NXT airs tonight (Oct. 18) live from the WWE Performance Center in Orlando.
Bring out the big guns
As expected, WWE’s bringing in several guest stars from the main roster for this week’s show. Their presence will enhance the build for Saturday’s Halloween Havoc event, sure. But it may also entice some folks who only usually watch Raw and SmackDown to tune in, or ones who are on the fence about whether to watch NXT or AEW Dynamite to pick the former.
• Miss Kevin Owens on WWE television? Good news! At Shawn Michaels request, he’s back tonight to keep the peace when NXT champ Bron Breakker and his two challengers Ilja Dragunov & JD McDonagh make their final statements heading into Halloween Havoc’s Triple Threat.
• Sonya Deville appeared last Tuesday, representing NXT Women’s champion Mandy Rose (who was kayfabe kidnapped while in reality dealing with the death of her brother) in her feud with Alba Fyre. The former Kay Lee Ray picked up a win over Toxic Attraction’s Jacy Jayne on Oct. 11, but then a disguised Deville attacked her from the seats. Sonya won’t have the element of surprise on her side when she face Fyre tonight. Will Alba have any back-up? She’ll need it, since Jayne, Gigi Dolin, and possibly a returning Rose will likely be in Sonya’s corner.
• Before they go “Weapons Wild” on Oct. 22, Roxanne Perez and Cora Jade got to pick each other’s opponents for the go home. Perez chose Raquel Rodriguez, while the partner who betrayed her is going with Rodriguez’s friend-turned rival, Rhea Ripley. This will be the Nightmare’s first televised match since June.
• Cameron Grimes has had the numbers against him since the start of his feud with Schism. So for his trios match against Joe Gacy, Rip Fowler & Jagger Reid, he secured the services of The O.C. It doesn’t really have anything to with this match or storyline, but shout out to Luke Gallows & Karl Anderson for staying prominent and getting paid no matter who they work for.
That still leaves Tony D’Angelo’s hand picked mystery opponent for Channing “Stacks” Lorenzo, who they haven’t specified as a main roster talent, but certainly could be. The Don wants to teach his remaining lackey a lesson, so someone like Braun Strowman is a possibility.
Plus, seeing how Rodriquez & Shotzi are currently chasing WWE Women’s Tag champs Damage CTRL (and Bayley’s made it very clear she keeps tabs on what happens Tuesday nights), and AJ Styles & The Good Brothers are beefing with Rhea’s mates in The Judgement Day... don’t be surprised if those feuds spill over and add even more star power to tonight’s show.
Will these promised and potential moves make for a better Halloween Havoc go home? A winning ratings strategy? Both? Neither? We shall see.
The rest of the title scene
The field for Saturday’s Ladder Match for the vacant North American championship is set after Nathan Frazer punched his ticket by winning his best-of-three series with Axiom. Frazer, Carmelo Hayes, Oro Mensah, Wes Lee & Von Wagner will all try to climb and claim gold at Halloween Havoc. But even outside the title chase, Trick & Melo have issues with Lee — so they’ll face him & Mensah in tag action tonight.
It’s not scheduled yet, but Pretty Deadly will soon be defending their NXT Tag Team titles against Edris Enofe & Malik Blade. Kit Wilson & Elton Prince watched as Grimes’ attack on Gacy helped distract The Dyad so the new #1 contenders could beat Fowler & Reid and Josh Briggs & Brooks Jensen in last Tuesday’s Triple Threat.
Nikkita Lyons & Zoey Stark’s shot at Kayden Carter & Katana Chance NXT Women’s Tag Team belts is also not on the schedule, but will be coming our way soon. But probably not on Saturday, since we already have six matches booked for that.
Other stuff to keep an eye on
• He didn’t directly cause Grayson Waller to lose to Dragunov last week, but Apollo Crews’ visions for Waller have been coming true lately. Doesn’t seem to bode well for the Aussie ahead of his Halloween Havoc clash with Crews.
• Roderick Strong says he’s still hurt from a Damon Kemp attack we never saw, and that he’s really pulling for Julius Creed to win his Ambulance Match with Kemp this weekend. We’re not sure we trust him on either count, though.
• It looked like Sanga was in Valentina Feroz’s corner last week, but he left after Veer Mahaan came and whispered something in his ear. Which means he missed seeing Indi Hartwell beat Feroz with a superplex.
• A Hank Walker/Quincy Elliot team could be on the horizon. NXT Security likes the idea, and so do we.
- Kiana James scored a win over Thea Hail, but only because Chase U’s star student can’t help herself when an opportunity to throw Robert Stone around presents itself.
What will you be looking for on NXT tonight?