After Apollo Crews debuted at NXT Takeover: Brooklyn, almost every WWE fan knew that it would be only a matter of time before he was called up to the main roster, because Vince McMahon loves big, jacked up guys, and Crews certainly is big and completely jacked.
Crews' NXT debut was one of the many highlights in Brooklyn, but since then, he was almost treated as an afterthought in WWE's developmental territory, and many began to believe that he may not be fast-tracked to the main roster after all. But after being in NXT for under a year, he was called up to the main roster the night after WrestleMania 32.
If you were calling up an NXT star based on how popular they were with the fans, then Crews wouldn't be anywhere near the top of the list, and it's not because he's not talented. It's just because, as previously mentioned, he wasn't exactly portrayed as an unstoppable force in NXT.
Thankfully, since he's been called up, WWE has been doing a great job with Crews, as they've booked him in short squash matches, where he's able to show off his power and athleticism. Plus, unlike most main roster call-ups, WWE has decided to have Crews begin an undefeated streak.
There's no question that Crews has all the potential in the world to become a legitimate main-event player in WWE. There's also no question that, based on his look and physical skills, he'll be given plenty of opportunities to make it on the main roster.
In his weekly blog over at JRsbarbq.com, WWE Hall of Famer Jim Ross weighed in on Apollo Crews' main roster run so far and whether or not he believes that the former NXT prospect has a chance to become a main-event player on the main roster.
Ross said that he loves what WWE is doing with Crews, and that, if booked correctly, Crews will have a legit chance to be a main-event-level star on the main roster.
"Apollo Crews is beginning to build momentum thanks to him simply winning all his matches in impressive fashion. Funny how that works. I'd like to see Apollo take it easier on his knees. He's certainly a thick flyer, that's for sure, and that's challenging to one's knees thanks to the landings. Crews is a helluva prospect, and he has a legit chance to be a main-event player for years to come. No guarantees, but he's got all the tools, or so it seems."
Crews' high-flying hasn't been toned-down since his main roster call-up, as WWE has actually made it a point to feature his incredible athletic ability.
WWE appears to be doing a slow-burn build with Crews, which is similar to what they did with Ryback back in 2012. It greatly benefited Ryback until WWE started beating him on a regular basis. However, "The Big Guy's" undefeated streak helped draw a huge buy-rate for 2012's Hell in a Cell pay-per-view, where he challenged CM Punk for the WWE World Heavyweight Championship.
It doesn't seem likely that WWE will be putting Crews in a WWE World Heavyweight Championship match anytime soon. In fact, he probably won't be anywhere near that WWE World Title picture until late next year at the earliest. But, you never know. WWE did throw Ryback in the WWE Title picture pretty quickly, so they may do the same thing with Crews.
An Intercontinental or United States Championship run for Crews will probably happen at some point this year. He'd actually be a great candidate to defeat John Cena in one of his U.S. open challenges if Cena ends up regaining that U.S. Title when he returns to action at the end of next month.
[Image via WWE]