By Jason Powell, ProWrestling.net Editor (@prowrestlingnet)
Johnny Gargano vs. Dexter Lumis in a Love Her or Lose Her match: A fun main event. The story of Lumis and Indi Hartwell is ridiculous, but it’s ridiculous in a way that only a pro wrestling fan could love. Just when it seemed like all hope for the star-crossed lovers was lost following the Gargano win, Hartwell blew off the match stipulation and made out with Lumis. While it wasn’t explained well, I guess the idea is that meant that Lumis had to stop pursuing Hartwell, but there was nothing that actually prevented her from pursuing him. Am I the only one who got a kick out the way that Hartwell’s hair repeatedly prevented cameras from getting a good shot of the duo locking lips?
LA Knight and Cameron Grimes vs. The Grizzled Young Veterans: I go back and forth on whether I have faith in NXT to make Grimes more than a hayseed comedy figure. It looked bleak last week, whereas this week he held his own against a top tag team despite Knight abandoning him. Either way, it should pack a punch when Grimes gets his revenge. And I continue to enjoy the involvement of Ted DiBiase in this story.
Top Dolla and Ashante The Adonis vs. Raul Mendoza and Joaquin Wilde: The DQ finish wasn’t the hottest way to start the show, but it was a logical move from a booking standpoint. Mendoza and Wilde need in-ring credibility after being booked as henchmen for Santos Escobar, so having them lose clean again would have done further damage. That said, this likely just prolongs the inevitable, as there’s no way that Mendoza and Wilde should be beating the hot Hit Row members clean. Hopefully the Legada del Fantasma duo can pick up some wins over other teams along the way.
Ridge Holland vs. Ikeman Jiro: A simple squash win for Holland. I’m not big on the gag of Jiro wearing a jacket during his matches, so I have no complaints about him being destroyed. I was surprised to see Pete Dunne do the talking for Holland and Oney Lorcan. NXT hasn’t shown much faith in Dunne as a talker in the past, but he was passable in this segment.
Bobby Fish vs. Roderick Strong: A Hit in terms of match quality. This landed in the Miss section simply due to the presentation. I’m not saying this should have been featured to be on par with Adam Cole vs. Kyle O’Reilly, but the other battle between former Undisputed Era members should have been presented to mean more than it did.
Joe Gacy vs. Trey Baxter in an NXT Breakout Tournament match: A good competitive match. The Miss is more about the actual tournament, which continues to feels flat. They still have the semifinals to draw me in, but I’d be lying if I said that I am currently anxious to see who wins this year’s tournament.
Io Shirai and Zoey Stark: I’m begging NXT to take the five seconds of thought it would require to come up with a reason for the cameras being present in these types of skits. Be better than the main roster.