After the fallout of the Cruiserweight Classic, which received very positive reviews, WWE decided to make the cruiserweight division a brand of its own, which ignited 205 Live. Initially, names such as Brian Kendrick, TJP, Rich Swann, Cedric Alexander, and Jack Gallagher were anchors of the division, as names such as Enzo Amore, Mark Andrews, Hideo Itami, Kalisto, Akira Tozawa, Austin Aries and Neville added to the list.
While the matches were still impressive, angles such as Cedric Alexander and Noam Dar battling over Alicia Fox, and Enzo Amore with his Zo-train and infatuation with Nia Jax brought more of a gimmick-heavy element to the programming. However, when Enzo got released from WWE, the division started to shift and the mood was different in a positive way. Shortly after Enzo's release, Daniel Bryan announced that 205 Live will hold a tournament to determine the winner of the vacated Cruiserweight Championship, and also introduced Drave Maverick (formerly Rockstar Spud) as General Manager.
Triple H was interviewed by CBS Sports' In This Corner podcast shared his thoughts on gaining creative control of the division and attempting to make it more exciting.
"I think it's a work in progress," said Triple H. "I think we did the 'Cruiserweight Classic' and it was an excitement and an opportunity. We jumped on making it into its own show, but I don't know if that was totally just kind of thought out in the right way or done in the right way. I think we made an attempt at it that.
"Vince will say a lot that the business is like flavors – chocolate and vanilla – and not everyone is going to agree on the flavors. So we went in the direction of a certain flavor. We gave them vanilla and people weren't buying the flavor of vanilla, so we went back to chocolate and people are seeming to like that again."
Triple H added that the division is a work in progress.
"The great thing about [WWE] is we can change them on a dime," said Triple H. "We can put it in a different direction, and if people don't like something, just keep watching [because] we are probably going to get you there. We are probably going to get you to a place that works for everyone. That is the intent.
"I think 205 continues to be a work in progress. I'm excited about that opportunity for all of the athletes there because, for a lot of them, there was no road in front of them. There was no big path, and it was doing what they were doing but this opened up doors for them. Hopefully it will continue to grow, much like NXT has, much like the [United Kingdom efforts] will and all of that. I think there is tremendous opportunity and in some way we are just kind of nicking the surface of where we will be."
Triple H is looking at the 205 Live and UK division projects as visions for "five and 10 years down the road, not tomorrow and not six months from now." He wants to look at both divisions long-term and "that growth is exponential."
Source: CBS Sports