NXT TakeOver: Chicago

This is is the first of these but it definitely won’t be the last.  This is the show I’m looking forward to the most.  Let’s take a look at how this might shape up, shall we?



Ricochet vs. Velveteen Dream

I fully expect this match to blow my head off.  The way this has been teased makes me want to watch it…oh…NOW!  Ricochet has been on the scene for years and we all know how amazing he is.  Few are more acrobatic and he’s all heart on the mic.  Fun fact:  he’s actually been wrestling since he was 15 years-old; he’s 29 now.  Velveteen Dream is still just 22 years of age and he’s an absolute firecracker in there.  Not only can he work beautifully, he can also talk and he’s flourishing in the Prince-inspired gimmick.  As for who’ll win, I honestly don’t care.  I’m good for either one and the match will be so good that neither could be hurt.  Still, it’s probably time for Ricochet to win one now.

T H E.  W I N N A H :    R I C O C H E T



Aleister Black vs. Lars Sullivan (for the NXT Championship)

I think this’ll be a lot of fun too.  Aleister Black is just a beast in there – capable of not only incredible acrobatics but equally-impressive pacing.  He has no fear of slowing down a match to a snail’s pace to tell a story.  Lars is, of course, a huge guy so he’s a fighter but he does it intelligently.  The clash of styles should give us a very interesting match and one I’m interested in for sure.  Aleister has had the title for a minute so it’s really only a question of whether or not they’ll give Lars the nod.  I think they just might.

T H E   W I N N A H   A N D   N E W W W W W W W W:   L A R S   S U L L I V A N



The Undisputed Era (Kyle O’Reilly and Roderick Strong) vs. Oney Lorcan and Danny Burch (for the NXT Tag Team Championships)

This one is slightly less interesting and that’s only because I really don’t care about Lorcan and Burch.  Little has been done with either one of them on NXT television so I’m just not moved by them.  ‘Course, I could almost say the same about Roderick.  Turning him heel was a nice choice as it kept him away from the mic and gave him a little much-needed edge.  Kyle O’Reilly will be the really fun one here and I know they’ll make a great match out of this.  As for who’ll win, I think part of the fun of the Undisputed Era is the fact that all of them lay claim to a belt.  I don’t see that changing here.

T H E   W I N N A H   A N D   S T I L L :   T H E   U N D I S P U T E D   E R A



Shayna Baszler (c) vs. Nikki Cross

I love everything about this story.  The Queen of Intimidation, Shayna Baszler verses the only woman in the locker room who just doesn’t care.  Their run-in last week was just fabulous and Nikki really sold her unhinged-ness.  She couldn’t care less and Shayna doesn’t really know what to do with it as she’s so used to bullying everyone she meets in the ring.  I’m hopeful that this feud will go on longer because I love seeing Shayna this out of sorts.  It adds all kinds of dimension to her character.  This will be a fantastic match – I guarantee it.  As for who takes it, I want the feud to continue so…

T H E   W I N N A H   A N D   S T I L L :   S H A Y N A   B A S Z L E R



Johnny Gargano vs. Tommaso Ciampa

Their last match quite literally left me breathless.  It took all I had just to watch the thing.  I can’t imagine what it did to them.  The story they told was magnificent in there and the end where they both sat down together when Gargano decided not to hit Ciampa with the crutch was just perfect.  They gave us the little inkling that they both might be coming to their senses and snatched it away before we could settle in on it.  As great as that match was (my personal favorite of…well…ever)…

This will top it.

No, really.  I have no doubt that not only will they swing for the fences, they’ll swing for stars in some other galaxy.  I’m about to have a new favorite match of all-time.  Who’ll win?  One one hand, I’d kinda like to see them feud with others.  On the other, I’d kinda like them to feud forever like Ric Flair and Dusty Rhodes did.  Wouldn’t that be cool?  If they can continue to be creative with these matches, I don’t care if they wrestle thirty more of them.  Gargano took the last one in dramatic fashion and I think the bad guy takes this one – further breaking Johnny and straining his relationship with Candice to the breaking point.

T H E   W I N N A H :   T O M M A S O   C I A M P A



Don’t forget to join us here this Saturday evening beginning at 6 for another of our Dignified Discussions.  Can’t wait to see you all here!