PWP Nation featured writer, Derek Gifford, discusses how he would finish the “who injured Hideo Itami” storyline on the main roster instead of NXT.
In 2015, NXT held a Takeover special called NXT Takeover: Unstoppable. At this event, NXT superstar, Hideo Itami, was attacked in the parking lot of Full Sail University and put on the shelf for nearly a full year. Throughout that year, many theories popped up regarding the deviant that was behind the attack. Guys like Kevin Owens, Samoa Joe, and Baron Corbin were thought to be involved in the story. Any one of them would have been a perfect asset to the Itami story, but each has since been moved up to the WWE main roster and the storyline has all but been scrapped down in NXT. Itami has not only lost momentum because of the injury, but he’s also lost his way because this important storyline hasn’t wrapped up. It’s time to make that happen. Here’s how.
Because there has been so much turnover on the NXT talent roster since Itami went down with his injury, the culprit will have to be someone currently on the main roster. Without that element, the consistency of the story fizzles away. The obvious solution would be to make that man Kevin Owens. The more out of the box (and entertaining) scenario would be the wild card option in one of Hideo Itami’s best friends, Finn Balor. That epic story would start with a Finn Balor heel turn and then progress on from there sending both talents to the next level.
When Finn Balor eventually recovers from his injury, he won’t have a storyline due to his last opponent, Seth Rollins, also being injured. Balor would return and immediatley start a heated argument with the current champion on the basis of the fact that he never truly lost the title. Here, the heel turn would kick in with him revealing in an aggressive promo that “I PUT MY BEST FRIEND, HIDEO ITAMI, ON THE SHELF IN ORDER TO WIN THAT TITLE“. The fans would gasp in disbelief as they connected the dots from Finn Balor injuring Hideo Itami to his rise to the the top of the WWE main roster. They’d ask themselves, would Balor have been able to get to where he got with Itami on the roster with him? The Itami/Balor feud would be rooted in that question.
From there, Hideo Itami would appear the very next week on the main roster and attack Balor to further fuel the rivalry that had been 2 years in the making. These attacks would span over a few months and eventually, Raw GM Mick Foley would have no choice but to put Finn Balor and Hideo in a match. Itami fighting for his respect against his best friend and Balor fighting to prove his dominance.
It’s a win-win situation for both men as both will need a good story when they hit the main roster again. Balor, fresh from injury working to beat a long time friend turned enemy while becoming a top heel. Itami, finally getting his main roster call-up and his chance to shine against the man that cost him a full year of his career.
Hideo Itami will be a force to be reckoned with on the main roster when his time comes. He needs the right opponent to really bring out his greatness. Finn Balor is that opponent. Balor is an amazing babyface, but an even better heel. This feud with Hideo Itami gives that side of Finn Balor the chance to come out. Both guys are talented and have something to prove. In the world of wrestling, that equals magic.