TAELER: Looking Ahead At Dakota Kai Versus Mercedes Martinez

With WWE NXT's emergence into your Tuesday night wrestling lineup, things are definitely being shaken up and not everyone is happy about it. Recently added to next week's NXT episode is a match that I've personally been waiting to see as a means to a new end. An ending perhaps almost twenty years in the making. Next week NXT will feature one half of the inaugural former NXT Women's Tag Team Champions Dakota Kai going one on one in a singles bout against the 20 year veteran, The Latina Sensation Mercedes Martinez.

With WWE ushering in a new era in their women's divisions, three brand new WWE Women's Champions emerged out of Wrestlemania 37 and NXT Takeover: Stand & Deliver. Last week the brand new NXT Women's Champion, the second generation wrestler, Raquel Gonzalez was added into the NXT Hall of Women's Champions and made her first appearance on NXT sporting her coveted championship gold. Within a span of minutes Raquel had already seen the hungry eyes setting their sight on the gold around her waist. Perhaps one pair of eyes has been a lot closer than Raquel could imagine. Those eyes coming by way of her BFF and inaugural NXT tag partner - Dakota Kai.

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Prior to Raquel Gonzalez becoming the woman to dethrone Io Shirai, Dakota Kai had aimed to do exactly that and had fallen short in her aim. Kai, storm, Ripley, Flair, LeRae, they'd all fallen short in their pursuit. A pursuit and promise that Gonzalez herself had made good on as she left Stand & Deliver Main Event on night one as the new NXT gold standard at the top of the growing NXT Women's Division. The pinnacle seat as I like to refer to it, although as fancy and sought after as that spot is, only one can hold it making it the most coveted position.

Dakota Kai and Mercedes Martinez won't be entering the ring for their next bout as friends nor as strangers. Both ladies having crossed paths with each over over the years prior to their subsequent WWE journeys will be looking for any sign of weakness or distraction. As their match begins and unfolds one will have to wonder which competitor will gain the advantage over the other and what role Raquel will play in it? Will she come to the aid of her BFF Dakota Kai? Or, will Raquel prove to be a fighting champion in every sense of the title by means of squaring off with the fiercest most seasoned competitors that NXT has to offer?

In Dakota Kai versus Mercedes Martinez I wonder which will win the upper hand and advance through the NXT rankings for a shot at Raquel and her NXT Championship Title…Experience. In ring style. Conditioning. Focus. Hunger. Motivation. All are key points that could turn the favor one way or another. If Raquel inserts herself the way Rhea Ripley did on Raw with Asuka versus Charlotte Flair, I wonder if this will draw the attention of Toni Storm? Or, will this play out as more of a two on one effort against the extremely threatening Rugged and Thugged Brass City Badass Mercedes Martinez?

Whether you are rooting for Kai or Martinez, we'll have to admit the threat of possibility as these two ladies walk in this next episode of WWE NXT on USA Network. In the end there's a saying for a reason revolving around the idea of keeping your friends close and your enemies closer. As I analyze this match setup, I am reminded of a speech I once read that I believe fits this exact scenario that Raquel Gonzalez finds herself in, treat your friends as if they could one day become your enemies and your enemies as if they could one day become your friends…

Just how friendly an eye will Raquel have if its her friend who comes after her title? With the growing confidence of Raquel Gonzalez i highly doubt she'll lay down and let Dakota Kai beat her. By the same token, I also equally doubt that Dakota Kai will let friendship get in the way of her getting to the top of NXT regardless of whom she'll have to walk over to get there. As far as Mercedes Martinez, she's nver seemed more focused or more ready. In her mind, it's step one - defeat Dakota Kai and step two - challenge Raquel Gonzalez for the NXT Women's Championship Title. Tune in to WWE NXT live this Tuesday to see Dakota Kai go one on one with Mercedes Martinez as both vie for the opportunity to become the number one contender for the NXT Women's Title!

For more Taeler Hendrix content check out the links below

Children's Book: "It's Not Easy Being A Sloth" By: Taeler Hendrix

Children's Book: "A Fish With A Wish Is Trish" By: Taeler Hendrix

Children's Book: "Nosey Rosie and the Secret Surprise" By: Taeler Hendrix

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