7/6 Zim’s NXT TV Live Review: The Revival vs. American Alpha in a best of three falls match for the NXT Tag Team Championship

Logo_NXT_dn_crop600By Zack Zimmerman

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NXT on WWE Network
Taped June 24 in Winter Park, Florida at Full Sail University

A brief hype package aired building the main event two-out-of-three falls match for the NXT Tag Team Championships between The Revival and American Alpha… The opening video played… Inside Full Sail, fans chanted as Tom Phillips hyped the main event. Bayley made her entrance. Phillips and Corey Graves briefly discussed the essential No. 1 Contender implications of this match before Alexa Bliss was out.

1. Alexa Bliss vs. Bayley. Bayley opened up strong with an elbow to Bliss’s back and a sliding clothesline, but seconds later Bliss cut her off and used a slingshot guillotine in the ropes to take control. Bliss worked a cravat on the mat and quelled Bayley’s attempts to gather momentum. The crowd pulled for Bayley, and she was able to block a kick from Bliss and turn it into a bucklebomb out of nowhere.

Bayley began her trademark comeback in the corner, and even carried Bliss to another corner to hit the series again. Bayley went to the well a third time, but Bliss countered and crumpled Bayley with a forearm shiver going into a break. [C]

Back from break, Bliss was still in control as a replay aired of the shot that rocked Bayley. Bliss was using the ropes to attack Bayley, but Bayley managed to use that against Bliss and hung her up with a stunner on the middle rope for a two-count. Bayley looked to follow up, but Bliss goozled her and slammed her to the mat.

Bliss hit a jumping knee drop and then a back handspring knee drop. She went up top looking to finish things off, but Bayley worked her way up and the two battled on the ropes. Bayley looked for her finisher off the corner, but Bliss reversed with a good looking yoshi tonic for a near-fall. The two battled over a backslide and traded near-falls before Bayley dropped Bliss with a back suplex for two.

Bayley went to the middle rope and tightened her headband, but the momentary delay allowed Bliss to sweep the legs and drop Bayley’s back onto the turnbuckles. Bliss looked for a Vader Bomb, but Bayley countered with knees and then planted Bliss with the Bayley-to-Belly for the win.

Bayley pinned Alexa Bliss in about 8:00.

Post-match, Bayley took a mic. She said that it’s been a rough stretch for her, losing her NXT Women’s Championship to Asuka and then falling short against Nia Jax. Bayley said that she hated having to watch the last Takeover from the sidelines while Jax was in her spot. Jia Jax’s music hit and she walked to the ring in regular clothes. She got in Bayley’s face and they spoke without the mics. Bayley wanted one more match and Jax calmly accepted before backing out of the ring and heading up the ramp with a confident smile on her face…

The commentators transitioned to a video package on TM61. It was short and decent. They said they’ve arrived, they’re mighty, and the mighty don’t kneel… Backstage, The Revival said that they’re not worried because worriers lose. They said they’re 100 percent confident and tonight everyone finds out who is number one. Dawson warned everyone not to doubt them… The main event was hyped… [C]

Zim Says: Very nice match from the ladies. It wasn’t Takeover-caliber at just about 8 minutes, but given some more time I think it could’ve been. Bliss is very athletic and is starting to put her in-ring game together. Matches like this against Bayley are how she’s going to improve, grow in fans’ eyes, and begin a collection of matches that can be pointed to as stand-outs.

Blake and Murphy were mid-entrance when the show returned, and the commentators questioned why they were back together again after seemingly breaking up repeatedly. The Hype Bros were out next and only a few people seemed to care. Phillips briefly noted that Murphy keeps begging Blake to be his partner still and Blake accepts out of pity.

2. The Hype Bros (Mojo Rawley and Zack Ryder) vs.  Blake and Murphy. Mojo ran right through Blake before Murphy tagged himself in and they began to bicker. Out of nowhere, Rhyno hit the ring and laid out everyone (except Murphy who escaped up the ramp) with Gores.

The match ended in a no-contest at about 1:00.

Rhyno hit the ropes and the fans cheered louder than they did for either tag team, though the reaction wasn’t blow-away… The commentators transitioned to a video building up next week’s main event of Finn Bálor vs. Shinsuke Nakamura. They were discussed in sound bytes from other NXT talent who marveled over their status in Japan and the spectacle of the match coming to NXT.

Clips from last week’s sit down interviews played, now with photos backing up everything they said about being friends outside the ring for years. Triple H said that when you get in the ring with a friend, it pushes both competitors past their own limits. He said that 10-15 years down the line people will recall the beginning of Bálor vs. Nakamura, and it all kicks off next week…

Backstage, American Alpha said that they’re going to execute their game plan. They said that they got taken out of their game last time, but that won’t happen again. Gable said that the longer the match goes, the more it plays to their advantage. They dropped their catchphrase and walked off… The match was hyped up next… Samoa Joe’s return to Full Sail was hyped for next week…

The roving reporter caught up with Rhyno walking outside in his gear and asked why he was back in NXT, but Rhyno said nothing and continued walking…

Back in the arena, American Alpha were out to a good response. The tag champs Dash and Dawson were out next. Both teams got formal in-ring introductions.

3. NXT Tag Team Champions The Revival (Scott Dawson and Dash Wilder) vs. American Alpha (Chad Gable and Jason Jordan) in a best-of-three-falls match for the NXT Tag Team Championships. Gable opened up with some fancy catch-as-catch-can before picking the leg and applying an ankle lock out of nowhere. Dash managed to escape to ringside and tagged Dawson in. Jordan entered for AA and went hold-for-hold with Dawson before ending in a standoff. Dawson took a cheap shot at Gable on the apron and while the ref was distracted restraining Gable from entering, The Revival took control.

Moments later however, Jordan fought back and AA used some nice tandem offense into simultaneous dropkicks. The Revival took a break at ringside going into a break. [C] Back in the ring, Jordan was caught off-guard by a blind tag and The Revival immediately began to target Jordan’s knee. They isolated him in their corner and made frequent tags for the next several minutes. Dawson repeatedly wrapped Jordan’s leg around the ringpost and mocked Jordan crawling towards his corner before dropkicking him in the face.

Dash entered and used some kneebreakers on Jordan, who tried to show some fight but remained isolated. A short time later, Jordan made a tag to Gable while fighting out of a suplex and Gable began to roll. He fired shots at Dawson and took out Dash with a crossbody. Gable cleared Dash from the ring and tossed Dawson overhead with an exploder for a two-count. Gable snuck in a small package for another two-count, but as the ref tried to contain Jordan, Dash dropped the top rope on Gable who was running and went toppling hard to ringside. [C]

Back in the ring, Dawson hit a hard clothesline on Gable for a two-count. The Revival stuck to the isolation game plan, now on Gable. They hit a combination drop tow hold and sliding elbow drop for another two-count. Dawson mocked Gable before slamming him to the mat and dropping Dash right on top of him with a leg drop for yet another two-count.

There was a good hope spot where Gable sent a charging Dash tumbling to ringside and appeared to have created sufficient space to make the tag, but Dawson was tagged in out of nowhere and cut Gable off at the last second. Around the 12-minute mark, Dawson planted Gable with an Anderson-style spinebuster for a near-fall.

A short time later, there appeared to be a miscommunicated spot on some sort of double-team sunset filp move, which led to another, less smooth hope spot. The Revival remained in control, however, and got yet another near fall with a bearhug/diving leg drop combo. Gable managed to fight out of an assisted gourdbuster and crawled through the legs to make the hot tag to the best hot tag guy going today.

Jordan came in throwing guys everywhere with tosses and suplexes before hitting a spear for a near-fall. Dash dove off the ropes at Jordan, who evaded and applied an ankle lock in the middle of the ring. Dawson looked to slide in and break it up, but Gable caught him and dragged him to ringside with an ankle lock of his own. Dash tapped out in the ring and the first fall went to AA by submission.

American Alpha won the first fall in about 16:15.

Moments later, Dash trapped Jordan in an inverted Figure-Four and Dawson held Gable at ringside while Jordan tapped.

The Revival won the second fall in about 17:30.

Gable and Dawson went back and forth with a serious of various pinning combinations. Jordan tagged in and caught Dawson with a spear, but Dash ran in at the last moment to break up Grand Amplitude. Jordan got a near-fall on a sunset flip and then got the ankle lock re-applied, but Dawson fought out.

Dawson reversed and got Jordan back in the inverted Figure-Four, but Gable flew off the top rope with a diving headbutt to break it up. Gable tagged himself in, but Dawson saw it and the two battled on the ring apron. Gable looked for a German suplex to ringside, but Dawson held on. Dash slipped onto the ring apron, and seemingly out of nowhere they caught Gable with the Shatter Machine on the apron. Seconds later, Gable was rolled into the ring and pinned by Dawson for the final fall.

The Revival defeated American Alpha in about 21:10 to retain the NXT Tag Team Championships.

Dash and Dawson celebrated their win and the show closed…

Zim Says: Excellent tag match. I thought there were points where Revival’s heat segment dragged a bit early, but they were just pacing things and it really picked up down the stretch. These two teams have worked virtually all of the live events, including at least one other best-of-three-falls match, so they’ve had plenty of opportunity to work on things and build this match. These two teams are largely responsible for the rise of the NXT tag division, and this was a fitting final clash.

Overall, this show was very good and super easy to watch. The ladies opened the show with their working boots on and delivered a very solid performance. The tag match which I don’t think anyone wanted to see was a short and simple way to re-introduce Rhyno and didn’t drag on at all. And I’ve said my piece on the main event. All in all, that makes for a very successful episode, and with Bálor vs. Nakamura coming up next week, it looks like NXT is going to have a string of hot shows and the chance to gather momentum as a week-to-week program that it’s lacked recently.

Check back tomorrow for an All-Access edition of the DotNet NXT Audio Recap, as well as Darren Gutteridge’s NXT Hitlist.

Throw comments, questions, criticisms, or corrections @DotNetZim or DotNetZim@gmail.com; always happy to discuss.


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