights are equally talented performers. It clearly worked for Kalisto, maybe it will work here.
3. Character Development
I will admit that this is getting better as time goes on and fans become more familiar with the wrestlers, but the Cruiserweight division still needs lots of work in the character development area. Many superstars such as Ariya Diavari for example have a basic gimmick and no other reason to be cheered for. Take Shinsuke Nakamura: Before being brought into NXT, he was hyped up, explained, and talked about. Announcers informed casual fans of his accolades, and promos were shown beforehand to help fans better understand the character of Nakamura. His promos of few words and Strong-Style along with an elaborate entrance and tons of time created the solid character that is now Shinsuke Nakamura.
Do this for the Cruiserweights. Hype them up, show promos, and talk about their outside accomplishments. Most of them are decorated indy stars. Don’t shy away from that! The character development seems rushed, and without this, fans have no reason to get invested in the first place. Take a breath, begin building characters, and the reactions will grow. ________________________________________________________________________
I for one would rather see one really good, long match than three boring, short matches. Of course, 205 Live is only one hour a week, but the WWE could and should put two guys like Cedric Alexander and Rich Swann in the ring, give them 20 minutes, and let them work their asses off! This would ensure high quality matches almost every episode, keeping people tuned in, or pulling in new fans. WWE tries to squeeze up to 5 segments in a one hour show and it just doesn’t work. Less is more in some cases.
1. Put The Title On Hideo Itami
Well, I feel like nobody saw this coming, but this is the perfect way to fill Neville’s void. Itami is lost in NXT… and it’s really sad. He is one of the greatest performers of this generation and his gimmick is extremely similar to Neviile’s. Itami’s heel antics would perfectly fill Neville’s shoes, without anyone batting an eye. This not only puts the title on one of the most underutilized and capable performers in Pro Wrestling, but it gives this true star a worthy title and the job of reviving the division. He can easily beat his way through the division in hard hitting matches, before dominating Kalisto and holding the title for awhile. He would be more than a qualified Champion and the freshness of the angle could only help this entire situation.