Rundown of last week’s show: William Regal announced another Dusty Rhodes Tag Team Classic tournament, Tye Dillinger continued his recent winning streak with a victory over Angelo Dawkins who continued his losing streak, Samoa Joe started his demolition of NXT by attacking whoever the Ealy Brothers are, Ember Moon beat Mandy Rose, Gargano and Ciampa announced their plan to compete in the Dusty Rhodes Classic, The Authors of Pain beat Jonathon Cruz and Jesus… Yurnet, Asuka jobbed out Liv Morgan and Asuka said no one is ready for her yet, and Hideo Itami beat Lince Dorado in the main event. Right, on to this week.
We open with a recap of Regal’s announcement last week, and this week the first round of the Dusty Rhodes Classic will take place this week.
Opening match is The Bollywood Boyz, Gurv and Harv Sihra. This is their NXT TV debut, they previously competed in the Cruiserweight Classic tournament, losing to Noam Dar and Drew Gulak respectively. I love this gimmick of egotistical Bollywood stars, but why do all tournaments in WWE have to have the word Classic in them?
Before the match starts we have a pre-taped interview with said Bollywood Boyz, they tell the NXT universe to get ready and they’re here to make a statement. Nice little promo but nothing memorable.
They’re going up against The Authors of Pain, so you know who’s going to win, and Corey Graves agrees with me. As Gurv is getting out of the ring, a crazy picture of Dusty Rhodes pops up behind him and takes over the whole frame.
Rezar starts off with Harv, and at this point I realised that just like AOP and TM61 and Jonathon and Jesus last week, one member of The Bollywood Boyz has tattoos while the other doesn’t. Harv slaps Rezar and Corey says “Lince Dora-” which would have been the last match he commentated, seeing how NXT records weeks of shows in one go.
Rezar and Akam double team Harv and dominate the much smaller team. Harv manages to tag out to his brother Gurv but he doesn’t have much luck either, adn AOP double team Gurv with a bunch of Knees. AOP hit their tag finisher, the Side Russian Legsweep/Running Lariat, which they call the Last Chapter for the pinfall victory.
Decent match, I like The Bollywood Boyz, but mostly for their gimmick. I don’t remember much from their brief stint in the Cruiserweight Classic, and they didn’t do much here, and since AOP won, they will go on to fight either No Way Jose & Rich Swann or Tony Nese & Drew Gulak.
Anyway, I forgot to mention who The Bollywood Boyz actually are. Well they’re from Canada, and started out in Elite Canadian Championship Wrestling, but all Wikipedia says about that is that they won the Tag Team Titles five times. They moved onto Ring Ka King, and India promotion sponsored by TNA that lasted from January 2012 to April 2012 After that they moved onto Global Force Wrestling in 2015 where they remain today. I hope to see them again in NXT, I love their gimmick and I’d love to see more of them.
We get a vignette for Roidback who will be appearing tonight. Then there’s an advert for a tour of the Performance Center, which I have to say sounds pretty cool, but it’s $1,499 so I can’t even afford to go on my own.
Now it’s onto the next match, Rich Swann dances his way to the ring,, gotta say this guy is awesome, it’s clear why he’s teaming with No Way Jose in the Dusty Rhodes Classic. Tonight he’s fighting Patrick Clark, who looks very different than the last time we saw him, and the commentators point that out.
The crowd are clearly in Rich Swann’s corner, singing “Can you handle this?”. Clark starts off with a Standing Side Headlock, and after knocking Swann down poses to the crowd and gets great heat from it. If anyone’s wondering, Patrick Clark debuted in Maryland Championship Wrestling in 2014 and worked for a bunch of indy promotions, including Combat Zone Wrestling, before joining Tough Enough Season 6 last year.
Swann is more experienced than Clark and it shows, while Clark is doing his basic Side Headlock Swann is doing crazy flips. Clark hits a Spinebuster which gets a two. Swann hits a bunch of kicks taking Clark down, before hitting a Cartwheel into a Standing Moonsault for the pinfall victory.
Good match, Swann is always fun to watch and Clark is alright too, but he needs some work. After the match Rich Swann dances some more.
We see Andrade ‘Cien’ Almas fighting Cedric Alexander two weeks ago, Cedric wins, Andrade gives him a big hug, and the two will now fight The Revival later tonight.
We’re about to have some Women’s action soon but before that we see Asuka beating Liv Morgan last week, and then Liv gets laughed at by Billie Kay and Peyton Royce (who is in her ring gear despite not wrestling next week) while receiving medical attention after the match.
Speaking of Peyton Royce, she’s on next, and she’s accompanied by Billie Kay, both of whom are from Australia. She’s against the debuting Danielle Kamela, if you’ve never heard of her don’t worry, all I could find was she was trained by Rikishi and Gangrel and Knokx Pro Entertainment which, despite the odd spelling of Knokx, is a real thing, Rusev trained there. Tom Phillips must have got his info on Daniele from the same Pro Wrestling Wiki page I was coz he recites it word for word.
Danielle hits a nice Armdrag and later a Running Crossbody onto Peyton, but Peyton slows her down with a big Spinning Kick for a two count and then locks in some elaborate move on the ropes, it’s so elaborate that the ref has to wait for her to lock it in before counting (instead of doing it right away like he’s supposed to), and to let it go, Peyton has to fall clumsily to the floor, in all honesty, it looked like she got herself in a Tarantula.
The match is pretty slow with no big spots, and the crowd are mostly quiet and on their phones, so this is the perfect time to advertise the Performance Center tour. Peyton locks in a Rear Chinlock for forty days and forty nights before Danielle can get out of it. She hits a Cartwheel Back Elbow and the crowd laugh at something.
Peyton gives Danielle a Running Knee followed by an awkward looking Fisherman Suplex for the three count and the victory.
Okay match, too long though, get rid of that Rear Chinlock and leave it at that.
Peyton has barely any time to celebrate as we go backstage with Bobby Roode and Tye Dillinger. They’re asked how training for the Dusty Rhodes Tag Team Classic is going, but before Tye can answer Bobby interrupts, and when Tye finally gets to speak, Bobby poses behind him, amazing bit.
They’re asked about their opponents Sanity, who they’re apparently fighting next week. NXT have been airing vignettes for Sanity but with that being such a ridiculous name, I had no idea what it was so I pretty much ignored it. But nevermind that shit, here comes Dan Matha, and his horrible acne ridden chest.
Dan Matha is out first and he has awful music, he doesn’t look as roidy as he did in his vignette but his back and chest are covered in acne.
Fans start cheering at something off-screen, holy crap it’s Samoa Joe! Joe beats the crap out of Matha (or Martha as I keep calling him). He gets on the mic and says “Tick tock, tick tock.” Must be a Kesha fan. He asks how many more people will suffer before Regal gives him Nakamura or the NXT Championship.
Well, what a debut for Dan Matha, all that build up, those vignettes, only to have the guy squashed by Samoa Joe. Not that I’m upset though, I don’t know who Dan Matha is but screw him and his back.
Backstage, No Way Jose and Rich Swann are asked why they decided to team up, Jose says Swann has come back from hard times, and Swann says Jose is taken too lightly despite being 6 foot 4. They leave singing “Can you handle this?” “No way Jose.”
Vignette for Sanity, it’s been on for weeks but I didn’t realise it was someone’s name, but anyway they’re gonna be here next week, for now it’s another Dusty Classic opening round match.
Andrade “Cien” Almas is out first and gets some boos, as he always does. His partner, who enters separately, is his opponent from two weeks ago Cedric Alexander. Despite the separate entrances, they’re both wearing blue, so that’s okay. They’re opponents are the NXT Tag Team Champions The Revival.
The ref rings the bell while both Almas and Alexander are still in the ring, which really annoys me. Scott Dawson starts off with Cedric Alexander, and Corey Graves, man after my own heart, mentions Almas and Alexander coming out separately.
Cedric hits a nice backflip into a Head Scissors followed by a pair of Arm Drags to Dawson and then to Dash, then Almas hits an Arm Drag and a Head Scissors onto both Revival members at the same time, awesome!
A pair of Dropkicks send The Revival out of the ring and they both kip up. Dawson tags to Dash on the outside but the ref doesn’t allow it since Dash wasn’t holding onto the tag rope, Alexander is distracted by the ref trying to get Dash out which allows Dawson to get Alexander, but it doesn’t work and Alexander tags to Almas and they double team him.
The Revival get the upper hand however and work over Almas with quick tags and by cutting the ring in half, but it doesn’t last long as Almas tags out to Alexander and they clean house. Almas does his caught in the ropes spot to fake out Revival while Alexander dives over Almas and lands on The Revival. Great spot and Alexander got great height on the dive.
Almas covers Dawson with an O’Connor Roll, but little does he know Dawson tagged to Dash, who comes in and works over Andrade’s arm. When we come back from a break, Dawson is still working over the arm of Almas, no more Suplexes or submissions for this high flier. I love The Revival but why work over a guy’s arm when all his moves are leg based, all the dives, flips, that Running Double Knee thing, all uses his legs.
Almas plays Ricky Morton while the fans chant for the more popular Cedric Alexander. Almas gets a roll up on Dawson but Dash distracts the ref so no pinfall is counted. Dash is tagged in but gets hit by an Enzuigiri from Almas, maybe if you’d worked over his legs he wouldn’t be able to do that.
Just as Dash tags back to Dawson Almas gets the hot tag, and Alexander is on fire. He hits a nice Sunset Flip with a Bridge into Scott Dawson for a two count, and when he goes to tag back to Almas for the double team, Dash pulls him off the apron. Alexander does a good job of avoiding both Dash and Dawson but once they hit the Shatter Machine that’s it for Alexander, Dawson gets the three count fall and they go through to the next round of the Dusty Rhodes Tag Team Classic.
Really good match, tag matches in NXT are almost always good, especially when they include The Revival. Almas and Alexander would make a good tag team, they have similar styles after all, but they didn’t do any tag moves.
After the match an irate Almas brutally attacks Cedric Alexander to a chorus of boos. Yes! Brilliant! Almas has been getting booed for ages now, and it’s not his fault either, he’s been put against much more popular guys like Tye Dillinger and Bobby Roode, so if he’s getting booed all the time, might as well give people a good enough reason to boo him.
Oh, and guess what I noticed in this match? Dash Wilder has a tattoo while his partner Scott Dawson has none. What the hell NXT’s tag division?
Overall, it was a pretty good show. For a while NXT, was just getting repetitive, it was like watching the same matches every week, but now it’s gotten exciting. We’re building up to the next TakeOver show, so we’ve got Joe’s destruction of NXT which will presumably lead up to him vs Shinsuke Nakamura who has been taken off TV before people get bored of him (after all, absence makes the heart grow fonder), we’ve got Hideo Itami vs Austin Aries, which I’m looking forward to but I have to admit I was glad not to see either of them this week, so far it’s been “I kicked you with my sockless loafer.” “You kicked me with your sockless loafer.” “You’re a baby and a coward.” “You’re a cowardly baby.” Meh.
Aside from that, we’ll presumably be seeing Andrade Almas vs Cedric Alexander, which is a match they should definitely save for TakeOver: Toronto, and of course we’ll have the finals of the Dusty Rhodes Tag Team Classic.
As for this week, the opener wasn’t anything to write home about, AOP are still having the same match every week and The Bollywood Boyz have a good gimmick but they didn’t do much. Not much happened between Rich Swann and Patrick Clark but Swann is so over and entertaining that he can get the crowd into any match. Payton Royce vs Danielle Kamela wasn’t great, it had its moments but it really went too long, but it was easy to ignore so I can’t complain there. Bobby Roode is awesome, I’ll leave it at that. The main event more than stole the show, it was the definite highlight by far.