Earlier today, the WWE announced that an NXT tournament will be held at WrestleMania Axxess next Thursday night, and the winner will earn a spot in the Andre The Giant Memorial Battle Royal at WrestleMania. As shown in WWE’s press release below, the tournament will feature four NXT superstars — Tyler Breeze, Hideo Itami, Finn Balor and Adrian Neville.
“An NXT tournament will be held this Thursday at WrestleMania Axxess, with the winner earning the right to compete in the second annual Andre the Giant Memorial Battle Royal days later at WrestleMania.
“Tournament participants will include former NXT Champion Adrian Neville, Finn Bálor, Tyler Breeze and Hideo Itami, WWE.com has confirmed. WrestleMania Axxess, which is the year’s biggest gathering of WWE fans, takes place at the San Jose Convention Center Thursday, March 26, through Sunday, March 29.”
Sami Zayn — who many NXT fans feel should be in the tournament — is currently suffering from a shoulder injury, and hasn’t been working any of the NXT live events, which is why he’s not involved in the four-man tournament.
There’s a chance that Finn Balor will not only win the tournament at WrestleMania Axxess, but that he’ll win the Andre The Giant Memorial Battle Royal as well, as WWE is planning to officially bring him up to the main roster the night after WrestleMania.
Finn Balor is currently the number one contender for Kevin Owens’ NXT Championship, but the Balor vs. Owens title match has already been taped, and Balor lost. WWE didn’t want to put the Balor vs. Owens title match on the next NXT Takeover special because they wanted to bring Balor up to the main roster immediately after WrestleMania.
There have been rumors that Sheamus is going to return at WrestleMania as one of the participants in the Andre The Giant Memorial Battle Royal, and win it. But now the rumor is that Sheamus is going to be the eighth person added to the Intercontinental Championship ladder match at WrestleMania, and win the match. It’s also rumored that Sheamus will feud with Daniel Bryan over the Intercontinental Championship following WrestleMania.
Most WWE fans who have watched the NXT product over the past couple of months feel that Finn Balor is the most ready to make the jump to WWE’s main roster, and WWE feels the same way. So, even if Balor doesn’t win the four-man tournament, expect him to make his main roster debut the night after WrestleMania.
[Image via WWE]