Tonight’s show finds us at Full Sail, for the third 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.
It’s not a match that seemed to need a rematch - Women’s champ Asuka kept her historic reign and win streak rolling along in Chicago by pinning both Ruby Riot and Nikki Cross. But General Manager William Regal needs to keep sending challengers the champ’s way, whether she thinks they’re ready for her or not.
At least by changing the stipulation up and making this one an elimination match, Nikki and Ruby’s hatred for one another won’t directly lead to a win for the Empress of Tomorrow.
We’ll see if the signs of desperation Asuka’s been showing since defeating Ember Moon in Orlando rear their head again. Just this past weekend at Download, she smashed Ruby’s head into some steel steps, triggering a no contest.
Was it intentional? Even though this match almost certainly doesn’t spell the end of the Empress’ time on top, it should provide some insight into her state of mind - and hopefully give us an idea of where the Cross/Riot rivalry is headed.
The Title Scene
In beating Eric Young, Roderick Strong showed what happens to people who verbally attack his family. NXT champion Bobby Roode didn’t learn from that lesson, or the Glorious One doesn’t care. While the Messiah of the Backbreaker was announcing his intention to come for the belt, the champ cut him off to run down Strong, his fiancee and their son. Forget the world - looks like it’s Roddy vs. Roode.
Heavy Machinery definitely wants a piece of tag titleholders Authors of Pain, but NXT is hedging their bets a little and teasing a bevy of challengers, including SAnitY and Tino Sabatelli & Riddick Moss... who’s next? Probably not Lars Sullivan, since he can’t seem to stop assaulting his partners. Otherwise, the race is on.
Other stuff to keep an eye on:
- A man who you’d think has to be entering the title scene sooner rather than later will be back in action tonight. Will Drew McIntyre move into a meaningful feud, or just continue to rough people up?
- Somebody finally called Andrade “Cien” Almas on his laid back attitude to losing. Who is the mysterious woman who showed up to try and slap some sense into Andrade?
- Whatever happens in tonight’s main event, Ember Moon is gunning for Asuka. First, she aims to take out the Iconic Duo of Peyton Royce & Billie Kay.
- He’s been trying to talk some sense into an increasingly frustrated Hideo Itami, but the time for talking may be over for Kassius Ohno when it comes to his oft-injured Japanese friend.
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See you tonight for NXT, Cagesiders!