Velveteen Dream def. Bobby Fish
Dream has been targeting Undisputed Era since returning two months ago and this win got him one step closer to NXT Champion Adam Cole. I realize they had to fill TV time somehow, but devoting almost 15 minutes to a match that had such an obvious outcome was an odd decision. That said, this was a well-wrestled, enjoyable opener. It wasn't announced when Dream will contend for Cole's NXT title, probably because the company itself doesn't know yet due to their taping schedule being up in the air at the moment.
Dexter Lumis def. Jake Atlas
Lumis originally debuted as part of the NXT Breakout Tournament last summer, but I don't believe we've seen him on NXT TV again until now. I was never a fan of his shtick in TNA years ago, but maybe it'll grow on me in NXT. It just seems a little too similar to Killer Kross, who coincidentally will also be debuting soon. In fact, I find myself more impressed with Atlas, who is an incredible athlete and has a lot to offer. Hopefully he'll be properly introduced at some point.
Dakota Kai def. Shotzi Blackheart, Kayden Carter, Aliyah, Xia Li and Deonna Purrazzo in a Second Chance Gauntlet Match to Qualify for Next Week's NXT Women's Championship No. 1 Contender's Ladder Match
Although the end result was ever in doubt, this was smartly executed, nonetheless. It suffered from not having a crowd (like every other match in wrestling right now), but Blackheart got to shine with the strong run she had. Granted, almost everyone she beat has been positioned as an enhancement talent in the past, but it was still impressive. Kai swooping in and stealing the victory made sense. I have no idea why she didn't qualify in the first place coming off her two big wins over Tegan Nox, but better late than never.
Kushida def. Joaquin Wilde
I can't believe Wilde has yet to be turned heel. As I've said before, he was way more natural in that role during his TNA stint. He's talented in the ring, but his character (whatever it's supposed to be) is awful. Kushida hasn't been on NXT a whole lot lately, so I was glad he picked up the much-needed win here. Wilde was interviewed outside afterward and was abducted by the same lucha mask-wearing dudes Raul Mendoza was a couple of weeks ago. I think one of them is the former King Cuerno from Lucha Underground, but I'm not sure about the others.
NXT North American Champion Keith Lee def. Dominick Dijakovic and Damian Priest in a Triple Threat Match
These three have terrific chemistry together and it's just a shame there was no audience there to appreciate all the action. They kept the pace consistent, delivered some sweet high-risk spots, and told a solid story with Dijakovic trying his hardest to pull out the victory only to come up short again. I liked that Lee pinned Dijakovic because hopefully that gives their rivalry closure for the foreseeable future and allows someone else to step in and challenge him for the title. Hell, they could go back to Lee vs. Priest if they wanted and I wouldn't mind because I'm sure that would be a quality contest as well.
I hate to say it, but I'm becoming used to these empty arena shows and to the company's credit, they're making the most of it. This was another entertaining edition of NXT with an above-average main event and the squash matches were effective in their own way. Next week's edition is stacked on paper between the NXT Women's Championship number one contender's Ladder matchup and Johnny Gargano vs. Tommaso Ciampa at an "undisclosed location." If that's the last NXT we get for a while depending on when they can tape TV again, at least they're going out on a high note.
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