We had a solid NXT show last week, but no indication of the championship scenes. Does that change this week?
As the fallout of TakeOver XXV continues, how is the NXT Universe getting ready for the future?
NXT Championship: I had a whole big complaint about it being two weeks without any word from the new NXT Champion OR the former champ, but it looks like that’ll be fixed NEXT week!
NXT North American Championship: So, Dream is looking for a new opponent, but there doesn’t seem to be any hint of who would be stepping up to try and take the title from him.
NXT Women’s Division: What a match! That match brought back a lot of memories of the REAL Four Horsewomen’s run in NXT. I loved that LeRae and Shirai got to show what legit badasses they are! Duke and Shafir have improved a little, but they are still rough to watch. The brawl between Shirai and Baszler was fabulous, as was the brawl between LeRae, Duke, and Shafir. Give me Shirai and LeRae as no fucks given tweeners, Triple H!
I also love that we’re getting a steel cage match for the Women’s title in two weeks. I don’t know if that’s ever been done in NXT and I can’t wait to see it!
I’ve been very vocal about how much I like Aliyah and I love her partnership with Vanessa Borne, but what the hell are they thinking picking a fight with Mia Yim?! I’m fully on board with Aliyah getting more screen time than she has been getting, but doing it this way is stupid and cringe-worthy, especially saying stuff like Yim is illiterate and offering her a book on how to speak English. Seriously, be better than this, guys.
NXT Tag Team Division: There’s nothing worse than a sore loser to ruin a great match. The match between the Bald Brawlers and Undisputed Era was FABULOUS and really makes a case for both teams getting a crack at the Street Profits down the road. The intrusion of Ryker from Forgotten Sons wasn’t a total shock, but it also seemed very strange. Also, does that mean UE are faces now? I guess we’ll find out next week when Cole comes back but that was an odd way to end that match.
Drew Gulak vs KUSHIDA: Well, it was put up or shut up for Drew Gulak and he got shut up, big time. There’s nothing more satisfying than seeing a jackass have to eat his words. All that gloating aside, that was a really good submission match, but I’m a little disappointed that it seemed so short, but I think it was more about making KUSHIDA look good than anything else. I did appreciate Gulak’s sportsmanship, even though it seemed quite reluctant.
Overall Thoughts: So, how was NXT this week? It was pretty good. It was still a pretty light episode as the first couple of weeks after a TakeOver usually are, but there were definitely ducks being put into place for the show going forward.
I LOVED the Women’s Tag Match. I loved LeRae and Shirai showing what badasses they are and I can’t wait for that cage match in two weeks.
Gulak vs KUSHIDA was good, but it seemed awfully short, but it seems KUSHIDA is being groomed for the title, probably against Cole, down the road, so he needed to look really strong.
I loved the tag team match, but the ending was confusing and my biggest question is: Did Undisputed Era just turn face or is it just Strong and O’Reilly? Guess we’ll see next week when Cole comes back.
That’s it for Tiffany’s NXT Takes! Tune in on Monday as we take on the go-home show for Stomping Grounds!
NXT Minus 6: Too Early To Fantasy Book War Games?
Everyone loves fantasy booking. Right?
The answer is No. It’s not too early.
6. NXT teases us with a Matt Riddle-Arturo Ruas match that went 3 minutes? I know it’s not happening, but those guys deserve a Takeover spot. Kudos to NXT for playing up the mma aspect. Everything from Mauro’s commentary to the ref stoppage made this feel like it should have been in an octagon. If you haven’t already seen it, check out Ruas’ match from the Evolve 10th Anniversary show. Dude is a killer.
5. We got the final opening round match of the Dusty Rhodes Everyman Classic. Bronson Reed is good. He delivered what might be the biggest frog splash I’ve ever seen. There is always a place for athletic big men, but he’s not the story.
4. Dexter Lumas is creepy. The key to wrestling is to crank your personality up to 11. If this creepy thing is any part of Dexter Lumas, I don’t want to be in a room with him. I don’t trust him around my kids. I wonder how many crimes against humanity he’s already committed. Creepy in a way that Bray Wyatt can only hope to be.
3. Tyler Breeze enters the running for Savage Burn of the Year. He looked at Jaxson Ryker and asked “Weren’t you Buddy Murphy?” Brutal. That line alone is worth the return of Prince Pretty.
2. I finally got the moment I was waiting for: an interesting KUSHIDA match. I was ready to send him to 205 in exchange for Akira Tozawa. And if this is Apollo Crews, I will gladly take him back full time in NXT. Stellar matchup and worth watching. 4.4 stars.
1. Oh no, this cannot be happening. They’re turning Keith Lee into Kassius Ohno 2.0? He’s talking about getting passed over for the new guys? And he’s jobbing to Damian Priest next week? Been here a year and zero Takeover matches? The Ridiculous Keith Lee deserves better. THIS…CAN…NOT…BE…HAPPENING!!!
Bonus time: Old school versus new generation. Tyler Breeze heads up a cast of NXT OGs to take on Undisputed Era in (cue William Regal voice) War Games to determine NXT supremacy. Keep Apollo around. Throw in Cesaro and Harper, maybe even Samoa Joe, and you’ve got yourself one hell of a brawl. Either that or Undisputed Era versus the Club. I’m cool with both.
Tiffany’s Takes: WWE NXT (7-17-19)
Who will be the first to challenge Adam Cole for the NXT Championship?
Who will be the first to challenge Adam Cole for the NXT Championship?
Have I ever told anyone that I can’t stand Matt Riddle? I have? Okay. I don’t even know what it is, but he sets my teeth on edge. I will give him props for having a good match with Arturo Ruas, but I’m not sure what they’re doing with his character, except teasing a heel turn after that NASTY beatdown of Ruas. I am here for Killian Dain vs Riddle, that even sounds like fun!
Looks like we are going to Undisputed Era vs Street Profits at some point, but I’m waiting for UE to make a big deal about Street Profits being on the Main Roster for the last couple of weeks.
I love that Mia Yim is learning from everyone’s mistakes in dealing with Shayna Baszler and is going after Baszler’s friends, who are the real reason she’s stayed on top for so long. This feud is going to get nasty in a hurry and I can’t wait!
The next match of the NXT Breakout Tournament had a lot to live up to after two AMAZING matches and one not so amazing. I’m not sure what in the world Australian Strong Styles is, I’m guessing it’s like any ‘Strong Style’ in that it’s pretty hard hitting. I also didn’t know Australia had a Black Forest, it was never on ‘Crocodile Hunter’. I did like this match, however. I can’t say it was as amazing as some of the other matches, but it was really good. Bronson Reed won the match for Australia, so we’ll see what happens in Round 2.
Someone should tell Tyler Breeze that having a beard doesn’t make you a man. I’ve seen teenagers with better facial hair. I did love the little dig at Forgotten Sons, but I don’t think Breeze really wants to pick a fight with Jaxson Ryker, that’s not going to end well.
Well, it looks like we’ll likely get a confrontation between Io Shirai and Candice LeRae next week, unfortunately for Kacy Catanzaro, she’s going to be Shirai’s punching bag before that.
I wasn’t really into KUSHIDA vs Apollo Crews. I’m just not a huge fan of either guy. The match was really good, but I don’ t think anyone really thought Crews was going to beat KUSHIDA, who is getting built into a title contender, but it was a longer match than Crews has been having for most of his WWE run, so there’s that.
I’m still not into Keith Lee, I just don’t get it, but I’m super stoked about the prospect of Lee vs Damian Priest, that promises to be a wild match.
So, it’s officially official, we WILL be getting Adam Cole vs Johnny Gargano III and it sounds like it’s going to be the last one. I did like Gargano comparing his victory tour of trying to inspire young people in Cleveland with Cole’s obnoxious antics at the Gargano restaurant. Also, love the ‘Johnny Badass’ thing, very cool. NXT TakeOver: Toronto II is going to be a wild ride in that Three Stages of Hell match! Thank you, William Regal for booking that!
That’s it for Tiffany’s Belated NXT Takes! Tune in Monday for Monday Night RAW!