In the fast-paced world of professional wrestling, a chaotic schedule is par for the course. However, when Mike Rome joined the ranks of WWE, he soon realized that the madness reached an entirely new level. Little did he know that his journey in WWE NXT would coincide with an explosive period, where the developmental brand transcended expectations and transformed into much more than anticipated.
During an enlightening conversation on the "Out of Character" podcast, Rome shared his baptism by fire upon entering WWE. His career in NXT commenced during a time of remarkable growth for WWE's Florida territory. Initially, the tapings at Full Sail University involved multiple episodes per session, but the landscape rapidly expanded.
WWE NXT began touring across the Sunshine State, eventually venturing nationwide, turning a local operation into a global phenomenon. Consequently, Rome found himself navigating a frenetic schedule as a backstage correspondent.
Explosive Growth and Unforgettable Moments
"It was an absolute whirlwind," Rome reminisced. "I witnessed the inception of WarGames, experienced pay-per-views outside the confines of Full Sail, and embarked on a journey of live shows across the country.
The buzz was palpable as fans from every corner of the world reveled in the excitement. It was an incredible evolution, and every performer who is now part of 'Smackdown' or 'Raw' had their roots in NXT at that time. We delivered a show that left fans astounded—it was truly something special." Indeed, "special" scarcely does justice to the explosive roster Rome found himself working alongside.
As he reflected on those remarkable times, he fondly mentioned luminaries such as Shinsuke Nakamura, Kevin Owens, Finn Balor, Sami Zayn, American Alpha, and The Revival (now known as FTR in AEW). Moreover, Rome acknowledged the pivotal role played by the women's roster, which would go on to revolutionize women's wrestling, forever altering its course.
In his tenure with WWE NXT, Rome witnessed the brand's meteoric rise and the indelible impact it left on the wrestling landscape. The culmination of talent, electrifying events, and a passionate fan base propelled NXT beyond its developmental roots, solidifying its status as a powerhouse in the industry.
For Mike Rome, those exhilarating moments marked the beginning of an extraordinary journey within WWE—a testament to the unpredictable nature of professional wrestling and the unyielding dedication of its performers.