He’s been dubbed by some fans as “The Man That Creative Forgot,” as a reference to his on-air nickname, “The Man That Gravity Forgot.” But WWE appeared to have recognized the potential they see in Neville, putting him in the Cruiserweight Division and turning him heel Sunday night, at the Roadblock: End of the Line pay-per-view.
Best-known as Pac in the independent scene, Ben Satterley was signed by WWE in 2012 and given the ring name Adrian Neville. The high-flying Englishman went on to become NXT Champion and stood out as one of the developmental territory’s most promising talents, but things would change when he was called up to the main roster in 2015, with his ring name shortened to Neville. Despite getting a good push at first, then winning a feud against Stardust (a.k.a. Cody Rhodes) that also involved Arrow star Stephen Amell, Neville spent most of 2016 either injured or floundering in the mid-card, not getting into any substantial feuds or storylines.
Early this year, PWMania counted Neville as one of WWE’s most overlooked wrestlers, opining that WWE wasn’t giving the former NXT Champion the recognition he deserved on the main roster, while limiting what he had to offer beyond his finisher, the Red Arrow.
“As magnificent as the Red Arrow is, it’s far from being the only thing Neville has to offer. The disgraceful way his move set was cut down when he came on the main roster frustrates me. Anyone who’s watched NXT knows what Neville is capable of. Making the ridicule of his looks central to his character was stupid from the WWE. We don’t need to hear Jerry Lawler joke about Neville’s ears every time he’s in the ring.”
That, however, may change soon. With 2016 a few weeks away from ending and WWE’s pay-per-view schedule for the year having ended with Sunday’s Roadblock: End of the Line, it looks like Neville has finally gotten some of the attention he deserves from the company’s creative team.
Per the Inquisitr’s Roadblock recap, Neville hit the ring after the Cruiserweight Championship match, where Rich Swann had retained his title against The Brian Kendrick and TJ Perkins. But instead of congratulating Swann, Neville attacked the reigning champ and his fellow babyface Perkins, signifying his seeming entry into the Cruiserweight Division, and for the first time since joining WWE, a Neville heel turn.
Gravity actually did forget him and he's in outer space, only comes down for house shows. https://t.co/Dtd57GqHom— Dave Meltzer (@davemeltzerWON) December 13, 2016
Neville’s apparent bid for the Cruiserweight Championship comes just a few days after veteran wrestling journalist Dave Meltzer tweeted about how WWE Creative didn’t have anything for the diminutive wrestler. Making reference to Neville’s nickname, Meltzer said that “gravity actually did forget him,” adding that he “only comes down for house shows,” hinting at his rare appearances on Monday Night RAW. But with the Neville heel turn, the 30-year-old wrestler’s character has just been freshened up, and many are expecting him to make the Cruiserweight Division, and its official show 205 Live, more interesting.
That might not be all for Neville, as Cageside Seats reported in its post-Roadblock: End of the Line rumor roundup. With Austin Aries having made his “main roster debut” as a guest commentator at Roadblock‘s Cruiserweight Championship match, and Japanese veteran Tajiri set to re-debut in WWE in early-2017, rumors suggest Neville, Aries, Tajiri, and other “known” names may be prominently pushed on both RAW and 205 Live.
Are Neville’s Cruiserweight Division switch and heel turn the shots in the arm his WWE career needs, and could he be next in line for a title shot against Rich Swann? Those are questions that may start being answered as soon as this week’s episodes of Monday Night RAW and 205 Live, but for now, it looks like somebody has just remembered about “The Man That Gravity Forgot,” and done so in a big way.
[Featured Image by WWE]