WWE WrestleMania 33: Grading NXT Debuts from Raw and SmackDown Live

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Shinsuke Nakamura

The King of Strong Debuts, or the King of Strong Style, Shinsuke Nakamura, made his debut on the post-WrestleMania edition of SmackDown. He entered the venue just as the Miz and Maryse were looking to leave the ring, having just dressed up as and mocked John Cena and Nikki Bella.

Nakamura’s entrance was goosebump-filled. He did his classic gestures and walk down the ramp that we’ve only seen in NXT and TakeOver events, but never on a stage like a WWE weekly show. It felt special, and the crowd soaked it all in.

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This all left Miz and Maryse speechless, having walked stared down Nakamura as he was doing his thing, and eventually departing the area. Having the Japanese sensation debut by attacking someone dressed up as Cena probably would have made the A-lister look as geeky as Hawkins looked against Dillinger, so it was best that WWE just let the Power Couple walk away and let them go head-to-head on the next SmackDown.

Once Nakamura made it into the ring, he continued to be serenaded by the WWE fans. They chanted “Naka-mura” continuously, until the sound of his music played again, ending the segment.

So, Nakamura really didn’t do much on TV (he wrestled Dolph Ziggler in a dark match after the taping), which was somewhat disappointing for the viewing audience at home. The entrance was great, but it left you wanting more, which isn’t such a bad thing, as it gets you to tune back the next week to see him in action.

There’s main event potential here for Nakamura on SmackDown. While that won’t happen yet, he’s going to be a special force for the show.

Grade: B+

Next: Top Potential Opponents for Shinsuke Nakamura

How do all of these post-WrestleMania call-ups grade out? Should one Superstar receive a higher one than another?