Admittedly, this news will appeal to a very small percentage of this publication's readership, but I'm in that group, so screw it: Portland is getting an NXT Takeover in early 2020.
What is that, you ask? Not sure why you would click on this post without already knowing, but it's a pro-wrestling event. Not just a pro-wrestling event, but arguably the greatest example of the form that currently exists in North America.
A quick primer for the uninitiated: In 2010, World Wrestling Entertainment launched its NXT brand initially with a reality show format, in which pro-wrestling rookies would pair up with veterans and compete in a series of challenges, with an overall winner announced at the end of the season.
With the launch of WWE's streaming service in 2014, NXT effectively became the company's developmental league, filming weekly episodes at Full Sail University in Winter Park, Fla., with standout stars eventually getting called up to the main roster. Over time, however, NXT earned a devoted cult following almost separate from WWE as a whole, thanks to a product emphasizing character development and in-ring storytelling over the soap opera drama and sophomoric humor many fans are forced to cringe through in order to get to the good stuff. (That is to say, even though it's still his company, Vince McMahon has little to do with it.)
NXT existed entirely on WWE Network until this fall, when the brand scored a cable deal with USA in an effort to counter-program the fledgling All Elite Wrestling on TNT, WWE's first legitimate competition in two decades.
So what's an NXT Takeover, then? Those are the brand's special events, akin to Wrestlemania, Royal Rumble or other big pay-per-views you've probably heard of. It's often where the roster really shows out. NXT has come to Portland before—it was just at Veterans Memorial Coliseum last month, in fact—but those were live events not filmed for television.
All that's to say: On Sunday, Feb. 16, Portland will finally play host to an NXT Takeover at Moda Center.
The timing on this one is particularly interesting. Most of the time, Takeovers happen in conjunction with a big main roster WWE event—standalones are rare. Even rarer, it's taking place on a Sunday. In fact, it's the first U.S. Takeover to not happen on Saturday.
Ticket on-sale information has not yet been announced. But I'll be there, even if you're not.