NXT TakeOver: WarGames Preview and Predictions - Triple Threat POV | Smark Out Moment

NXT TakeOver: WarGames Preview and Predictions - Triple Threat POV

Posted by Robert DeFelice Sunday, November 12, 2017
Welcome to another edition of Triple Threat from Smark Out Moment, where three of us get together to discuss three questions based on one big topic going down in the week of professional wrestling.

This week, Robert DeFelice, Andy Sahadeo and Callum Wiggins will be giving their opinions on what they expect from the historic NXT TakeOver: War Games!

Question 1: It will officially be a new day for the NXT women's division. Who do you want to see usher in this new era and win the NXT Women's Championship in the Fatal 4-Way at TakeOver?

DeFELICE: Let's break this down. Make no mistake about it, Nikki Cross is great. She would probably be my number two. She's frantic and has had some historic matches with the promotion already. I would love to see her win in a scenario where they are building towards total dominance by the SAnitY faction. In order to do that, they would have to win the War Games and I don't want to see that happen, so as much as I like Nikki, I'm going to say that her time will come at a later date. That is to say, if she even wins it at all. Remember, Alexa Bliss never held the NXT Women's Championship, and she's doing fantastic things on the main roster.

On to Peyton Royce. There is this adoration with the Iconic Duo of NXT, I'm going to be honest, I don't get it. I want to preface this by saying that I think Peyton is phenomenal as an athlete but the iconic gimmick just remind me too much of the butterfly belt era. Two bratty, beautiful girls that are BFFs. They do it very well but I don't understand the fascination with something that was literally the backbone of the era of women's wrestling that we all loved to hate. The whole thing where everybody has to have a buddy and it's a buddy system, I just hate it. Now, I was dying to see the girls get called up to be with Emma but now that she has been released, I'm not really sure what I want for them in the future. However, I do know that I don't want them anywhere near the Women's Championship. I know they're popular. Send your hate tweets to the handle in the footer of this post.

Kairi Sane. Yes, she's amazing. She's going to make the match that much more epic. Now that that's out of the way, in no way, shape, or form does she belong winning the championship here. We just got over a 400+ day title reign of Asuka. We do not need her super kawaii counterpart to pick up where she left off. Drop all the beautiful elbows please, be an adorable pirate, do whatever you want, but do not walk out with the championship.

Ember Moon needs to win here. She is not Bayley, she's not an adorably lovable loser. She should've been the one to beat A and she lost to her twice. If she loses here, in my eyes she will have lost all steam. She deserves it more than any other girl here and I believe she is the perfect successor to Asuka, and I'm going to be pretty upset if she doesn't win.

SAHADEO: Definitely Ember Moon, no doubt about it. All four of these women are indeed worthy contenders, but Ember Moon has been in the title picture for too long and has fallen victim to Asuka so many times. If they don't pull the trigger on this, I don't know how long they can keep her momentum up.

Nikki Cross is my number two pick given that she puts on an incredible showing every time she's in the ring. Granted her freakouts in the ring are kinda cringe-worthy to watch at times but overall she can seriously deliver in and out of the ring, and she definitely has the biggest personality in this match aside from Peyton Royce.

I can see Peyton Royce pulling off the win by shenanigans just to screw Ember Moon out of the title. Especially with Billie Kay at her side, there's no doubt in my mind that Kay could potentially interfere in this match. You can never tell with the Iconic Duo.

Lastly, Kairi Sane I feel is the dark horse of this match. Yes, we know she was an incredible performer outside of WWE and I'm not saying this just to hype up WWE, but she definitely needs to work her way up the division instead of being hot-shotted the Women's Title. My first exposure to her was under the name Doku during that hour-long gauntlet match between the Black Lotus Triad and Pentagón Dark. I've seen her work wonders in the ring, but let the NXT Universe get to know who Kairi Sane is first before giving her the title.

WIGGINS: In my mind there is only one logical choice to be crowned the next NXT Women's Champion… Peyton Royce. No, seriously.

Ember Moon is great in the ring, Nikki Cross offers fantastic frenzy and Kairi Sane is surely Asuka's heir apparent in NXT. But, after such a dominant and excellent run by Asuka atop the division, none of these are quite ready to step up to her level as a fighting champion. Comparisons are bound to be made so soon afterwards, and that will leave all three exposed.

So, your next champion should be someone the polar opposite of Asuka - a chicken-shit heel that will hold onto a title by any means necessary, including her bestie Billie Kay causing interference. I think an underhanded, definitively heel champion makes sense right now, and Peyton Royce has improved to the point that she can carry the belt safely while Sane is built up.

Question 2: How do you feel about Almas getting an NXT Championship opportunity? Has he earned it? What do you think the future holds for the NXT Championship?

SAHADEO: Of course he's earned it. Almas got a bad deal when he debuted as a face all to no fanfare. It was disappointing to see such a talented guy get booed so much but NXT writing team was smart enough to turn him heel before he became unsalvageable. I do think that this match will just act as a filler so Drew McIntyre doesn't lose his first defense, but regardless of such it will definitely put more eyes on him for the future. I know Cien Almas is a bonafide main-eventer, and this opportunity gives him a chance to prove it.

As for the future of the NXT Championship – as NXT history dictates, the champion will defend successfully the first couple of times, lose to the next rising star (in this case, it's Adam Cole), invoke their rematch clause and lose, thus getting sent up to the main roster. It's only a matter of time before Drew McIntyre is back on WWE TV.

WIGGINS: I like Andrade Almas, especially his recent work since teaming with Zelina Vega. To me, he's felt like the natural successor in NXT to Tyler Breeze - the dependable heel circling the main event who you can rely on for quality matches and put new talent over. He's done this for over a year now, so I feel a shot at the NXT Championship is long overdue and richly deserved for his improvement.

Sadly, it is hugely unlikely to end with Almas capturing the championship, as Drew McIntyre and Adam Cole seem destined to take place sometime in 2018. Even worse, this won't even be the main event of TakeOver. But, I'm looking forward to the match as both McIntyre and Almas can be relied on to deliver, and I wouldn't count out this match stealing the show in Houston

DeFELICE: McIntyre should be in War Games. This match with Almas, it feels like it's just the latest downgrade in the NXT Championship scene. Like I get it. Cien had a great match with Johnny Gargano last time out at TakeOver, but there could just be so much better uses for Drew. I really want to see Adam call win that championship soon, and then maybe Johnny or Roderick.

Question 3: How surreal is it to see War Games return? Who do you think will win?

WIGGINS: I'm cautiously excited if such a state of mind is even possible. WarGames as a concept is a few years before my time, and past examples I've seen of these matches and its TNA-branded successor Lethal Lockdown have me slightly worried it will be a clusterfuck. But, the guys involved all have plus points, so I'm remaining positive this will be an exciting, chaotic brawl, with The Undisputed likely going over.

My biggest gripe with WarGames though is the lack of stakes, which I feel needs to be addressed. Why is the structure needed for such a feud? It hasn't felt like a blood feud, and they aren't fighting for anything but a victory. Personally, I would have the Tag Team Championships on the line for the tag teams (Sanity, Authors of Pain and Bobby Fish & Kyle O'Reilly), while Eric Young, Roderick Strong and Adam Cole fight for the next opportunity at the NXT Championship. Instant high stakes, better match in my opinion.

DeFELICE: I'm excited. This is one of those surreal moments that are maybe too familiar in the industry today. I grew up watching The Monday Night War, and War Games was always a fascination. I really thought that TNA did it justice with Lethal Lockdown, but this is the big time! First and foremost, you need to understand that there will be two rings for the entire show, not just the one match. Think of all the incredible spots that we will be seeing throughout the night. Secondly, although it traditionally competes by way of two teams of four or five, we will have three teams of three, a really big trend in WWE right now. Seriously, you need to sit down and go on the network and they have a whole collection devoted to War Games. Familiarize yourself because you're going to see something incredible.

Right off the bat, I'm going to single out the weird team of strong and the AOP. Really, I would've rather seen Drew, Roddy, and Johnny or the UK trio. I don't see them winning, but I do see Roddy being the workhorse and Paul Ellering, who was in the first ever War Games, Will probably play a hand in the layout of this unique match. I would like to see SAnitY win but they would have to do so at the expense of The Undisputed Era. Since Cole, Fish, and Kyle just got there, I see them walking away with a victory and establishing dominance over the yellow brand. All in all, I've never been so excited for an NXT TakeOver ever and I am dying to see them deliver.

SAHADEO: I started watching wrestling back in 2002, so I wasn't around to experience the original WarGames in WCW. I should actually take a look at one of the matches on the WWE Network to see how these matches play out on TV, but I'm still kind of weary to see how this plays out.

For years we've heard rumors of WarGames coming back and every time those rumors broke out, the IWC would run it down because we all know it probably wouldn't turn out good, especially since Vince McMahon loves to ravage WCW any chance he gets (for example, making Starrcade, WCW's WrestleMania, into an untelevised house show). Now that this match is taking place in NXT under Triple H's guidance, this really has me thinking about how great of a match this can potentially be.

With bonafide stars like Adam Cole, Bobby Fish, Kyle O'Reilly, Roderick Strong along with the Authors of Pain and SAnitY, can this match really go wrong?

Those are our thoughts on the issue, but where do you stand?
Let us know your answers to these questions in the comments below!

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Robert DeFelice is a journalist and marketing student. You can follow him on Twitter, Instagram as well as his apparel website Time Killer Apparel and his pro wrestling blog PandemoniuMania.


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