With all due respect to Rusev Day, NXT Takeover Day is the happiest day on the calendar
First stop, NXT Television
6. If you need one match this week to remind you how much fun wrestling can be, make it Lorcan/Burch versus Bartel/Aichner. This is an action packed quickie (that’s what she said). Pound for pound, there’s nobody tougher than Lorcan. Dude would fit nicely into NJPW. Aichner hit a double top rope moonsault that you really need to see.
Now on to Takeover: Phoenix
5. Matt Riddle versus Kassius Ohno.
I’m excited for both guys to have a spot on the card. They’ve done a nice job slow building this feud. I hope they get enough time to shine.
Why Riddle will win: because he’s the f$%&ing future of NXT and the new guy never loses.
Why Ohno will win: because the cagey veteran finds a way to outsmart the new guy & finally get the push he deserves.
4. Shayna Baszler versus Bianca Belair
It will be interesting to see how Belair responds to her first major match. I’m also wondering how Baszler will handle someone who is physically her equal.
Why Belair will win: because she will stay UN…DA…FEA…TED!
Why Baszler will win: because she just recaptured the belt & it’s too soon for her to drop it…and because she is pure evil.
3. Undisputed Era versus War Raiders:
This as a wrestling match only has me slightly interested. If this turns into a brawl, then count me in. Either way, look for UE to somehow craft another tag team classic.
Why War Raiders will win: because it only seems natural for them to finally capture gold.
Why UE will win: because they are awesome and the best tag team and Kyle O’Reilly.
2. Ricochet versus Johnny Bad Ass
The easy play is to let these guys go all flippy dippy and try to outspot each other. However, I like the element of hate & viciousness they’ve tapped into. Anything less than a MOTY candidate will be a shocker.
Why Ricochet will win: because he’s a workhorse champion and Johnny needs his comeuppance.
Why Johnny Bad Ass will win: because it sets the stage for a new 2 man power trip and for reunited, evil DIY to capture all the gold.
1. Aleister Black versus Tommaso Ciampa
It’s another potential MOTY contender. Ciampa’s promo Wednesday night was scorching hot & really added a lot of elements to an already intense rivalry.
Why Black will win: because the Striking Man From Amsterdam always gets his revenge.
Why Ciampa will win: see Johnny Bad Ass.
5 rock solid matches…5 compelling stories…not a single special stipulation match. Takeover: Phoenix should pick up right were 2018 left off. I’d hate to be any wrestling show that has to follow this opener.
That’s right…I said it.