By Jason Powell, ProWrestling.net Editor (@prowrestlingnet)
NXT TV Hits
“Legado Del Fantasma” Santos Escobar, Joaquin Wilde, and Raul Mendoza vs. Isiah Scott, Tyler Breeze, and Fandango in a Street Fight: An entertaining brawl to start the show. NXT creative seems to be doing their best to give Breeze and Fandango more of an edge. The outcome of the match gave Scott the big win over Escobar that I assumed was going to happen when these teams had a standard six-man tag match before Takeover.
Bronson Reed vs. Timothy Thatcher: This match looked intriguing on paper and it turned out to be a fun mix of styles. Reed was protected via the Austin Theory interference, and Thatcher got a win that he needed coming off a couple of high profile losses. I am surprised that NXT creative didn’t hold off on moving Reed into a feud with Theory before he faced Damien Priest. Reed scored the pre-Takeover singles win over the now NXT North American Champion, so I figured the rematch with Reed would be Priest’s first title defense. Instead, it appears Thatcher is being moved into the No. 1 contender slot.
Candice LeRae vs. Kacy Catanzaro: A showcase win for LeRae. I’m not sure what to make of the LeRae and Tegan Nox friendship drama, but you have to turn your brain off to avoid wondering why they couldn’t work out their issues with a simple off-camera conversation. Anyway, with Catanzaro and Kayden Carter currently the only babyface women’s tag team in NXT, I’m starting to fear what Nia Jax might do to poor little Catanzaro if Jax and Shayna Baszler show up in NXT to defend the WWE Women’s Tag Titles.
NXT TV Misses
Finn Balor vs. Tommaso Ciampa vs. Adam Cole vs. Johnny Gargano in a 60-minute Ironman match for the vacant NXT Championship: A very well worked match that gave each wrestler moments to shine. I mentioned last week that I was surprised that NXT didn’t stretch things out by booking a tournament so that they had some meaningful matches to run opposite AEW Dynamite. But I don’t think it was a good idea to ask fans to dedicate an hour to the match with the promise that they would see a new NXT Champion crowned only to deliver an unsatisfying tie between two wrestlers with the goal of getting fans to come back to watch a singles match next week. That said, the proof will be in the numbers. As much grumbling as some fans are doing about the finish of the match this week, I suspect most will return to watch the Cole vs. Balor match for the vacant NXT Title next week.
The Pro Wrestling Boom Podcast with Jason Powell features Kenny Herzog discussing his journalism career, his new Outside Interference podcast, doing a feature story on CM Punk, pro wrestling in the pandemic, WWE talk on Retribution, The Hurt Business, Roman Reigns as a heel, and much more...