wrestling / Columns

411’s NXT Takeover: Stand & Deliver (Night One) Preview

April 7, 2021 | Posted by Jeremy Thomas
Raquel González NXT Takeover: Stand & Deliver

Hello 411 guys, gals, enbies, and everyone else! Welcome to 411’s WWE NXT Takeover: Stand & Deliver Night One preview! I’m Jeremy Thomas as always, and we’ve already had a busy WrestleMania week that is only going to get busier in the coming nights. The WrestleMania edition of NXT Takeover is a two-night event this year, and that means we have just five matches to look at for tomorrow night’s show. They are some very strong matches though, and have the potential to deliver a hell of a strong start to NXT’s big show of the season. I’m a little short of time this week so without any further ado … lets get right into the matches, shall we?

Kushida vs. Pete Dunne

There’s only one match on the first night of NXT Takeover: Stand & Deliver without direct title implications, but it has a couple of fantastic competitors in Pete Dunne and Kushida. These two are facing off to settle the idea of who the better technical wrestler is, and that’s a recipe for success from a fan perspective. Kushida got off to a very hot start in NXT but he’s cooled off since, and he has been more or less stuck in NXT’s midcard while Dunne has been pushing on or sitting at the upper card for some time. All that to say that while both men should kill it in the ring tomorrow, Dunne is pretty clearly the likely guy to win here. I don’t at all mind that, even if it is a somewhat foregone conclusion and I’d like to see Kushida get a bit more momentum.

WINNER: Pete Dunne

NXT North American Championship Gauntlet Eliminator
Leon Ruff vs. Isaiah “Swerve” Scott vs. Bronson Reed vs.
Cameron Grimes vs. Dexter Lumis vs. LA Knight

The winner of this match gets to go on to face Johnny Gargano at night two of Takeover for the North American Championship. That immediately narrows down this list of potential winners in which should be a fun little bout. LA Knight would seem to be tipped for the win, entering at #6 and being a guy that the company is said to be high on. But the idea of a heel vs. heel match without any real personal build doesn’t seem to make much sense for this Takeover. You want Gargano’s match to have some storytelling stakes, and that narrows it down to people he’s personally had issues with. I could potentially see Leon Ruff taking this one because WWE loves their underdogs, but the smart money has to be on Dexter Lumis who has been in the heads of The Way for a while. Scott, Reed, and Grimes are all fine guys, but this gives Lumis the chance for a real shining moment in night one before he goes on to battle Gargano in the second night.

WINNER: Dexter Lumis

NXT Tag Team Championship Match
MSK vs. Grizzled Young Veterans vs. Legado del Fantasma

The NXT Tag Team Championships were left vacant after Danny Burch suffered a separated shoulder last month. That leaves the titles in a position where MSK, Grizzled Young Veterans, and Legado del Fantasma are in a position to capitalize. All three of these teams were part of the Dusty Rhodes Classic this year, with MSK winning the tournament and earning a shot at Burch and Oney Lorcan before the injury. There’s honestly no reason I see that MSK doesn’t go on to win here. NXT has been pushing them to the moon in terms of the tag team division, while Grizzled Young Veterans have been perennial gatekeepers and Legado del Fantasma are mostly there as Santos Escobar’s followers. As someone who was a fan of both MSK members in their Impact days, I’ve enjoyed their run here and expect nothing but a great match here with the addition of GYV and LdF.

WINNER: MSK (NEW NXT Tag Team Champions)

NXT Women’s Championship Match
Io Shirai vs. Raquel González

Io Shirai has been largely unstoppable in NXT. She’s held the NXT Women’s Championship for the better part of a year and taken on all comers for the title. Shirai has been a shining light of the NXT Women’s division, and while I know there are many who would like nothing more than to see her stay in NXT, it does feel like a Raw or Smackdown call-up is probably on the horizon. Meanwhile, they’ve made an absolute star out of Raquel Gonzalez by booking her like a monster. Frankly, I would say it wouldn’t make sense to build Gonzalez up for so long and then have her lose here, but I should also note that I literally accidentally wrote “Ripley” when typing this sentence at first and not Gonzalez. That said, I don’t see them not pulling the trigger here. Everything’s come together well and we should obviously get a strong match here, but Shirai has to lose at some point and this seems like the best possible time.

WINNER: Raquel Gonzalez (NEW NXT Women’s Champion)

NXT United Kingdom Championship Match
WALTER vs. Tommaso Ciampa

I mean, to start with let’s just say that the winner here is obvious. WALTER is an incredibly dominant NXT UK Champion who has a UK Championship match airing the next day in NXT UK Prelude, and Ciampa just doesn’t seem likely to head to the UK to join that brand. WALTER is the easiest pick of the show here. That said, no one is coming to this match with excitement because they don’t know who’s going to win. They’re coming because Ciampa and WALTER are likely to deliver a ridiculously hard-hitting match that should be an absolute blast. WALTER’s match with Ilja Dragunov was one of the best matches of 2020, and I legitimately think he could top that bout with Ciampa (albeit in a different way). This should be a hell of an in-ring effort by both men, but we almost certainly know how it ends.


And that’s all we have for the first night of NXT Takeover: Stand & Deliver! It’s a very good set of five matches and hopefully they can deliver in the way fans are looking forward to. Anyway, thanks once again for reading, and remember that we will have live coverage of WWE Takeover: Stand & Deliver Night One courtesy of Kevin Pantoja, right here on 411mania.com. Now, I’m gonna get the hell out of dodge, because WALTER’s in the US and I don’t want to end up collateral damage somehow…