The arrival of AJ Styles wasn’t the only exciting addition to the WWE roster earlier this year; another New Japan Pro Wrestling star surprised the industry when it was revealed Shinsuke Nakamura would also be signing with the company.
He hasn’t appeared on WWE programming just yet despite signing a multi-year deal with the company, but what has been revealed has fans excited for April 2.
It was announced on NXT that at TakeOver: Dallas – two nights before WrestleMania – Nakamura would be making his in-ring debut against fan favourite, Sami Zayn.
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This match was made because there’s no doubt in anyone’s mind that this match will be fantastic, along with the fact that Zayn is the perfect superstar who can handle Nakamura’s strong style.
Despite the excitement surrounding the match, there isn’t a real feud between the men, but that won’t be the case for good. Nakamura will be on NXT looking to make an instant impact and here are the guys I believe he could feud with.
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Along with Zayn, I believe Apollo Crews is another superstar who will be able to handle the strong style Nakamura brings to the ring. Crews is fantastic in the ring, but it’s no secret that he’s failing to connect or improve his character.
Crews need a solid, entertaining feud under his belt which involves some fantastic matches. He hasn’t had that yet; his feuds have been short-lived, and although his performances in matches have been great, matches as a whole haven’t been what we’ve expected.
A lengthy feud with Nakamura benefits both men; Crews will get the chance to work with a world class wrestler, one of the best on the planet, in fact, and he could help him get the best out of Crews. It’s also a good way of easing Nakamura into NXT; Crews is a former NXT Championship contender, he’s worked with numerous stars, and he’s great in the ring; this is something the fans would thoroughly enjoy.
My pick for Nakamura’s first feud on NXT would be Baron Corbin, even though I believe The Lone Wolf is ready to move on to the main roster.
I don’t think Corbin needs to win the NXT Championship; his time has passed, and now he needs to focus on continuing his improvement and development so he can succeed on the main roster. Corbin has improved a lot, and his size could play a huge factor in this potential feud, along with his character.
Corbin has a habit of targeting those coming on NXT looking to make an impact right away, we saw it with Crews as well as Austin Aries and he could do the same with Nakamura. Again, it’s something to benefit both men, the experience will be invaluable for Corbin while Nakamura gets to work with someone on NXT who has been there for quite some time and get used to the style further.
Elias Samson is more of a wildcard pick on this list; he is a unique superstar with a unique gimmick. However, I do think he can become a big star if he continues to develop as The Drifter and doesn’t go off-track.
Both Samson and Nakamura will be looking to make an impact on NXT; Samson hasn’t done a lot other than competing in a few matches, and he will be going up against Crews at TakeOver. Once that is out of the way, he too will need real competition to bring out the best in him, and they don’t come bigger than Nakamura.
Nakamura is also an intriguing character; he’s very enthusiastic, charismatic and ‘out there’ which the fans will love. They’re two gimmicks which could work brilliantly in a potential feud and for Samson, this will be hugely beneficial at his age.
FINN BALOR/SAMOA JOE
I think one of these two men will definitely meet with Nakamura at one point or another, depending on how long they want to keep the King of Strong Style on NXT rather than move him up to the main roster, if ever.
Finn Balor and Samoa Joe battle it out in the main event for the NXT Championship and if rumours are to be believed, the loser of this match will be heading to the main roster two days later while the champion will continue on NXT.
Regardless of who the champion is, a feud between Nakamura and Balor or Joe would be fantastic and the perfect way to throw him into the deep end, because fans of his will know he can succeed at the stage right away.
The matches with the two of them would be great, while Nakamura is too good to not be in the NXT title picture when he starts appearing more frequently.
NXT FANS – WHO DO YOU WANT TO SEE SHINSUKE NAKAMURA FEUD WITH WHEN HE DEBUTS? LET US KNOW YOUR THOUGHTS IN THE COMMENTS SECTION BELOW.