NXT TakeOver: WarGames II goes down this weekend, kicking off four straight nights at the STAPLES Center in Los Angeles, California for WWE. The company will be producing their second “WarGames” themed show and their twenty-third overall event under the “NXT TakeOver” banner on Saturday, live via the WWE Network.
Saturday’s live WWE Network special features an excellent, albeit brief card containing only four matches. Each match is an important one, however, as included in the card are NXT World Championship and NXT Women’s Championship matches, the namesake WarGames bout and a grudge match between Aleister Black and Johnny Gargano.
The main event will feature Tommaso Ciampa defending his NXT World Championship against Velveteen Dream in one-on-one action, while the NXT Women’s Championship bout will feature “The Queen of Spades” Shayna Baszler defending her title against former title-holder and the first-ever Mae Young Classic tournament winner Kairi Sane in a two-out-of-three falls match. The WarGames bout will include all four members of The Undisputed ERA — Adam Cole, Roderick Strong, Bobby Fish and Kyle O’Reilly — facing off against The War Raiders — Hanson and Rowe — as well as WWE U.K. Champion Pete Dunne and NXT North American Champion Ricochet. Finally, The Black-Gargano bout will be the culmination of a longstanding rivalry that picked up momentum when Gargano turned heel and was revealed as the man who attacked Black in the parking lot of Full Sail University following the August 8th episode of NXT TV.
SEScoops.com writers Andrew Ravens, Jeff Moss and Ian Carey have prepared their predictions for each of the matches scheduled for Saturday night’s big event. Without further adieu, here are the SEScoops.com staff predictions for NXT TakeOver: WarGames II.
Shayna Baszler vs. Kairi Sane (2-Out-Of-3 Falls NXT Women’s Title)
Andrew Ravens: Baszler just won the title back at the Evolution PPV event, and with this current stipulation that goes along with this match, I think it plays a factor into Sane winning here. Baszler had to cheat to even win the title back, and Sane has her number when going one-on-one. Thus, Sane gets her title back and moves onto another program. (Prediction: Kairi Sane)
Jeff Moss: At Evolution, these two were a high spot in a night of high spots and if ever there was a more deserving pair to pick up the “fight forever” tag, it’s Sane and Baszler. Their matches tend to play off of the previous one, which I love. Too often when wrestlers face each other over and over, they forget what worked and didn’t work last time. These two learn from each match and have surprises for each other in the next one. I have a feeling there’s a Horsewoman battle a-brewing, so I think Sane will win back her title here, freeing up Shayna to play with her friends for a bit. But when that’s done, she might be a rare case of someone who comes back to NXT for a last run before permanent call up. (Prediction: Kairi Sane)
Ian Carey: I feel as though Triple H is really high on Baszler. Also, at Evolution, she established that her old MMA training partners are now in the promotion as well and looking to help Shayna protect her championship. It seems unlikely to me that they would take the title off of her so quickly after she regained it at Evolution and established new allies in the process. (Prediction: Shayna Baszler)
CONSENSUS: 2-1, Kairi Sane
Undisputed ERA vs. War Raiders, Pete Dunne & Ricochet (WAR GAMES)
Andrew: Wrestling 101 says that the babyfaces go over here and I agree. It just makes sense as The Undisputed Era are up for getting beat as it plays into the story. Unless WWE just wants to go for a swerve with Pete Dunne turning heel and joining the group, I don’t see why the heels would go over here. (Prediction: War Raiders, Pete Dunne & Ricochet)
Jeff: So, let me just recap here: 1. Ricochet. 2. Double Ring Steel Cage. 3. The rest. Yeah, this is going to be AWESOME. I found myself enjoying last year’s War Games match way more than I thought I would and damn if this one doesn’t look like it’s going to be even better. Pete Dunne is gold, the War Raiders have the ability to be devastating in this kind of match and the Undisputed Era id back to full air-guitar-wailing strength. I cannot wait to see this match and though the Undisputed Era won it last year, I think they will go Back-To-Back, more than likely due to the re-ignition of a Dunne/Ricochet beef. (Prediction: The Undisputed ERA)
Ian: The last WarGames match was one of the best matches in NXT history so there is good reason to be looking forward to this match. Kyle O’Reilly picked up the win over Hanson to earn his team the advantage at WarGames on NXT last night. The match was far more exciting than the usual coin flip. I’m giving this match to the babyfaces almost purely to even out the wins on the show between heels and faces. Come the next Takeover, however, expect the tag, North American, and UK titles to be on the line in matches involving some of the wrestlers involved in this match. We could find out who will be challenging for what title next Takeover based on how things shape up in the WarGames match on Saturday. (Prediction: War Raiders, Pete Dunne & Ricochet)
CONSENSUS: 2-1, War Raiders, Pete Dunne & Ricochet
Johnny Gargano vs. Aleister Black
Andrew: No doubt this will be a fun match that could go either way depending on how long the WWE wants to extend this program or what plans are in place for these two stars. This is the first match between them in this current feud and should be a barnburner depending on how much time they give them. The obvious choice would have Black going over here, but I have the feeling that we get one more match with these two stars. Gargano cheats and sneaks out a win. (Prediction: Johnny Gargano)
Jeff: This one is going to be U-G-L-Y. Gargano has snapped and Black is out for blood. This is the real test for Gargano. Has he completely turned to the Dark Side? or is there an idealistic farm boy and ghostly space wizard waiting to bring him back to the light? Or will Black force him to kill Johnny Wrestling for good in order to win. The drama for this match is so wonderfully high, we win either way. But, given how monkey-wrench-prone the main roster is these days, it wouldn’t shock me to see Black on Raw or Smackdown post-Takeover to add a little of his brand of sinister chaos, so I’m picking Gargano here. (Prediction: Johnny Gargano)
Ian: I’m expecting Aleister Black to tear through Johnny Gargano Saturday night. Even though this will be Gargano’s first big match as a heel, I still don’t think Triple H wants Aleister Black losing any matches before he gets another shot at Ciampa. Black vs Ciampa should main event the next Takeover. What will likely happen not too much longer after Takeover, is Ciampa and Gargano will re-align officially. In fact, we could see the former tag partners start to work together again on Saturday against their respective opponents. (Prediction: Aleister Black)
CONSENSUS: 2-1, Johnny Gargano
Tommaso Ciampa vs. Velveteen Dream (NXT World Title)
Andrew: Might be the funniest match on the card and with the title being on the line, expect for them to go 20 minutes if not longer as they should have enough time to tell a compelling story. I don’t see it being Dream’s time to win the title here as Ciampa has only had the title a few months and this is his real first test outside of working with Gargano. Dream’s character also isn’t one that needs a title to get over. Ciampa is better off as being that heel on top of the mountain in order to gain more heat. (Prediction: Tommaso Ciampa)
Jeff: Good Lord, this is like Sophie’s choice, isn’t it? Arguably the best heel in the company vs arguably the best performer in the company and EACH OF THOSE TITLES COULD APPLY TO EITHER COMPETITOR!!! if this isn’t the Match of the Year, I’ll eat Ian Carey’s hat. Both men deserve the title. Both are incredible performers and wrestlers. While I would like nothing more than to see the title draped over the shoulder of the Dream, I think that Ciampa will retain here. Unless they are planning an Evil DIY reunion, Ciampa and Gargano still have one more good story to tell and the Wrestlemania Takeover could be a great place to do that. (Prediction: Tommaso Ciampa)
Ian: Ciampa is likely going to retain “goldie” in his title defense against Velveteen Dream here. As much as I’d like to predict the 23-year-old Dream will win the title, it feels as though Ciampa is going to hold that thing for a while longer still. Dream defeated EC3 at the last Takeover event and has generally been kept strong in 2018 but it doesn’t feel as though he’s hot enough right now to put the title on. Ciampa, on the other hand, is still one of the hottest heels in the business. (Prediction: Tommaso Ciampa)
CONSENSUS: 3-0, Tommaso Ciampa
What do the experts think is going to happen on Saturday evening? Check out the online NXT TakeOver: WarGames II betting odds. What do you think of the above NXT TakeOver: WarGames II predictions? Let us know by sounding off in the Comments section below, and make sure to join us here this Saturday for live play-by-play results coverage of the show.
— WWE Network (@WWENetwork) November 15, 2018