Monday, November 12, 2018
Home Articles Early Card Predictions for WWE NXT TakeOver: Philadelphia PPV Match Lineup

Early Card Predictions for WWE NXT TakeOver: Philadelphia PPV Match Lineup


Since TakeOver: WarGames is in the bag, the next NXT special event scheduled for WWE’s calendar is TakeOver: Philadelphia set for January 27, 2018 at the Wells Fargo Center in, of course, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.

As always when an event ends, I like to try to give my extended projections for which matches I think we’ll be getting on the next card, what makes the most sense, what missteps WWE may take and so forth before it’s all been fully fleshed out and announced while also recapping what we do know for sure is being set up.

This is especially difficult to do when it comes to NXT, since there’s a much longer time frame to take into consideration and more often than not, matches don’t seem to be announced until the final tapings just a week or so before the event takes place, but that’s part of the fun.

This also allows everyone else to leave their comments below to sound off on which directions they think WWE will go so we can trace back to this point and say we were right all along, or that we wish they would have done something different, so on and so forth.

So what do I see in my crystal ball for NXT TakeOver: Philadelphia?




NXT Championship Match: Andrade “Cien” Almas (c) vs. Johnny Gargano / Roderick Strong

With Drew McIntyre injured and a rematch unlikely to happen at this event, Almas needs a new opponent, and outside of a brand new member of the roster coming into the fray to take on the challenge (James Storm, for example), we have to narrow it down to just a few suspects.

Kassius Ohno certainly won’t get the title opportunity as he’s done jack squat since returning and failed to take down Lars Sullivan.

You’re not going to see someone like Oney Lorcan bumped up that much, nor are you likely to see someone from the United Kingdom division step up, and with the heat he received recently, Lio Rush stands no chance at getting this spot.

Realistically, it comes down to Aleister Black, Roderick Strong and Johnny Gargano.

Between those three, I’d honestly prefer it to be Gargano, but mostly because I’m hoping this means Candice LeRae gets signed and we can have her ringside in support of Johnny Gargano to offset Zelina Vega’s interference on behalf of Andrade “Cien” Almas.

Hell, for that matter, I would be game with the title being on the line in a mixed tag team match with all four of them.

Alternatively, this could just be a generic match between Andreade “Cien” Almas and Roderick Strong after Roderick Strong wins a No. 1 contender’s bout, and then, really, there’s nothing to talk about, as Andreade “Cien” Almas will retain and that’ll be it.

I don’t think it will be Aleister Black who challenges Andrade “Cien” Almas, as he strikes me more of the type to either move up to the main roster by that point (or soon after, without having won the title) or he’ll be the one to dethrone Andrade “Cien” Almas, which I don’t think will happen at this event no matter who he’s facing.

NXT Women’s Championship Match: Ember Moon (c) vs. Billie Kay

Nikki Cross was pinned, so I think she’s pushed aside for now, and Kairi Sane against Ember Moon seems like it’s a hard babyface vs. babyface sell for her first true title defense, so they should go with a heel challenger against Ember Moon.

Since Peyton Royce was chosen to be in the Fatal 4-Way at NXT TakeOver: WarGames, I think it’s only fair that she’ll have some kind of bone to pick with Ember Moon that will lead to a title match on a regular episode of NXT, which then in turn will lead to Billie Kay getting the title shot in Philadelphia.

I can’t imagine there being too many other women in the running for that shot as Aliyah and Liv Morgan don’t do much these days, Sonya Deville is currently feuding with Ruby Riot, and most of the rest of the women aren’t quite ready for main card status like that, which would rule out someone like Bianca Belair or Lacey Evans.

NXT Tag Team Championship Match: SAnitY (c) vs. The Undisputed Era

Not only did The Undisputed Era win the WarGames match, their team captain Adam Cole pinned SAnitY’s team captain, Eric Young.

If that isn’t grounds for a tag title shot, I don’t know what is.

By this point, I’m not just assuming this match will happen, I’m feeling like it’s a certainty that it absolutely will and that the titles will change hands, as it’s clear The Undisputed Era are being given a very solid push.

Since Adam Cole is unlikely to be taking that NXT Championship from Andrade “Cien” Almas as they’re both heels, the tag team titles will be a worthwhile replacement instead.

Lars Sullivan vs. Aleister Black

Call it a hunch, but I can see Lars Sullivan being hot-shotted right to being the guy to hand Aleister Black his first loss.

Out of all the people on the roster, a match against Roderick Strong, Johnny Gargano, No Way Jose or any other babyface just isn’t going to mean as much as one against Aleister Black, so if WWE is looking for the best possible scenario for getting people to care about Lars Sullivan, Aleister Black is the only choice.

Given the circumstances, Aleister Black is already popular enough that he can take the loss and put over Lars Sullivan to keep that snowball rolling without losing much momentum, too, so I’m feeling more confident in this than my next match guess, that’s for sure…

Dusty Rhodes Tag Team Classic Tournament Finals

We didn’t get the return of this tournament in its usual fall slot from the previous two years, but I do think we’ll see it come back, and there’s a good chance the finals take place at this show.

Of course, there hasn’t been a single thing pointing in that direction for sure, but this event seems better suited in my mind than trying to put it at the show before WrestleMania at NXT TakeOver: New Orleans, as the tournament will get lost in the shuffle.

This week’s set of tapings will more than likely clarify if this is a go or not, as if there aren’t signs of its return, there’s no way they’ll be able to fit in all the rounds in time.

In the event it does return, I expect to just have the finals here and if I had to go with a random guess of the two teams that would face off, I wouldn’t even know where to start, but I’ll be rooting for The Street Profits, that’s for sure.

In the event the tournament doesn’t come back in time, this fifth match could be another women’s match (Kairi Sane against Peyton Royce, maybe?) or a defense of the United Kingdom Championship (Pete Dunne against Trent Seven?) but I’m hoping for the tag tournament scenario instead.


NXT Championship Match: Andrade “Cien” Almas (c) vs. Johnny Gargano / Roderick Strong
NXT Women’s Championship Match: Ember Moon (c) vs. Billie Kay
NXT Tag Team Championship Match: SAnitY (c) vs. The Undisputed Era
Lars Sullivan vs. Aleister Black
Dusty Rhodes Tag Team Classic Finals