NXT personnel were left shocked and frustrated by Karrion Kross' presentation on this week's WWE Raw, reports Fightful Select.
The reigning NXT Champion was felled by Jeff Hardy in under two minutes on the show. This was the first time Kross had been pinned or submitted since signing with WWE in February 2020, and that he appeared without manager Scarlett, who has been tethered to Kross throughout his run, made it look even worse.
One of Fightful's sources claimed the situation "felt like a message was being sent."
While the reaction as a whole is described as "not mad, disappointed," it comes from a feeling that the Kross loss represents how WWE higher-ups view the NXT brand overall. Understandable, given that Karrion is its champion.
Considerable frustration stems from the effort that has gone into making Kross look dominant on NXT, with the likes of Finn Balor, Adam Cole, and Johnny Gargano all contributing to that.
As for Kross himself? Fightful note that he was apparently in "good spirits" after the Hardy loss, so there's that.
Karrion was in more dominant form on last night's episode of NXT, continuing his feud with Samoa Joe by wrecking William Regal in an offscreen beatdown.