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NXT Championship – 2016 & 2017 (Subscriber’s Ratings)

Welcome everyone to this community article, written by subscriber Runn O. He’ll take it from here, enjoy the piece!

In front of the star ratings for the matches, you’ll either see “HR”“R” or “RTA”“HR” means the match is highly recommended ; “R” means the match is recommended ; “RTA” means recommendation to avoid. In case nothing appears, the match is watchable but nothing spectacular.


Samoa Joe (April 21 2016 – August 20 2016)

  • Televised matches: 4
  • Record: 3-1

My match ratings:

  • Samoa Joe (c) def. Finn Bálor – NXT Live Event April 21 2016 (N/R)
  • Samoa Joe (c) def. Finn Bálor in a Steel Cage Match – NXT TakeOver: The End (***¾) *R*
  • Shinsuke Nakamura def. Samoa Joe (c) – NXT TakeOver: Brooklyn (****½) *HR*

This reign wasn’t bad in particular. Actually, it was quite good. Joe won the belt at a random NXT live event (out of all places). And four months later, he eventually dropped the title to Shinsuke Nakamura. Both of his title defenses were great and he always cut some brilliant promos on TV but having him win the title in a godd*mn live event out of all places just ruined this reign right at the start and downgrade the overall rating.

Rating: 7/10

Shinsuke Nakamura (August 20 2016 – November 19 2016)

  • Televised matches: 3
  • Record: 2-1

My match ratings:

  • Shinsuke Nakamura def. Samoa Joe (c) – NXT TakeOver: Brooklyn (****½) *HR*
  • Samoa Joe def. Shinsuke Nakamura (c) – NXT TakeOver: Toronto (****¼) *HR*

After one hell of a debut against Sami Zayn at Dallas, Nakamura wrestled Austin Aries at TakeOver: The End in another great match up. Finally at Brooklyn, the belt would find it’s way around the waist of The King of Strong Style. Then, Nakamura was wrote off TV by Joe setting the rematch between the two in which we saw the ending of the reign. Good reign but too short, both of his matches are highly recommended so that’s that.

Rating: 5/10

Samoa Joe (November 19 2016 – December 3 2016)

  • Televised matches: 3
  • Record: 2-1

My match ratings:

  • Samoa Joe def. Shinsuke Nakamura (c) – NXT TakeOver: Toronto (****¼) *HR*
  • Shinsuke Nakamura def. Samoa Joe (c) – NXT December 7 2016 (***½)

One question: Why the hell do you need to put the belt back on Joe? That doesn’t make any sense, at least to me. This reign wasn’t terrible, but it was extremely pointless and unnecessary.

Rating: 2/10

Shinsuke Nakamura (December 3 2016 – January 28 2017)

  • Televised matches: 3
  • Record: 2-1

My match ratings:

  • Shinsuke Nakamura def. Samoa Joe (c) – NXT December 7 2016 (***½)
  • Shinsuke Nakamura (c) def. Samoa Joe in a Steel Cage Match – NXT December 14 2016 (***¼)
  • Bobby Roode def. Shinsuke Nakamura (c) – NXT TakeOver: San Antonio (***¾) *R*

Poor Nakamura, both of his reigns individually didn’t even last a hundred days. I have a feeling his first reign was slightly better, but still, both were too short. Next.

Rating: 3/10

Bobby Roode (January 28 2017 – August 19 2017)

  • Televised matches: 7
  • Record: 6-1

My match ratings:

  • Bobby Roode def. Shinsuke Nakamura (c) – NXT TakeOver: San Antonio (***¾) *R*
  • Bobby Roode (c) def. Kassius Ohno – NXT March 15 2017 (***½) *R*
  • Bobby Roode (c) def. Shinsuke Nakamura – NXT TakeOver: Orlando (****) *R*
  • Bobby Roode (c) def. Hideo Itami – NXT TakeOver: Chicago (****) *HR*
  • Bobby Roode (c) def. Roderick Strong – NXT July 5 2017 (***¾) *R*
  • Drew McIntyre def. Bobby Roode (c) – NXT TakeOver: Brooklyn III (****½) *HR*

Now, we’re taking! After a brief game of hot potato between Joe and Nakamaura. We finally got ourselves another great, or should I say… GLORIOUS (no pun intended) NXT Title reign in Bobby Roode. This man was just awesome on TV with his heel character along with his tremendous mic skills. Roode’s reign came to an end in August when McIntyre took the title from him in a fantastic main event. None of his matches were bad and I have no reason why this isn’t a ten. This is what a perfect Championship Reign should ve.

Rating: 10/10

Drew McIntyre (August 19 2017 – November 18 2017)

  • Televised matches: 4
  • Record: 3-1

My match ratings: 

  • Drew McIntyre def. Bobby Roode (c) – NXT TakeOver: Brooklyn III (****½) *HR*
  • Drew McIntyre (c) def. Roderick Strong – NXT October 4 2017 (****) *R*
  • Andrade “Cien” Almas def. Drew McIntyre (c) – NXT TakeOver: WarGames (****) *HR*
  • Drew McIntyre (c) def. Adam Cole – NXT January 3 2018 (***½) *R* [Taped on November 17 2017]

So, we all know Drew won the belt from Roode in August at Brooklyn. But since winning the belt, Drew had only one successful televised title defense (two if you count that fun hidden gem with Adam Cole that was tape but didn’t air until 2018). McIntyre never failed to deliver in the ring as well. This reign was great despite being a little bit too short.

Rating: 7/10

Andrade “Cien” Almas (November 18 2017 – April 7 2018)

  • Televised matches: 6
  • Record: 4-2

My match ratings:

  • Andrade “Cien” Almas def. Drew McIntyre (c) – NXT TakeOver: WarGames (****) *HR*
  • Andrade “Cien” Almas (c) def. Johnny Gargano – NXT TakeOver: Philadelphia (*****) *HR*
  • Andrade “Cien” Almas (c) def. Johnny Gargano – NXT February 21 2018 (****) *HR*
  • Aleister Black def. Andrade “Cien” Almas (c) – NXT TakeOver: New Orleans (****¼) *HR*

Not to take anything away from Andrade, though. But before all of this happened, he was stuck in the midcard of hell for probably forever. That was until they decided to pair him with Zelina Vega, leading to his shocking win over the NXT Title in November. Soon afterward, he would go on to have arguably the 2018 Match of the Year against Johnny Gargano before losing the belt to Aleister Black in another great match at New Orleans. Andrade was (and still is) such a spectacle to watch in the ring, and pairing Zelina with him was literally a perfect fit.

Rating: 8/10

ALL-TIME CHAMPIONS RANKING

  1. Bobby Roode (28/1/17 – 19/8/17) 10
  2. Kevin Owens (11/2/15 – 4/7/15) 10
  3. Finn Bálor (4/7/15 – 21/4/16) 9
  4. Adrian Neville (27/2/14 – 11/12/14) 9
  5. Andrade “Cien” Almas (18/11/17 – 7/4/18) 8
  6. Drew McIntyre (19/8/17 – 18/11/17) 7
  7. Bo Dallas (12/6/13 – 27/2/14) 7
  8. Samoa Joe (21/4/16 – 20/8/16) 7
  9. Sami Zayn (11/12/14 – 11/2/15) 7
  10. Seth Rollins (29/8/12 – 9/1/13) 6
  11. Shinsuke Nakamura (20/8/15 – 19/11/16) 
  12. Shinsuke Nakamura (19/11/16 – 28/1/17) 3
  13. Big E (9/1/13 – 12/6/13) 3
  14. Samoa Joe (19/11/16 – 3/12/16) 2