Adam Cole Believes The Undisputed Era Is 'One Of The Best Factions In WWE'
Adam Cole has admitted that he didn't foresee The Undisputed Era's rise to superstardom and insisted the stable is now 'one of the best in WWE.'
The Undisputed Era has become synonymous with NXT and made history last year by becoming the first faction to capture all of the male titles on the black and yellow brand.
When SPORTbible asked Cole if he thought the fan-favourite WWE faction would reach the height of success it has, the NXT champion responded: "So for me, no. I didn't expect it.
"I'm confident in myself and all of us. I'm very confident in our abilities. I know that if given the chance -- like the chance that we have now -- that we would succeed.
"But yes, if I'm being totally honest, I did not expect this to turn into one of the... seriously, the best factions in WWE.
"Like, as far as history, the support and how behind it [the fans are]... towards the beginning to look out in the crowd at a TakeOver and I feel like every other person has an Undisputed Era shirt on.
"I was like, 'Woah, this is crazy.' So, it's been awesome."
Bobby Fish, who is one-half of the NXT tag team champions alongside Kyle O'Reilly, suggested that The Undisputed Era's success could not be predicted.
The 43-year-old NXT star told SPORTbible in an exclusive interview: "I don't think this can be predicted. I don't think you can set out to do... like, it has to happen organically.
"There has to be an organic component, too, and things need to evolve. And this, from the inception, has evolved and turned into different things along the way.
"Like we talked about it before when there was three and then adding Roddy and Roddy was the only option for this and it caused us to evolve.
"And you don't evolve when you're just sitting in your comfort zone. So like if you plan it all, that doesn't work. This can only come together when, like, there's things thrown at you that are unexpected.
"You know, I didn't expect to have ACL surgery, we didn't expect for Roddy necessarily to come in when there was the three of us and then when that was presented it was like, 'Well, yeah, of course! That's the only option.'
"And it's just continued to evolve. If something doesn't evolve, what happens? It dies. So, this continues to go strong. Why? Because there's been a full evolution."
According to O'Reilly, The Undisputed Era has worked so well due to each member seamlessly connecting on a personal level.
"But seriously, like Adam said that personal expectations, I guess, for ourselves... we know what we can do and we expect a lot out of ourselves, but together, it's a little bit more unpredictable," he explained.
"But I think as organic as the fans took to us, we took to each other as a group just based off how long we've known each other and just, you know, we've seen each go through the best of times, the worst of times.
"And in every situation, there's so much respect and trust that I really feel like that helps.
"If you look at any group, any faction in the history of professional wrestling that has been successful, there is that. There's respect and extreme trust, and the rest handles itself."
Roderick Strong, who lost the North American Championship to Keith Lee last month, echoed O'Reilly's sentiments over the close relationship shared within The Undisputed Era.
And the 36-year-old NXT star believes that fans can see the "genuine comradery between us" and claims that's the reason "why it works."
Fish revealed that the dynamic of The Undisputed Era is built on their friendship, which can help them overlook the low points and squash conflicts that might arise.
He explained: "And that's why we can withstand the conflict and stuff that happens.
"Because it's not sunshine and rainbows every day with us, but that conflict can be dealt with because this is real, because we are friends. And that's the dynamic between us.
"We don't always have to see things in the same way; we grow based on the relationship between the four of us. Because of some of the conflict, because of the fact that we see something slightly different.
"Like, Roddy can make me see a different side of things or we don't have to agree on everything."
Cole, who will defend his championship against Tommaso Ciampa at NXT TakeOver: Portland this month, said that their success extended beyond friendships or being a "solid pro wrestler."
The 30-year-old WWE star, real name Austin Jenkins, insisted that The Undisputed Era is a "one-in-a-million scenario."
Cole told SPORTbible: "Again, it's one thing to be really close friends, it's another thing to individually be a really solid pro wrestler. But, like, this is a one-in-a-million scenario.
"Just because all of us have strengths and our own weaknesses doesn't mean that all thrown together that the group would work. But the group fits perfectly.
"Of all of the things that I've done, this has been the most natural -- I don't want to use the word easy -- but fun. It's been a blast."
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