5/6 NXT ON USA PRIMER: Takeover level line-up including Io Shirai challenging Charlotte, Dream challenges Cole, Karrion Kross debuts, Balor seeks justice, Dijakovic vs. Gargano

By Amin Ajani, PWTorch contributor

Killer Kross talks character strategy with Scarlett
Karrion Kross and Scarlett (photo courtesy NXT)


It’s a Takeover worthy episode of NXT as my favourite Io Shirai will challenge for the NXT Women’s Championship. Plus, Adam Cole will defend the NXT Championship against the Velveteen Dream. But that’s not all as Karrion Kross will make his NXT in-ring debut. It’s a jammed packed episode of NXT which takes place from Full Sail University on the USA Network. Let’s take a look at what’s advertised for tonight’s show.


  • Will Io Shirai make The Queen’s reign a short one?
  • Karrion Kross makes his in-ring debut with Scarlett
  • Finn Balor seeks justice against his mystery attacker
  • Dominik Dijakovic takes on Johnny Gargano
  • The Velveteen Dream finally get his chance at Adam Cole’s NXT Championship

After weeks of mind games, Velveteen Dream finally get his shot at the NXT Title as he takes on Adam Cole. Dream has already picked up a victory over Cole as he pinned the champion in a tag team match. But last week it was Cole who said he’s ready for Dream and looks forward to defending his championship. Will Dream end Cole’s reign as the longest reigning NXT Champion or will it be dream over for the Velveteen Dream?


(Amin’s Analysis: This match has been building for a while and it should be very good as both Cole and Dream are great wrestlers. Dream has been on a role but I still don’t think the timing is right for Cole to lose the NXT Title as he’s been a terrific champion. My guess Cole will find a way to retain the NXT Title and move onto someone else who will be Finn Balor.)

Will Io Shirai make The Queen’s reign a short one?

Io Shirai will challenge for the NXT Women’s Champion. Shirai earned the right to challenge for the title after winning a Six-Women Ladder Match. Io Shirai made it clear that she bows down to no one and when she confronted Charlotte Flair last week. The question is will Io Shirai finally get her moment and become the new NXT Women’s Champion tonight on NXT?

(Amin’s Analysis: I’m just going to cut right down to the chase. Io Shirai is the best female wrestler in all of WWE. It’s really upsetting that Io Shirai’s hasn’t already been NXT Women’s Champion. Io Shirai is my favourite and I want to see Triple H and NXT do the right thing and have Shirai defeat Charlotte Flair tonight and become the new NXT Women’s Champion. Hey, Triple H here’s an idea for you. How about you have Io Shirai beat Charlotte on NXT and have her become the new NXT Women’s Champion. This way you have a new top superstar to lead the NXT Women’s Division in Io Shirai and not someone from Raw. I want to see my favourite Io Shirai become the new NXT Women’s Champion.)

Karrion Kross makes his in-ring debut with Scarlett

After sending out warning for months, doomsday is here for NXT as Karrion Kross is set to make his in-ring debut with Scarlett. Kross has already made his presence felt after viciously attacking Tommaso Ciampa. While we still haven’t seen Ciampa since, it’s it’s clear Kross has bad intentions in mind for his first opponent.


(Amin’s Analysis: The build-up from the vignettes to the attack on Tommaso Ciampa has been great leading to Karrion Kross in-ring debut. This should be good and it will be interesting to see if they bring Ciampa back on tonight’s show to start building to a match with Kross.)

Finn Balor seeks justice against his mystery attacker

Finn Balor is determined to solve the mystery behind his attacker. The problem for Balor is the list of suspects stretches out a mile long. Balor was set on taking the NXT United Kingdom Title from WALTER before turning his attention to Velveteen Dream who stirred the pot claiming Adam Cole was arguably the greatest NXT Champion. Balor was scheduled to take on Velveteen Dream but was mysteriously taken out before the match. Apart from Dream and Imperium, Balor has also had issues with Johnny Gargano, Tommasso Ciampa and the Undisputed Era. The question is will Balor come closer to finding out who was behind the mystery attack?

(Amin’s Analysis: I like how this storyline has been playing out as this could be the way to move Balor away WALTER and maybe challenge for another NXT Title? I could see this playing out for weeks and Balor revealing he was behind the attack and this way he can target his next challenger.)

Dominik Dijakovic takes on Johnny Gargano

When he’s not gloating about being a Triple Crown Champion, Johnny Gargano has found time to anger almost all of the NXT wrestler. Well, one NXT wrestler is Dominik Dijakovic who questioned how Gargano is playing a victim when he was put in so many TakeOver matches by NXT. The question is will Gargano’s new change helping him get past the powerful Dijakovic?

(Amin’s Analysis: This should be great as both Dijakovic and Gargano are great wrestlers. Gargano’s heel turn has been great so far and is adding more layers to his character. I would expect Gargano to win and then see which NXT Title he can be placed in.)

The Big Takeaway From Last Week’s Show

Keith Lee defeated Damian Priest to retain the NXT North American Title. Drake Maverick and Isiah “Swerve” Scott won their first matches in the Interim NXT Cruiserweight Championship Tournament.

Overall Thoughts

This will be a very good and my guess a newsworthy episode of NXT. I will say NXT is my favourite show and I want Triple H keep it that way. I want to see my favourite Io Shirai beat Charlotte Flair and become the new NXT Women’s Champion on tonight’s show.

CATCH UP… 4/29 NXT ON USA REPORT: Wells’s report on Keith Lee vs. Damian Priest, Charlotte vs. Mia Yim, Drake Maverick vs. Tony Nese

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