You can take over part of next week’s Cheap Popcast by out-predicting the Laser Time hosts and your fellow commenters when it comes to NXT Takeover: San Antonio! Check out Dave and Brett’s expert opinions, then drop some knowledge of your own in the comments!
After a few weeks of holiday doldrums in the WWE, we’re finally back with some noteworthy rasslin from the biggest company in the business (okay, that started two weeks ago with the UK tournament, but you get my jist). Along with the first big shows of the year, we have our customary predictions contest! Here’s how said contest goes. Dave and Brett will make picks in this here article, and then open up the replies to you awesome listeners. You will then pick a winner (or if you’re feeling frisky, a rare draw/no contest) for each match (don’t worry about getting the finish right, I’m just looking for winners, if any), and then, just in case there’s a tie for correct predictions, pick a running time for the final match listed (the presumed main event) as a tiebreaker.
If you have the most correct predictions, you can make your mark on the next Cheap Popcast episode (exclusive to Patreon) by choosing a theme to close a segment. Pick the wrestler theme and include a YouTube URL to a wrestler’s theme alongside your predictions (including the running time of the NXT Championship match as a tiebreaker) and I’ll give you a shout-out on the next Patreon popcast. Got it? Good. Now, onto each LaserTimer’s predictions!
1 – Eric Young vs. Tye Dillinger
Look, WWE needs to strike while the iron is hot with Tye Dillinger. Everyone wants him to come out as #10 in the Royal Rumble, and who knows if his popularity will still be at this level in one year’s time. I think The Perfect 10 is set to get promoted to the main roster, and that should come with the customary NXT honors. Tye loses, but shows incredible strength by *almost* overcoming EY’s Sanity teammate interference. Afterwards, Smackdown gets its own Sami Zayn-like underdog with TD!
PICK: Eric Young
2 – Roderick Strong vs. Andrade Almas
Roddy is the current king of NXT’s “why do I care about this guy?” division, which has housed talent like DIY, TM-61, and Cien himself in the past. A good showing against Almas will certainly help, but Strong still needs a bit more personality to come out on television before he becomes a top-level dude in NXT. I predict an Almas win, but the duo could find a mutual respect (in cheating) and become a formidable tag team instead of sinking amongst the championship picture.
3 – NXT Women’s Champion Asuka vs. Nikki Cross vs. Billie Kay vs. Peyton Royce
If this was happening *after* Asuka went one-on-one with Ember Moon, I’d say this would be the prime situation for Asuka to lose her belt without taking a pin. However, EM is (shockingly) not a part of this Takeover, so I assume that Asuka will gut out a victory by pinning one of the hapless Australians, have a staredown with Moon, and ride that feud into her potential NXT swan song at the Takeover before WrestleMania.
4 – NXT Tag Team Champions Johnny Gargano and Tommaso Ciampa vs. The Authors of Pain
While I worry that an Authors of Pain title reign could turn NXT’s tag ranks back into the one-dimensional division it was during the Ascension’s heyday, I think there’s no other way for this to pan out than the dominant Authors of Pain ending the Cinderella story of DIY. TAOP can have a dominant run where new teams have to figure out other methods to topple the giants, Gargano and Ciampa can have a friendly exhibition at the next Takeover to follow up their Cruiserweight Classic bout, and DIY can re-establish their bond before graduating to the main roster.
PICK: Authors of Pain
5 – NXT Champion Shinsuke Nakamura vs. Bobby Roode
Nothing would make me happier than seeing Nakamura making his debut in the Royal Rumble with his awesome entrance catching an all-new audience by surprise, but the timing is all off. Nak *just* spent the last two months trading the title with Samoa Joe, so the belt needs some stability (plus Senor Joe’s absense over the last month makes him a better surprise Rumble entrant). Roode can look good by putting up a damn good fight before suffering his first high-profile NXT loss. Then Roode can win the belt at the next Takeover as Nakamura graduates to WWE post-Mania.
PICK: Shinsuke Nakamura in 24 minutes
Up next… Brett’s picks!