The angle between Adam Cole and Pat McAfee has been brewing since Cole made an appearance on ‘The Pat McAfee’ show and got into a physical altercation with the host.
What started off as something people thought could be genuine, soon played out as a highly interesting angle as NXT’s founder, Triple H appeared on McAfee’s YouTube show to apologise on Cole’s behalf and invite the former NFL player to the Performance Center in person.
At this point fans started to smell the build up for a very special match at NXT Takeover that would see arguably NXT’s top heel in Cole face off with McAfee. Some speculation even suggested the angle would pivot to Cole vs HHH.
Yesterday it was announced that McAfee would be heading to this week’s NXT show. Social media posts before the show began showed Cole & McAfee had met to thrash out their differences and put the incident behind them.
Sure. Because that’s how it happens in wrestling.
Later on in the night McAfee was all smiles and praise as he joined the NXT broadcast team for the Tag Team Title match between Imperium and The Undisputed Era.
During the match, McAfee’s demeanour began to change significantly and he began to rail on Cole specifically and NXT in general, to put it simply, McAfee began to turn himself heel at the broadcast booth.
These remarks were made in ear shot of the former NXT Champion Cole who obviously took exception and another physical confrontation ensued. This drew out both Triple H and Shawn Michaels to pull the two apart in extremely rare on camera appearances for the duo in NXT, thus adding to the realism this angle has so far attained.
The segment ended when the former Indianapolis Colts punter (kicker for non-NFL fans) hit Cole with a huge Randy Orton style punt kick as his adversary was draped over the edge of the announce table.
Cole sold the move like a true game-ender, the show ending with the Undisputed Era leader out cold on the floor.
Clearly this looks to be heading to a match at the landmark NXT Takeover XXX that, barring any swerves in the story, will pit Cole against McAfee.
Whilst that match is intriguing enough in itself, what makes it truly exciting is that it seems to mark the highly anticipated Undisputed Era face turn.
Whilst portraying very effective heels since their debut on the brand, fans’ affection for Cole, Strong, Fish and O’Reilly has left them desperate to be given permission and opportunity to truly get behind the foursome as babyfaces.
There have been signs this has been on the cards for a few weeks and this angle seemed to cement that with McAfee taking the heel ‘anti-NXT’ role and Cole and his running buddies standing up for the brand and the fans.
We will surely get further news on this in the coming weeks but it adds a huge level of excitement to Takeover which will take place on Saturday August 22nd.