The manner in which Triple H has played the executive Game is really quite remarkable.
This is a man who once literally buried the Spirit Squad underneath a box lid before sending them back to Ohio Valley Wrestling in November of 2006. He was more concerned with popping the boys with a mocking insider reference than he was cultivating the next generation of talent. That future, incidentally, once looked - if not bleak - then very much like the present. As it became clear that Triple H was certain to TakeOver Vince McMahon's role as Chairman, following Shane McMahon's 2009 tap out, he took Sheamus under his wing. The Irishman was acutely aware, through the rise of Batista, that the weight room was pro wrestling's golf course.
The subsequent, absolute, shocking brilliance of NXT became steeped in irony.
Triple H is set to succeed Vince, but he is closer in spirit to his greatest-ever threat. Like Eric Bischoff, Trips has thus far taken a magpie approach to his role as promoter by bursting the WWE bubble. He has looked beyond it to gauge what is popular - and what can be subsumed into the WWE fabric. Where Bischoff liberally borrowed from ECW's reality-leaning aesthetic and one of the biggest money-spinners in puro history to inform the nWo, Triple H created NXT: a glorified - and glorious - mega-Independent.
This ethos is reflected in his choice of personnel...