Shinsuke Nakamura has once again claimed the NXT Championship from Samoa Joe and later retained the title in Melbourne, Australia (that episode will air this coming Wednesday). Rumors are already popping up about Joe's inevitable jump to the main roster, where he would join Team Blue on Smackdown Live.
So where does one go from here with Joe? He's already the first two-time NXT Champion and a multi-time world champion outside of the WWE. What feuds would excite and reenergize the fans, especially for those who had never seen any of his Ring Of Honor or TNA matches with the likes of Kurt Angle and even WWE World Champion AJ Styles?
We take a look at the current roster and give our picks of what could be big money feuds for the Samoan Submission Machine now that the war between him and the King of Strong Style is supposedly over for now.
With the dozens of Samoan wrestlers being affiliated with the legendary Anoa'i family, it's interesting to note that Samoa Joe is a rare instance of not coming from that bloodline. You know who is though?
Current United States Champion Roman Reigns.
Now, we've talked about what a weird year it's been for Roman, but 2017 could be a restructuring year for WWE's Big Dog. He'll soon challenge for the Universal Championship, with the hopes and possibilities of being a double champion, but what Roman needs to do is forget about championships for a minute and concentrate of being the best performer he could be.
Roman should be booked like this juggernaut of pure force and he's on the right track of doing so, but if you put him in a match with Joe, you have a case of where Roman looks like the actual underdog with an opponent he's never faced before. Yes, Reigns has gone up against opponents that have very different styles, but Joe is so stiff and so calculating, it would be interesting to see if he could keep up with the former NXT Champion.
Stop me if you've heard this one before: AJ Styles and Samoa Joe putting on an absolute wrestling clinic. Sound familiar?
Sound familiar? Well, it should.
The two combatants have a long-standing feud with WWE rival promotion TNA (who you might have heard is going through one hell of a transitional period) over every single title they had at the time. Now, of course, this was 10+ years ago, and both Joe and Styles have since been elevated to the top of the wrestling world, especially with AJ winning the WWE World Championship.
Joe still has plenty to prove in the WWE, but the for the fans who never got a chance to see these two go at it. Time may have passed and maybe their wounds have healed since their last encounter, but as the saying goes "everything old is new again".
As part of WWE, including their former developmental territory OVW, Randy Orton has been part of the WWE for 15 years. In that time he's main evented WrestleMania, become a 12-time World Champion, has won the Royal Rumble, and gave the Ruthless Aggression era one of its brightest stars. It's obvious that Orton will one day in the WWE Hall of Fame, but who can fill that time until he retires?
How about an actual bit of fantasy warfare against Samoa Joe?
These two started breaking into the business around the same time and although Orton's star has shown exponentially brighter over the years, what to say that Joe couldn't come in and dull it up a bit? They have very contradicting styles, but still very much at the top of their game with no signs of slowing down in the near future.
Even with Randy currently being part of the Wyatt Family, that's merely just more pins for Joe to inevitably knock down.
Although Seth and Joe had an outstanding feud in their ROH days, neither men's stock has ever been higher. With Rollins currently in one of the top face positions in the company, it would be very wise to throw them at one another again. A solid performance by either of the two could elevate both me. They're both former NXT and ROH World Champions and considered two of the best in the world, so no long-term build up required and the story essentially writes itself.
Joe is better built up and marketed as some nigh-invulnerable force, but he can still lay somebody out with his technical skills as well and Seth has proven time and time again why he's the undisputed future of the company.
Put these two together on a grand stage and it's pure wrestling magic.
In my book, Kevin Owens is the Raw Superstar of the Year.
In the past two years since signing with WWE, Owens has made a name for himself as one of the company's top heels and straight up bad asses. While some purists don't believe Owens as the right aesthetic for a world champion or a guy who can hang with the big timers, WWE's Prizefighter has knocked down all opposition, eventually claiming the WWE Universal Championship.
While it's true the two had a brief stint of a feud when Joe debuted in NXT (and even some killer matches in ROH), it's hard to not wonder what would happen if the two collided on a weekly basis, building up to something great and even bigger than themselves. Joe is going to burst out to the main roster with both muscle busters blazing, so why not put him with someone who he's faced before, but that the fans wanted more of?