WWE NXT will be putting on their latest live special tomorrow (Sat., June 1, 2019). For a change, this one stands alone from any main roster event. The location and venue for TakeOver: XXV - Bridgeport, Connecticut’s Webster Bank Arena - also came together at the last minute.
Regardless, the card set to come our way tomorrow at 7PM Eastern, exclusively on WWE Network, looks to be the usual high quality we’ve come to expect from the black-and-gold. It will feature five matches, with four titles will be on the line.
If you're new or someone who only checks out NXT for the live specials, we've got a full preview of the matches coming up for you between now and belltime. Right now, we've assembled a motley crew of Cagesiders who watch & love NXT to give us their thoughts & predictions on each.
Let's get to it.
WWE NXT TakeOver: XXV PREDICTIONS
Johnny Gargano (c) vs. Adam Cole for the NXT title
Sean Rueter: As my fellow NXT old heads may recall, they’ve done this “ultimate underdog considers going to the dark side only to overcome and climb the mountain the right way” story before. And Sami wasn’t champ long. Pick: Adam Cole
Kyle Decker: It feels like Johnny is a supporting player in the Undisputed ERA story. That alone has me doubtful we’ll see a change. Couple in the fact that Johnny’s journey to the title was way too long to have him go one and done. Pick: Johnny Gargano
Rev. Claire Elizabeth: It’s interesting, because Undisputed ERA are booked for Evolve in June... without Adam Cole. And Johnny Gargano is booked for Evolve in July for the 10th anniversary show. So that alone makes me suspect a title change rather than Hunter allowing his champion to come wrestle for the atomic purple brand. Plus at a certain point you have to just do the thing, and that thing here is put the gold around Adam Cole’s waist. Pick: Adam Cole
Stella Cheeks (of the always awesome NYD podcast, and Cageside social media maven): I feel like a broken record, but I just don’t give a _____ about Johnny when he is not with Ciampa. Whatever underdog magic he had before now feels stale to me. Actually...maybe it’s just NXT and this weird TakeOver that feels stale... Pick: Adam Cole
Henry T. Casey: This TakeOver — in the calendar and my mind — feels completely inexplicable in its placement. Last year this TakeOver took place on MITB weekend, and now for some reason it isn’t. Are they trying to keep Vince away from the rest of the roster? I ramble because it feels too soon by a month for a show, and I’m struggling to not think of XXV as a glorified house show. So, as you’ll see, I’m going to pick with my hope: that this show changes the NXT landscape. Cole getting another title shot, also, makes little sense if he loses again. Pick: Adam Cole, BAYBAY
Io Shirai vs. Shayna Baszler (c) for the NXT Women’s title
Sean Rueter: NXT isn’t afraid to hang a “can’t win the big one” sign around a babyface’s neck. With their recent back-pedaling on Bianca Belair’s push, I’m not sure who the Genius of the Sky would feud with as champ. S’why even though I agree with my comrades that the Queen of Spades run on top is past it’s sell by date, I’m guessing they string this along until Toronto. Pick: Shayna Baszler
Kyle Decker: It’s long past time for Shayna to drop the title and move to the main roster. io Shirai is the perfect person do take it from her. Pick: Io Shirai
Rev. Claire Elizabeth: As much as I love the Queen of Spades, I gotta agree— it’s time. Pick: Io Shirai
Stella Cheeks: Honestly, part of me wants Shayna to win just to troll the NXT audience. There have been so many times when “it’s time for Shayna to drop” and then she wins is a dope finish and all the nerds have to eat crow. Here for Shayna to beat Pete’s record and then unceremoniously drop it to a woman who slaps real good. Pick: Shayna Baszler
Henry T. Casey: Io getting another shot reminds me of the top NXT men’s title match. Let’s make Io even more big time. Pick: Io Shirai
Street Profits vs. Undisputed ERA vs. Oney Lorcan & Danny Burch vs. Forgotten Sons in a ladder match for the vacant NXT Tag Team championship
Sean Rueter: If only because I’ve always liked that Dubstep Cowboy, Wesley Blake, and would like to see him be a two-time champ. I mean, they’ve been building these guys for something, right? And let’s not pretend the NXT Tag belts are the best booked titles in the territory or anything. Whoever wins here only gets the dubious honor of being the champs after the unbeatable champs walked away without losing (aka the Ember Moons), anyway. Pick: Forgotten Sons
Kyle Decker: It feels like the Street Profits are the team they tried to heat up the most when the War Raiders left the territory without losing. Fish and O’Reilly are also a solid pick, but I think Undisputed are going 0-3 tonight. Pick: The Street Profits
Rev. Claire Elizabeth: I never thought much of the Street Profits before they came to Evolve, but the hard work and kickass matches they had on my beat really turned me around, and it’d be a hell of a shame if they didn’t earn a proper run with the NXT belts off of those performances. Pick: Street Profits (Angelo Dawkins & Montez Ford)
Stella Cheeks: Boy oh boy do the Street Profits need this win. They have been on the NXT roster for a long time and although they are incredibly fun and great to watch in ring they haven’t really done anything. They need to win here to prove that they belong in the tag team scene. I want to see their victory dance on top of a ladder! Also LOLOLOL The Forgotten Sons suck. Pick: Street Profits
Henry T. Casey: If Daddy Cole eats, so do the boys. Profits will take the titles off of them some day. Pick: Bobby Fish and the Ambassador of Kickassador, Kyle O’Reilly: the Undisputed Era
Tyler Breeze vs. Velveteen Dream (c) for the North American championship
Sean Rueter: For the sake of being unpredictable, to avoid having the first guy officially brought back keeping the “sent down” stink on him, and because if I’m write about the main event, it’s time for Dream to chase the heel holding the top belt. Pick: Tyler Breeze
Kyle Decker: If it were me, I’d book the surprise and have Tyler win the title. But I can’t imagine they actually go that route. This is more likely to give Dream a marquee win in short order after Dijakovic got hurt. Pick: Velveteen Dream
Rev. Claire Elizabeth: I am very here for this, but I can’t see the title change happening unless the idea is just to get Tyler a gold watch, and the thought of putting him out to pasture makes me too sad to pick that way in good conscience. Pick: Velveteen Dream
Stella Cheeks: Tyler being back in NXT feels like it could be the hard reset this man needs. He was great in NXT when he was there but he never quite climbed the mountain. It’s time for Tyler to have some gold and remind people of how good he really is. And if he wins the title that means in stays in NXT and honestly, that’s where he should stay. Pick: Tyler Breeze
Henry T. Casey: 25th TakeOver feels like it could use a jolt of the OG days. Tyler needs this bad, and he and Dream could feud for a bit if need be. Pick: It’s TYLER!
Matt Riddle vs. Roderick Strong
Sean Rueter: They’re not hanging two TakeOver Ls in a row on The King of Bros, bros, bro-ettes, and non-binary broheims. Pick: Matt Riddle
Kyle Decker: As I mentioned above, I think Undisputed are going 0-3. Even if they weren’t, Riddle is clearly the guy in this match who is poised to be the huge singles star. Pick: Matt Riddle
Rev. Claire Elizabeth: Bro. C’mon. Pick: Matt Riddle
Stella Cheeks: Is this a serious question bro? Pick: Matt Riddle
Henry T. Casey: Riddle lets his emotions get the best of him, loses by DQ whilst looking like a beast. Even better, though, Roddy gets a win that he can use to threaten Cole’s reign. Pick: Roderick Strong
That's who we've got. Who are you taking, Cagesiders?