After missing wildly with the Phoenix Splash and narrowly escaping the Camel Clutch, Seth Rollins struck with Avada Kedavra and finished Jinder Mahal with Blackout to become the first-ever NXT champion. To be a champion in the WWE says that you’ve made it, but to be the first-ever champion immortalizes you in the record books. And for Seth Rollins to compete in the Gold Rush Tournament–devised by WWE Hall of Fame Dusty Rhodes–and wave around the NXT championship at its conclusion, means that he’s going to be something big.
For the past two years, since reporting to developmental in Florida, Seth Rollins has generated a buzz in WWE. Rollins began his rise in Florida Championship Wrestling by defeating Hunico, then-masked luchador, to become the first FCW 15 champion. A few months later, Rollins and Richie Steamboat, yes… the son of WWE Hall of Fame Ricky “The Dragon” Steamboat, captured the FCW Tag Team titles, and less than a year following his FCW 15 crowning, Rollins defeated Leo Krugar for the FCW Heavyweight championship. With many RAW and SmackDown Superstars–including John Cena–praising Rollins for his in-ring abilities, the Iowa native is believed to be in line to be drafted to the main roster.
Most recently, Rollins sent out a tweet stating that he was the future of the WWE, and not Cody Rhodes. The second generation superstar, who has cited himself as being the future of WWE, did not take Rollins tweet and subsequent challenge lightly. Rollins vs Rhodes–which took place at an NXT live event on September 14th–garnered much hype from fellow WWE superstars who were excited to see them compete against one another. Among those superstars were Rollins’ former rival Daniel Bryan, and Rhodes’ former Legacy stablemate Ted DiBiase.
The match overall received rave reviews–wished it was televised (just saying…)–and a standing ovation for both Rollins and Rhodes for putting on one of the best matches seen in a long time. If the battles between Rollins and Dean Ambrose, former Jon Moxley, over the FCW 15 championship were any indication, any wrestling fan knew that Rollins vs Rhodes was a dream match.
Seth Rollins has come a long way from that faithful night of Glory by Honor IX, where–in front a heated NYC crowd–dropped the ROH title to Roderick Strong. Rollins was leaving the independent stronghold of Ring of Honor to test his abilities in the WWE. And at the time, no one knew exactly how long he would last.
Do you still believe he made the wrong decision of not resigning with ROH? Still believe that he’s a sell-out? Still think that Rollins is too small to be worth a damn in WWE?
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