NXT New Year’s Evil Predictions, WK17 Thoughts, More Monday Morning Q&A

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Welcome back to another Monday Morning Q&A where I toss out some questions to get a feel of how you guys and gals are feeling about certain topics.

So here are 5 questions I’d like to toss out for this week. I’ll give my answers, too, but the key here is that I want to know what YOU think! So make sure you chime in!

1) What are your predictions for NXT New Year’s Evil?

  • Bron Breakker retains over Grayson Waller
  • Dijak vs. Tony D’Angelo ends in a draw to set up a Triple Threat for Vengeance Day against Wes Lee
  • Indus Sher beats The Creed Brothers
  • Charlie Dempsey beats Hank Walker
  • Pretty Deadly fails to win the gauntlet match. I’m leaning toward Schism winning instead.
  • Roxanne Perez’s No. 1 contender ends up being Cora Jade so they can have one more match. Jade pulls some “thought she was eliminated, but comes back in and takes out someone like Indi Hartwell” bit to win the battle royal.

2) What are your takeaways from Wrestle Kingdom 17 and New Year’s Dash?

  • FTR is totally leaving AEW after dropping all 3 of their titles within a month. Their contract is up in April. They’re gone.
  • Kazuchika Okada, meanwhile, is a lifer. That guy is never going to another company for more than a guest spot.
  • So does Kenny Omega drop the title at Forbidden Door back to Will Ospreay, or to someone else? I’m thinking someone else. Hell of a match.
  • New Japan in general is such a dead zone for storylines from my outsider’s perspective. It’s seemingly just a factory that creates belts so people can say “I will face that champion for that title” and nothing more. That makes it hard for me to get into it, particularly if all the matches feel exactly the same.
  • That NJPW World Television Championship belt is so ugly.
  • I didn’t see the point of that 3 minute exhibition draw. That just felt like an awkward start.
  • Sasha Banks was a dud. Yeesh. None of that went over as well as they thought it would. I think she’ll be back in WWE by the end of 2024.
  • I didn’t see New Year’s Dash. From the breakdown of the results, it doesn’t seem as though I missed anything.

3) Now that Charlotte Flair has dethroned Ronda Rousey for the SmackDown Women’s Championship, what do you think those two will do at WrestleMania?

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I’m not feeling super confident about this prediction. Maybe they have some other radical ideas in mind. But right now, I think Flair will defend the title against Raquel Rodriguez, while Ronda Rousey will be up against Bianca Belair.

Alternatively, if Rhea Ripley is in the mix for either Flair or Belair, then maybe we get Rousey and Shayna Baszler for the tag team titles?

What I’m also confused about is how Becky Lynch factors into any of this, as I can’t picture her just sitting out the show, either.

4) Darby Allin defeated Samoa Joe for the TNT Championship on the same episode of Dynamite as the tag team titles nearly changed hands, just prior to Battle of the Belts. Do you think either of these things should have been saved for BOTB?

Absolutely! These BOTB shows haven’t amounted to much of anything. How does AEW expect fans to care if they pop up a few times a year with matches that aren’t pay-per-view worthy and mostly have zero title changes?

So far, we’ve had an interim title decided and a TNT title change, both by Sammy Guevara, in the first and third. Two title changes, if you can even call it that, out of 15 matches.

Nobody thought Skye Blue had any chance against Jade Cargill, so why bother? It just gives off a vibe that these are as extraneous filler episodes as WWE treats Main Event—something to fulfill a contractual obligation, but not anything that you ever need to see unless you’re one of the hyper-focused in-ring obsessed “gotta see this overlooked match” type person. But even then, that implies the matches are all awesome. Often, that isn’t even the case on paper, like how Ricky Starks fought Matt Sydal for the FTW Championship on the first show. Talented guys, sure, but that’s a filler match if there ever was one.

5) Zoey Stark’s return QR code. Bray Wyatt’s codes. Scrypts. Now, NXT_Anonymous. Are you still enjoying all this, or do you think WWE has officially run it into the ground?

The Wyatt one was the most interesting, by far. All the others have been lame. Scrypts essentially killed it, but NXT_Anonymous isn’t proving itself all that much better.

WWE fell into a trap thinking that they struck gold and could keep rinsing and repeating, without realizing that it takes more than the gimmick for something to work, and that there would be diminishing returns each time it is lesser than before.

Let us know your thoughts about these questions by answering them in the comments!

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