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WWE NXT preview (April 12, 2022): Stranger than fiction

Joe Gacy’s Twitter

NXT 2.0 returns tonight (April 12) live from the WWE Performance Center in Orlando!

Advertised for the show:

  • Mandy Rose (c) vs. Dakota Kai for the NXT Women’s championship
  • Grayson Waller & Sanga, Legado del Fantasma, The Creed Brothers, Josh Briggs & Brooks Jensen, and Pretty Deadly in a Gauntlet Match for the NXT Tag Team titles
  • Cameron Grimes (c) vs. Solo Sikoa for the NXT North American championship

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

1) Remember when Joe Gacy & Harland kidnapped Rick Steiner?

That was nuts.

Seriously, as I was running through the list of things on my mind about this week’s episode, it took me a while until I even remembered that last week’s episode closed with NXT champion Bron Breakker’s dad in a cage.

But that’ll happen in a week where one half of the newly crowned Tag champs gets released in a nasty, messy online scandal, and four people who’ve been champions on developmental brands get moved up to the main roster.

Hope the Dog-Faced Gremlin is doing okay. I’m guessing Gacy’s incarceration style isn’t like Dexter Lumis’, but maybe Harland & the Hall of Famer are watching cartoons and eating cereal like Lumis and & Austin Theory did? Even if they are, I don’t think there are going to be any safe spaces for the duo when Bron gets his hands on them.

2) What does the booking of the NXT tag title match tell us about the future of the division?

Longtime NXT watchers immediately noted the team who wasn’t included in tonight’s Gauntlet Match, and their omission probably doesn’t say great things about Grizzled Young Veterans standing in WWE. Which is a bummer, but also not terribly surprising. They just brought in a younger, more conventionally attractive pair of former NXT UK Tag champs, after all...

Pretty Deadly is one of the five teams who did get the nod for tonight. Assuming they want to continue their program with The Creeds that was set-up last week when Kit Wilson & Elton Prince debuted on 2.0, figure those two teams cancel each other.

Of the remaining three, it’s hard to bet against Grayson Waller & Sanga. Waller’s been positioned as one of the stars of 2.0, but has yet to win a championship. He and his muscle were scheduled to challenge MSK tonight before Carter’s release. Legado Del Fantasma are perennial runners-up, and figure to soon be busy in their boss’ beef with the new “Don of NXT”.

They’re long shots, but I wouldn’t completely rule out Biggs & Jensen. If WWE wants to plug a babyface team into feuds they had planned for MSK, that could be their ticket to a title.

3) Is this Dakota Kai’s NXT swan song?

Speaking of long shots, I wouldn’t wager on the Captain of Team Kick dethroning Mandy Rose tonight. She’s had numerous singles title shots in her WWE career, and if they were going to pull the trigger on a championship run for the Kiwi, they’d have done it by now.

With her temporary reunion with Raquel Gonzalez Rodriguez already over, Kai could move back into the tag scene with Wendy Choo. And if Gigi Dolin & Jacy Jayne help Mandy retain tonight, that could be the move. Personally, I’d like to see Dakota pull a Roderick Strong and head over to NXT UK for a quick program with Meiko Satomura. Fingers crossed.

4) Is there a plan for Fabian Aichner?

He walked away from Imperium last week, then Gunther & Marcel Barthel Ludwig Kaiser showed up on the blue brand. The Italian is an amazing in-ring worker — Buddy Matthews is probably a good comparison. But Matthews isn’t here any more, and Aichner will probably need to display some skills we haven’t seen yet if he’s going to stick around.

5) When are Dexter Lumis & Duke Hudson just gonna kiss and get it over with?

That has to be where this is headed, right? It’s what I’m rooting for, anyway. Indi Hartwell & Persia Pirotta are just using them in their childish rivalry. They’d be much happier together.

Give us your questions and answers in the comments below. Then join us in our live blog, and we’ll see what Qs and As tonight’s show gives us.

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