NXT TakeOver Brooklyn 2015: Final Predictions for Event's Biggest Matches
NXT will go to the next level this weekend, when it jumps out of Full Sail University and into the fire of 13,000 fans in Brooklyn's Barclays Center.
It's the biggest indication yet that NXT can justify itself as a stand-alone brand, and there's a real danger for those competing at SummerSlam that the action on Saturday might just be more enjoyable than what happens on Sunday evening.
And with six matches locked in for the two-hour special, which will be live on the WWE Network, there's plenty to get excited about at TakeOver once again.
With the event now a little over 24 hours away, let's take a look at some final predictions for the show, and see who will be winning what on Saturday night.
Apollo Crews vs. Tye Dillinger
TakeOver Brooklyn will see a new star potentially shine bright in NXT, as Apollo Crews makes his first serious WWE bow by stepping into an NXT ring at TakeOver.
Crews' career on the independent circuit with various promotions offers plenty of hope for what the man previously known as Uhaa Nation will bring to NXT, with plenty of physicality and impressive in-ring performances a guarantee.
Crews has made one appearance on NXT TV so far, when he saw off Martin Stone fairly convincingly. And unfortunately for Tye Dillinger, more of the same will likely be on the cards this Saturday.
NXT are making a big deal out of Crews and what he's going to bring to the promotion, and a fairly solid win here will kickstart an intriguing run for the new man in the coming months.
Winner: Apollo Crews
Blake and Murphy vs. The Vaudevillains
First things first, credit has to be paid to Blake and Murphy for the way they have grown as NXT Tag Team Champions lately.
They were a surprise choice to take the belts at the start of the year, but with Alexa Bliss by their side, they've evolved into a very, very good heel tag team who have a bright future ahead of them.
This feud they've been having with The Vaudevillains, another team with bags of potential, has been going really well, and having Bliss as the devilish sidekick who constantly denies Aiden English and Simon Gotch has added an extra shot of enthusiasm into the feud.
But who wins at TakeOver Brooklyn? There's an argument to suggest Bliss keeps scorning The Vaudevillains' chances, but this would be a great time for the babyfaces to take the straps.
It would add extra impetus into their rivalry, and keep it going for a good while longer. And given how well all four men have done inside the ring lately, that would be no bad thing.
Winners: The Vaudevillains
Tyler Breeze vs. Jushin Thunder Liger
Arguably the most interesting night is going to be Tyler Breeze's battle with the iconic Jushin Thunder Liger at TakeOver Brooklyn.
The beauty of NXT is that the promotion rolled out Liger for his first ever competitive action in WWE at the ripe old age of 50, but that won't weaken the excitement to see the former WCW high-flyer in action for the first time.
And this has been one of those rare feuds with the new face, in this instance Liger, that hasn't really been needed to give the match a push. Why? Because right now, Tyler Breeze is just so good at what he does.
Breeze's brashness and arrogance led him to believe there's nobody better than him around, talking trash and gradually becoming more and more of a heel once again in NXT.
And although it's Liger's debut, it should still be Breeze's night. He's riding on the crest of a wave at the moment and is the up-and-coming star who needs the win more. But WWE fans will have a ball watching Liger roll back the years on Saturday night, and Breeze is a real stern test.
Winner: Tyler Breeze
Samoa Joe vs. Baron Corbin
Undoubtedly the toughest match of the night to predict at TakeOver Brooklyn is Samoa Joe's bout against Baron Corbin.
Much like Tyler Breeze on the slide before, Corbin is an up-and-coming talent who would benefit from knocking off an experienced star like Samoa Joe at a big show.
But Joe isn't in the same bracket as Jushin Thunder Liger. He's a permanent fixture on the NXT roster and will be looking for momentum ahead of a move up to the main roster.
And since Joe's future probably lies toward the main event scene in NXT, his need just feels a little bit greater than Corbin's at this moment in time. Corbin could easily recover from a loss to someone with the prestige of Joe, so long as the match is impressive, and there shouldn't be any fears of that.
Right now, the best result here would be a win of any kind for Samoa Joe to move forward with gusto.
Winner: Samoa Joe
Sasha Banks vs. Bayley
Now let's move on to the two main championship bouts at TakeOver Brooklyn, and a hugely anticipated match for the NXT Women's Championship.
Sasha Banks has established herself as perhaps the best performer in the entirety of WWE over the last few months. She brings aggression, talent and pure charisma to every single segment and match she competes in, and she is destined to be a Divas Champion in the near future.
But given how she's made the step up to the main roster recently, this might be the time where her reign as NXT Women's Champion comes to an end. Eagle-eyed viewers may have spotted that on Raw this past week, as Banks was without her title. That's not so much of a clue toward who will win here, but more of a sign of what could be to come.
And Bayley would be a great champion. She's infectiously enthusiastic and has been a great addition to NXT since debuting. She brings a genuine likeness to her performances and is certainly becoming more and more of a favorite with the crowd.
But above all, she can certainly wrestle, as can Banks. That should make this a contender for match of the night, with Bayley finally dethroning Banks and completing her own road to glory.
Finn Balor vs. Kevin Owens
After their bout in Tokyo last month, NXT fans have been waiting what feels like months to see these two wrestling superstars lock horns at a big show, once again.
Brooklyn will likely be the place to be on Saturday night when Finn Balor makes his way to the ring with that unique entrance. And with Owens still maintaining plenty of heat from fans, it's going to be hostile.
It represents the first part of a big weekend for Owens, who will also be fighting at SummerSlam in another match that will be a hot favorite for match of the night, when he takes on Cesaro.
But this ladder match takes up his attention first and foremost, and although Owens could easily go over and regain his NXT Championship, that's probably not the way WWE will go.
Having Balor lose the belt so early would be criminal, and all things considered, this might just be a fitting venue for Owens to bid farewell to NXT: in a huge arena in front of thousands of fans, putting on a title match for the ages with a worthy foe.
It should be Owens who comes away empty-handed in this instance, and let Balor move forward as champion with real momentum behind him.
Winner: Kevin Owens