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WWE NXT preview (May 31, 2017): Defining statements

Tonight’s show finds us at Full Sail, for the first episode from a taping (spoilers from which are here) which will start to bridge the gap between May’s TakeOver: Chicago and August’s TakeOver: Brooklyn III. Here's what to expect.

The Headliner(s)

While overall, there’s not much new here from when we previewed last week’s show, we do know NXT champion Bobby Roode will definitely be here.

The Glorious One will likely cut his usual strong d!ckhead promo about it being his NXT, especially now that he’s continued the Roode era by evading the Go To Sleep and pinning Hideo Itami at TakeOver: Chicago. By the looks of a video released online after that show, but sadly not followed up on last week, Itami seems to be moving on with a possible heel turn and at least one match with Kassius Ohno. So tonight’s segment should be the first step in our finding out who the next #1 contender will be.

There are plenty of options. Enough so General Manager William Regal could probably schedule a defense for Roode before the next TakeOver in Brooklyn. Roderick Strong, coming off a clean win against SAnitY’s Eric Young, is probably the frontrunner. But with solid showings on last week’s episode, Drew McIntyre and Aleister Black deserve some consideration, too.

We’ll know more after we hear Bobby’s “Glorious Message” tonight.

The Title Scene

The big news for undefeated Women’s titleholder Asuka was WWE officially announcing they like her worked streak better than Goldberg’s... or anyone else in company history. None of that changes the landscape on NXT, however. Who will be the next to try and dethrone the Empress? Do Ruby Riot & Nikki Cross deserve another shot? Is anyone else ready (we know what the champ would say)?

Now that tag team champions Authors of Pain have left #DIY in shambles, there aren’t a lot of options left for their next rivals. Are the hosses of Heavy Machinery ready to take the next step? Will EY let Killian Dain & Alexander Wolfe try for pairs glory?

SO MANY QUESTIONS! AND NONE BIGGER THAN...

Other stuff to keep an eye on:

- WHY, TOMMASO, WHY? Some bad injury news has cast a bit of a pall over Ciampa & Johnny Gargano’s impending feud, but we’re still tuning in to see how they address all the real life and kayfabe happenings since 10PM Eastern on May 20.

- Triple H’s UK territory stole the show in Chicago. Will we learn where we can next see new champ Pete Dunne and the man he beat for the belt, Tyler Bate?

- Is Andrade “Cien” Almas upset he was left off the card at TakeOver, or too busy partying?

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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