NXT Preview – May 30, 2018 – Kai vs Baszler

After a weeks hiatus (I was in Brazil, sorry guys), I’m back!

Takeover: Chicago is on the horizon, and the card is beginning to take shape. On top of that, Triple H is making the UK tournament a bit more involved with NXT, featuring a few title matches & tag matches for NXT Talent. However, we do have a title match scheduled for tonight! I’m Parker Love, here with your weekly NXT Preview!

As always, a recap of last week’s episode.

  • TM61 defeats Heavy Machinery
  • Lacey Evans defeats Kairi Sane
  • Lars Sullivan over Ricochet & Velveteen Dream (2 on 1 Handicap match)
  • Johnny Gargano accidentaly commits spousal abuse (probably 2nd degree) due to Tommaso Ciampa.

The Main Event

NXT’s newest underdog, Dakota Kai, is scheduled for a title shot tonight. Normally, anyone would be happy about a title opportunity, but Kai is going up against the woman she fears most in Shayna Baszler. It seems the timing is a bit off for this – she was horrified of Baszler for months. Now after one psycho pep talk from Nikki Crossshe’s ready? Damn.

Is it likely she wins? For a number of reasons, I doubt it. First, it wouldn’t really make sense for a underdog story to be rushed to a the finish here after not much of a build. Secondly, Baszler has a championship match scheduled for June 19th already; she’ll be facing the winner of a fatal four-way that consists of Isla Dawn, Jinny, Killer Kelly, and Toni Storm. Personally, I don’t see her losing her title before then. Finally, is Kai ready to carry the women’s division? Would it kill the momentum of resident badass Baszler to lose so early? Lots of questions to answer, and I guess we’ll find out the answers tonight.

Other Segments

Aleister Black makes his return to Full Sail University tonight, after winning the title from Andrade “Cien” Almas in New Orleans. He’s been sorely missed in my opinion. The official WWE preview says that names like “Lars Sullivan, Ricochet and Velveteen Dream” will be listening. One of those competitors beat the other two though, so it doesn’t take rocket appliances to figure out who may interrupt Aleister.

If you don’t get the references, watch a couple episodes of Trailer Park Boys.

WWE.com’s preview lists a hype package for Bianca Belair tonight. “Who is Bianca Belair” could go a couple ways for her. On one hand, it was fantastic for helping Roderick Strong get over with the audience of Full Sail. On the other hand, it didn’t go super well for TM61. NXT’s clearly high on Belair, though, so hopefully this helps give her a more established character. She’s got the in-ring talent to be a star, but a character is needed to help her grow.

NX3 continues tonight as EC3 takes on an enhancement talent, local competitor or a low-rung sports entertainer. The treatment of Ethan Carter has been a small complaint of mine, but at least he’s on TV tonight. Hopefully we get the start of a bigger storyline for the one-percenter.

Finally, we’ll likely be hearing about the upcoming Street Fight between Tommaso Ciampa and Johnny Gargano. Candice LeRae certainly isn’t a fan of this after last weeks vignette – what more will we find out about this?

Otherwise, we’ll see the likes of Kassius Ohno, War Raiders and Lacey Evans tonight.

The Championship Scene

The NXT Tag Titles are officially going to be defended in Chicago. The Undisputed Era will be taking on the newly exclusive duo of Danny Burch and Oney Lorcan. On top of that, they’ll be facing an undetermined opponent at the United Kingdom tournament – will they lose the straps to Burch and Lorcan? Maybe, but highly unlikely.

United Kingdom Champion Pete Dunne doesn’t have a scheduled matchup at the arena he won the strap in, but he does have a title defence just a few days after Chicago. His next challenger will be the winner of the United Kingdom tournament on June 19th, and is scheduled for a 6-man tag on the 18th with his buddies, Trent Seven and Tyler Bate. As much as I wanted to see a full, uninterrupted match between Dunne and Adam Cole, that’ll be on hold.

Adam Cole is also putting his title up on the 19th, and his opponent is undecided as well. It seems NXT has a minor problem similar to the Greatest Royal Rumble, and it somewhat interrupts the flow of the program. But – the talent involved in Chicago & the UK tournament is enough to create interest (in my book), and NXT rarely fails to disappoint. I believe in the man with 3 H’s.

My Thoughts

Parker Love | wincolumnsports.ca
  • After seeing how well Velveteen Dream & Ricochet worked together, I have two thoughts. One, this feud is going to be great. Secondly, I hope they eventually have Dream team with someone like Ricochet or Black. This man is unbelievable.
  • Io Shirai, welcome to WWE. Hopefully the brass of WWE treats her like the star she is.
  • Speaking similarly to EC3, hopefully we see War Raiders in a meaningful feud soon.

Will you be tuning in for tonight? NXT rolls on towards TakeOver Chicago, and i’m fully on board! What’re your thoughts thus far? Let me know by tweeting me @Parkman15Love, and be sure to follow us @WCSportsCA for all the latest in WWE and other sports!

Thanks for reading! And see you next week!

WWE Last 5!

NXT Preview – May 30, 2018
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