• NXT TakeOver: Dallas Preview and Predictions

    Better than Mania?

    Giving their thoughts and predictions on what to expect from the PPV are members of the site @JoeyOnEarth, @TimWelcomed and @TomBlargh.

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    Apollo Crews vs. Elias Samson

    Joey:

    I have no idea how Elias Samson made the card but I’m glad Apollo Crews gets a spot on the huge show. My assumption is Crews wins in under 5 minutes and shows off that beautiful smile.

    Interest Level: 3/10
    Prediction: Apollo Crews wins.

    Tim:

    I’m excited that Apollo Crews is on the show but I have to say that I am not on board with The Drifter. Crazy, I know. Elias Samson is hardly even one-dimensional. He shows no promise at this time. He barely even exists. Hopefully he’s been put into the spotlight lately to make his defeat at the hands of Crews feel somewhat meaningful. I’m just trying to make sense of him.

    Interest Level: 4/10
    Prediction: Apollo Crews wins.

    Tom:

    I feel bad for Apollo Crews, he seemed to be getting a bit of momentum for a while and now he’s stuck drifting around. “DRIFTING AROUND”! DRIFTING! Because Elias Samson is The Drifter! Okay, that’s it.

    Interest Level: 2/10
    Prediction: Crewsy wins.

    Austin Aries vs. Baron Corbin

    Joey:

    Baron Corbin beating the shit out of Austin Aries is a true dream match. Aries is such an asshole but he’s definitely talented so the match should see an interesting clash with Corbin improving and at his best lately. I think they will have a very good match together but we need Corbin to drop some banter and destroying Aries at the end for optimal results.

    Interest Level: 8/10
    Prediction: Baron Corbin wins.

    Tim:

    I cannot stand Austin Aries but I am curious to see him compete in the WWE environment, especially against the likes of Baron Corbin. I’m not really sure if I genuinely like him or if he’s just a good laugh for me but I think this match could help me understand these strange feelings I have towards The Lone Wolf. The Big Breakfast. Baron Corbin.

    Interest Level: 6/10
    Prediction: Austin Aries wins.

    Tom:

    I’m so excited for this. I remember Austin Aries being fun to watch for a while, but years of TNA have made it impossible to care about him and he seems like a genuinely poor human being. Contrarily, Baron Corbin is perhaps the BEST human being! I can’t wait to see him kick Aries about a bit, hopefully only pausing to tell him to go back to Shit-kara.

    Interest Level: 10/10
    Prediction: Baron Corbin wins.

    The Revival vs. Chad Gable and Jason Jordan for the NXT Tag Team Championship

    Joey:

    Dashman and Dawson Leery are not a tag team I enjoy. Chad Gable and Jason Jordan are a tag team I enjoy. The latter may already be the best tag team in NXT history (match wise) and they need a long run with those titles to make them as relevant as the other NXT championships. We will get the wonderful moment of Gable and Jordan winning the big one in beautiful Dallas, Texas.

    Interest Level: 8/10
    Prediction: Chad Gable and Jason Jordan win.

    Tim:

    The Revival may have won me over as competitors at Road Block. I was really harsh on them beforehand but, hey… their characters are still pretty lame. They’ve at least made me interested in seeing them wrestle again especially against one of the most intriguing tag teams WWE has had in a long time. It may have been that Enzo and Cass and the crowd reaction made them seem better. LOOK, I DON’T KNOW YET. American Alpha may be a horrible name but these two guys have something. I can see them both being great singles stars one day if they keep growing at this pace. They have awesome chemistry as a team and them winning the titles on the biggest NXT stage will be a great moment. The Revival’s theme song sounds like something TNA would use. It’s like Garth Brooks harnessed his dark powers but didn’t turn into Chris Gaines this time.

    Interest Level: 10/10
    Prediction: American Alpha wins.

    Tom:

    I like Gable and Jordan but The Revival doesn’t do anything for me. This is an observation I’ve made in all previous NXT Takeover previews and an observation I will continue to make. Am I supposed to not have any interest in The Revival, is that the point? Am I getting worked, bro? Maybe.

    Also, I like that Joey refused to call Gable and Jordan “American Alpha” when he was setting this post up, because he is a TRUE fan who refuses to use Vince Jr’s bullshit Mickey Mouse monikers.

    Interest Level: 6/10
    Prediction: American Alpha wins.

    Shinsuke Nakamura vs. Sami Zayn

    Joey:

    What can be said? The match will be an amazing spectacle. I’ve seen a bit of doubt regarding Sami Zayn’s performances since returning but it’s hard to get a grasp of someone on NXT television. The TakeOver specials are where everyone puts out their best work and I have faith in this delivering. The electric atmosphere alone should be amazing and this is the perfect place for Shinsuke Nakamura to debut.

    Interest Level: 10/10
    Prediction: Shinsuke Nakamura wins.

    Tim:

    I’m 100% in denial that I will be seeing this match live. Two of my favorites going against each other in a WWE ring. I’m sure Nakamura will bring it in his WWE debut. Sami Zayn has been in some very boring matches since his return. This match will hopefully set him back on his normal pace. Every once in a while a story isn’t necessary in the set-up of a big match. Two respected wrestlers going head-to-head is all this match really needs especially with Zayn on his way out and Nakamura needing a big win on his debut to show that he is the real deal. Will Shinsuke Nakamura’s very important aura translate to the WWE Universe? I think so but even something as small as having a bad entrance theme can subtract from his mystique. I’m ready to find out for sure though. Also, please go back to the leather tights and lose those leather pants, man. C’mon.

    Interest Level: 10/10
    Prediction: Shinsuke Nakamura wins.

    Tom:

    I’m very onboard to see two of the best wrestlers on the planet having a scrap, but it’s essentially an exhibition match, for all intents and purposes – there’s been minimal build for it and I don’t imagine we’ll see any repercussions from the finish, given old Sami’s on the main roster now. Also, the fact that Sami has a Wrestlemania ladder match the next day has me questioning how hard he’ll go here. I’m not trying to be a downer! I’m very excited for this and extremely sad I can’t witness it live – the atmosphere will be insane and I think the two of them will be able to carve out their own story in the context of the match. Also, one of the most fun things about NXT is seeing how new guys adapt to the new environment – Nakman seems like the type who won’t have much trouble at all, but seeing how he tweaks himself to fit in will be very interesting. I’m also hoping we get some post-match business to signpost what else they have planned for Shinsuke.

    Interest Level: 9/10
    Prediction: Shinsuke Nakamura wins.

    Bayley vs. Asuka for the NXT Women’s Championship

    Joey:

    I feel like everyone has been sleeping on this match due to the other things announced for NXT, Wrestlemania and other indie shows during the weekend. I’m predicting Bayley and Asuka will have the best match of the weekend and deliver one of the greatest matches in NXT history. I would personally have this main event TakeOver but the H-Man knows what’s best so I trust his vision. Unless he loses to Roman Reigns.

    Interest Level: 10/10
    Prediction: Asuka wins.

    Tim:

    I’m with Joey in thinking this match should main event. Bayley’s story and character development has been incredible throughout her tenure in NXT and now she faces her scariest opponent yet. I remember realizing that Asuka was eventually going to have to wrestle Bayley and feeling legitimately worried about it for a bit. These two will put on one hell of a match and I know there’s a good possibility that Asuka will walk out champion. Watching Bayley fall to such a ferocious competitor will be heartbreaking and that’s okay! In fact, it’s what I want from this.

    Having a strong reaction to a babyface losing is pretty rare these days for me. Wrestling should be used to bring out all emotions through its storytelling and I really think this one can hit on that in a unique way by using the intriguing dynamics of these two characters efficiently. It will make Bayley stronger in the end and Asuka will be a must-see champion. I cannot wait to witness this one. This could very possibly be the best match of pro wrestling’s biggest weekend.

    Interest Level: 10/10
    Prediction: Asuka wins.

    Tom:

    I’m extremely excited for this. Asuka has been the highlight of NXT for me since her debut, but all her feuds so far have been with people a solid few rungs below her in terms of ability, and the same could be said for Bayley. The two of them have had good matches with Emma and Dana Brooke and so on, but the two of them facing off feels like the real deal and it’ll be very interesting to see how a crowd reacts to Asuka kicking the head off someone they like for a change. Hopefully it gets a good amount of time!

    Interest Level: 10/10
    Prediction: Asuka wins.

    Finn Balor vs. Samoa Joe for the NXT Championship

    Joey:

    With everything announced for the show, this may be on the bottom half of my most anticipated matches on TakeOver. I enjoyed the London match quite much and I’m sure this will be very good but it’s going to be tough to see them top the other matches on this card. I think Finn Balor loses the title and debuts on Raw after Wrestlemania with Karl Anderson and Doc Gallows as The Balor Club. Joe getting a title run and facing Nakamura at TakeOver: Brooklyn is my prediction for the future of NXT.

    Interest Level: 8/10
    Prediction: Samoa Joe wins.

    Tim:

    I’m all for Samoa Joe as champion. I will probably always be a huge fan of his even though I know he can be off a lot more than he is on nowadays but I think putting the title on him will make him push himself more. Joe is still good at bringing his intensity to the forefront. I still havent seen Balor have a match that captured me in NXT but it could have a lot to do with him having to follow out-of-this-world women’s division matches. He has everything needed to be a headlining star on the main roster somewhere in him. He just needs to find a groove in the ring.

    I’m sure we will get “The Demon” since this is Wrestlemania weekend and they really haven’t done too well with not overusing it. I think this could be the last time for a while since he’s probably moving up and there really won’t be a need for his Balor Club persona to use it. I’m still really looking forward to seeing this live. I’m sure it will be a great match at least. I’m just not sure it will feel that way after two to three possible show-stealers before it. If any two wrestlers could possibly overcome that though it is these two.

    Doing my Wrestlemania Preview and Predictions after doing this one is going to be pretty sad.

    Interest Level: 9/10
    Prediction: Samoa Joe wins.

    Tom:

    Do I think it should have been Corbin over Joe in the main event spot? Yes. Am I bitter about it? Absolutely.

    Honestly though, it’s hard to be too interested in this. The feud’s stretched on too long for me and I don’t think there’s much left for the two of them to do with one another. Joey’s prediction of Joe winning feels extremely plausible, but I still don’t know if I see Balor losing the title, even if his main roster debut is imminent. KO set a precedent of the NXT champ appearing on Raw, and I thought that was a cool thing that would work well for a Balor Club / Bulletproof / Whatever-They’re-Called debut – Finn still holding the NXT title while “invading” Raw with his big mates would add an interesting edge to things. ANYWAY. Fantasy booking aside, I don’t have high hopes for this match but I’d love to be wrong!

    Interest Level: 6/10
    Prediction: Finn Balor wins.

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