NXT firmly established itself as WWE's third brand back at Survivor Series when WWE's Black and Gold brand beat both Raw and SmackDown in a series of seven cross-brand matches. But WWE took things a step further by having Adam Cole defend his NXT Championship on the show, something that hadn't been done at a main roster event since Finn Balor beat Kevin Owens for the title at the 2015 Beast in the East show in Japan. The split between the three brands has been re-established in the weeks since then, but it sounds like WWE will be involving NXT once again when WrestleMania season rolls around in April.
According to wrestling inside @WrestleVotes, which has broken a number of stories in recent years, NXT will be involved in WrestleMania 36 in April 2020 in Tampa.
Heard from a well placed source, as of now, NXT will have a role at WrestleMania. Not talking about TakeOver, but on the actual Mania card. No details as to who or what, but an NXT presence will be felt at Raymond James Stadium.— WrestleVotes (@WrestleVotes) December 12, 2019
As is tradition, NXT will have its biggest TakeOver event of the year the night before WrestleMania. Triple H recently unveiled the logo for next April's installment, NXT TakeOver: Tampa.
NXT will kick off 2020 with the Worlds Collide event during Royal Rumble weekend, which will feature stars of NXT taking on NXT UK. The first TakeOver of the year, NXT TakeOver: Portland, will take place on Feb. 16.
Next week's NXT will be headlined by an NXT Championship match between Adam Cole and Finn Balor, who returned to the roster on the same night the show moved to two live hours on USA Network each week. During a recent interview on After The Bell, Balor explained why he chose to make the move back to his old stomping grounds.
"I wasn't happy where I was at with Raw and SmackDown," Balor explained. "I had a conversation with [Triple H], we pinged some ideas, and back and forth, I took some time off, and came back with NXT. People gauge success differently. Not everyone can be champ. I was having a great time on Raw. Sometimes, you have to make the best of what you're given and I feel like I always made the best of anything I was given. I don't think there was anything that was a failure. Maybe, I'm guilty of not being a squeaky wheel sometimes with regards to 'Hey, I don't want to do that.' I'll hold my hand up and say I'm guilty of going, 'Okay, yup, no problem. Whatever you guys want. I'm a team player.' I think that probably affected my performances and maybe my creativity, not believing what I was doing out there. With the time off, I kind of reset, and I feel like I'm not playing ball, and I'm gonna do whatever I want to do. I value myself a little more as a performer."
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