From Leon Ruff to A-Kid, WWE NXT Reveals The Nominees For Future Star of The Year

Published 12/31/2020, 12:31 AM EST


The WWE NXT Year End awards are beckoning and excitement has gripped fans. However, one category that very few people pay attention to is the award for Future Star of the Year.

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This seems like a consolation prize for Superstars who weren’t given a push or even a chance. However, this year’s nominees contain some of the best talent in the WWE NXT roster.

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NXT UK makes a surprising appearance

The UK brand of WWE NXT has been relatively quiet in 2020. Outside of a blistering UK Championship match between Walter and Ilja Dragunov, NXT UK has not been the place for stars to ‘break out’. However, three names from the UK brand have found their way into the list.

First up is a tag team called Pretty Deadly. Sam Stoker and Lewis Howley are two handsome men who also make a dangerous duo, hence the name Pretty Deadly.

They debuted in December 2019, putting on an impressive display against Kenny Williams and Amir Jordan. If booked consistently, they could be an asset for NXT UK in 2021.

The second member of NXT UK roster on the list is Aoife Valkyrie. Described as one of the most enigmatic superstars in all of NXT UK, Valkyrie is currently undefeated. With her undefeated run still intact, Valkyrie could be a big name in 2021.

Finally, we have A-Kid, the winner of the Heritage Cup. The high-flying Spaniard was one of the most sought after talents in Europe, and he finally arrived in NXT UK in 2019.

From then on, he began displaying his brilliance that captured fans’ attention when he was still wrestling in Spain. Watch his matches against Will Ospreay and Zack Sabre Jr. to understand just how incredible he is.

WWE NXT has a ton of names for the future

The US version of NXT has their usual deep roster to depend on once the big names depart. When Finn Balor, Adam Cole, Tomasso Ciampa and Johnny Gargano move up to the main roster, these are the superstars that Triple H and William Regal will depend on in 2021.

Austin Theory is one of the luckiest men in wrestling. He got signed to NXT in 2019 and was moved up to the main roster to wrestle at WrestleMania.

At the Show of Shows, Theory teamed up with Angel Garza to take on the Street Profits for the Raw Tag Team Championships. Post that, he was a part of Seth Rollins’ crew under the latter’s ” Messiah” moniker. He returned to NXT after a while where he is now a part of Johnny Gargano’s heel faction.

Leon Ruff stole headlines when he beat Johnny Gargano for the NXT North American Championship. Although he had Damien Priest’s help, Ruff quickly became one of the most popular stars on the brand. He did lose the title at Takeover: War Games, but his spirited performance makes him one to watch out for in 2021.

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Along with Austin Theory, Indi Hartwell has also joined forces with the Gargano’s. Under Candice Le Rae’s guidance, Indi can be a potential threat to Io Shirai’s title reign.

Jake Atlas is an amazing performer but has yet to form a connection with the NXT Universe. Irrespective of his personality, his Cartwheel DDT finishing move is amazing.

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Kacy Catanzaro, Xia Li and Kayden Carter are three women who have been on the NXT roster since 2018. Each year, they feature in a few high-profile matches before returning to obscurity. A push seems impending for these talented women, and 2021 just might be the year they overthrow the likes of Shirai, Ripley, and Gonzalez.

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Nathan Fulgado

848 articles

Nathan Fulgado is a WWE and AEW author at EssentiallySports. Having published close to 1000 professional wrestling articles, Nathan is currently pursuing his Journalism degree from Xavier's College. He has previously worked at Free Press Journal as a local journalist.

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