Grayson Waller On What It’s Like Working With Shawn Michaels In NXT
Grayson Waller has opened up about what it’s like to work for a legendary wrestler that’s also his boss, the “Heartbreak Kid” Shawn Michaels.
As the WWE Senior Vice President of Talent Development, two-time WWE Hall of Famer Shawn Michaels is the creative force behind the NXT brand. It’s a job that Shawn’s best friend Paul “Triple H” Levesque had for most of the last decade before a heart issue sidelined him in 2021. Shawn took over NXT at that point, now Triple H is the Chief Content Officer and is running things creatively on the main roster while Shawn remains the guy in charge in NXT.
One of the talented young wrestlers that burst onto the scene when WWE rebranded NXT to NXT 2.0 is a talented young Australian named Grayson Waller. Anybody that watches NXT can see that Waller is very athletic in the ring, he knows how to get heat as a heel based on the things he says and his cocky attitude reminds people of some WWE stars with similar attributes like The Miz, Dolph Ziggler or even a young “Heartbreak Kid” Shawn Michaels about 30 years ago. At 32 years old, Waller has a very bright future in WWE.
Grayson Waller recently had the biggest win of his NXT career at the Deadline Premium Live Event in December when he won the first-ever Men’s Iron Survivor Challenge match. The win by Waller means he will challenge Bron Breakker for the NXT Title this Tuesday, January 10th at New Year’s Evil.
During an interview on Steve Fall’s Ten Count, Waller talked about how big this match at New Year’s Evil is for him.
“This is hands down the biggest match I’ve ever had and I’ve had some big ones. I was in WarGames. I got to wrestle AJ Styles. Stand and Deliver Ladder match. Apollo Crews. I’ve had a lot of big ones, but this is as big as it gets. This is the NXT Championship. This is the biggest prize and you can think of some of the guys who have held this championship, like there’s a lot of lineage to it.”
As he continued, Grayson Waller talked about how Shawn Michaels really believed in him.
“Me and Shawn have a great relationship. I think Shawn has full trust in me. Shawn gave me opportunities before anyone else would have. You know, I got things like WarGames and the match with AJ. No one thought I deserved this position. Everyone online was like, ‘Who is this? Who is this’, and Shawn knew how good I was. Shawn has seen me.”
“Shawn knew that I had the potential and we had a conversation one day. I remember I wrestled Roderick Strong for the Cruiserweight title, my first proper match on NXT. I went out and I killed it, because that’s what I do. Like, of course I did. I came backstage and I said to him, and I don’t even remember saying it, and I said to him,’ If you give me the ball, I’ll run with it.’ About six months later, he reminded me of that conversation and he said to me, ‘I gave you the ball, and you’re doing what you said you would do.’”
“So we have a great relationship. It is a business relationship. I know I can go to him with anything. As you said, he is the GOAT. I’ll admit that, but I’m not a fan anymore, either. You know, I’m a work colleague. I’m someone that, you know, he’s my boss. But Shawn knows how good I am and I know how good Shawn is. So if you’re gonna go to anyone for advice, that’s the man right there.”
You can watch WWE NXT New Year’s Evil on Tuesday night on USA Network in the US or wherever you regularly watch NXT. It’s a TV episode of the brand rather than a Premium Live Event.