NXT has come a long way in the last few months, having gotten away from the 2.0 stuff and trying to get back to where it was before everything went coconuts. A good portion of that is getting on the road again and that is what they are doing here with the biggest show of the year. As was the case last year, this is a glorified warmup to Wrestlemania, but it is also a heck of a card on its own with a major showdown in the main event. Let’s get to it.

Women’s Tag Team Titles: Kiana James/Fallon Henley(c) vs. Alba Fyre/Isla Dawn

This is one of your classic tropes of partners, or even champions in this case, who can’t stand each other but have to work together. Henley and James don’t like each other over what James might be doing to Henley’s friend Brooks Jensen and James isn’t exactly being open about things. Now they have to fight these monsters and that could be quite the problem for them.

I’ll go with new champions here, as James and Henley don’t feel like they are supposed to be long form champs. Fyre needs to win SOMETHING in NXT and this is about as good as it is probably going to get or her. That being said, it would not shock me a bit to see the angle drawn out even more, as there is a love of dragging out stories that could be over in about five minutes if someone would watch the TV show. But yeah, Dawn and Fyre win.

Tag Team Titles: Gallus(c) vs. Creed Brothers vs. Tony D’Angelo/Stacks

This is a match that has been set up over a few weeks, mainly due to drinking and shooting pool at a local bar. Gallus are the big brawlers, the Creeds are the big wrestlers and D’Angelo and Stacks have mob ties so they can get whatever shot they want. Oddly, D’Angelo and Stacks have been leaning more towards the good side of late and it’s strangely working for them. I’m not sure that’s enough to win the titles though.

I’ll take Gallus to retain here, as they haven’t really done much with the belts so far. Their look alone is enough to get them a chance, but they can back it up well enough. The Creeds have already had their title reign and don’t need another so soon, but D’Angelo and Stacks winning would make some sense too. For now though, I’ll go with Gallus retaining, as they can lose them in a big regular tag match later.

Chase U/Tyler Bate vs. Schism

Here we have a match that should go one way but very well may go in the stupid way instead. Schism continues to be one of the least interesting, most annoying and useless things I have seen in wrestling in a very long time and they have already dragged Chase U down with them over the last few weeks. The winner of this gets control of Chase U and Duke Hudson isn’t exactly happy with what he has been doing lately. This doesn’t instill me with hope.

For the sake of my sanity, I’ll go with Chase U, as I absolutely cannot take Schism getting another featured role. Schism talking as much as they do now is annoying as all goodness and it would be hard to fathom them getting to talk even more. Chase U really needs a win too and it would be great to see them FINALLY get to shut these pests up. I’m completely unsure if they will, but for the love of all things good and holy do the smart thing here.

North American Title: Wes Lee(c) vs. Ilja Dragunov vs. Dragon Lee vs. JD McDonagh vs. Axiom

For once this isn’t a ladder match and that was quite the relief to see. Instead it’s a scramble, with Wes wanting to face ten challengers at once but only getting four. In this case I could see a bunch of people walking away as champion, with Wes being right in the middle after having a rather strong reign with the title. It’s nice to have something this wide open as it leaves you with a bunch of options.

I’ll go with…..I think I’ll go with McDonagh winning, as he has been teased to win something big for a long time now and they might as well let him steal the pin here. Wes has held the title long enough that he doesn’t need to hold it much longer and a bunch of people could chase McDonagh very quickly. This is wide open and that makes for a fun match, which at least doesn’t involve a ladder.

Johnny Gargano vs. Grayson Waller

This is the personal match of the show as Waller is the huge pain and Gargano is standing up to fight for NXT. The match seems to be unsanctioned, even though Waller didn’t seem to sign the contract to make it official this week. What matters is getting Gargano back to his roots as it doesn’t seem to be working so well on the main roster. At least he is getting a chance here and it should be good.

I’ll take Gargano here in the big feel good moment as Waller has shown he can find a way to get back on top just by complaining enough. He is one of those people who will never shut up and he can do that all over again after Gargano wins. If nothing else, this ends the Gargano/Shawn Michaels issues with Waller and we can move on, as I’m sure Waller can find another target quickly enough.

Women’s Title: Roxanne Perez(c) vs. Tiffany Stratton vs. Zoey Stark vs. Gigi Dolin vs. Lyra Valkyria vs. Indi Hartwell

NOW we get to the ladder match and Perez is back to defend her title after missing a few weeks. As usual, you can eliminate some names right off the bat from this, as I can’t imagine Stark or Hartwell getting the title. At the same time, Dolin is shaky at best but could be an X factor. That leaves a few names as possible winners and that makes things more interesting.

I’ll go with Stratton winning here, as her winning the title and bragging about it would be perfect for her. You can then have Perez chase the title that she was never pinned for while also playing into her recent medical issues. Dolin or Valkyria winning isn’t out of the question, but this feels like it should be Stratton or Perez. I’ll take the former, in another match that could be wide open.

NXT Title: Bron Breakker(c) vs. Carmelo Hayes

This is the match that has been set up for months now because there is no one left for Breakker to face. Hayes has felt like the next big thing around here and can back it up as well as anyone else. He has the athleticism, the talking and the resume to make him feel like a star, but Breakker is another kind of force. This is a toss up match and I have a feeling that the loser is going to be making it up to the main roster.

I’ll go with….Hayes to win here, as there is just no reason to keep the title on Breakker much longer. While Hayes would be fine on the main roster at the moment, putting him on top of NXT for a bit feels like something he has earned. There is no bad ending here though and that is a great thing to see. This feels like a special match and I want to see how well they can make it work.

Overall Thoughts

The potential is here for a major show and that is great to see. What matters here is having the top talent around and the main event feels like a huge showdown. Going on the road makes the show feel that much bigger as this show is just a few hours before Wrestlemania. NXT has come a long way and they are looking like they deserve everything they are getting here. Now just make it work.

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You can find more from Thomas Hall at kbwrestlingreviews.com, or check out his- Amazon author page with 30 wrestling books.

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