WWE NXT! (4/19/17)
-Andrade “Cien” Almas VS Danny Burch; Cien wins.
-The Iconic Duo, Billie Kay & Peyton Royce VS Liv Morgan & Aliyah; Liv & Aliyah win.
-Steel Cage Match: Tye Dillinger VS Eric Young; Dillinger wins.
PLAY BY PLAY
The GLORIOUS Bobby Roode comes to the ring to open the show.
“Ladies and gentleman, what can I say?” Two years in a row, HE made Wrestlemania Weekend GLORIOUS. HE was the one to sell out the Amway Center, and HE treated those 15000 fans to “the biggest box office superstar in the business.” That same night, he snuffed out the “last flickering star of the old NXT”, and now truly controls the “fate and the future” of NXT. This Glorious Roode Era has now truly begun. At least, up until last week when Shinsuke Nakamura returned to Roode’s ring to say good-bye and got a standing ovation from the NXT locker room as well as the fans. “It’s pathetic.” But HE didn’t stand on that stage, and you know why!? He wasn’t going to “listen to the crap that came out of Shinsuke Nakamura’s mouth!” Nakamura didn’t leave NXT, Roode embarrassed him out of NXT! Yet these people cheered and chanted for Nakamura when ROODE is the champ. Roode tells the fans they don’t deserve to be in HIS NXT, and no superstar on the roster deserves to be wrestling in HIS NXT. Jump on board the Roode wagon, or get out! Suddenly, Hideo Itami comes to the ring! Back again from injury, Hideo SLAPS Roode across the face! The fans want that “one more time”, Roode takes off his suit jacket as he fires himself up. “You wanna slap the champ, huh?!” Roode steps to Hideo, and gets the GO TO SLEEP! The fans love it! Hideo straightens his tie and jacket as he stands over the champ, will Roode be GLORIOUS for much longer?
Backstage interview with the WWE UK Champion, Tyler Bate, and the Extraordinary Gentleman, Jack Gallagher. Both British wrestlers politely greet each other despite both men set to do battle over the title next week. Gallagher watched the UK Tournament, Bate did a phenomenal job. Bate likewise watches 205 Live, he’s a fan of Gallagher. Gallagher thanks Bate for this chance to win the title. Well Bate himself looks forward to retaining. The two can tell what the other means by their words, which gentleman will be the champion?
Bobby Roode is still dazed from the GTS by Hideo Itami. Disrespected then dropped by a devastating move, but determined to walk out on his own power, Roode ignores the “Are you okay? Are you okay? Are you okay, Bobby?” chants. Will he be able to ignore Hideo for much longer?”
During weight room work-outs, El Idolo, Andrade “Cien” Almas, gets in the face of The Chosen Scotsman, Drew McIntyre. Cien has thrown down the gauntlet, how will McIntyre respond?
Andrade “Cien” Almas VS Danny Burch!
El Idolo didn’t sweat his loss to the debuting Embodiment of the End, partying in Orlando after the show, will he be able to do the same against the veteran British boxer from the WWE UK tournament? Cien keeps his distance to start, but then gets a waistlock. Standing switch, Burch shoves Cien, who goes “tranquilo” on the ropes. Burch allows Cien time to return, not giving in to Cien’s ego. Cien gets an armlock, Burch turns it around, hammerlock overhead suplex, Burch gives a bow to his brash opponent. They tie up again, Burch snapping some of Cien’s fingers. Cien whips Burch and uses some agility, but Burch is wise to his ways and grabs a leg to ground El Idolo. Cien slips out of a suplex, pushes Burch and runs him over with a clubbing clothesline. Cien turns up the aggression with a loud open hand chop. Cien then bounces boots off of Burch before backing off to embrace the heat. Cien stomps Burch and toys with him. Burch fires back with forearms and a European Uppercut, but as Burch gets the crowd into it, Cien makes him pay with a clubbing forearm and then boot to the face. Burch crawls to a corner, Cien fires up for the running double knees! Knees hit, then Hammerlock DDT to finish, Cien wins! El Idolo feels satisfied with how easy he made that seem.
With Asuka having defeated Ember Moon to retain the NXT Women’s Championship–though by controversial means–the NXT Women’s Division voices their opinions of the undefeated Empress of Tomorrow. Asuka, the most dominant champion in NXT and the most dangerous, there’s a reason for this win streak. The best stepped up, and the best failed, and she was always in control. She is lethal from her kicks to her holds, but a bit arrogant now. That might turn out to be her fatal weakness. Every woman on the roster vows to finally be the one to take that title from Asuka, but can they really do it?
The Iconic Duo, Billie Kay & Peyton Royce VS Liv Morgan & Aliyah!
The Aussie Mean Girls picked this fight when they mocked Ms. 201 and the Cat’s Meow, and got some swift karma when Billie ended up in the water. As with everything in pro-wrestling, things are going to be settled in the ring. Liv and Billie start, Billie getting Liv in a headlock right away, then holding on to hair when Liv powers out. Billie knocks Liv down but Liv jumps up, but then gets a hip toss. The Iconic Duo celebrate, but then Liv Matrix leans under a lariat to begin the rolling bodyscissors! Around and around, Liv finally stops, TWO, now we roll the other way, TWO again. Billie is dizzy, Liv tags Aliyah, snapmare to second rope leg drop, TWO. Aliyah’s whip is reversed, she slips under Billie but takes a big right forearm, TWO. Tag to Peyton, double armlock and playful hands, Aliyah kicks out. Peyton drags Aliyah up, Aliyah slips out of the slam to tilt-o-whirl schoolgirl, TWO, Peyton hits a heel kick! TWO! Peyton puts Aliyah in a corner, Aliyah fights out. Billie works to save Peyton from a sunset flip, but Liv comes in to dropkick Billie down! Aliyah gets the sunset flip, and the win! Billie and Peyton are furious while Liv and Aliyah are ecstatic! How will this impact the Iconic Duo’s rise to the top?
Steel Cage Match
Tye Dillinger VS Eric Young!
For whatever reason, SAnitY demanded the Perfect Ten join them, but then turned to beating him–and his friends–down after he refused them. Now 15 feet high steel walls are put up to keep things solely between Tye and EY. Eric even takes initiative by sending SAnitY back to the locker room. Eric gives Tye one last chance to leave and never come back, Tye dares Eric to get in and have the match. Eric does, and gets a left hand right away. Tye closes the door personally, then throws jabs and chops at Eric from the bell. Eric fights back, but Tye denies being thrown into the steel. The two brawl around, Tye takes Eric’s toss to start a climb. Eric stops him, so Tye whips Eric corner to corner before a back drop. Knee pad down already, Tye wants to end it fast, but Eric rakes eyes to deny the Perfect Ten his finisher. Eric then throws Tye face first into steel before stomping away as we go to break.
After the break, Eric is still in control as he throws Tye to the steel again. Tye slips between wall and ropes, Eric drags him up so he can put a boot into his face and push him against the steel. Eric wants the door opened, but Tye grabs his trunks. Eric stomps Tye down, the match continues. Eric brings Tye to a corner, hangman dragon sleeper lifts Tye up, a diving elbow drops him down. TWO! Eric drags Tye up but Tye fights back with rights. Eric denies the superkick to then catapult Tye, but Tye uses that to climb! Eric climbs up to pursue, bashing Tye’s head into steel. Tye fights back and knocks Eric away, but only momentarily. Eric drags Tye down and wants a powerbomb, Tye gets in some punches, sit-out powerbomb still hits! TWO! The fans rally for Tye, Eric wants the door, Tye anchors him again. Eric stomps Tye more before climbing up. Tye keeps him from reaching the top, dragging him to the buckles. A choke grip before a big throw, Tye has evened things with Eric as we go to another break.
We return to see Tye toss Eric into steel this time, and three different times! The fans rally for Tye as Tye stomps a mudhole int a scratched and bleeding Eric, then a SUPERKICK rams Eric into steel once again. Tye starts climbing, Eric gets up to pursue, Tye makes it to the top before Eric catches him. Tye and Eric brawl on the top rope, clubbing forearms giving Eric the advantage. Eric gets to the top but Tye fires back. They brawl again, Eric bangs Tye’s head against steel. But instead of climbing down, Eric goes up, SUPER Elbow Drop from the top! “Holy shit”, a bloody Eric pins Tye, TWO! “This is awesome!” Eric gets up, and he slowly walks towards the door, but Tye again reaches out to grab his foot. Eric grins sadistically, and tells the fans to “wave good-bye”, but it’s a TYE BREAKER outta nowhere! Tye crawls, the door opens for him, but SAnitY returns!
They close the door on him! So Tye’s pals appear! Roddy Strong, Kassius Ohno and Ruby Riot take the fight to Big Damo, Alexander Wolfe and Nikki Cross!
Strong and Ohno keep Wolfe from getting in the ring, but then Damo squashes them AND a referee! The Beast of Belfast climbs up, Tye revives to knock him down. Eric takes advantage, but Tye uses Eric to knock Wolfe away. Tye climbs up, Wolfe tries to stop him from the outside while Damo uses the door to get in and grab Eric. Tye sees this, and FLIES!!
The Perfect Ten bowled a strike, but he sees Wolfe coming. Tye gets out of the door, and wins! Tye locks the door on SAnitY, and closes the chapter on his fight with this frenzied faction.
What a great NXT to have as we continue into this new chapter. The GLORIOUS Roode may consider this his NXT, but Hideo Itami–who has been in and out of the NXT ring since before even Shinsuke Nakamura–finally gets to challenge for the championship and thereby challenge Roode’s control. Hopefully Itami’s time away hasn’t slowed him down, he deserves to finally go all-out and shine in the spotlight. And his use of no words, only actions, really works against the braggadocious Bobby Roode who can talk enough for both of them. In parallel, the video package for Asuka and all of the Women’s Division did well to create an “Asuka VS All” feel, perhaps it will take an Asuka VS All kind of match to finally defeat her, which would do wonders for Asuka because it makes her out to be an insurmountable opponent while allowing for another woman to win while looking just as formidable (if it’s a Face) or just as opportunistic (if it’s a Heel). Now that I’ve imagined it, I really want to see something like that, it’d make for a great segue towards the WWE Woman’s Tournament this Summer.
This is NXT’s third steel cage blow-off match within a span of 12 months for NXT, Finn VS Joe and Shinsuke VS Joe being the other two. Even so, this one was arguably the best as Tye Dillinger and Eric Young made excellent use of the entire structure. Young’s forehead and nose bleeding were surely accidental but quite helpful to the intensity of this personal grudge the two have. The surprise return of SAnitY to almost screw Tye over and then brawl with Ohno, Strong and Ruby was also entertaining, and helped spur on the best spot of the whole thing: Tye flying off the top of the cage to fall on Damo and Young. Naturally Tye wins, as he’s on his way to being full-time on SmackDown, and it gives him a triumphant and well-deserved celebratory good-bye.
My Score: 8/10