It's less than two weeks before NXT's next live event, TakeOver: Respect, comes our way from Full Sail Live on WWE Network. The October 7 show's main event was announced before it even had a full name, and thanks in part to that match being given thirty minutes, much of the show is already in place.
The company did add one bout to the card on last night's show, however, so it seemed appropriate to run down what we know we'll be getting from Respect...and what we still hope might find a few minutes two Wednesdays from now.
*NOTE: Spoilers are out there for the pre-taped broadcast leading up to the live special (some of them right here), but many of our regulars don't partake. If you are going to post or discuss spoilers or results of future shows, please use the spoiler bar in your comment.
Announced to date...
Bayley vs. Sasha Banks in a 30 minute Iron Man match for the NXT Women's championship
Not a dream! Not a hoax! Not an imaginary story!
The match of the year candidate these two put on in Brooklyn may have felt that way. The surreal final segment on the September 17 episode of NXT (where this bout was set up as the main event of Respect) that masterfully blended the kayfabe and real word importance of this brand's women's division was better than most fantasy booking.
William Regal has promised that this will be the last bout of the evening. While some have griped that the ladies still won't have gone on after a men's singles title match, this is still a big next step after the "double main event" at Barclays in August. And it's being given to two wrestlers who have proven they can handle the pressure.
Now what do they do to top their previous match while proving who is the best women's wrestler in the world?
The Finals of the Dusty Rhodes Tag Team Classic, featuring the winners of:
The semi-finals will also take place at TakeOver, meaning we'll have three tag tournament matches, with two teams pulling double duty on the night.
Rhyno & Baron Corbin vs. the winner of Hype Bros (Zack Ryder & Mojo Rawley) vs. Chad Gable & Jason Jordan
The Man-Beast & the Lone Wolf have bonded over a shared love of destruction to form an effective, and surprisingly entertaining, pair. Ryder & Rawley, who are still undefeated since tagging up, square off against the arrogant former amateur standouts at a Florida house show this weekend. Despite their heel alignment, a lot of fans are ready, willing and Gable for Chad & Jason to win it all.
Scott Dawson & Dash Wilder vs. the winner of Finn Bálor & Samoa Joe vs. The Realest Guys (Enzo Amore & Colin Cassady)
Dash & Dawson have earned their first live show appearance without having either of the early round wins shown in full on our screens. The old-school duo often draws comparisons to Arn Anderson & Tully Blanchard's Brainbusters unit from the old WWF, and they'll be a tough out for whichever favorite survives next Wednesday's main event.
Enzo & Big Cass have a lot of history with Dawson & Wilder, but they've also had a tough time winning the big one. NXT champ Bálor & indie legend Joe make a formidable team, but it's pretty clear the Samoan Submission Machine has his eyes as much on the Irishman's belt as he does winning the tournament.
Tyler Breeze vs. Apollo Crews
We found out about this the same time Breeze did, last night, shortly after he cut some corners to pin Bull Dempsey. Prince Pretty is a near constant presence on the show, and was given the honor of doing the job for Jushin "Thunder" Liger in his WWE debut the night before SummerSlam. Crews debuted on that same card, and has likewise been featured in one way or another on almost every episode since.
Apollo is rising up the card, however, while Tyler seems to have settled into his place on it. Will be interesting to see if this is the start of a long program between the two, or if the King of Cutesville is just a bump on the road for Crews and his Apollo Nation.
Other possiblilities for October 7 include:
- Last night's debut for joshi star Asuka certainly generated a ton of buzz, and set-up a feud with both Emma & rumored title contender Dana Brooke. Adding a second women's match would add to Respect's already revolutionary feel.
- Some mid-card acts have been making noise of their own while the men's main eventers are tied up in the Dusty Classic, including the comedy stylings of Bull Dempsey, an increasing frustrated & aggressive Solomon Crowe and Tye Dillinger's perfect score (10 out of 10). In the absence of a big debut, any of those three could start a program with another, or work a squash to keep them in the audience's mind.
- Neither the current nor former tag champs are on the show right now, which means their popular female partners aren't either. An intergender tag between The Vaudevillains & Blue Pants and BAMF might be considered, or an eight man with a couple of squads eliminated from the tournament, similar to the one taped before the TakeOver portion of the Brooklyn show.
- There's not a whole lot of time for much else, when you figure the main and the three tag matches will account for more than half the two hour show.
What do you make of that line-up, Cagesiders?
Which official match excites you the most? What do you think makes the card in addition to what we know now?
It's your turn to take over!