It was surprising to see Apollo Crews called up from the NXT after Wrestlemania 32. He wasn’t in NXT for very long before being called up, and there was a lot left for him to do in WWE developmental before being called up to the big show.
There has been a report that Vince McMahon isn’t impressed with him on the main roster. No one is saying that he isn’t physically gifted or has great potential, including Vince. His problem is getting over with the WWE Universe, and his “smiling gimmick” isn’t working. So the question is simple, “How does Apollo Crews get over?”
They’re two very different talents, yet I think getting Crews over on the main roster should be similar to what WWE did with Neville a year ago.
Crews and Neville are both guys that do their talking in the ring. Their mic time is going to be limited, and it’s not their strong point in the first place. That works for Neville because he has the Red Arrow.
As physically gifted as Apollo Crews is in the ring, he doesn’t have a huge move like that to finish matches. The Guerilla Press and Moonsault combo are cool, but it’s not believable for him to use it and get wins over top guys.
The Sit-Down Powerbomb was a good idea to add to his moveset, but it’s not unique or special enough to create a connection the way the Red Arrow has with Neville. Simply put, Apollo Crews is a unique talent, so he needs a unique move that is his and forces people to watch his matches because they want to see it again.
What’s even more important than that is getting quality wins over bigger opponents. Neville had the Red Arrow, but what got him accepted onto the main roster was strong performances against other good performers.
Sometimes it only takes a single match to really make the point that a guy is good in the ring and deserves respect. All Neville had to do was accept the John Cena US Open Challenge and put on a very good match with Cena and prove that he can hang and belongs.
That’s exactly what Apollo Crews needs even more than a big move. One big match tonight on Raw with Kevin Owens or Chris Jericho would do wonders.
A veteran that can make him look good and force people to acknowledge his talent will do a lot for him. It’ll certainly do much more than beating all four members of The Social Outcasts. After that, Crews can go on to get wins over a Dolph Ziggler or The Miz. That’ll establish him and give him a chance to find his character.
What do you think Apollo Crews needs to get over on the main roster?