Well I think Shayna's pretty limited too but she has a killer look which is why they keep pushing her. And so does Rhea. That helps both of them a lot.
Another big anchor for Rhea is that she's a babyface. NXT hates long babyface reigns these days. Most of them only last a couple of months at most. And if Shayna drops the title to Rhea, there aren't many heels left in the division if Shayna moves up (which she should). Io and Bianca are it. And Shayna's already beaten Bianca.
Io is in that weird spot of being a heel, but coming off more as a tweener as time rolls on. It helps that she has more upside than a lot of other women in the division right now.
I feel like WWE is intentionally keeping Rhea and Io apart in singles action because they don't want to hand either a loss. And I have a feeling if Rhea wins the title from Shayna, she'll be dropping it soon after to Io. Rhea is in that weird spot of getting a big push, but her ceiling is pretty low on NXT. Especially since she's limited in the ring. All she really has is a power game.
Io and Rhea had a house show match like 2 weeks ago. The match ended in a double count out but Io dominated 95% of the match and was way more over than Rhea.
Little stuff like the post match celebration is why I think Io has the edge in being a badass and a face of the division over someone like Rhea. She wins her match, points to a fan, yells at them. She then does a flip off the top rope to the floor below, and stops just shy of decking another fan for talking trash to her. You can see him flinch as well, and her laughing at him. She then listens to some little kid in the audience for like a few seconds before getting bored and leaving.
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Join Date: May 2011
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Re: Io Shirai Fan Thread
Io Shirai On Where She Got The Idea For Her Heel NXT Gimmick, Who She Wants To Face In WWE
NXT Star Io Shirai spoke with the Hindustan Times about her heel turn and where she originally got the idea to become a more sinister character. Shirai also revealed who she really wants to face on the WWE main roster.
Originally coming into NXT as a face, Shirai turned on her friend, Candice LeRae, a few months back, sparking a new, much more evil side. The NXT Superstar was asked how fans reacted to her change and if it was too sudden.
"To the fans, my character changed suddenly," Shirai began. "But I took a long time to think about it and it was a gradual process for me. When I came to WWE, I wanted to try out something different. They already had Asuka and Kairi [Sane]. So, I wanted to show something new. I wanted to show a new side of Japanese woman wrestlers. I have mainly been a babyface in my career, but I wanted to make a big change."
Lucha Underground fans will remember Shirai playing the character, Hitokiri. Although her time was brief in the company, it allowed Shirai to get a glimpse of how dark her gimmick could potentially go.
"That was just one time," Shirai said. "I can see the small similarity, but that was a small part of it. I got the idea from that character, but this is what Io Shirai is capable of. This is something that I have worked a lot on."
After appearing in the Mae Young Classic, Shirai debuted for NXT in November of 2018. Still honing her craft there today, Shirai does have dreams of facing a few women in particular on the main roster.
"I would really like to fight Sasha [Banks], Charlotte and Asuka," Shirai revealed.
Shirai is scheduled to be in the first-ever women's WarGames on November 23 at NXT TakeOver. It will be Rhea Ripley, Candice LeRae, Tegan Nox and Mia Yim vs. Shayna Baszler, Bianca Belair, Shirai, and a partner to be named.
4 Horsewoman, Asuka, Kairi Sane, IO, and Alexa Bliss
WWE: AJ Styles, Kevin Owens, Roman Reigns, Aleister Black.
AEW: Jon Moxley, Kenny Omega, Cody Rhodes, Allie, and Chris Jericho
Credit To Second Gif On Avatar: Carter