Andrade “Cien” Almas vs. Tye Dillinger
Predicted Winner: Andrade Almas
Just like every major debut wrestler, Andrade Almas will win this. Unfortunately, the insanely over Tye Dillinger has to take the loss here. The upside is it does give him Takeover exposure, and hopefully will give him some kind of offense here. It will be interesting to see who the crowd sides with, considering how over Dillinger is. If the NXT house shows indicate anything, Almas is a flashy in-ring wrestler. That, combined with Dillinger’s well-rounded skills, should make a great match to kick off the show.
American Alpha vs. The Revival (NXT Tag Team Championship)
Predicted Winners: American Alpha
Tag team wrestling has made a great comeback in NXT. The addition of TM61 and growth of Ciampa & Gargano have made the immediate future of the division exciting. Right now though, American Alpha are the hottest tag team in the division. This match will likely be similar to their others with The Revival, in which they have definitely delivered. The contrast in style between amateur wrestling and old school brawling is always a nice mix. This is likely their blow-off match with AA moving onto bigger and better things, so don’t expect the Revival to become the first ever 2 time champions.
Auska vs. Nia Jax (NXT Women’s Championship)
Predicted Winner: Auska
Everyone knows the ‘money’ match in the women’s division is Auska vs. Bayley II. Jax will provide a strong transitional challenger, but will be nothing more than that right now. Jax is still quite green, and she still needs to find herself (and hopefully find a new finisher while she’s at it). Unfortunately, this will likely be the weak link of the card this Wednesday. That being said, there is still hope that it will provide some entertaining aspects, and setup for some newer storylines.
Shinsuke Nakamura vs. Austin Aries
Predicted Winner: Nakamura
Nakamura vs. Aries seems like a bit of a mini dream match in NXT land, so this one may steal the show. Aries has been slightly underwhelming as a babyface, so this will provide a good launching point to a much-needed heel turn. The fans will be 100% on Nakamura’s side, so it will have a face/heel dynamic even though it may not be meant to initially. In-ring, it would be hard to ask for more. A veteran X-division wrestler vs. a 5-star Japanese wrestler should meld into a classic match. The only possible issue is that this will likely not be the final meeting between the two, so they may hold back for a great 2nd or 3rd match. Either way, sit back and enjoy this one.
Samoa Joe vs. Finn Balor – Steel Cage Match (NXT Championship)
Predicted Winner: Samoa Joe
Balor & Joe will go down in NXT history as one of the better, if not one of the best feuds for the NXT Championship. Utilizing a gimmick such as a cage is a perfect way to end this feud. The cage has never been used in NXT before, so it gives a sense of wonder to the match. There will be at least one high spot (possibly Balor coup de grace off the top of the cage), and some innovative ways to fight in the cage. Cages generally do limit the amount of things one can do in a match, but with the amount of matches they have had already, it shouldn’t be much of a problem. The brand split has put both of these men on the podium for a call-up, so it will be interesting to see who wins and what they do with the title. Expect Joe, but don’t count Finn out on a surprise win.