WWE NXT WrestleMania Gargano Ciampa
Tommaso Ciampa and Johnny Gargano

WrestleMania 36: Should NXT Matches Be Added To The Card?


With WWE superstars dropping from WrestleMania 36 due to medical concerns related to COVID-19, should NXT matches be added to the show?

Not even a month ago, we were discussing Goldberg’s victory over Bray Wyatt/The Fiend for the Universal Championship, and if a Roman Reigns’ win was a given. Now Roman is out of WrestleMania 36 and we’re probably looking at Braun Strowman as Universal Champion in less than two weeks.

We’ve also lost talented individuals from the WrestleMania card, including United States Champion Andrade, Women’s Tag Team Champion Asuka, Cesaro, Smackdown Tag Team Champion The Miz, and more.

Add it all up, and it means a portion of the confirmed and rumored 16-match card (spread out over two nights) is up in the air, and more matches might be needed to fill in the gaps.

So what’s WWE to do? Well, you have some of the most talented individuals in the world competing down in NXT, and matches are reportedly recorded for upcoming Wednesday night broadcasts to replace what was scheduled for Takeover: Tampa.

Should WWE put NXT matches on the WrestleMania card?

It’s not so simple as a yes or no answer (although there is one, lol), as a few factors need to be evaluated first

What’s more important: NXT television or WrestleMania?

The matches slated for Takeover: Tampa, including the Women’s #1 Contender Ladder Match, Johnny Gargano vs. Tommaso Ciampa, NXT Champion Adam Cole vs. Velveteen Dream, and North American Champion Keith Lee vs. Dominik Dijakovic vs. Damian Priest, will now take place as part of the NXT television broadcasts on the USA Network over the next few weeks. Those matches are presumed to be recorded already, so they could be used as part of WrestleMania if needed. That also means empty space during upcoming NXT broadcasts.

So what’s more important? NXT has a TV deal on USA Network, and providing first-run content is obviously a priority. Normally, that’s the answer for me…but this is WrestleMania!

USA Network, along with FOX, have already seen old content grace their airwaves over the past few weeks, and NXT has an amazing library of content that could supplement the upcoming broadcasts if any matches were moved to WrestleMania.

To me this is a non-factor, and if a move is needed, it can be done.

Are these WrestleMania worthy matches?

That question is kinda silly at this point, no? There’s already a big huge difference between any WrestleMania over the past 35 years and WrestleMania 36. Take this match for example:

Raw Tag Team Champions The Street Profits vs. Angel Garza & Austin Theory

Yes, that is a likely match taking place at WrestleMania 36, since Andrade is out with an injury. Austin Theory is rumored to be make his proper main roster debut on the biggest stage possible, the beneficiary of “right place/right time” for the 22-year old that I see as a future WrestleMania main eventer.

I am not sure that match is worthy of a WrestleMania Kick Off–hour one of a WrestleMania Kick Off–let alone the actual WrestleMania card. But that is our reality in 2020, as desperate times call for desperate measures. So to question if these Takeover matches, that have an actual build, are WrestleMania worthy is borderline insane at this point.

Will they make WrestleMania better?

And here we have what I believe to be the million dollar question. Would adding these matches to WrestleMania make the show better?

Honestly? YES.

Maybe it’s not the aforementioned matches. Maybe you throw together The Undisputed Era of NXT Champion Adam Cole, Bobby Fish, Kyle O’Reilly, and Roderick Strong against a combo of NXT stars like NXT Tag Team Champion Matt Riddle (whose partner is stuck in the UK), Velveteen Dream, Oney Lorcan, and Danny Burch. Let Keith Lee and Dominik Dijakovic tear it up one more time–but for WrestleMania.

Io Shirai and Candice LaRae could rekindle their program for one more match, and outdo their prior Takeover showdown.

One match that I do, for a fact, believe belongs at WrestleMania? Tomasso Ciampa vs. Johnny Gargano for one last time. Gargano asked for two weeks to prepare, maybe we short him a few days and put that on the biggest WWE event of the year?

So by now you know my vote: YES. Yes, you absolutely should add NXT matches to WrestleMania 36. And it’ll be better because of it.

What say you? Sound off in the comments with your thoughts!

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