Carmelo Hayes Comments On Defending The NXT Title In His Hometown At Battleground

Carmelo Hayes will return home to Massachusetts on Sunday at NXT Battleground when he defends his "NXT" Championship in the main event against former champion Bron Breakker. During a recent appearance on "Busted Open," Hayes said he's trying to not get caught up in everything coming full circle, seeing as though he once attended a "WWE NXT" event in Lowell.

"Yeah, I'm not getting lost in that," Hayes said. "It almost feels like that is a true homecoming, like a full circle moment. Even when I was there, I just remember being so motivated after watching that show, and I was already kind of in the business, I was about two years in. Watching that, I was like, 'Man, I would love to get to this point where I can come home and perform in front of my friends and family.'"

Hayes recalled seeing Oney Lorcan and Tommaso Ciampa being the hometown performers back when he was there as a fan, and now "NXT" is returning to Lowell with him as the face of the brand. Knowing that WWE has put him front and center on the event's poster and that his friends and family will be in the crowd on Sunday, Hayes says he wants to over deliver and refuses to let it be a failure.

The 28-year-old captured his first "NXT" Championship in April at NXT Stand and Deliver by dethroning Breakker. Prior to that, Hayes experienced two runs with the "NXT" North American Championship after making his debut in 2021.

If you use any quotes from this article, please credit "Busted Open" with a h/t to Wrestling Inc. for the transcription.