By Graham "GSM" Matthews
Baron Corbin def. Johnny Gargano
Gargano shines regardless of who he is in the ring with whenever he appears on the program and his impressive outing versus Corbin was no exception. That said, I'm still shocked Gargano has yet to be offered a full-time contract given how great of a talent he is, but perhaps in due time. Meanwhile, Corbin continues to improve with every match he has and I love how perfect this matchup was considering Corbin's gimmick is apparently that he hates independent wrestlers. Spoiler alert, but I imagine this is leading to him attacking the debuting Austin Aries in the near future.
The Hype Bros def. Corey Hollis and John Skyler
I was fully expecting Orlando to reject The Hype Bros, but they were actually fairly favorable toward the tandem. The match itself wasn't much of note, but it allowed them to showcase their skills as a team and score an easy win. Props to Hollis and Skyley, who have appeared on NXT as enhancement talent in the past, for selling nicely for them. Since The Hype Bros suffered their first defeat the hands of The Vaudevillians last week, I assume they will continue to feud going forward.
Alexa Bliss def. Cameron
Uh, who was supposed to be the babyface here? The crowd booed Bliss when she made her entrance, but they immediately took to her once Cameron was announced as her opponent. Cameron's progress in the ring is coming along just fine, but nothing she did in this match blew me away. Certain spots were sloppy, but otherwise it was a passable contest. I don't think the plan is to turn Bliss babyface any time soon, so this was pretty random.
Elias Sampson def. Jesse Sorenson
Ugh. For as awesome as Sampson's entrance music is, his gimmick is anything but. I've tried to give him a chance, but all of his matches have been blatantly boring and have blended together. This was another snooze fest of a match, but on the bright side, the crowd realized how horrible the character was and started chanting "Drift away!" which I must admit was hilarious.
NXT Women's Champion Bayley def. Carmella
Needless to say, this was the best Carmella match I have ever seen, and although it wasn't Bayley's strongest title defense up to this point, it was still a solid match. Per usual, I liked how it was placed in the main event slot and made to feel like a big deal. Additionally, the two being friends outside the ring definitely helped add to their chemistry and the final few minutes were especially entertaining. The eventual Bayley vs. Asuka match should be stellar and an Asuka vs. Eva Marie and Nia Jax feud should hold them over until TakeOver.
This was really a one match show with the main event title match being the only bout worth going out of your way to see. It wasn't a five star classic by any means, but it was a breakout performance for Carmella and both women put forth a great effort. Everything else was mediocre in comparison with some of the matches not seemingly serving a purpose, though the ending promo from Samoa Joe was well done. However, the hot Orlando crowd made for a fun environment and I'm excited to see the next several shows emanate from that arena as well.
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