On this week's roundup, we take a look at whether the "Slammy" results were legitimate, CM Punk's first UFC opponent and tonight's NXT: Takeover show:
** There was a lot of surprise over Roman Reigns winning the “Superstar of the Year” Slammy, which was supposedly voted on by fans online and on the WWE app. Very quickly, accusations of the WWE rigging the vote popped up.
However, various reports have come out since, including one from Dave Meltzer, saying that the vote was 100 percent legitimate, and even the higher-ups in WWE were surprised by the vote, as they expected John Cena or Daniel Bryan to win.
It is interesting to note that recently the WWE has caught flack for not giving the fans what they want.With these results, would giving Reigns a huge push and having him win the Rumble be giving the fans what they want?
** If his Twitter account is to be believed, welterweight Cathal Pendred will be CM Punk's first opponent in UFC. On Wednesday, he tweeted out “This punk is going to be 'one & done' in the UFC. It looks like I will be that one. #JustWonTheLottery"
Pendred is 15-2-1 in his MMA career. He is 2-0 since joining UFC after competing in "The Ultimate Fighter." While this fight isn't confirmed by UFC yet, it would add up somewhat, as Dana White said that Punk would likely “fight a guy who is 1-0, 1-1, 2-1, something like that.”
** Tonight NXT will put on one of their quarterly Takeover specials. This one is named NXT: Takeover (R)Evolution. While I have been a big fan of all of the NXT specials to this point, this show has the potential to the best of them.
It's headlined by the Sami Zayn vs. Adrian Neville match for the NXT title, which should be an absolute show featuring these two veterans of the independent circuit.
Zayn's storyline, overcoming all of the big losses he's had over the past year or so, has been a basic yet incredibly compelling storyline that not only has shown another dimension to Zayn, but has succeeded in making Neville a credible heel. They've done a great job with this, and if Zayn does win the title, it should draw a huge reaction.
Another match featuring two independent wrestlers is Hideo Itami and Finn Balor (the former Prince Devitt) teaming together to take on The Ascension. This is the first time we'll see either Itami or Balor in an extended match in NXT, assuming this gets a good amount of time, so this should be a good one. This could also be The Ascension's last match before they get called up.
The final thing about tonight's show, and possibly the most notable, is the debut of Kevin Owens, who is former ROH champion Kevin Steen. They've been showing promos for the past few weeks on NXT that has been hyping up his independent background, which is interesting that they'd go that route.
They've acknowledged his past with the likes of Seth Rollins, Daniel Bryan, Adrian Neville, and of course his former tag partner and rival Sami Zayn. They haven't announced a match for him yet tonight, so he could face someone random, or he could get involved in a current storyline.
Many people of course have latched on to the fact that Zayn is fighting for the title the same night Owens debuts, though I don't think they'll immediately connect those two. Fans are as excited for his debut as any on NXT that I've seen, so how the WWE uses him will be fun to watch.
** Be sure to be on a lookout this weekend for recap of the NXT special and a preview of Sunday's TLC pay-per-view.
Thoughts? Questions? Leave them in the comment section, email me or find me on Twitter: @TheAOster