A few years ago, there was a massive influx of talent finding its way to WWE to help shape NXT to become what it is right now.
The first batch of guys featured the likes of Neville and Sami Zayn, while the world went crazy when the likes of Finn Balor, Shinsuke Nakamura and Kevin Owens were revealed to be joining the company as well.
All of the names mentioned have done great things on NXT and have since solidified their positions on the main roster; some have won world championships while others have recently debuted and have left fans wanting more.
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There is one sad case, however, as Hideo Itami has been forced to watch the guys come and go, yet he remains on NXT.
The man formerly known as KENTA hasn’t had an easy ride on NXT, though, as two untimely injuries stopped him in his tracks and only now has he started to feature in genuine storylines, such as his recent NXT Championship loss to Bobby Roode.
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Based on how his WWE career has gone so far, it’s safe to say that he hasn’t hit the heights many thought he would as he has made very little progress.
Although this year could be vital for him, Dave Meltzer of the Wrestling Observer Newsletter had a surprising thought regarding Itami and his future in the WWE.
ON HIS WAY OUT?
There had been some rumours floating around the dirt sheets that his contract expires this year, and it was suggested that he wouldn’t sign a new deal with the company.
Meltzer recently addressed the issue during the mailbag segment on Wrestling Observer Radio where he didn’t confirm that Itami would leave WWE, but claimed he could see it happening this year.
The reason he believes this could be the case is because he still has his family in Japan, and a move to New Japan Pro Wrestling can’t be ruled out either.
It’s certainly upsetting news for those that were desperate to see Itami overcome his injury woes and make a real go of getting past the developmental system and cement his place as a real player on the main roster.
In WWE’s case, it might not be a huge loss.
They survived on NXT without him and right now, they don’t seem to be building the brand around him either as other big names continue to be brought in, such as Aleister Black.
Not only that, but they’ll be fine in the Asian market too as they have some talented Chinese recruits, while The King of Strong Style and Asuka are already representing the Japanese market brilliantly.
As the year advances, it’ll be clear based on the storylines just what the future could hold for someone who was brought to the company with so much hype and jubilation.
Will Hideo Itami leave WWE in 2017? Have YOUR say in the comments section below and the third episode of GiveMeSport’s WWE podcast is here! Check it out via this link. https://soundcloud.com/user-818579649/gms-wwe-podcast-all-the-fallout-from-wwe-payback