Powell’s NXT Hit List: Nia Jax and Shayna Baszler vs. Dakota Kai and Raquel Gonzalez for the WWE Women’s Tag Titles, NXT Champion Finn Balor vs. Roderick Strong in a non-title match, NXT Tag Champions Oney Lorcan and Danny Burch vs. Tommaso Ciampa and Timothy Thatcher in a non-title match

By Jason Powell, ProWrestling.net Editor (@prowrestlingnet)

NXT Hits

Nia Jax and Shayna Baszler vs. Dakota Kai and Raquel Gonzalez for the WWE Women’s Tag Titles: A solid match with a clever finish that protected the NXT mainstays despite their loss. I am also hopeful that the second referee counting despite the illegal person being pinned will lead to William Regal introducing NXT Women’s Tag Titles next week.

Finn Balor vs. Roderick Strong: I loved the way that Balor told Strong that he’ll never be a leader and will always be a follower until he develops a killer instinct. I also liked that Strong didn’t just stand there and take the verbal abuse even though Balor’s words felt like a fair assessment. As talented as Strong is in the ring, he feels like a second tier character and thus there’s rarely any doubt when it comes to the outcome of his matches with the true stars. Don’t get me wrong, Strong is a great role player. I just wish hope he find what’s missing from his game so that he can take it to the next level.

NXT Tag Champions Oney Lorcan and Danny Burch vs. Tommaso Ciampa and Timothy Thatcher in a non-title match: A hot tag team opener. Thatcher did a really good job of selling a neck injury, and I loved the burst of offense that Ciampa executed when he took a hot tag. The distraction finish of the three Imperium members walking onto the stage was nothing special, but I like that Ciampa seemed bothered by Thatcher freezing and it wasn’t just considered par for the course that babyfaces do stupid things when other wrestlers walk onto a stage.

Cameron Grimes vs. Bronson Reed: Grimes continues to be hilarious in his role as the Billionaire Bumpkin. I assumed this would be another loss for him, but the interference from LA Knight gave Grimes a rare win. I’m surprised that they appear to be going with Reed as the first opponent for Knight. Reed seemed like he was on the verge of being moved up the card, but it’s hard to imagine him winning this early in Knight’s run.

Ember Moon vs. Aliyah: More of an in the middle. It’s hard to take Robert Stone’s crew seriously since they never win matches. But Moon showed good energy and I got a kick out of Stone being nervous when he saw Shotzi Blackheart’s tank given his bad history with it.

Legada del Fantasma: Beating the hell out of Breezango before they could complete one of their ridiculous cosplay entrances was the best babyface turn we’ve seen in ages! Wait, what do you mean that wasn’t a babyface turn?

NXT Misses

The Way attend therapy: I’m convinced that NXT creative could stick Johnny Gargano in every bad sports entertainment style segment that there’s ever been and he’d find a way to make it fun. And I can’t deny that there were some fun moments in these skits, but the lack of explanation for the cameras being present and Theory’s terrible acting in response to the therapist telling him what Lumis said about him were big turnoffs. Maybe I’ve watched too many horror movies, but am I the only one surprised that we didn’t find out that the therapist was actually the demented mother of Dexter Lumis?


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