Why Pete Dunne Should Be The Next NXT Champion

Get lost Karrion.

Pete Dunne
Source: WWE

Finn Balor’s next challenger to his NXT Championship appears to be none other than ‘The Bruiserweight’ Pete Dunne. Since making a brief return to NXT UK before resuming active competition in America, the NXT Universe were shocked to see the physical transformation Pete Dunne had undergone over the UK’s lockdown period. Now a much leaner version of the gritty, joint-manipulating Brummy bruiser, Dunne was ready to make a comeback in a big way, which is precisely what he did at NXT Halloween Havoc.

Entering a renewed heel run alongside Pat McAfee, Oney Lorcan and fellow countryman, Danny Burch, ‘The Bruiserweight’ immediately ascended into the main event scene, competing in his second annual men’s WarGames match and then going on to be featured in NXT Championship contenders matches. There’s no doubt that NXT hold Pete Dunne in high regard and that a main event push is on the cards for the near future, but I personally believe that it should go a little further than him just getting the match against ‘The Prince’. I think it’s time for his biggest win since the UK Championship.

Maybe this is the BritWres marky side talking, but I don’t see any other superstar more primed for a run with the title than ‘The Bruiserweight’. Since debuting for the company in the 2017 UK Championship tournament, Pete Dunne’s stock has skyrocketed and has been known as one of the WWE’s best performers across their entire roster. His instant classic performances against Tyler Bate, WALTER and The Undisputed Era have put him in the conversation for being one of NXT’s biggest stars of all time, and need we mention the work he put in to establish their UK sister show.

Pete Dunne is more than ready for a run with the NXT Championship and what better champion for him to dethrone than Finn Balor. Surprisingly, the two have never clashed in a major promotion, including the British indies. As Prince Devitt was making a home for himself in Japan, Pete Dunne was rising through the ranks and just as ‘The Brusierweight’ achieved main event status, Finn Balor was born in NXT. It was almost as if Devitt had handed over the reigns of British wrestling to Pete Dunne, who then took over PROGRESS alongside British Strong Style and went on to compete against the likes of Will Ospreay, Jushin Thunder Liger and even Japan’s Marafuji.

Of course it wasn’t long before Pete himself was snapped up by WWE and the two were instantly put into dream match scenarios by fans like myself that hotly anticipated their encounter. Four years on and we’re finally getting to see it in an NXT main event that’s yet to be given a date. Mark my words when I say that this is a potential MOTY candidate for 2021, a shocking victory over Balor and first NXT Championship win for Dunne would be a huge help in making this one of the most talked about matches of the year.

Not only would the NXT title elevate Pete Dunne to potential megastardom within NXT but also help the careers of Lorcan and Burch, who since losing McAfee as their mouthpiece have floundered in the Tag division. Even though the duo are holding onto the NXT Tag titles, they’ve failed to maintain the presence generated by aligning themselves with Pat McAfee. Luckily, Pete Dunne has stuck around to keep the faction going and for all three to hold championship gold would help solidify the faction has something to take note of, rather than being a wannabe UE.

The outlier in this scenario is of course Karrion Kross, who had to vacate his title last year due to an injury sustained in the match against Keith Lee. Since returning, Kross has had his sights set on Finn Balor’s title, having to go through Damian Priest to maintain his spot in the main event scene. Karrion has yet to confirm that he’s gunning for ‘The Prince’ anytime soon, so this gives Dunne the perfect opportunity to swoop in and take NXT by surprise.

Of course, Kross is well within his right to challenge for the title again in the near future, but I’d much rather see ‘The Bruiserweight’ be given his deserved run with the NXT title before handing it back to Karrion. After all, Kross is a certified star that could easily transition onto the main roster alongside Scarlett. His victory over Lee and dominant performances have built his aura enough for him to be a threat to anyone. Does he necessarily need that second NXT title run?

I for one would love to see a triple threat put together for the WrestleMania TakeOver special, giving all three men a chance to do what they do best in a big-man scenario. But I think it goes without saying that I’ll be backing one man all the way, and that man is ‘The Bruiserweight’.

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