Undisputed Era Addressed Tommaso Ciampa and Velveteen Dream
It was logical to start the show with Undisputed Era considering Adam Cole was the last man standing at TakeOver: Portland (not counting Johnny Gargano, of course). Both Cole and Roderick Strong cut solid promos but nothing too out of the ordinary. Cole addressed his win over Ciampa (without acknowledging Gargano's actions) while Strong hyped up his main event match with Dream for later in the night.
NXT Cruiserweight Champion Jordan Devlin def. Lio Rush
With Angel Garza moving on up to Raw, I'd argue Devlin and Rush are the two the Cruiserweight division has to offer. Thus, I would have held off on doing this match until a later date when it could have been built up a bit more. This was an entertaining outing with strong performances from both guys, but I didn't think it ever reached that next gear. Devlin won decisively, so I don't see the need to do a rematch.
Tommaso Ciampa Attacked Austin Theory
Theory was supposed to be in action, but Ciampa prevented that from happening. He made it clear that his sights are set on exacting revenge against Gargano for what he did to him at TakeOver: Portland before he goes back after the NXT Championship. I didn't love how this made Theory look inferior to Ciampa, but this did serve to set up a bout between the two for next week. I doubt he'll win, but he could look strong in defeat.
Grizzled Young Veterans def. Raul Mendoza and Joaquin Wilde
Mendoza and Wilde will face off in a rematch from last month on 205 Live this Friday night, so this allowed them to promote their entertaining encounter. More importantly, it looks like Grizzled Young Veterans have joined the NXT tag team division full-time. They've done everything they can do in NXT UK, so the move makes sense. Plus, it gives NXT another tandem to work with since there really isn't anywhere else. The Forgotten Sons called out Grizzled Young Veterans later on in the episode, so expect them to clash one of these weeks.
NXT Tag Team Champions The BroserWeights def. Oney Lorcan and Danny Burch (Non-title)
Similar to Devlin vs. Rush, I would have held off on this match for down the road when the the titles could have been on the line. As previously noted, NXT's tag team division is depleted, so I thought it was odd that NXT would blow through this bout with zero prior hype. Don't get me wrong, this was fun while it lasted, but Lorcan and Burch should have been given a win in their first match back at Full Sail University before being built up as believable threats to the tag titles.
NXT North American Champion Keith Lee def. Kona Reeves (Non-Title)
Before Lee could speak, he was interrupted by Reeves, who Lee promptly squashed in 10 seconds or so. This was their third televised match in the last two years, so I was perfectly fine with this ending so quickly. Lee was then immediately confronted by Dominik Dijakovic. Their feud isn't over despite Lee winning clean at TakeOver. Hey, I can't say I'm complaining about at least more match between them, though no date was given for when it might happen.
Chelsea Green def. Kayden Carter; Bianca Belair Challenged Charlotte Flair
Carter beat Green in Green's in-ring debut for NXT a few weeks ago. Sure, Green was able to get her win back here, but this was not an impressive showing in the slightest. In fact, this sucked. Carter is still very green (no pun intended) while Green appeared to have an off night. I don't know if she botched her Unprettier finisher or if that's just the way she does it, but it looked terrible. Belair should have just showed up post-match to challenge Flair since she made the match a complete afterthought by interrupting it halfway through (not that it was good to begin with).
Velveteen Dream def. Roderick Strong
This had been touted as a grudge match, yet it felt like anything but. The intensity wasn't there and they didn't really pick up the pace until the final few minutes. This was a well-wrestled main event but far from their best work. In short, it was underwhelming. Dream won only to be attacked by Undisputed Era, which further fuels my speculation that it will be Dream vs. Cole for the NXT Championship at TakeOver: Tampa.
I'm honestly shocked NXT didn't put forth a better effort coming off that tremendous TakeOver on a Sunday night. There wasn't anything technically wrong with this show (aside from that awful women's match), but it wasn't as hot as you'd expect to be, especially with TakeOver: Tampa fast approaching. The Crusierweight Championship clash was the best thing on the entire episode and even that wasn't as excellent as it had the potential to be. NXT hasn't been too notable in recent weeks, so here's hoping they can get back on track soon. Tegan Nox vs. Dakota Kai in a Steel Cage match in two weeks is worth looking forward to.
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