Like many of his peers, Pete Dunne has been inactive since March 2020 because of travel restrictions caused by the COVID-19 pandemic. This week, The Bruiserweight returned to the US at NXT: Halloween Havoc where he turned heel and attacked The Undisputed Era's Kyle O'Reilly. In the process, he joined the team of Pat McAfee and the NXT Tag Team Champions, Danny Burch and Oney Lorcan.
Although WWE hasn't officially confirmed it, this gradual build-up to a feud between The Undisputed Era and McAfee's newly formed stable headed could eventually lead to a War Games match. WWE's decision to turn the team of Burch and Lorcan, as well as Pete Dunne, heel is an attempt to create a formidable group of antagonists for The Undisputed Era.
Pete Dunne could be just what NXT's title picture needs right now
Karrion Kross's injury at NXT: TakeOver XXX and Johnny Gargano and Tommaso Ciampa's descent into the mid-card has left a void for a new heel to compete in the main event scene of NXT.
With his ruthless British wrestling style, Pete Dunne, who is famously known as The Brusierweight, is a perfect fit for the role. This leaves also the door open for several mouthwatering feuds with the likes of Adam Cole, Kyle O'Reilly, and more importantly, the current NXT champion, Finn Balor.
It is worth noting that Pete Dunne was involved in a feud with The Undisputed Era for the NXT Tag Team Championship alongside his partner Matt Riddle. As mentioned earlier, Dunne was unable to travel to the US because of the COVID-19 pandemic. So, Timothy Thatcher replaced him as Riddle's partner. The team later lost the titles to Imperium, Fabian Aichner and Marcel Barthel.
Pete Dunne made his return to WWE on Oct. 15, 2020, for NXT UK. In the recent episode, he teamed up with Ilja Dragunov to defeat NXT UK Champion, WALTER, and Alexander Wolfe.
It would indeed be interesting to see how this heel turn and alignment with Pat McAfee would help Pete Dunne to get into the main-event picture of NXT TV, and perhaps claim his first-ever NXT Championship.
To give some context to this ongoing feud, the former NFL star, Pat McAfee, has been embroiled in a feud with The Undisputed ERA, specifically Adam Cole, since July 2020. He made his in-ring debut against the longest-reigning NXT Champion in a losing effort at NXT: TakeOver XXX.
Later, Ridge Holland, who is currently sidelined with an injury, brutally attacked Cole after NXT TakeOver 31.
On the Oct. 21 episode of NXT, a mysterious attacker took Roderick Strong and Bobby Fish out off-screen. As such, their tag team title shot was given to the team of Burch and Lorcan. After their victory later in the main event, the mysterious attacker revealed himself to be none other than McAfee.
A War Games match down the road could be the perfect opportunity to reestablish Pete Dunne as a main event star. It could also position McAfee as a credible wrestler with a long-term future with WWE.