By Graham "GSM" Matthews
Billie Kay def. Daria Berenato
So, I guess Berenato is a babyface now? Just because Kay and Peyton Royce turned on her? Whatever. I still do think she has potential, though, and she had a far better outing here than she did in Toronto last month. Her MMA gimmick is unique and it's what she knows, but it was a bit too over-the-top in this contest, so I hope she tones it down in the future. I assumed Nikki Cross would be Asuka's next title challenger, but Kay and Royce throwing their names into the hat was interesting considering they don't feel like true threats right now.
The Authors of Pain def. John Ortagun and Anthony Bowens
Although this was yet another standard squash match from The Authors of Pain, it was quicker than usual due to one of their opponents getting hurt pretty badly on that move where they powerbomb their opponents on top of each other. I haven't heard an update on him since the injury occurred, so I hope he's okay. As for Authors of Pain, this was a straightforward match to help further their momentum heading into the tag title match at TakeOver: San Antonio.
Bobby Roode def. Tye Dillinger, Roderick Strong and Andrade "Cien" Almas in a No. 1 Contender's Fatal 4-Way Elimination Match For the NXT Championship
I was really happy this match ended up getting as much time as it did, as it should have. The eliminations of Almas and Strong were pretty forgettable, but at least each of them had solid showings. Strong in particular was able to showcase his skills for the first time since coming to NXT. Here's hoping they feud with each other heading into TakeOver. Dillinger and Roode have the history, so the match picked up down the stretch, especially after the sweet superkick spot from Dillinger. The crowd nearly exploded after Dillinger hit the Tye Breaker, and although the ending outcome was pretty predictable, Dillinger might have actually gained something from the defeat.
The first two matches didn't do much for me personally, but the main event is absolutely worth going out of your way to see. Those four guys deserve credit for putting together one of the best television main events on NXT in recent memory. With Shinsuke Nakamura vs. Roode confirmed for the card, DIY vs. Authors of Pain also looks likely as well as Asuka vs. Cross. What else will fill out the card? I suppose we'll find out in the weeks ahead.
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