|Big Boy Playtime!
I think the problem is expectations. It's the worst with Asuka, of course, because she's been so dominant for so long that there's no way in hell they're going to put the belt on Nikki Cross. So while their Last Wrestler Standing match was excellent, hard-hitting, intense, and had a big finish, I didn't believe Cross could win, and neither did Full Sail, and that took the oomph out of the match a few weeks back.
Last week, we had Roderick Strong versus Bobby Roode, and again, great match. Again, great performances. And again, there was no way Roddy was taking the belt off of Roode here. NXT is, by its very nature, more predictable than the main roster, due to the fact that, no matter what they say, which means that there isn't a large, or even small, pool of credible contenders for any of the titles. The order of acension and even the timing of ascension has been apparent for years, for the most part, and so Roode was destined to win, and did. Strong may well be the next NXT champion, but not yet.
And this week, we had Heavy Machinery vs. the Authors of Pain. The tag division on NXT is incredibly thin right now, and while Heavy Machinery have the size and strength to look like credible contenders, they don't have the experience, and so they were going to lose. The thin tag division was made even more apparent after the match, where heel team Sanity tore up the Book Of Pain, indicating a heel-heel feud for the tag belts because THERE IS NO FOURTH TEAM RIGHT NOW.
The NXT midcard is a very odd place right now, with Aleister Black, Cassius Ohno, HIdeo Itami, the debuting-this-week Bobby Fish, Drew McIntyre, Eric Young, Andrade Almas, and the newly single Johnny Gargano all farting around with a total of one story between them, and that's the extended Hideo Itami heel turn.
The women's division is in better shape, with Ruby Riot, Nikki Cross, and Ember Moon still hovering around the title, even though we all know Moon is the only one who's gonna end up with it. It remains to be seen how this summer's Mae Young Classic affects the women's scene across the board.