Sam Roberts received a ton of heat from fans online for his rant on Bianca Belair during Saturday's WWE NXT "Takeover: Phoenix" Pre-show. Roberts said Belair didn't deserve to be on a Takeover special as she didn't stand a chance to NXT Women's Champion Shayna Baszler.
Roberts' somewhat-bizarre rant left co-hosts Charly Caruso and Pat McAfee a bit shocked. Roberts seemed lost for a few seconds but that could have been because someone was communicating with him in the headset.
"We're going to get to see Shayna Baszler be dominant as she always is. We get to see Bianca Belair finally step up and get the opportunity to challenge for the women's championship," Roberts said. "It's... I j... it's not... I mean, I don't think it... it's not Take-Takeover worthy. Bianca Belair, she's a good athlete but look at the list of women champions. You got Shayna Baszler, you have Charlotte, you have Sasha Banks, you have Asuka, you have Kairi Sane. This is a list of the elite women in wrestling and Bianca Belair is nowhere close to that list. Takeover has become what Takeover has become. There's only 5 matches on this card and we're going to sit here on the panel and act like there's a possibility that one of the most skilled women in the history of NXT needs to worry about another woman hitting her with her ponytail."
Caruso then defended Belair and said she prides herself on being the strongest, toughest, and the fastest. Roberts wasn't done. The SiriusXM Satellite Radio host and longtime wrestling fan said the match was a waste because Belair just isn't ready.
"She's not," Roberts said. "She's not going to win. She doesn't have a chance to win the match. You know she doesn't have a chance. Even you [McAfee], with those rocks clinging in your head, you know Bianca Belair does not have a shot at beating Shayna Baszler. And when we walk into a Takeover knowing that the challenger doesn't have a shot to win the championship, we're wasting a match. Bianca Belair is a great athlete. I would love to see this match on NXT TV. Put it on NXT TV. She'll be champion one day, but you know what day she won't be champion? Today. She's not ready."
Belair, who went into Takeover with an undefeated TV singles streak but lost to Baszler by submission without tapping out, responded in a WWE YouTube video and said Roberts can kiss her backside. You can see her response in the video above.
Belair said, "You know what? Mr. Sam can say what he wants to say because I literally just pushed Shayna to her limit. So, Mr. Sam, you can kiss me ass."
Belair also talked to Sarah Schreiber about the match. She said, "You know what? Being undefeated is not just a record. Being undefeated is a mindset, and I just had my first NXT Takeover match, and the title was literally in my fingertips. So, Shayna knows that one day I'm going to take that title from her because I'm undefeated."
Below is the video of Roberts ranting along with some reactions from Twitter. Fan reactions were all over the place, with some fans agreeing with Roberts and others accusing him of being racist for not supporting Belair. Others called him out for his appearance and his earlier comments on new NXT North American Champion Johnny Gargano, who he called a loser. Some of those opinions changed after the match actually took place.
Sam Roberts says Bianca Belair doesn't deserve to be on a TakeOver event quite yet and gets headed that was not cool at all he needs to be respectful and professional at all times ????????#NXTTakeOver pic.twitter.com/CANbMXY6YQ— BeyondThe3Count (@BeyondThe3Count) January 27, 2019
Honestly, who the hell crapped in Sam Roberts cereal this morning? #NXTTakeOver— Zachary Breer (@zb_sk8_) January 26, 2019
Did Sam Roberts just have a stroke?#NXTTakeOver— Ross W Berman IV (@RossWBermanIV) January 26, 2019
Sam Roberts is not a fan of Johnny Gargano and Bianca BelAir. Calling Gargano a loser and Bianca unworthy of being on the show #NXTTakeOver— Allan Albert (@AllanAlbert07) January 26, 2019
What the hell is Sam Roberts trying to say? #NXTTakeover— Alan Proctor (@APWrestlingBlog) January 26, 2019
Did Sam Roberts' brain just break?— Corey (@Corey5771) January 26, 2019
What is this racist bulls--t Sam Roberts? Bianca is not Takeover worthy? Go f--k yourself.— James Parsons (@jamesparsns) January 26, 2019
Did Sam Roberts just malfunction or something? #NXTTakeOver— Matt (@MShadows17) January 26, 2019
SAM ROBERTS SHOOTING FROM THE HIP???? #NXTTakeOver— Matt Simpson (@_Matt0409) January 26, 2019
Is Sam Roberts drunk or having a stroke right now? #NXTTakeOver— MileHigh303 (@Emperor_of_Beer) January 26, 2019
Bianca Belair needs to hair whip the s--t out of Sam Roberts. #NXTTakeOver— Mike Lewis (@MikeLewis216) January 26, 2019
Sam Roberts has been crap. He's trying so hard to be a heel.— Fight Bomaye Fight (@BomayeKO) January 26, 2019
Sam Roberts gets the shovel out for Bianca Belair, damn. #NXTTakeOver— Andrew MacDonald (@andrewisgood) January 26, 2019
Whoa I thought we almost lost Sam Roberts there for a second. #NXTTakeOver— Sean Murphy (@Murphs56) January 26, 2019
WOW SAM Roberts dropping the truth bomb on BELAIR!!! #NXTTakeoverPhoenix— Jason (@Jernst222) January 26, 2019
What happened with Sam Roberts? Did that beard infect him with negativity? #NXTTakeOver— Allan Albert (@AllanAlbert07) January 26, 2019
Somebody needs to unplug and plug back in Sam Roberts, i'm p sure. #NXTTakeOver— Steven Rondina (@srondina) January 26, 2019
Did Sam Roberts just have a stroke? #NXTTakeOver— ??Brandon?? (@LordKraken1562) January 26, 2019
Sam Roberts is on the fritz. Someone needs to reboot him.#NXTTakeOver— Kyle Decker (@kfd2010) January 26, 2019
Sam Roberts full on BURIED Bianca BelAir there. JESUS. #NXTTakeOver— Matty I D (@MattyID) January 26, 2019
Sam Roberts trying so hard to argue against Bianca BelAir without actually making a point. Like it sounds like he's trying to dance around something.— lib morgan (@fxkdreaming) January 26, 2019
Woah did Sam Roberts just shoot hard there?— Genuine Wrestleboys Podcast (@WrestleboysCast) January 26, 2019
Sam Roberts experimenting with a racist gimmick. Fair play— Alpha Entertainer: Michael (@kaossm) January 26, 2019
Did Sam Roberts just have a stroke— ?????????????? (@p_erezident) January 26, 2019
Jebus Sam Roberts, this is super cringey.— Koby (@KobysaurusRex) January 26, 2019
Ummm. Sam Roberts just went full shoot lol— #BBPW (@BBprowrestle) January 26, 2019
I love it.
I would love if everyone just spoke their mind more!!#NXTTakeOver
For the first time ever. I agree with Sam Roberts talking about Bianca Belair. @BiancaBelairWWE prove him and me wrong tonite. Tear the house down. #nxttakeover #NXTTAKEOVER #nxttakeoverphoenix #NXTTakeOver #NXTTakeover— KoreyDead ?? (@Korey100) January 26, 2019
sam roberts is a racist pass it on— victo ortiz (@thesweetvee) January 26, 2019
H-Man bout to go out there and give Sam Roberts a shoot pedigree— Jake Nazar (@jake_nazar) January 26, 2019
Who forgot to update Sam Roberts's software before the show?— Ross W Berman IV (@RossWBermanIV) January 26, 2019
Did Sam Roberts have a brain fart then WTF #NXTTakeOver— Kurt (@KurtMCR) January 26, 2019
Not sure if Sam Roberts had a CTE flare up or what, but then what he said after confirmed it. #NXTTakeover— Logan (@LoganBDoubleU) January 26, 2019
Damn Sam Roberts just dragging Bianca Belair #NXTTakeOver— Koranteng N.O (@Ghnanayaw) January 26, 2019
Did Sam Roberts just lose his marbles on live TV— Jeremy Botter (@jeremybotter) January 26, 2019
Sam Roberts laying the truth down #NXTTakeOver ??— chiari fighter (@carbon_robert) January 26, 2019
Sam Roberts about to get fired hahaha what a shoot. #NXTTakeover— Cubs World Series 2019 Champs (@SammyP4Real) January 26, 2019
Sam Roberts is working a whooooooole bunch of nerds lol #NXTTakeOver— #Broken Matt Warren (@MWarren115) January 27, 2019
I think everyone owes Sam Roberts an apology #NXTTakeOver— giants all day (@dougcyrus1) January 27, 2019