WEEKLY OVERVIEW – NXT (thru 1/3): Top stories of week, major show lineups, live event results, schedule of live events, noteworthy social media posts, more


The following is the latest in a new series of weekly in-depth articles exclusive to PWTorch which will help put in perspective major wrestling promotions with a weekly overview, looking at news and roster developments, results, future line-ups, social media activity, key interviews, plus a timely commentary at the end. We will be featuring similar features on other promotions each week and each will be updated weekly.

•Top Stories of the Week

  • Dave Meltzer recently said on Wrestling Observer Radio that WWE offered a developmental deal that is much larger than their standard contracts due to the aggressive nature of AEW and Ring of Honor in signing new talent. He did not mention who the wrestler was that was offered the contract but things will sure be interesting in 2019.
  • The top two matches are etched in stone for NXT Takeover Phoenix with Tommaso Ciampa set to defend his NXT Championship against Aleister Black and NXT Women’s Champion Shayna Baszler defending her title against Bianca Belair. The rest of the card is still up in the air with less than 3 weeks to go.

•NXT Live Event Results

No live events

•Upcoming Major Show Line-up: NXT TakeOver Phoenix

NXT Takeover Phoenix
January 26, 2019
Phoenix, AZ (Talking Stick Resort Arena)

Projected Lineup:

  • Tomaso Ciampa (Champion) vs. Aleister Black
  • Undisputed Era (Champions) vs. War Raiders
  • Ricochet (Champion) vs. Johnny Gargano
  • Shayna Baszler (Champion) vs. Bianca Beair
  • Matt Riddle vs. someone/anyone

•Upcoming Events

Friday Jan. 4 – Center Stage Theatre (Atlanta, Georgia)
Friday Jan. 4 – Maxwell Snyder Armory (Jacksonville, Fla.)
Saturday Jan. 5 – Spartanburg Memorial Auditorium (Spartanburg, South Carolina)
Saturday Jan. 5 – Crystal River Armory (Crystal River, Fla.)
Sunday Jan. 6 – Durham Armory (Durham, North Carolina)
Thursday Jan. 10 – Minnreg Hall (Largo, Fla.)
Friday Jan. 11 – Havert L. Fenn Center (Fort Pierce, Fla.)
Saturday Jan. 12 – Orlando Live Events (Casselberry, Fla.)
Thursday Jan. 17 – Venice Community Center (Venice, Fla.)
Friday Jan. 18 – University Area CDC Gymnasium (Tampa, Fla.)
Saturday Jan. 19 – Citrus Springs (Citrus Springs, Fla.)
Thursday Jan. 24 – Viejas Arena (San Diego, Cal.)
Friday Jan 25 – Riverside Municipal Auditorium (Riverside, Cal.)
Thursday Jan. 31 – Highlands Today Center (Sebring, Fla.)
Saturday Feb. 2 – Lakeland Armory (Lakeland, Fla.)
Thursday Feb. 7 – The Reserve Pavilion at Hilton Ocala (Ocala, Fla.)
Thursday Feb. 7 – RWJ Barnabas Arena (Toms River, New Jersey)
Friday Feb. 8 – St. Petersburg Armory (St. Petersburg, Fla.)
Friday Feb. 8 – Mid-Hudson Civic Center (Poughkeepsie, New York)
Saturday Feb. 9 – Lowell Memorial Auditorium (Lowell, MA)
Saturday Feb. 9 – Sanford Civic Center (Sanford, Fla.)
Sunday Feb. 10 – Ryan Center (Kingston, Rhode Island)
Thursday Feb. 14 – Bartow Armory (Bartow, Fla.)
Friday Feb. 15 – Cocoa Armory (Cocoa, Fla.)
Saturday Feb. 16 – Mark Lance Armory (St. Augustine, Fla.)
Saturday Mar. 9 – Dade City Armory (Dade City, Fla.)

•NXT 2018 Award Nominees: With my projected winners in RED

Female Competitor of the Year

  • Nikki Cross
  • Shayna Baszler
  • Kairi Sane
  • Ember Moon
  • Bianca Belair

Male Competitor of the Year

  • Tommaso Ciampa
  • Johnny Gargano
  • Ricochet
  • Aleister Black
  • Velveteen Dream
  • Andrade Cien Almas
  • Adam Cole
  • Pete Dunne

Overall Competitor of the year

  • Tommaso Ciampa
  • Nikki Cross
  • Johnny Gargano
  • Ricochet
  • Shayna Baszler
  • Aleister Black
  • Kairi Sane
  • Velveteen Dream
  • Andrade Cien Almas
  • Ember Moon
  • Adam Cole
  • Pete Dunne
  • Bianca Belair

NXT Tag Team of the Year

  • Undisputed Era
  • War Raiders
  • Street Profits
  • Heavy Machinery
  • Oney Lorcan and Danny Burch
  • Moustache Mountain

NXT Match of the Year

  • WarGames Match (WarGames)
  • Johnny Gargano vs. Andrade Cien Almas (Philadelphia)
  • Undisputed Era vs. Moustache Mountain (NXT TV)
  • Tommaso Ciampa vs. Johnny Gargano (New Orleans)
  • NXT North American Title Ladder Match (New Orleans)
  • Shayna Baszler vs. Kairi Sane (Brooklyn)
  • Ricochet vs. Velveteen Dream (Chicago)
  • Aleister Black vs. Tommaso Ciampa (NXT TV)
  • Pette Dunne vs. Zack Gibson (NXT TV)
  • Aleister Black vs. Adam Cole (Philadelphia)
  • Pete Dunne vs. Kyle O’Reilly (NXT TV)
  • Danny Burch and Oney Lorcan vs. Undisputed Era (Chicago)
  • Nikki Cross vs. Bianca Belair (NXT TV)
  • Ricochet vs. Pete Dunne (NXT TV)
  • Ricochet vs. Pete Dunne vs. Adam Cole (NXT TV)

NXT Rivalry of the Year

  • Johnny Gargano vs. Tommaso Ciampa
  • I refuse to list any other rivalry – thank you

Breakout Star of the Year

  • Bianca Belair
  • Lacey Evans
  • Rhea Ripley
  • Dakota Kai
  • Lars Sullivan
  • Ricochet
  • War Raiders
  • EC3

Future Star of NXT

  • Matt Riddle
  • Keith Lee
  • Mia Yim
  • Forgotten Sons
  • Dominik Dijakovic
  • Io Shirai
  • Candice LeRae
  • Duke Shafir
  • Kona Reeves

•Latest TV Highlights: 1/2 NXT TV Report

  • (1) Matt Riddle beat Kassius Ohno by submission (1:47:10 – 1:53:17)

Check out PWTorch’s NXT TV Report HERE.

•NXT in the media

  • The artist formally known as Dijak and now known as Donovan Dijakovic sat down with Byron Saxton for an interview last week on wwe.com. He discusses cutting his wrestling teethe at the New England Pro Wrestling Academy with trainer Brian Fury as well as what makes him different than the rest of the NXT roster. LINK
  • Former NXT Women’s Champion Bayley had a question and answer with metro.co.uk and discussed all things wrestling. She says the best wrestler in the world right now…..is her best friend Sasha Banks….surprise, surprise. Check out the article here. LINK

•Latest NXT Podcast – “PWT Talks NXT” PWTorch Livecast

In this episode, Kelly Wells and Justin James cover the NXT award nominations and the snubbed Best Match nominees, who we’ll be talking about a year from now, a few thoughts on Mean Gene, and more.

-On Tune In Radio HERE
-On Apple Podcasts HERE
-Or search “PWTorch” or “Pro Wrestling Torch” on your podcast app of choice

•Top NXT Tweets of the Week

Ciampa Tweet of the Week

Now that’s a Wrestlemania match I would like to see.

Must to be a good feeling. Probably going to be the highlight of his NXT career.

The newest AEW signee with her significant other.

•Thoughts and Comments

What an amazing year 2018 was for NXT. They just seem to transition from champ to champ so seamlessly. There was a time when I never thought they’d recover from losing Neville, Sami, and KO….and then I felt the same about Finn, Joe, Roode, and Shinsuke…and then McIntyre and Almas. They just keep evolving with new talent, and it is absolutely incredible to see.

The hardest award to choose this year is Male Competitor of the Year and Top Overall Performer of the Year. I went with Tommaso Ciampa for both, but for me it was a toss-up between him and Andrade Cien Almas. Almas elevated himself from an afterthought to NXT Champion, and his match with Johnny at NXT TakeOver Philadelphia is easily match of the year for me. Please strap a main roster title on this man in 2019.

It doesn’t look like Adam Cole or Velveteen Dream will have a match at NXT TakeOver Phoenix, which is very disappointing. Last year at this time I was really clamoring for NXT to add another title….which they did with the North American Championship. Can I beg them to add another in 2019? How about a TV Title that must be defended every Wednesday night on NXT TV? Doesn’t sound too bad to me.

With AEW rumored to be aggressively trying to sign talent, how many misused main roster superstars and underused NXT talent must be chomping at the bit to see what they have to offer. Competition is ALWAYS a good thing.


OR JUMP TO LAST WEEK’S WWE OVERVIEW: WEEKLY OVERVIEW – NXT (thru 12/27): Top stories of week, major show lineups, live event results, schedule of live events, noteworthy social media posts, more

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