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NXT TakeOver Orlando: One year later

Nakamura vs. Roode

Even though earlier this week, Triple H forgot that many of these year's TakeOver talents competed on last year's show, I didn't. That's why I wanted to check in on the progress of the TakeOver participants from last year's WrestleMania weekend show to see how everyone evolved, perhaps as a harbinger of what could be for this year's group a year from now.

SAnitY (Alexander Wolfe/Eric Young/Killian Dain/Nikki Cross) def. Kassius Ohno, Roderick Strong, Ruby Riot, and Tye Dillinger

SAnitY remains in NXT and since last year's show, they won and held the tag titles for roughly four months last fall. Dain goes for the new North American title in a multi-person ladder match on this year's show while the rest of the crew isn't booked for the main show.

While Ohno is also still in Florida, Dillinger made his jump to the main roster on the post-Mania SmackDown and remains mired in the midcard. Riot was called up in November, got an extra 't' added to her name, and is now part of the Riott Squad with fellow call-ups Liv Morgan and Sarah Logan.

Strong works primarily in NXT, but did make his main roster debut on 205 Live when he took part in the recent cruiserweight title tournament. Strong goes for the NXT tag titles with UK Champion Pete Dunne on this year's TakeOver show.

Aleister Black def. Andrade "Cien" Almas

One year later, these two find themselves in the main event of TakeOver. Almas is the reigning NXT Champion and has found his act revitalized with the addition of manager Zelina Vega, even making his WWE debut in this year's Royal Rumble. Black is essentially the same character as a year ago, but has only increased in popularity with a memorable feud with Velveteen Dream recently having concluded. 

NXT Tag Team Champions Authors of Pain (Rezar/Akam) def. DIY (Johnny Gargano/Tommaso Ciampa) and The Revival in a three way elimination match

The AOP are no longer the tag team champions but are once again in a three-way dance for the tag titles again this year. The Revival got called up on the post-Mania Raw and defeated The New Day on their first night, but injuries to both men over the course of the year significantly derailed their progress. They also managed to become a punchline in the 'Being The Elite' YouTube series.

The biggest change here is with Gargano and Ciampa who went from the best of friends to the worst of enemies following Ciampa's heel turn at TakeOver Chicago. Ciampa ruptured his ACL and missed a significant amount of time, but returned in a big way, attacking Gargano at NXT Philadelphia after Gargano failed in his NXT title bid against Almas. He then cost Gargano both the title and his career in a rematch, paving the way for this year's "unsanctioned" match at TakeOver.

NXT Women's Champion Asuka def. Ember Moon

Asuka completed her NXT run as the champion and got her call-up to Raw in the fall with a decent amount of fanfare. She still hasn't lost in singles competition and takes her much-discussed winning streak into WrestleMania in a showdown with SmackDown women's champion Charlotte Flair after having won the first-ever women's Royal Rumble.

One year later, Moon is back in the title match, but now as the champion. At this year's show, she looks to defend the title in a rematch with Shayna Baszler, a title she won in a November four-way. Like Almas, she made her WWE debut at the women's Rumble this year.

NXT Champion Bobby Roode defeated Shinsuke Nakamura

Both men are now part of the SmackDown brand, but are in two different spots at WrestleMania. Roode (called up in August) will look to regain the U.S. title in a three-way with Randy Orton and Jinder Mahal while Nakamura (post-Mania SmackDown call-up) is gunning for the WWE title against AJ Styles in one of the weekend's most anticipated matches. 

Here is Saturday's NXT TakeOver main card, a group we'll be looking at a year from now to see how they did:

- NXT Champion Almas vs. Black 
- NXT Women's Champion Moon vs. Baszler
- NXT Tag Team Champions Adam Cole/Kyle O'Reilly vs. AOP vs. Strong/Dunne
- NXT North American Championship ladder match: Adam Cole vs. Ricochet vs. EC3 vs. Killian Dain vs. Lars Sullivan vs. Velveteen Dream
- Gargano vs. Ciampa unsanctioned