The NXT superstars are set to settle their disputes in an all-time favorite, WarGames. This year’s theme seems to put the NXT originals versus the new generation of talent. The card features its traditional five-match outline with two WarGames bouts. Will Sunday be an official passing of the torch?
It should be of note that NXT quietly ditched the “Takeover” moniker for this WarGames. The reason remains to be seen, but there’s no doubt WWE is doubling down on this being a new era of NXT and are fully invested in the 2.0 talent. The outcomes of each match could be very telling of the future of anyone NXT 1.0
Cameron Grimes vs. Duke Hudson (Hair versus Hair)
In a feud that erupted from a card game, Grimes seemingly embarrassed Duke Hudson at his own game twice. Hudson outsmarted by Grimes would introduce sheers and deface Grimes’s trademark hair and beard. Since winning the million-dollar belt Cameron Grimes hasn’t done much and his run of luck may be running out. While Grimes is certainly a fan favorite with his rags to riches tale, there’s been a noticeable investment in Duke Hudson for some time now. A serious Cameron Grimes will be on display but in the end, expect him to get a makeover.
Prediction: Duke Hudson wins, Grimes gets hair shaved
Imperium vs. Kyle O’Reilly and Von Wagner (NXT Tag Team titles)
Imperium became the first team to defeat MSK and dethroned their championship reign in the process. While the tag-team division has gotten deeper in 2.0, their first defense will be against the odd couple of Kyle O’Reilly and Von Wagner who have formed a bond in recent weeks. We know the WWE loves their mismatch pairings, see RK-Bro, but Imperium has been booked dominant recently. With O’Reilly’s contract set to expire and Wagner’s recent appearance on Smackdown Live, this new tag team could be short-lived. O’Reilly comes up short in his quest to become a 4-time tag champ, Imperium retains in their first title defense.
Prediction: Imperium wins, retains
Roderick Strong vs. Joe Gacy (NXT Cruiserweight title)
Roderick Strong has reinvented himself with the help of Diamond Mine. Strong defeated KUSHIDA but in recent weeks seems he was void of any Cruiserweight challengers. Strong has feuded with KUSHIDA, Odyssey Jones, and now Joe Gacy. Gacy’s mission is to create an all-inclusive NXT 2.0 for everyone. His cringe messaging has made him a polarizing character each week.
The telltale in this match will be the influence of Diamond Mind and Harland who’ve yet to become physical with one another. Rumors are swirling about the Cruiserweight title being scrapped altogether, which may be a good idea since 205 live is anything but that nowadays. Without a concrete plan for a new title in place, expect Diamond Mind to help Strong retain.
Prediction: Roderick Strong wins, retains
Raquel Gonzalez, Io Shirai, Cora Jade, and Kay Lee Ray vs. Dakota Kai, Mandy Rose, Gigi Dolin, and Jacy Jayne (WarGames)
The first War Games match to form took place within the Women’s division. Since Mandy Rose returned to NXT, she’s taken over the entire division. Now Toxic Attraction has all the gold and is arguably the biggest act on NXT 2.0. They partner with Dakota Kai who returned to end her former partner Raquel Gonzalez. Gonzalez will team with former champions Io Shirai, Kay Lee Ray, and women’s division newcomer Cora Jade. All of which have had their problems with Toxic Attraction.
This match will feature a ton of high spots, likely led by Io Shirai, but the edge should go to the more functional team, Toxic Attraction. Shirai and Gonzalez have a documented rivalry, and Gonzalez got the pinfall over her during the last War Games match. It’s also worth noting that Dakota Kai is known for big War Games moments. Kai will be the ace for her team in this matchup despite not gaining the advantage for her team.
Prediction: Toxic Attraction and Dakota Kai win war games
Tommaso Ciampa, Johnny Gargano, Pete Dunne, and LA Knight vs. Bron Breakker, Carmelo Hayes, Grayson Waller, and Tony D’Angelo (WarGames)
This match of the night truly epitomizes NXT 1.0 versus NXT 2.0. The NXT 2.0 standouts taking on the talent who’ve helped carry the ship these past years. Bron Breakker won the advantage for his team, and the only thing stopping him from being NXT world champion is time. While NXT 2.0 has had its fair share of criticism, there’s no doubt a future for the 2.0 talent in this match. Hayes is already North American champ, D’Angelo is over with the audience and Waller can promo and is generating a reaction.
The NXT vets could very well be taking part in their last big NXT branded pay per view. It’s no secret that Johnny Gargano is in contract talks and extended his contract just to participate in War Games. While we may never get another Ciampa vs Gargano rivalry, we get a DIY reunion here. Pete Dunne and LA Knight fill out team NXT 1.0 with both taking issues with 2.0 superstars as of late.
Violence will be the theme of this bout and if 1.0 loses it will be an official passing of the torch. The NXT 2.0 team will have an advantage with Trick Williams around, it would be nice if a certain three-time NXT champ shows up to make this a 5 on 5. There’s a huge investment in 2.0 but something just feels like 1.0 isn’t completely dead just yet, they pull one more out over the rookies.