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WWE NXT preview (May 4, 2016): Another level

It's the first episode from the April 29 Full Sail taping (spoilers for which are here) which starts the build to June's TakeOver in earnest. Here's what to expect from the show.

The Headliner

A lot of guys in NXT are at the 'A' level. But there's only one at the 'A-Double' level.

That's about all I've got. I'm a fan of Austin Aries, and have been since the Generation Next days in Ring of Honor (ROH). But I don't see a clear path for him in NXT right now. His introductory feud turned out to be one match long, and with a win over Baron Corbin at TakeOver: Dallas, he's now positioned for...

See that's the problem. A guy like Aries would ideally be used as a compelling foil for a mid-card act on the cusp of the main event, but I really can't think of anyone on NXT television who fits that description in the men's singles ranks currently.

Barring that, maybe you call back to those mid-Aughts days in ROH, and build a title feud with Samoa Joe that harkens back to Aries ending Joe's longest-ever run with their World title?

Where the Greatest Man Who Ever Lived could really be of use is in NXT's blossoming tag scene. A feud with American Alpha could be great fun and further cement those guys as main eventers. But whoever will he partner with? If only his old TNA ally were a free agent...

The Title Scene

Other than a few brief words and some house show results, we don't know much about Samoa Joe's freshly minted NXT title reign. Finn Bálor continues to not show up on the main roster, so he likely has a rematch clause, and then there's guys like Aries and the newly signed Eric Young who have the claim of having held top belts elsewhere. We should get an idea of where Joe's first program is headed soon.

After selling for Eva Marie last week, Women's champ Asuka had a moment with Nia Jax, and the Samoan showed... to borrow a phrase from another Wednesday night star... cero miedo. Bayley still has designs on reclaiming the title, but Jax looks game for another shot herself.

The best angle of the entire WrestleMania Axxess tapings involved former tag titleholders The Revival putting the division on notice. They're still sitting on a rematch clause themselves, so we'll see how new champs American Alpha respond.

Other stuff to keep an eye on:

- Shinsuke Nakamura has somehow not been thrown into the main event mix - yet. He's got to be done with Elias Samson on television after last week, though, right?

- After a nice win over former champs Blake & Murphy, the Hype Bros fell victim to Dash & Dawson's refocused mean streak. How will Zack Ryder & Mojo Rawley answer?

- After wins over some lesser names, are Carmella and Alexa Bliss positioned to rise in the Women's division? Will we finally see pushes for Performance Center talents like Peyton Royce, Billie Kay and Adrienne Reese?

- Who is this Jose, and why do people keep denying him?

NOTE: Spoilers are out there for these pre-taped broadcasts (including here), but many Cagesiders don't partake.  If you are going to post or discuss spoilers for this show before they happen, or results of future shows, please use the spoiler bar in your comment.

See you tonight for NXT, Cagesiders!

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