The Dark Match Predicts: NXT Takeover Chicago II

Welcome to another NXT Takeover Chicago.  Remember last year when I refused to believe the rumors that DIY was going to break up?  No, I’m not crying.  My allergies are really, really bad this year.  I’m allergic to Tommy Sports Entertainment.

I can’t really imagine anything crazier happening than last year.  Let’s see what we predict!

NXT Tag Team Champions Undisputed ERA vs. Oney Lorcan & Danny Burch

Jeremy:  Oney and Lorcan are cool, but the Undisputed ERA’s real title defense is going to be against Mustache Mountain at the Royal Albert Hall.  More of a story has been built for the UK Tournament than this title match.  I expect this to kick off the show and be a fine match, just nothing super crazy.  Then again, it’s very likely that Oney and Lorcan know the expectations are low and put on a barn burner of a match.  Either way, Undisputed ERA retain.

Matt: On the weekend, this match might be the one I least look forward to.  Not because I have anything against any of the people in the match, and all four should put on a pretty decent tag match, but because Lorcan and Burch just aren’t NXT TakeOver Number One Contenders to me.  They’re the team that gets a random NXT TV title shot, but the depth of the NXT Tag Division being as it is, it just doesn’t feel like it fits.  In any event, Undisputed Era won’t be dropping any of their belts just yet.

Ricochet vs. Velveteen Dream

Jeremy:  How good is The Dream?  We all knew Ricochet was good.  You might have even saw that much buzzed about match with Will Ospereay.  But for Dream to emerge from a losing run on a WWE reality show to having amazing feuds with Aleister Black and Ricochet is kind of unheard of.  I really don’t want to choose a winner here.  The winner is us.  Ok.  Ok.  I’ll make an actual prediction.  Ricochet will eek out a win here simply because he’s a veteran.  It’s as simple as that.

Matt:  I’m not going to pick, because it doesn’t matter to me who wins this dream (pun intended) match.  I’m going to make my pick based solely on Twitter feeds, and Velveteen has absolutely crushed social media in building this match.

NXT Women’s Champion Shayna Baszler vs. Nikki Cross

Jeremy:  I really hate what I’m about to write but…Shayna Blaszler is going to retain.  I love Nikki Cross but something tells me that the WWE is going all in on these MMA women.  On the other hand, I don’t really know what the point was of keeping Nikki down in NXT if she’s not going to have a title reign.  I just think we’re in for a disappointing ending.  I do think it sets up a rematch at NXT Takeover Brooklyn XXIV (I lost count what number it was).  Beyond that, Nikki is going to take a beating and show a lot of heart.  Anyone that doesn’t love her is going to at the end of it and demand they put the title on her.

Matt:  NIKKI CROSS.  NIKKI CROSS.  NIKKI CROSS.  Legitimately, she’s the most entertaining person in the entirety of WWE to me, and as pissed as I was that she didn’t get bumped to Smackdown with the rest of her stable mates, they seemingly got lost in limbo on their way to the main roster anyway, so now I get to, God willing, see her holding the NXT Women’s Championship for some time to come.  Let chaos reign.

Johnny Gargano vs. Tommaso Ciampa (Chicago Street Fight)

Jeremy:  For someone that doesn’t watch NXT week-to-week, this doesn’t feel repetitive to me.  I realize that I might be the only one though.  I get it.  The New Orleans match should have been the blow off from this feud and it wasn’t.  And how do you top a 5 star match?  Well, if you’ve seen Meltzer’s latest rankings, Omega and Okada show that it’s somehow possible.  I think it’s possible to do it here too, without resorting to a crazy shock of Candice bringing out divorce papers.  I do think that both these guys know what’s at stake here and are looking to put together another classic.  I’m optimistic.  As far as the winner, I can never vote against Johnny Gargano.  I’m literally wearing a Johnny GargaNO Mercy tee-shirt right now.

Matt:  Aside from repetitive booking, because let’s be realistic here and accept that an Unsanctioned Match and a Chicago Street Fight are the exact same thing, I mostly don’t want this match to happen because it can’t end well.  You can’t have Ciampa lose again, you just can’t.  There’s also the fact that it’s in Chicago, and we all remember how we were left the last time DIY was at TakeOver: Chicago.  Unless Candice costs Gargano this match to give us another WTF moment, I just don’t know how else you would do this, and I just don’t know if I want to see that.  I’m going with Ciampa.  I have to.

NXT Champion Aleister Black vs. Lars Sullivan

Jeremy:  Am I the only one that thinks Lars Sullivan’s music might be the scariest of the WWE?   Anyway, I hate to just always agree with Matt, but there’s no way Lars is your new NXT champion.  Yes, I’ve heard the rumors that Aleister Black is going to be fast-tracked to the main roster, but Lars isn’t the guy to take it off of him.  Lars is there to show someone like EC3 or someone else weaknesses in the champion.  Then again, it really depends on who’s up next to challenge for the championship. If Johnny Gargano is up, maybe the Leviathan is the right opponent.  Aleister Black retains.

Matt:  Sullivan has come a long way, but that being said, he’s going to fade to black in Chicago (he’s probably better suited for a one off feud with Adam Cole for the NA Championship anyway).  Aleister Black has to retain, because Aleister Black has to fall to the will of the Top 1% in Brooklyn, as NXT becomes NX3.  I hope EC3 is standing tall when the broadcast ends, no matter how it plays out to get him there, and yes, it has a lot to do with wanting to hear that banging theme music.  Aleister Black.