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    Friday, April 5, 2019

    Smark Hen-XT (4/3/19): It's Ladies' Night (and TakeOver: New York Predictions)

    Honestly, I'd like to keep this review short and sweet because it's the pre-TakeOver episode of NXT. Hence, apart from the expected build-up for the pay-per-view, this episode is mostly intended to provide shock value and garner late support for our favorite NXT Superstars.

    With packages and promos taking a look at what matches will happen at NXT TakeOver: New York, this show felt more like a recap than a build-up for the upcoming event. Despite this, one segment of the episode caught my eye and that is the main event between Kairi Sane and Bianca Belair.

    The match itself was pretty standard and enjoyable. However, it ended up being a no contest because of Shayna Baszler's interference (with Jessamyn Duke and Marina Shafir in tow). This, in turn, led to Io Shirai coming out for the save which then escalated into a full-on brawl that finished up with the whole NXT women's locker room filling up the ring.

    This might be the first time I've seen an all-out brawl with the women's roster (minus the Royal Rumble match) and it is both glorious and amazing to see how far these ladies have come. We normally just have full-on locker room brawls and pull-aparts when Brock Lesnar is around, but to see it happen here is a sight to see. They built up Shayna as an ultimate heel deserving of an angle such as this. Bravo! Not just to her, but to all the women involved in the match (and the angle) for capping off the night with such a bad-ass ending to close out the show.

    Grade: B+


    • Relative to my comment from last week's review that we haven't seen the War Raiders in a while, they actually competed in this week's episode. Twice. Way to build the champs by destroying four people in a short span of time.
    • Aliyah and Vanessa Borne are a lower-tier copy of The Iiconics.
    • I can't seem to get behind Oney Lorcan and Danny Burch. Maybe it's because they rarely win anything and are always being fed to up-and-coming Superstars.
    • That was Jaxson Ryker's finish? Well, that sucked. Please give this man a finish that screams unhinged destruction, not something forgettable.
    • Keith Lee's promo was a good way to address why the angle with Donovan Dijakovic hasn't had a follow-up.

    NXT TakeOver: New York Predictions

    With that part of the review done, let's move on to my predictions for tomorrow's NXT TakeOver: New York.

    2-out-of-3 Falls Match for the NXT Championship: Johnny Gargano vs. Adam Cole

    Adam Cole wins the vacant title. This was honestly a tough call. I'd love for Adam Cole to reign supreme along with The Undisputed ERA, however, Johnny Gargano winning the title could mean he'll be staying with NXT in the foreseeable future. I have a gut feeling that whoever loses will eventually show up on the main roster.  So against my better judgment, I pick Cole to win the title since Gargano has actually shown up on the main roster. Maybe when Tommaso Ciampa is back, they can continue their feud on RAW or SmackDown Live.

    NXT United Kingdom Championship Match: WALTER vs. Pete Dunne (c)

    This is an easy choice for me. WALTER wins via a decisive finish. Pete Dunne has held the title long enough with minimal title defenses so it's time for a reset button on the title. WALTER winning would breathe new life into the title and usher in a new era in NXT UK.

    NXT North American Championship Match: Matt Riddle vs. Velveteen Dream (c)

    This is another one of those "it could go both ways" kind of match. The NXT North American Championship has changed hands twice in a short span of time so it's highly possible Velveteen Dream retains, however, Matt Riddle has been slowly pushed up as a viable and credible threat within the NXT roster so he's got that going for him.

    I see Dream retaining this one while Riddle either wins the title at a different event or goes for the top title instead. Either way, Velveteen Dream wins.

    NXT Women's Championship Match: Io Shirai vs. Kairi Sane vs. Bianca Belair vs. Shayna Baszler (c)

    An easy pick for me, I want Bianca Belair to win. This may prove an unpopular choice to everybody else, but with WWE establishing that the Women's Tag Team Titles are cross-branded, it gives us a chance to see the Boss and Hug Connection defend their titles against the Sky Pirates. This also gives Shayna Baszler and her posse a chance to come to Ronda's aid and set up a confrontation with the Four Horsewomen either at WrestleMania or at a future show.

    NXT Tag Team Championship Match: Aleister Black and Ricochet vs. War Raiders (Rowe and Hanson) (c)

    If there was one match that I was highly sure of, this would be it. The War Raiders will definitely retain–but not before Aleister Black and Ricochet give them a fight for their lives. This won't be an easy win for the Raiders, but they will give everybody their money's worth in what I expect to be the sleeper hit of NXT TakeOver: New York.

    Did you enjoy the build-up for NXT TakeOver: New York? Are you ready for NXT TakeOver: New York? Did you agree with our picks?  Hit us up in the comments section below.

    Photos and videos from WWE


    Miguel “The Migz” Llado is your supposed style icon and NXT reviewer at the Smark Henry offices. A lover of everything music, wrestling, videogames, and food, he lives his life tweeting his mind off (@the_migz) and ‘gramming random food items and locations (@tha_migz) as he sets on his journey to completely do things spontaneously. You can also add him on PSN (MigzLlado) to show your WWE2K19 (or any PS4) skills. When not being a smark, he lives his life being (and trying to be) an awesome architect, musician extraordinaire and armchair fantasy booker.
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    Item Reviewed: Smark Hen-XT (4/3/19): It's Ladies' Night (and TakeOver: New York Predictions) Rating: 5 Reviewed By: Migz Llado
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