Cruiserweight Championship match set for NXT, title gets new name

Lio Rush is the No. 1 contender for the WWE Cruiserweight Championship. Photo:
Lio Rush is the No. 1 contender for the WWE Cruiserweight Championship. Photo: /

Drew Gulak will defend his NXT Cruiserweight Championship against the newly returned Lio Rush on NXT on Wednesday, Oct. 9.

Triple H has said that more 205 Live matches will happen on NXT, and next up for the cruiserweights is a defense of the championship on the Oct. 9 episode of NXT on USA. This will be the second cruiserweight match to take place on the black and yellow brand since his statement and obviously the biggest, with Lio Rush challenging the Cruiserweight Champion, Drew Gulak.

Many were surprised that the match wasn’t taking place at Hell in a Cell. Putting this match during NXT on USA will expose them to a bigger crowd than a pay-per-view kickoff show. The Full Sail crowd will likely be more appreciative of this match as well.

WWE has also renamed the title NXT Cruiserweight Championship and has moved Gulak to the NXT Champions on their roster. While this creates more intrigue about the future of 205 Live (Friday’s episode was a surprise repeat following Friday Night SmackDown), it also makes for an entertaining matchup on Wednesday night.

Rush made a surprise return to action on NXT‘s first live show on September 18. In another surprise, he faced Oney Lorcan to become the No. 1 contender for the Cruiserweight Championship. Rush had been off WWE TV for five months as he dealt with mental health issues. Prior to his time off of TV, Rush had been the manager/voice for Bobby Lashley. While he competed several times on 205 Live and Monday Night Raw, his time on the main roster was mostly to babysit or put over Lashley.

Lorcan had several attempts at becoming Cruiserweight champion before, but came up short. He came very close at yet another shot, but he was bested by Rush in an awesome match.

Gulak won the Cruiserweight Championship back at Stomping Grounds in June when he beat Akira Tozawa and Tony Nese. Since then, he has dubbed himself “The Law.” In the last few months, he has defended his title on the Kickoff Show of every pay-per-view, along with multiple defenses on 205 Live. 

On NXT, it will be the first meeting between Gulak and Rush. Rush has an explosive, high-flying style while Gulak is a mat-based technician. During his time on the purple brand, Gulak has been known as the anti-high flyer, and used to decry that there was a “No Fly Zone” during his matches.

If Gulak can keep Rush grounded, he has a very good chance of retaining his title. Gulak has faced aerial wrestlers during his time on 205 Live and knows what to do to throw them off their game. Rush has a lot to prove to both fans and himself. Winning a title in his first match as the No. 1 contender would be a huge boost of confidence for him.

Next. WWE Hell in a Cell 2019: Predictions, how to watch. dark

Do you think Gulak can retain and stay “The Law” of 205 Live or will Rush be a fresh change for the purple brand? Do you like the idea of Cruiserweight matches on NXT?