A little while back, it was announced that NXT TakeOver: Houston would not be taking place before the Royal Rumble and instead, Worlds Collide would take its place.
After having two of those in 2019, the logical conclusion was that it would be the same sort of setup in that Superstars from NXT, NXT UK, 205 Live and the lesser talent from Raw and SmackDown would compete in random matches that would air at another time.
However, WWE announced Monday that this would actually have a theme of NXT vs. NXT UK and that instead of just being random matches, it would follow Survivor Series in being about “brand supremacy” in some fashion.
That got the gears in my brain turning and I decided to take a look ahead of what that might mean, what the card could be and how WWE could set those plans into motion.
So I invite you to also look into your crystal ball and give your super early predictions for what you think we’re in store for come January 25, 2020 with the card for Worlds Collide: NXT vs. NXT UK.
WARNING: SPOILERS FOR NXT UK BELOW
NXT Champion Adam Cole vs. United Kingdom Champion WALTER
At NXT UK TakeOver: Blackpool II (January 12), WALTER will defend the United Kingdom Championship against Joe Coffey. I can’t imagine that title will change hands, nor do I think WWE will pull the plug on Adam Cole after the amazing few weeks he’s had. At least, that won’t happen by January 25th.
Assuming this follows the champion vs. champion patterns (ignoring how WWE decided against Brock Lesnar and Bray Wyatt this year), this seems like it’s a given match for the card.
Of course, it isn’t 100% guaranteed. Not only could the titles change hands, there could also be an eight-man tag team match of some kind with The Undisputed ERA vs. Imperium as an alternative.
If the match does happen, I think WALTER has to win. The way they made him lose so quickly at Survivor Series went completely against the way he’s been used so far, almost as if it were a punishment. But until there is anything that comes out that that’s the case, I’ll chalk it up to poor time management and a bad idea on Creative that they’ll want to course-correct.
The rest of The Undisputed ERA and Imperium should get involved in this as a brawl no matter what, and I think the overall size advantage for WALTER should net him the victory. That way, people don’t write off NXT UK as a show they can skip.
NXT Women’s Champion Shayna Baszler vs. NXT UK Women’s Champion Piper Niven or Toni Storm
Again, assuming they follow through with the champions against each other, this would either be Shayna Baszler or Rhea Ripley against Kay Lee Ray, Piper Niven or Toni Storm.
I don’t think Ripley will win the title from Baszler quite yet. She’s more than likely the next in line, but unless there are plans for Baszler to win the Royal Rumble, there’s no rush to take the title off her. Ripley vs. Baszler can take place at TakeOver: Portland on February 16h instead.
Kay Lee Ray, though, I don’t have as much faith in. She’ll be facing Toni Storm and Piper Niven at TakeOver: Blackpool II and those two are much more likely candidates to fight Baszler.
Between the two, I’d lean more toward Storm, but it’s really a toss-up. It all depends on if they want to go with something new or if Storm is a reliable fallback they can’t deny.
In either scenario, I think Baszler wins. She’s only lost to Kairi Sane and Ripley, essentially, and I don’t see her losing again before Portland.
NXT Tag Team Champions The Undisputed ERA vs. NXT UK Tag Team Champions Gallus
There is no midcard title equivalent to the North American Championship on NXT UK, so they couldn’t do Roderick Strong against someone unless it was just a title defense.
However, what they could do is have Strong team up with Kyle O’Reilly and Bobby Fish against the three members of Gallus, assuming Wolfgang and Mark Coffey are still the tag team champions. Then, Joe Coffey’s loss to WALTER in Blackpool would just pivot with him taking part in this match as the parallel to Strong.
That could be a scenario where Gallus wins to put a point in the NXT UK column, depending on what other matches are on the card.
NXT Cruiserweight Champion Lio Rush vs. Jordan Devlin or Noam Dar
If the cruiserweight title is defended as part of the NXT brand, someone from NXT UK will contend for it. Given that it has to be someone under 205 lbs, the options are limited, but there are still plenty of names to pick from.
Some of those could easily be ruled out. Amir Jordan, for instance, is not getting a solo match here and probably won’t be involved in anything at all. It’s too soon for A-Kid, unless they want to push him to the moon.
But it could be Flash Morgan Webster, Ilja Dragunov, Jordan Devlin, Mark Andrews, Noam Dar, Travis Banks, or Tyler Bate, to name some more notable options. Between those, I’d lean toward Devlin or Dar, just because they’re heels who can fit the bill very well.
For the sake of star power (more on that later), I’ll go with a slight edge that Dar would be in this match, rather than Devlin.
I don’t expect a title change for a setup like this, so I’d go with Rush as the winner no matter who he fights.
Some Sort of Multi-Man Tag Team Match
The easiest way to get lots of people on this card and make it a five or six match lineup is to copy the Survivor Series model by having a 5-on-5 tag team contest.
As with anything, the names that make up the teams could be any grouping. However, I think NXT UK is pretty much hovering around less than 10 people: Eddie Dennis, Dave Mastiff, Ilja Dragunov, Jordan Devlin, Kassius Ohno, Noam Dar, Travis Banks, Trent Seven and Tyler Bate.
Given the concept of balancing star power, I’d put more weight behind the team being Dave Mastiff, Ilja Dragunov, Jordan Devlin, Travis Banks and Tyler Bate as the captain.
For NXT, the list is even harder to narrow down and the level of star power is totally unbalanced in comparison. Angel Garza, Cameron Grimes, Damian Priest, Dominik Dijakovic, Finn Balor, Isaiah “Swerve” Scott, Johnny Gargano (doubtful), Keith Lee, Killian Dain, Kushida, Matt Riddle, Pete Dunne (unless he goes over to NXT UK in the process), Tommaso Ciampa and maybe even Velveteen Dream in any combination should just destroy NXT UK.