11/18 NXT ON USA PRIMER: Announced matches and key segments with analysis including Balor’s announcement, grudge match, Women’s TItle match, Gargano-Ruff follow-up

By Amin Ajani, PWTorch contributor


SPOTLIGHTED PODCAST ALERT (YOUR ARTICLE BEGINS A FEW INCHES DOWN)...

NXT ON USA
NOVEMBER 18, 2020
ORLANDO, FLA. AT CAPITOL WRESTLING CENTER
AIRS ON USA NETWORK

It’s a championship edition of NXT as Io Shirai defends her NXT Women’s Title against Rhea Ripley. NXT Champion Finn Balor is set to return to address what’s next after defeating Kyle O’Reilly at TakeOver: 31. Plus after last week’s stunner, Johnny Gargano will look to regain the NXT North American Title when he takes on Leon Ruff. It’s sure to be an action packed episode of NXT which takes place tonight on the USA Network from the Capital Wrestling Center. Now let’s take a look at what’s scheduled for tonight’s show.

  • Io Shirai to defend NXT Women’s Championship against Rhea Ripley
  • NXT Champion Finn Balor set to return
  • Johnny Gargano looks to retain NXT North American Title from Leon Ruff
  • Ember Moon & Toni Storm team up to face Dakota Kai & Raquel Gonzalez
  • Dexter Lumis faces Cameron Grimes in a Blindfold Match

ADVERTISED MATCHES & SEGMENTS

Io Shirai to defend NXT Women’s Championship against Rhea Ripley.

Rhea Ripley has been on the road to redemption to regain the NXT Women’s Title after losing it to Charlotte Flair at WrestleMania. Standing in her way is the current NXT Women’s Champion who’s been on the roll of her career overcoming all challengers in her path. The question now is can Shirai overcome Ripley and continue her dominant reign as NXT Women’s Champion?

(Amin’s Analysis: This should be a tremendous match as both Ripley and Shirai are tremendous wrestlers. Ripley has star potential but I feel like her run in NXT has been stale of late and loss to Shirai would help change the direction of her character. Shirai has been on a roll and with the teases of both Ember Moon and Toni Storm appearing at TakeOver: 31, this isn’t the time for Shirai to lose her title.)

NXT Champion Finn Balor set to return

After defeating Kyle O’Reilly in a tremendous match at TakeOver: 31, Finn Balor is set to return tonight to address the NXT Title and the injury he suffered in the match. The question is what will Balor have to say and who will step up next to challenge for the NXT title?

(Amin’s Analysis: Looking forward to hearing what Balor has to say on tonight’s show as his presence has been missed. Also it will be interesting to see who challenges him as KUSHIDA would seem like the right choice as he’s been in a role since his character change.)

Johnny Gargano looks to retain the NXT North American Title from Leon Ruff

Johnny Gargano thought he could pull a fast one by spinning the wheel and facing Leon Ruff who hasn’t won a match on NXT. But thanks to an outside distraction from Damian Priest, Ruff pulled a fast on when he applied a crucifix and pinned Gargano to the mat to win the NXT North American Title. The question is will luck strike twice for Ruff or will Gargano once again regain his NXT North American Title?

(Amin’s Analysis: Last week was an unexpected surprise and a great moment for Ruff to not only beat Gargano but also win the NXT North American Title. This should be a fun match and Gargano getting his title back would be the expected move. However, I wouldn’t do that because title matches and wins should mean something and having it switch constantly wouldn’t help.)

Ember Moon & Toni Storm team up to face Dakota Kai & Raquel Gonzalez

Ember Moon and Toni Storm who just recently returned to NXT will have their hands full tonight when they take on the team of Dakota Kai & Raquel Gonzalez. Kai recently picked up a big win over Moon on NXT TV. The question now is how will both Moon & Storm work together against Kai & Gonzalez who have made to be a formidable team on NXT.

(Amin’s Analysis: This should be a solid match featuring four talented wrestlers and another chance to showcase the greatness of the NXT Women’s Division. This is a match where either Moon or Storm needs to pick up the strong win for their team to establish themselves as the next contender for the NXT Women’s Title.)

Dexter Lumis faces Cameron Grimes in a Blindfold Match

Cameron Grimes has been getting under the skin of Dexter Lumis including costing him a match last week against Timothy Thatcher. Well, Grimes will have nowhere to run tonight when he faces Lumis in a Blindfold match. The question with both Grimes and Lumis being blindfolded who will find a way to come out on top?

(Amin’s Analysis: Let me say blindfold matches are usually mostly there for the comedy spots which I don’t mind here as Grimes will be great here with his onscreen character. A Lumis win here would be expected and will be interesting to see what program both he and Grimes go into next.)

The Big Takeaway From Last Week’s Show

Danny Burch & Oney Lorcan defeated Tyler Breeze & Fandango to retain the NXT Tag Team Titles. Leon Ruff defeated Johnny Gargano to win the NXT North American Title. Santos Escobar defeated Jake Atlas to retain the NXT Cruiserweight Title.

Overall Thoughts

This should be a solid episode of NXT as the wrestling should be great with the two championship matches. Also expect to see some big angles and a new challenger emerge for Finn Balor’s NXT Championship.


RECOMMENDED: NXT HITS AND MISSES 11/11: A Ruff Loss for Gargano, Escobar vs. Atlas, Storm vs. LaRae, Lumis vs. Thatcher, more

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