-The NXT "Soon" with spades teases are Shayna Baszler's debut promos.
-Sheamus is currently dealing with a spinal issue, the word is this is something that happened over time with wear on his spinal cord. While some other news outlets are claiming the severity of his condition right now, the truth is he has had ongoing meetings with doctors and medical personnel and the severity has yet to be determined.
-While on a recent audio show with Dave Meltzer, Chris Jericho confirmed, what we had reported first last month, that Vince was in the know about the NJPW deal and was not caught off guard. Jericho also confirmed it is a one-match deal in NJPW where he is being paid main event money.
Zack Reacts: I think it's hilarious that WWE haters were so excited that Jericho was "sticking it to Vince" when in reality it's the other way around. This is Vince sticking it to New Japan. He's sending Chris over as an ambassador to recruit talent to WWE.
-For those wondering about the booking of NXT as of recently, there is a reason why some of the storylines have been out of whack. Prior to getting approved for War Games, the plan was to go Drew vs. Cole for the title and Cole was to win sending Drew to the main roster and then having Cole feud with Strong. Obviously, this was changed when War Games was introduced and this is where the booking took a turn. In one of the rare times for NXT, nothing was booked as a long-term play. Going into the tapings last week it was most interesting as they did not have anything set in stone for the January Takeover. Those decisions were all part of meetings held 24 hours prior to the tapings. This is one of the reasons that Black went over on Cole and then took his first pinfall loss in the fall for the fatal four way to determine a new #1 contender. It simply was not as well thought out as their normal long-term booking. As of writing, I was told the plans throughout January are now all set. It will be interesting if they stick with Johny vs. Almas at Takeover or if it is turned into a multi-man match. For those wondering they did not want to go with Black in the title picture yet. However, the idea was discussed and they decided against heel Cole vs. Heel Almas early in the booking process.
-The current plan at Clash of Champions is for Shane to take a bump during the match taking him out of the match and Bryan coming down as the backup referee. Bryan, as well as Shane, will be refereeing some upcoming house show matches with some of the participants in the tag match.
-As of writing, WWE has come down to 2 people to win the rumble, both would challenge the Smackdown champion at WrestleMania.
Zack Reacts: This is likely due to Roman challenging Lesnar for the Universal Title on Raw. Nothing is ever set in stone in WWE, but that match is something Vince has been set on for nearly a year. I think even Vince knows that Roman winning the Royal Rumble (again) and going on to face Lesnar (again) would have a huge backlash against Roman.