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WWE NXT TakeOver: Unstoppable match card, rumors for May 20, 2015 event

WWE.com

All of the pre-taped episodes have aired as of last night, and we now have less than a week to wait until the sixth NXT special event, live on the WWE Network.   The show, the fifth to be branded Takeover, will air on Wednesday, May 20th at 8PM Eastern time exclusively on the company's subscription-based, over-the-top service.

After a confusing month or so worth of episodes due to the previous live show having been rushed to avoid any conflict with WrestleMania and increased touring for NXT, the brand really got back on track with a tightly focused set of hours in the three weeks since Unstoppable was announced.

Despite those well mapped out and executed plans, there's been uncertainty introduced to this show due to injury reports for a couple of main eventers. There's been no indication from WWE that plans for next Wednesday are being altered in any way as a result of those injuries (they haven't even acknowledged one of them in or out of storyline), so unless an announcement is made on the house shows NXT will run this weekend in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania and Albany, New York, we'll all find out how they're handling Sami Zayn and Hideo Itami's status next week.

Here's the card, which is presumably final:

- Sami Zayn vs. Kevin Owens (c) for the NXT Championship

This one goes back to Owens' debut in December (or to Ring of Honor in 2009, depending on how adherent you are to cross-promotional kayfabe). The current champ attacked his long-time friend just as he finally captured the NXT title, baited him into a match with the strap on the line for Rival and then beat him until he couldn't answer the referee's call to claim the belt. After some soul-searching, Zayn returned fire physically three weeks ago and since then psychologically to get this match made for the championship and to try to beat the champ at his own game.

Things get a little murky because Sami was given an opportunity to make a big splash on the main roster in his hometown when he answered John Cena's open challenge for the United States championship on May 4th in Montreal, and looked to clearly hurt his shoulder in the process. That's been acknowledged on NXT along with news that Zayn underwent an MRI, but no updates have been provided, and they were already committed to an angle where KO was promising to target a mystery injury (perhaps to The Likeable One's confidence?).

- Tyler Breeze vs. Hideo Itami vs. Finn Bálor in a Triple Threat match to determine the #1 Contender for the NXT Championship

Itami got to appear at WrestleMania thanks to a victory over his friend Bálor, in a tournament where Finn had already taken out Prince Pretty. Before that, Breeze had seemingly won his program with Hideo by coming out on top of a two-out-of-three falls match designed to end his program with Hideo. That was after the Irishman eliminated his Japanese friend in the tournament to determine the #1 contender to Owens' title.

So, the trio have a ton of history with one another, and all three men have a legitimate argument about deserving a title shot, even if Bálor lost the match he earned by winning the tournament wherein he defeated Hideo. Since General Manager William Regal announced this Triple Threat, The Gorgeous One has stood tall over Itami & Finn twice - once after losing a singles' match that saw Hideo inadvertantly blast Bálor with a kick and last night when miscommunication between the former tag partners resulted in a win for Breeze and his partner, Adam Rose.

This is the other injury bit match on the card...allegedly. Reports came out last week that Itami needs surgery that will keep him on the shelf for six months to a year, and his not being listed on a July tour of Japan seems to back that up. But show watchers have seen no sign of injury, and WWE's made no mention of it.

- Sasha Banks (c) vs. Becky Lynch for the Women's championship

I was very much looking forward to the build to this one between The Boss and her former Team B.A.E. partner, and the women have not disappointed.

After the Irishwoman was granted a somewhat surprising shot at the Women's belt in the Fatal 4Way at Rival, Lynch felt that she was disrespected by her friend when Banks won the title from Charlotte. She cleaned up unfinished business from that bout by submitting Bayley in a one-on-one match, and then pinning the Hugster in a Triple Threat to determine the #1 contender (as The Nature Girl was stretching her legs out in a Figure Four).

Bex has been rebuilt as a determined babyface for the feud. And in between tune-up matches for each and the usual flawless heeling from Banks, we got a contract signing for this match that was pure fire. If injuries impacted the top two mens' matches in the worst possible way, the Women's title could main event and very few people would complain.

- Enzo Amore & Colin Cassady vs. Blake & Murphy (c) for the NXT Tag Team championship

As was the case the last time we checked in on the show we now know will be called Unstoppable, much of the story here has focused on the Dubstep Cowboys' creepy flirtation with/ harrassment of Enzo & Cass' valet/manager Carmella. Once the Princess of Staten Island clearly shot down the champs' advances, Blake & Murphy dropped the ambiguity, attacking The Realest Guys backstage and costing Carm a match against Alexa Bliss.

The time seems right to take the New York/New Jersey faction to the next level, but Topknot & the Australian one are also hitting their stride. Either outcome would be defensible, with the most important element probably being how well Enzo & Cass hold up their end of the bargain between the ropes - win or lose.

- Rhyno vs. Baron Corbin

Full Sail has helped turn The Lone Wolf heel, and, character-wise, it looks like a good move. Booking has set this up as a clash of unstoppable beasts - now it's up to Corbin to show us something in the match itself, or the heat he's catching from fans will be less kayfabe and more shoot.

- Bayley & Charlotte vs. Emma & Dana Brooke

Just announced last night, the on-again, off-again team of the Hugster and the Nature Girl reunites to deal with a loose alliance between the two thorns in their sides.

Emma has gone dark since returning to Developmental, and made it her personal mission to drag Bayley away from the fans. That included distracting her into a loss to newcomer Brooke, "The Total Diva" whose character personifies every stereotype of a fitness model-turned-female WWE performer that smart fans hate. When Dana also started taking shots at Charlotte for getting a spotlight she feels she deserves despite only being on television for a month, the former Women's champ decided to help her biggest fan - and get a match at TakeOver in the process.

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Six matches is about the right number for one of these shows, but audibles may need to be called based on what Itami and/or Zayn are capable of. A segment debuting Uhaa Nation, who's been heavily featured in vignettes the last couple of weeks even though his real-life signing was only announced last month, looks likely - if for nothing else to reveal his WWE name.

In addition to that, there's also a long list of performers and even angles who have been absent from television that could be spruced up for the undercard...Jason Jordan or Alexa Bliss' turns, Marcus Louis' Phantom of the Opera act, anything having to do with former #1 contenders The Vaudevillains - just to name a few.

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What do you think of this card, gang? How does it stack up to the illustrious history of NXT live shows? Or are you too worried about Sami's shoulder to even think about that yet?

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