The first NXT Takeover was held at Full Sail University in front of about 400 fans. Five of the twelve people who wrestled on the show are no longer wrestling for WWE, including then-champion Adrian Neville. NXT’s Takeover shows have come a long way since 2014, and are now widely considered the best product that WWE puts out. This Saturday, all four NXT championships will be on the line in front of a crowd of thousands to celebrate twenty-five Takeover shows! All of which were main evented by Johnny Gargano! (That isn’t true. It just feels that way.)
NXT Tag Team Championship Ladder Match: Oney Lorcan & Danny Burch vs The Street Profits vs The Undisputed Era vs The Forgotten Sons
After the Viking Raiders (fka the Viking Experience fka the War Raiders fka War Machine) got called up to Raw and relinquished their titles, there have been no NXT Tag Team Champions! These four teams represent the future of the division. You’ve got the hard-hitting tough guys Lorcan and Burch, the swaggy and athletic Ford and Dawkins, and finally the dastardly dipshits Fish and O’Reilly. (Oh also there’s these two big boring guys with beards.)
This is a NXT Takeover ladder match with eight dudes in it. It’s going to be a fun time. Even with the musty, dusty Forgotten Sons in tow, look at the six other guys! It’s guaranteed to be good. Even if it somehow manages to be bad, just watch Kyle O’Reilly the whole time. Problem solved. I’d watch him change a tire.
Prediction: I’m just standing here in my skinny jeans doing the stupid Undisputed Era hand gesture. Let’s cover these idiots in gold, baby!!
Matt Riddle vs Roderick Strong
Former MMA fighter and all-around chill guy Matt Riddle made fun of the Undisputed Era’s infighting. When Roderick Strong tried to help Adam Cole beat Riddle, his plan backfired and Riddle won. To get back in with his terrible brethren, Strong jumped Riddle in a parking lot. He presented his boys a bloodied sandal. The Undisputed Era seem to be getting along great again, but now Riddle wants revenge.
Prediction: As much as I’d love to see Undisputed sweep the card and win every match they’re in, I can’t see Riddle losing here.
NXT North American Championship: Velveteen Dream (Champ) vs Tyler Breeze
After being absent from WWE TV for weeks, Tyler Breeze surprised Velveteen Dream in the ring at Full Sail. Breeze wrestled on the very first NXT Takeover. Although he did find some success on the main roster with Fandango as the Fashion Police, he was never taken seriously as a competitor the way he had been on NXT. I mean, this is the guy they had wrestle Jushin Thunder Liger in Liger’s only WWE match in history! It’s very cool to see NXT’s first flamboyant ace return to face the new and improved version. This should be something special.
Prediction: Dream retains, but it’s close.
NXT Women’s Championship: Shayna Baszler (Champ) vs Io Shirai
Io Shirai challenged Shayna Baszler for this title unsuccessfully in New York, but is sick of Baszler’s bullying behavior. Honestly, as much as I love Shayna, her reign and character are both feeling a little stagnant. The first match I ever watched and loved of Baszler’s was against Io Shirai in Stardom, so I’m really looking forward to this match. Shirai is one of the best wrestlers on the planet, and I can’t wait to see her pull out all the stops in a big singles match.
Judging from their interaction on this week’s NXT episode, Candice LeRae will be in Shirai’s corner, which will hopefully prevent Marina Shafir and Jessamyn Duke from interfering.
Prediction: With Ronda Rousey gone, it’s hard to guess what WWE’s plans are for Shayna Baszler and her Horse Girls. Still, I’m going to go with Shirai winning here.
NXT Championship: Johnny Gargano (Champ) vs Adam Cole
Listen, I’m sure this will be a fine match, but do you ever just imagine like… wow… what if Candice LeRae was NXT Champion and she was the one feuding with Adam Cole? I sure do. I wonder it every day. The background here is that Gargano beat Cole in a 2 out of 3 falls match at the last Takeover but Cole is mad because he won the first fall. They’re both like 5’6″ and love skinny jeans, so at least that’s fun.
Prediction: Johnny Gargano is a talented guy, but it’s time to admit that there’s a new sheriff in town and he fucking sucks. And I love him. It’s time for Adam Cole.
These five matches are all that have been announced as of Thursday morning. Who would you like to see added? I’d be into some more Kushida/Drew Gulak or maybe even a surprise IIconics Women’s Tag Team Championship defense. How about Sasha Banks coming back to NXT to take on Bianca Belair? Tell me what you think in the comments. Let’s fantasy book this.