Raquel Gonzalez vs. Rhea Ripley, Last Woman Standing
Rhea Ripley and Raquel Gonzalez are two game-changing wrestlers who can become major stars in WWE for years to come. I mean, we’ve already seen Ripley earmarked as a huge star, which is why it was so frustrating to see her lose the NXT Championship to Charlotte Flair at WrestleMania 36. It would have made so much more sense for Ripley, the MVP of Survivor Series 2019, to walk out as *still* the champion.
Instead, we’ve had a strange path for Ripley since then, and it’s kind of frustrating to see WWE not shooting it straight with the booking of arguably their most talented young star. Ripley can be an industry-defining performer for WWE in the future, so you’d think they’d make it a priority to book her more consistently instead of having her take so many losses.
In any case, she could very well take a loss here at NXT New Year’s Evil, too, because Raquel Gonzalez seems poised for an NXT Title shot against Io Shirai. And so if Ripley loses, we will once again have a discussion about the Nightmare going to Raw or SmackDown. She’s definitely needed on Raw, which is a three-hour borefest that only the most loyal WWE fan can sit through.
This has to be the most difficult match to predict, but I’m going to go with Raquel. I don’t feel good about it, but Rhea’s career winning percentage in NXT is barely above 50 after it was above 80 in NXT UK. Yikes.
Prediction: Raquel Gonzalez