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NXT preview (Sept. 30, 2020): Support group


NXT returns tonight (Sept. 30) from Full Sail University in Winter Park, Florida. It is the go home show for TakeOver: 31 this Sunday.

Advertised for tonight:

  • Shawn Michaels hosts a face to face between Finn Bálor and Kyle O’Reilly
  • Damian Priest & Io Shirai vs. Johnny Gargano & Candice LeRae
  • Dakota Kai vs. Shotzi Blackheart

As per usual, here are our five questions about NXT tonight:

1) Are the rest of Undisputed really happy for Kyle O’Reilly?

The speculation for some is that Kyle O’Reilly’s title shot against Finn Bálor, that he earned in the Gauntlet Eliminator last week, is going to lead to issues within Undisputed ERA. Perhaps even lead to a feud with the de facto leader Adam Cole.

Last week it seemed like everyone was very happy for Kool Kyle when they all celebrated with him after his huge win. (Well, Bobby Fish wasn’t there, but word has it he’s injured to some degree.) But will that selfless enthusiasm endure?

Would Adam Cole be OK with the possibility of stepping aside and letting KOR lead things? You’d assume the NXT champion would be the man in charge of the group. Are the ERA OK with Kyle eschewing their more villainous tactics as of late?

I don’t think we’ll get any major tells tonight, but some subtle hints could surely be dropped.

2) What does Shawn Michaels bring to the face off?

Given Kyle O’Reilly won the right to face Finn Bálor last week, NXT has just one week to give it any build. That’s likely why they’re advertising Shawn Michaels as part of the face off - to add some weight to this feud.

Not that it really needs it. Kyle O’Reilly is liked enough by fans and this is a fresh enough match up that it’s already very intriguing. But a segment that helps paint this as the rare opportunity for O’Reilly that it is could add a bit more weight to it.

How does Michaels add to it? He doesn’t have any known person history between the men, but he’s got the historic career to connect with both men. He knows the shoes both men are wearing. He’s been that first time champ with a brash personality. He’s been an established champ who has had the experience at the top. He’s also been a man who was part of a stable similar to Undisputed (DX of course) so he gets what it’s like to put the team stuff aside to focus on himself.

HBK is a legend, and he’ll be able to sell whatever they need to.

3) Will we get any more hints about the Oct. 4 debut/return?

Last week, NXT played a video that seemed to tease a returning star (or stars). A computer altered narrator discussed how they worked hard to create something in NXT and now the company has paper champions.

We won’t get any big hints, but it was buzz worthy enough that they’ll either re-air the video or hopefully give us one with a few new clues.

There’s been some online speculation about Bo Dallas possibly being the guy, and while I love Bo, that’d be a bit disappointing. Dallas was a full blown jobber the last time we saw him on TV, whenever that was. It could be something good after the build it, but the moment they reveal it would very possibly be a let down.

Then again, most names that would return from Raw or SmackDown would be likely coming from an unsuccessful stint or they wouldn’t be coming at all.

4) Is Dakota in trouble?

Dakota Kai finds herself in an odd spot.

She earned her way to a title shot a little while back, but that was because she had Raquel González in her corner as her muscle. Raquel was a very instrumental in Dakota’s ascension. Now, while they’re technically still together, González is on her own rise, feuding with Rhea Ripley. She’s focused on her own issues, so she’ll have less time to focus on assisting Kai.

Does this mean that Dakota is in essence on her own again?

That wouldn’t be great for Kai. While Dakota’s talented and a good heel, she hadn’t found success in that role until they paired her with Raquel. Is Dakota going to be able to find her place in a talented but busy women’s division without her insurance policy?

Tonight she faces another woman who’s climbing fast in Shotzi Blackheart. It will be a chance to let folks know she can do it on her own.

5) When do we get the #1 contenders tag title match?

Last week, the four top contenders for the tag team titles (and pretty much the entire NXT tag division) picked one member from each time to compete in a tag two on two tag match. The team of Roderick Strong and Danny Burch won this odd couples contest. That means Burch & Oney Lorcan will face Strong & Bobby Fish... some time.

That was never specified. Given Fish’s injury during training, we don’t know when this match will happen. Even if he were healthy, a tag team match probably wasn’t making the TakeOver card. They’ve got five already and if there’s a sixth, it will probably be a non-title bout like Rhea Ripley vs. Raquel González.

If everyone is good to go, they can run this match next week.

We’ll see if we get any answers to these questions tonight at 8 PM on USA Network?

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