NXT star Carmelo Hayes has discussed how he didn’t fight a tough booking decision, instead seeing it as a challenge.
On the 13th September 2022 edition of NXT, Solo Sikoa became North American Champion when he defeated Carmelo Hayes. The title change came as a shock due to the fact Sikoa had joined The Bloodline at Clash At The Castle earlier in the month, signalling a call-up to the main roster.
Indeed, Sikoa relinquished the belt a week later, leaving many wondering why the title was switched in the first place. Instead of the championship being returned to Hayes, it was put on the line in a ladder match at Halloween Havoc. Whilst Hayes was in the match, he wasn’t the victor.
In an interview with Fightful, Carmelo Hayes has admitted it was a challenging decision, but one he used more for motivation than anything else.
I took the challenge on it. I said, ‘Okay,’ because it’s out of my control. At that point, it’s like, I’m not going to fight Shawn Michaels for this title. ‘Hey, give it to me. Come on.’ It was a challenge that I was looking at like, ‘Okay, if I have to prove it again. If I have to prove five times that I’m the man, I’ll prove it five times.’ That’s always my mindset.
They keep throwing things at me to see if I’m going to miss, and I looked at this as another one of those. ‘Okay, you want to take my title and you want make me try…’ I didn’t win it back, so I guess I did miss. At the same time, ‘You want to put me in a ladder match, you want me to show out and get my title back, alright, that’s what we’re going to do.
Carmelo Hayes also recently discussed why Shawn Michaels is the perfect person to be running NXT.