KEY POINTS

  • Sources report that Shawn Michaels is planning to take Carmelo Hayes under his wing
  • The new NXT North American Champion has also made a major impact behind-the-scenes
  • Adam Cole credited Michaels for helping him have a massive debut with AEW

Shawn Michaels has helped boost the careers of many WWE superstars, and his latest project could be the next big thing.

According to Fightful Select, Michaels is very much interested in working with current NXT North American Champion Carmelo Hayes to bring him to the next level.

“Carmelo Hayes has impressed some people of influence within NXT and the Performance Center. We’re told by WWE Performance Center sources that Carmelo Hayes specifically caught the eye of Shawn Michaels, and was viewed as a 'project' of his by many,” said the report as quoted by Ringside News.

The newly-minted North American Champion has been impressing everyone over on the new-look NXT brand, but the report also mentioned that his matches with Kushida and former NXT Champion Adam Cole brought him to Michaels’ attention.

Hayes took the title from Isaiah “Swerve” Scott after the latter’s grueling battle with Santos Escobar.

However, Michaels’ interest in the talent could be because he sees a reflection of himself in the 27-year-old.

“Another high-level NXT source said that they believe Shawn Michaels sees a lot of himself in Carmelo Hayes, which seems to be backed up by Shawn Michaels taking a celebratory photo with [Carmelo] Hayes following his NXT North American Title victory,” according to the same report.

Developing talent in NXT has become one of the WWE icon’s many talents and is best exemplified by his work with Cole.

Cole credited Michaels for helping make him even more of a major name in the pro wrestling industry before debuting with AEW, he revealed in September.

Hayes’ North American Championship victory was well-received by the fans in attendance, and it could be a sign of things to come for the young talent.

An athletic and high-charisma personality, the Massachusetts native had just joined the company in February of this year.

The North American Championship win shows that WWE is looking to invest more in homegrown talent instead of bringing in major wrestling stars similar that of Cole.

If his latest social media post is of any indication, working with someone of Michaels’ caliber could be Hayes' next step towards becoming a household name.