The March 14 edition of NXT is set to air on the WWE Network at 8/7c, midnight here in the UK, and I am here to give you a preview of what’s to come. Please note that this preview will contain no spoilers and only what WWE themselves have confirmed.
Dakota Kai vs. Lacey Evans
Dakota Kai has been out of action for a few weeks now following an injury sustained at the hands of Shayna Baszler. She returns to action one-on-one with the ‘Lady of NXT‘, Lacey Evans. Recently, Lacey has been playing a brilliant heel role, claiming to be superior to her colleagues and being a “real woman”.
She lost recently to Nikki Cross, so both of these competitors are yet to cement themselves as top-level performers in NXT‘s women’s division. This is the only women’s segment scheduled, so don’t be surprised to see Shayna Baszler, Kairi Sane, and NXT Women’s Champion Ember Moon, who have all been vying with each other for the last couple of weeks, pop up – especially with Shayna and Kai’s history.
Street Profits vs. Heavy Machinery
Arguably the two most entertaining tag teams in WWE‘s yellow brand are set to go head-to-head in the first round of the Dusty Rhodes Tag Team Classic. Both teams have garnered quite a bit of momentum recently, each coming out on top in mini-feuds with Riddick Moss & Tino Sabbatelli at the latter end of 2017.
Out of the two teams, Dawkins and Ford would probably rank higher if there were to be a ranking system of the most over teams in NXT, with many even slating them to win the entire tournament and challenge the Undisputed Era at NXT Takeover: New Orleans.
The winners of this bout are set to face The Authors of Pain. Seeing Heavy Machinery and Akam & Rezar in the same ring at the same time would certainly be a sight to behold, but the Profits have a score to settle with the big Europeans, as it was the ‘Sultans of Swag’ who AOP defeated to get a title match at NXT TakeOver: Philadelphia. The Authors of Pain beat TM61 last week to earn their place in the semi-finals.
SAnitY vs. Riddick Moss & Tino Sabbatelli
A second first-round match in the Dusty Rhodes Tag Team Classic will also take place tonight, as former NXT Tag Team Champions SAnitY square off against the impressive duo of Moss and Sabbatelli. SAnitY will no doubt want a second chance at taking the titles back from those who took them away, but Moss and Sabbatelli have had a rough time as of late. As mentioned earlier, they came out second in both of their main angles of 2017 and have never really got going. Just over a month ago the ‘God-Gifted Athletes’ fell short to Heavy Machinery, and following some tension throughout the match appeared to be crumbling apart, especially when Moss walked away from Tino in the aftermath. They do, however, claim to have put that behind them.
I don’t buy that for a second. I fully expect SAnitY to advance and for the tension between Moss and Sabbatelli to grow. Personally, I can’t wait for Tino to become the biggest heel in all of WWE. The winner of this one, probably SAnitY, will face either Mustache Mountain or Oney Lorcan & Danny Burch in the next round.
Tommaso Ciampa Segment
Ciampa is set to once again address the NXT Universe tonight. This follows on from last week where he beautifully worked the crowd into a booing frenzy, even getting so enraged that he obliterated a fan’s Johnny Gargano sign with his crutch.
Ciampa has probably become my favorite heel in wrestling recently. Partly due to his new look matching his new attitude, but it’s also down to the fact that he has the best Twitter account in wrestling. Here is his latest tweet.
See what I mean? Will we get another few minutes of angry silence from Ciampa tonight, or will we get some form of explanation regarding his recent actions towards Gargano? I’d guess the former.
Pete Dunne (c) vs. Adam Cole – NXT United Kingdom Championship
Last week a confrontation between WWE United Kingdom Champion Pete Dunne and his former challenger Roderick Strong was interrupted by the Undisputed Era, of course, led by Adam Cole. Cole made fun of Strong for never winning big matches, to which Dunne retorted by pointing out:
“You haven’t won anything since you’ve been here.”
Might be forgetting that big scary War Games match there Pete…
The two are now set to go toe-to-toe for Dunne’s title. When the championship was introduced, it looked like it meant great things for British wrestling, and there were apparently even plans for a ‘UK only’ show on the WWE Network. This has clearly not come to fruition, so much so that WWE is introducing another championship in NXT.
I expect a decent match because these two guys are brilliant wrestlers. Keep your eyes peeled for some involvement from Fish, O’Reilly, and maybe even Strong though. It’s likely that Dunne will keep the title and move on to pretty much the same thing he’s been doing for ages – hanging around and having some meaningless but good bouts for his belt. It will be interesting to see what happens to the WWE United Kindom Championship after the introduction of the aforementioned new mid-card championship.
Andrade Almas vs. Aleister Black – NXT Championship Match Contract Signing.
By virtue of a win last week against the ‘Beast of Belfast’ Killian Dain, Aleister Black is the new number-one-contender for Andrade ‘Cien’ Almas’ NXT Championship.
Following that match, NXT General Manager William Regal announced that at NXT TakeOver: New Orleans Black will have his first NXT title match in the main event against ‘El Idolo’. Regal also said that the contract signing for that match is going down tonight.
As we know, being wrestling fans, contract signings never really go down without some sort of shenanigans – usually involving a table. It will be interesting to see how Almas responds to being across the ring from a character like Aleister Black. We can hardly expect Almas to want to engage in some form of fisticuffs with the ‘Dutch Destroyer’. There’s also, of course, the supporting factor of Zelina Vega, who arguably is the reason Almas has the gold right now, both in kayfabe and out.
There’s still four episodes of NXT to go until these two will officially clash, so I’m not sure how they plan to build after this – contract signings are usually done on the go-home episode of a show before the big event.
This week’s NXT should be a solid episode, after all, when was the last time there was a bad one? The segment I’m most interested in is the contract signing between Almas and Black, but Pete Dunne vs. Adam Cole has the makings to be a very good match. What are you most looking forward to?
If you agree or disagree with anything I said, feel free to shout at me in the comments or on Twitter. Also, check out the official WrestleTalk Twitter page for updates and notifications about articles on this very site. But most of all, I hope you enjoyed reading this and have a spiffing day.
- pete dunne
- Aleister Black
- adam cole
- Andrade Almas
- Dusty Rhodes
- Street Profits
- Dusty Rhodes Tag Team Classic
- andrade cien almas
- NXT Championship
- NXT North American Championship
- Roderick Strong
- The Undisputed Era
- WWE United Kingdom Championship
- Heavy Machinery
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