At NXT’s most recent special event, Takeover: The End, the team of Chad Gable and Jason Jordan, known as American Alpha, were shockingly defeated by The Revival (Dash Wilder and Scott Dawson) and lost the NXT Tag Team Championships that they had won to huge ovation at NXT Takeover: Dallas in April.
In a brilliant rematch of the Dallas contest, Jordan and Gable were setting up for their finisher, Grand Amplitude, when Dawson intervened, setting up Jordan for the Revival’s own finishing move, The Shatter Machine, leading to a pin.
In what was undoubtedly the most shocking moment of the night, American Alpha losing clean was the last thing anyone expected at 'The End'.
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Firstly, the two have been extremely well received by the fans; their title win was just the icing on the cake for Alpha, who had been fan favourites ever since their formation in July last year.
Secondly, no team had ever been two-time NXT Tag Team Champions and this pattern was expected to continue at 'The End'. Instead, Dash and Dawson walked away with the belts for a second time, which was extremely unexpected.
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With American Alpha being so well-liked and with their defeat coming so soon after their big win, many fans have been left confused, even angered, by the decision.
Furthermore, the question now arises as to why WWE made this decision and what it means for the duo of Gable and Jordan.
There are three options for WWE regarding the team. The first is to simply grant them a rematch with The Revival and continue this feud, but this would just seem like a re-run of their previous feud; the popular faces chasing the heels for the titles.
Also, after the aftermath of their match at 'The End', this storyline doesn’t really make a lot of sense.
By this, of course I mean the attack that Jordan and Gable suffered from the debuting Authors of Pain, a new tag team comprised of wrestlers Sunny Dhinsa and Gzim Selmani managed by WWE Hall of Famer, “Precious” Paul Ellering.
The two big men assaulted Jordan and Gable following their loss, undoubtedly to “make an impact” as a new team and it worked; the two looked destructive.
A feud between The Authors and American Alpha on NXT could be the plan, but this wouldn’t make an awful lot of sense in the long run.
To get over - but American Alpha are still very popular and still have a lot of potential, so booking them to lose to the Authors straight after their title loss would make the group look incredibly weak, something the fans may end up rejecting.
Option number three is the end goal of every NXT wrestler and something that is bound to happen eventually, but in the case of American Alpha, timing could be crucial.
The next step for the team could coincide with the new brand split. With both shows, Raw and Smackdown, eager to fill their rosters with plenty of stars, it’s highly likely that NXT will be raided by each show.
If this is the case, does American Alpha losing their titles so early into their run mean that the two are destined for the main roster?
It seems like too much of a coincidence. A top team lose the titles a few months after their huge win on a massive stage to a team not nearly as popular, all while a new draft is only weeks away.
This would be a brilliant idea; WWE are current going through a “new era” and Jordan and Gable are two of the hottest new stars of recent years, so bringing them up to the main roster would not only be welcomed by the fans but also help keep things fresh and exciting during this new brand split.
Jordan and Gable could debut on the main roster in the coming weeks or even on draft night itself, coming up to the main roster and receiving the attention their talent warrants.
The only problem with this story is that their rivalry with The Authors of Pain is left unfinished, but there’s nothing stopping the two teams battling it out on the main roster in the future.
American Alpha are immensely popular and a push to the main roster would be a brilliant way to keep their momentum going after losing their titles. Whilst Jordan and Gable’s time at the top in NXT may have been short, it may be a case of the end justifying the means for these two incredibly talented competitors.