I’m not going to compare NXT to AEW or talk about ratings, because this is about entertainment and NXT has been wildly entertaining since their first night on USA – and for years before, but I’m trying to focus on NXT on USA. The storylines and feuds have been solid. This is a show that anyone who loves wrestling can step into the shows and really immerse themselves without feeling lost and that’s a triumph for any show.
This is how you start a wrestling show. Rhea and Bianca are two of the most talented women in the WWE today, possibly ever. They are much more than sports entertainers, much more than pro wrestlers, they are pure athletes who know how to take what they do and both entertain and leave us in awe. When Charlotte, Becky, Sasha, Alexa, and the rest came up to the main rosters of the WWE they were a new breed of women wrestlers, but these two are on a whole new level (along with Shayna, Io, and Mia) and are evolving wrestling themselves.
All that greatness being said, someone needs to make better pants for Rhea. The chains were falling off her pants through the entire match, and that’s really not cool. It’s a distraction Rhea, Bianca, the ref, and the fans didn’t need. Since I’m hitting on the menial negatives, I don’t like how Rhea has to keep moving her hair out of her face. It’s a distraction for me as a fan. As a woman I’ve never understood how any of them, including the men, can work the ring with long hair down. I struggle with my hair in my face on a daily basis and it drives me crazy.
Dunne cleans up real well until he starts talking, and I love it! I love his viciousness that comes out when he speaks, shattering the whole look he had going on. Bate’s look screams that he looks as comfortable dressed snazzy, and he carries it well.
Long Haired Hippies
Both of these men are so talented in the ring and so confusing to me. I’m still not sure what I think of Grimes. He doesn’t look like the typical pro wrestler, and while I feel like I should like that, he looks too much like too many of my medieval friends and it gets all wonky in my brain. Then there’s Riddle who worries me each and every time he steps into the ring without any padding or any shoes. I was a shoeless person for much of my life, but I was careful not to put myself into dangerous situations, while Riddle does that every time he steps into the ring.
All that being said, it was great to see Grimes no squash and really work the ring this week. He’s quite clever in the ring and worked quite well with Riddle despited differing styles. This match was really great, but what happened after the match is what has me giddy. I love Tyler Bate and this teaser left me with a huge grin on my face.
I really hope we get a feud between Grimes and Bate, which could be really exciting. I think their ring work would be 5 Crown each time.
Aces & Ango
It’s going to take me a bit to call him Ryker and not Gunner, but I was a huge fan when he was in TNA and he looks like he could be a Forgotten Sons standout. Well, he will be for me. Honestly, it’s nice to see anyone make it out of TNA with their passion still attached. I know I need to watch and see what Impact is these days, but I don’t have AXS, so I don’t see it happening soon. Anyway, I think Forgotten Sons looked really good here. They have seemed to have been living up to their name, but they had a great showing here. They worked over Breeze, Fandango, and Swerve in a great way. It was a fun and exciting match to watch, with my boy Ryker being the standout of the group in this match, and not just because I wanted to see him do so well.
Swerve looked really solid and interesting here. He held his own between two huge personalities in Breeze and Dango. He’s a young man to watch! If he can stay healthy, he could be a force to be reckoned with in a few years!
The other day Fandango posted a pic of what I hope is his Halloween costume on Twitter. I commented that he looked like he was from OOB (Old Orchard Beach, a town locals hang out before the tourists come in for the summer) in the 90s. I had a serious flashback. Sadly I didn’t get a reply. I hope I didn’t offend him, but that’s exactly what he looked like – everyone I hung out with during the early 90s in OOB.
A Gentleman Appears!
I love Gentleman Jack! I was so excited to see him in a match, but then Garza blew me away as much as Jack does, possibly more, and in a very different way. I love Jack’s technical work, how he moves from hold to hold and uses such charm and comedic flair in all he does, but it was Garza that blew me away. I love his personality and ring work! Garza could absolutely be the person they have been looking for to replace Rey since he left the first time. Yes Andrade is great, but Garza is so much more. I really thing he has the it factor that McMahon hoped ADR, Sin Cara, and so many others would have, but never showed. This match was much shorter than I’d hoped, so I have my toes crossed that we will see more of these two together soon.
I cannot wait to see where they go with Garza, Jack, and Lio now that the CW Division is working NXT.
I really don’t like Nox’s cannonball in the corner. Second time I’ve seen it and second time it looked horrible! It just doesn’t work for me. It looks like she’s landing in her opponent’s lap than hitting the move to their bodies. It just looks wrong. That being said, I’m getting a bit of a Victoria vibe from Nox with the double knee braces. Victoria handled it well without injuring herself further or others with her braces and I’m hoping the same for Nox. I’m loving that Kai and Nox are back and killing it in the ring most of the time. They are so well matched in the ring and I cannot wait to see what they do in the ring with Asuka and Sane.
I will fully admit that I know little about Jessamyn and Marina. They’ve been in the ring so little compared to Shayna and even Ronda. I’ve seen so many people begging for a 4 Horsewomen vs 4 Horsewomen feud, or even just a match, but these two have done so little, have proven nothing in the WWE, and didn’t look as solid as I’d hoped they would here. Honestly few have taken to wrestling from MMA like Shayna, Sonya, and even Ronda – of this generation, not talking about Shamrock, Blackman, or Severn. Jessamyn and Marina have spent so much time following Shayna around and attacking people, but not working full matches and it shows. I hope they step things up and get truly ring-ready before Sasha is too injured to be able to go at the level of the rest, if at all. While I have high hopes for them and what can happen if all eight are healthy at the same time, I worry it will never happen.
I absolutely love that Asuka and Sane do not speak in English much. I also love their new looks, though it’s harder to see Sane’s through all that hair in her face. Cannot wait to see this match!
The Feast, The Glory and The Undisputed (Sovereign S.A.M.)
Simply put, this match was amazing on every single level and should be a match of the year contender. All three men brought it tonight and put on one heck of a show. Keith Lee was amazing in everything he did. This was truly the showcase he needed, and he could be a star for WWE. Dijakovic was just as amazing as Lee and he brought it tonight. Strong was just as great as his opponents and that was the recipe for this amazing match. So many spots in this match had me yelling expletives in excitement to my television. The tower of doom spot was both amazing and terrifying because it could have gone wrong so easily. I can’t even come up with any more words to describe this match because it was so darn good. If you have not seen this match, do yourself a favor and do so because it is one of the best matches that NXT has given us in 2019.
The 5…Star! (Baron Botch)
I will never understand what our Queen has against Keith Lee. It totally baffles me. He’s got ring work that no one of his size should be able to get away with, he’s got charisma and he’s got mic work. No clue what else she wants, honestly. Never have we disagreed so markedly on anyone as we do on Keith Lee. She offered this part of “The Here and Now” to Sam and you’ll note that it’s the only thing she didn’t cover here. I asked in as well because, in the words of the prophetess, Mariah Carey, “even though I try, I can’t let go”. I was in the AEW DD so I didn’t catch this while it was happening (and didn’t get spoiled either which is the whole point of divided DDs).
Oh, the deliciousness of this match! The immediate move was to sell Keith’s incredible strength and and that was done well in short-hand. Of course, that doesn’t work as well with Dijakovic and they established that fact quickly too. Two incredibly strong men and one really smart one. There were no gigantic botches here but the remarkable one was Dijakovic missing the mark with Lee when he suplexed Lee onto Strong. Strong should have moved to accommodate but he didn’t. The three-man Tower of Doom more than made up for it though. Lee didn’t do the typical walk into the release; he stood there and held them both. Incredible to see!
Roderick is no slouch either as he Olympic Slam-ed Lee like he was nearly nothing. He was more than up for this and he was just as much fun to watch as Lee & Dijakovic. As far as the crowd was concerned, they were FIRMLY in Lee’s corner throughout the match.
There’s no enough good to say about this match, honestly. I could go on and on. This was a Takeover-quality main event in every respect. While it would have been much fun to see Lee or Dijakovic take this, I can’t even be mad that Strong took it. The brain won out and I totally don’t hate it.
After this match, if our Queen still doesn’t like him, I don’t know what to say, though to be truthful, I didn’t know what to say after the amazing matches Dijakovic (who is equally great) and him have already had.
Shut Up Mauro, I’m Talking
I love that Balor went heel and how he did it. Everyone was so excited about him going back to NXT where he will really shine, it was a huge thing and I don’t know anyone who wasn’t excited for him to be there. His move was simple, to the point, and obviously we all thought he was in contention to face Cole very soon, or have a great face versus face match with Ciampa to see which would face Cole first. Then BAM he turned heel and the whole script has flipped! Now, along with the rest of the guys in the NXT DD, I am hoping they’re setting up for a War Games very soon. Honestly I never thought they could bring back War Games because of the name and how much more conservative and politically correct the world is now compared to the 90s, but Triple H has made it work with nary an issue. The man is a wrestling genius who couldn’t have more of a clue if he’d been a born and raised McMahon.