WWE has officially announced a series of qualifying matches will go down over the next several weeks that will determine the next challenger for the NXT championship held by Andrade Cien Almas.
William Regal made the announcement, saying that due to Drew McIntyre's injury, his contractually obligated rematch won't be able to go down. WWE posted the following:
Almas’ opponent will be decided based on a series of four singles matches, with the winners of those matches then competing in a Fatal 4-Way Match. The winner of that match will challenge Almas for the NXT Title at TakeOver: Philadelphia on Saturday, Jan. 27, at the Wells Fargo Center.
The four singles matches will be: Kassius Ohno vs. Velveteen Dream, Aleister Black vs. Adam Cole, Killian Dain vs. Trent Seven and Roderick Strong vs. Lars Sullivan. Seven earned his way into the series of matches after winning a Battle Royal during an NXT Live event in Lakeland, FL.
Most interestingly, this differs slightly from what was taped a few days ago. Johnny Gargano, who will go on to win the tournament, isn't even listed. However, it is expected that Velveteen Dream will be written out of his match, allowing Gargano to take his place and participate.
The next NXT Takeover event in Philadelphia will go down on January 27, the night before the Royal Rumble.