The Big News: If there was ever an episode that proved it’s a new era of NXT — it was this one.
The Medium News: Shinsuke Nakamura returned to Full Sail University for the first time since winning the NXT title, with the crowd giving him an ovation worthy of a champion.
The Little Beaver Sized News: Steve Cutler is getting a push.
Earlier today, a doctor informed both Samoa Joe and William Regal that Joe is not cleared to compete due to injuries he suffered at NXT TakeOver: Brooklyn II. Joe stormed out of the office without saying a word.
Tye Dillinger defeated Buddy Murphy
This was set up last week when Dillinger defeated Buddy Murphy’s former tag team partner, Wesley Blake. Murphy kept the annoying dubstep music even though he lost his girl and his tag partner.
The crowd chanted “one” at Murphy, before downgrading him and chanting “You’re a zero.” This match was much better than the Blake match, for one it was shorter, and for another, the crowd actually cared about more than just chanting.
Tye Dillinger won his second match in a row with the Tye Breaker.
They showed video footage of Johnny Gargano tapping out at both TakeOver: Brooklyn and last week at the Cruiserweight Classic. This led to a backstage interview with Tommaso Ciampa. Ciampa started talking when The Revival walked up, which led to a fight between Ciampa and the tag champs.
The fight spilled into the arena with The Revival throwing Ciampa over the announcer’s table and then beating him down to the ring. Ciampa tried to defend himself, but he couldn’t get much of anything since Dash Wilder was holding his arms behind his back while Scott Dawson beat on him.
Revival kicked Ciampa out of the ring, like garbage, before grabbing the microphone.
Dawson said everyone is a tough guy until they face reality, and The Revival is that reality. Gargano and Ciampa faced the top guys in NXT and it was a reality check.
Ciampa dragged himself back into the ring and creepily smiled at the champs before he got laid out with the Shatter Machine.
Steve Cutler defeated Kenneth Crawford
I make a reference to Mike Adamle every time Cutler wrestlers, but from now on it’s all about his Lash LeRoux sideburns. Kenneth Crawford is not to be confused with former WWE developmental/Ascension member Kenneth Cameron, who went on to become Bram in TNA.
Do you remember when the WWF would start house shows with a match between two jobbers? Well, this is as close as we’ve gotten since, as neither man has ever won a match on NXT TV despite doing several jobs.
Crawford kept slipping every time he would be in a situation where he had to land on his feet. He definitely needs more experience, even though he had the most exciting move, with a running shooting star press.
Cutler won with a fisherman suplex-driver.
Hideo Itami was backstage and said at TakeOver, it was a huge moment to kick Austin Aries in the head. He mocked Aries claiming to be injured, saying Aries is a baby and not a real man. If Aries is not a real man then he needs to stay out of Itami’s ring or he’ll make Aries go to sleep… again.
Sanity is coming!
No Way Jose defeated Angelo Dawkins
Someone in the front row was so excited for Jose’s entrance that he was caught on camera yawning. This was not Dawkins’ night to get one in the win column, as it was all about getting Jose a win coming out of Brooklyn.
No Way Jose won with his windup punch and Cobra Clutch Slam. And after the match, he literally ran into the crowd and danced with the people in the cheap seats.
Andrade “Cien” Almas was attempting to do a promo when Aries walked up eating a banana. Aries said Itami busted his eardrum, and Almas got angry and yelled at him in Spanish. This eventually led to a challenge for next week. Aries backed away, saying he couldn’t hear Almas.
Liv Morgan defeated Aliyah
Now that they have gutted the women’s division, it’s time for someone new to step up. Will one of these ladies be the next great women’s wrestler?
The most curious thing in this match was when 300 residents of the state of Florida began chanting for New Jersey. It was a match of two halves. For half of this match, it was fun, fine, and had absolutely nothing wrong with it. But it started to fall apart in the second half.
Aliyah slapped on a kimura and then combined that with a headscissors. It turns out her kimura is not nearly as good as Brock Lesnar’s, because Morgan got out of it with no problem whatsoever. Morgan won with a spin kick that didn’t quite connect.
No Way Jose was happy about his win over Dawkins when Bobby Roode walked by, straightened his suit, and walked away.
It was time for the main event segment! The brand new, reigning NXT Champion, Shinsuke Nakamura is in the house! The fans sang his theme song, which is hard to do when your song has no lyrics.
Sometimes I think these chants are more pre-determined than the matches. They seamlessly transitioned from chanting “Nakamura” to “You deserve it.”
Nakamura said when he was in Japan he wanted a new challenge, and the only place to challenge the best is here in NXT. He came here and faced the best, from Sami Zayn to Finn Balor to Samoa Joe. His neck hurts, his knee hurts, and his fingers are shaking, but despite that, he became NXT Champion.
He has held championships before, but this one means the most. He has great respect for Samoa Joe, but the Joe era is over. It’s now the era of strong style.
The show ended with Nakamura playing to the crowd, and no new challengers were teased.
What happens when Asuka returns next week? Until then, remember to say your vitamins and take your prayers!