It wouldn’t be WWE these days without a few injuries. As previously mentioned, Hideo Itami is injured and out of the Dusty Rhodes Tag Team Classic, leaving his partner Koti Ibushi on his own. His replacement has already been announced though as NXT General Manager William Regal has named the pick in the video below.
TJ Perkins is an interesting choice to team with Ibushi as the two fought in the finals of the Cruiserweight Classic earlier this year. Perkins has since moved on to the main roster as the Cruiserweight Champion while Ibushi hasn’t been seen on WWE programming since. If nothing else this continues the relationship between the cruiserweight division and NXT, which feels a bit more natural than their relationship with “Monday Night Raw”.
Perkins is just about as good of an option as NXT could have selected. I’m glad they didn’t choose another Japanese wrestler just for the sake of having two Japanese wrestlers together. Choosing Perkins shows some extra thinking by NXT and that’s never a bad thing. Perkins and Ibushi could even be considered dark horses to win the whole thing, which makes their matches even more interesting.
What are your thoughts in Perkins taking Itami’s place? Would you have picked someone else? Who do you think will win the whole tournament? Let us know in the comments below.