WrestleMania 35 is only a few days away and much like the other major WWE pay-per-views, NXT will have its own event prior to that. Traditionally, TakeOvers happen on Saturday night but WWE switched things up and moved it up to Friday night. This was in order to have the WWE Hall of Fame ceremony Saturday.
The event will be held at the Barclays Arena in Brooklyn, New York, a familiar territory where WWE has had its past TakeOver and Summerslam events.
Five matches will be on the card as usual with every match having a title on the line, making it one of the most highly anticipated Takeovers in NXT history. Here are my predictions heading into Friday night.
NXT Tag Team Championship – War Raiders (c) vs. Aleister Black & Ricochet
Ricochet and Aleister Black were surprisingly paired together for the 2019 Dusty Rhodes Tag Team Classic and made their way to the finals for the right to face the NXT Tag Team Champion War Raiders.
To me, it is obvious that the War Raiders will win here. With Ricochet and Black being mainstays in the Raw and SmackDown tag team title picture for the last few months and they are competing for the SmackDown tag titles two nights later, it is clear that War Raiders will win here.
They won the titles back at TakeOver Phoenix and have not had the most memorable run with the titles so far. Having them win against main roster members like Ricochet and Black will be good for their title reign.
Prediction: War Raiders retain the NXT Tag Team Championship
WWE United Kingdom Championship – Pete Dunne (c) vs. WALTER
Pete Dunne has held onto the United Kingdom Championship for 685 days winning it back at NXT TakeOver: Chicago in 2017. He has had a lot of memorable matches as champion and has the record for the longest-reigning champion in WWE history.
Now about WALTER. He has had a fantastic career in the independent scene and was a huge signing for the new NXT U.K. brand and looks to be a star right away.
Dunne’s title reign has been impressive but there is no better time for him to drop the title than now. He seemingly has done a lot for the NXT brand and there is nothing left for him to do than to be finally called up to either Raw or SmackDown. NXT U.K. needs to start building stars and WALTER is more than capable of being the new face of the brand.
Prediction: WALTER wins the United Kingdom Championship
NXT North American Championship – Velveteen Dream (c) vs. Matt Riddle
This is the match that I am looking forward to the most. Velveteen Dream finally won his first title in NXT after beating Johnny Gargano for the NXT North American Championship. His first defense will be up against one of NXT’s biggest signing in 2018 Matt Riddle.
We’ve seen what Dream can do as he has put on excellent matches at every TakeOver he has been a part of. Riddle himself started off hot, having wins against Kassius Ohno and being involved in the main title picture right away.
While it would make sense to legitimize Riddle here with a title run, it would be nice for Dream to have a lengthy title run in NXT. At 23 years old, he really has stepped up his character development and ring present for the past two years.
This has a chance to be a five-star classic.
Prediction: Velveteen Dream retains the NXT North American Championship
NXT Women’s Championship – Shayna Baszler (c) vs. Io Shirai vs. Bianca Belair vs. Kairi Sane
A match here that seems to be all over the place, Shayna Baszler defends her NXT Women’s Championship against three other superstars in a fatal-4-way.
Kairi Sane and Io Shirai look to be a tag team down the line but it is nice for them to be in the title picture for now. Bianca Belair has the chance to be champion down the line but with the way Baszler has been with her second title reign, it makes sense for her to hold the title for a little longer. Belair will eventually be champion down the line.
Prediction: Shayna Baszler retains the NXT Women’s Championship.
Vacant NXT Championship – Johnny Gargano vs. Adam Cole in a Two-out-of-Three Falls match
Tommaso Ciampa was forced to vacate the NXT Championship due to needing neck surgery so we will be guaranteed a new champion after tonight.
This is a toss-up for me, mainly because either Adam Cole or Johnny Gargano might be called up to the main roster after WrestleMania. I am leaning more towards Gargano here. For years he has been in the title picture and has put on excellent matches against the former champion Ciampa in 2018. He is more than deserving of a title run and this might be his last opportunity. The two falls stipulation probably means that both guys will get a fall early and there will be a tie-breaker here. Gargano should get his moment tonight.
Prediction: Johnny Gargano wins the NXT Championship 2-1 falls
Unlike WrestleMania 35, TakeOver: New York will be a lot short but the action itself could potentially be a lot better. It is an interesting time here as some of the people here will likely be called up after ‘Mania, depending on who wins each match.
All the matches will be great here especially Dream/Riddle and Dunne/WALTER for the North American and United Kingdom titles respectively. This TakeOver has the chance to be one of the best in NXT history.