The Velveteen Dream def. Tyler Bate
Dream recently expressed frustration on Twitter (in storyline, of course) with the many independent wrestlers signed by WWE and how he's a homegrown talent, which is where this matchup stemmed from (along with their interactions backstage on NXT over the last month). They worked very well together and put together a nice little match filled with entertaining action and solid storytelling. As bright of a star as Bate is, Dream going over was the right call considering he's more of a regular in NXT than Bate is at this point.
Adam Cole def. Cezar Bononi
I was honestly surprised that Bononi was voted the "Future Star of 2017" by fans because other than his size and unique look, I don't see anything special in him. He's in the same spot Fabian Aichner is in right now in that he's a jobber to the stars, except he never looks too impressive in defeat. This was a fine squash match for Cole, though, that allowed him to showcase his skills a bit and further Undisputed Era's momentum.
Shayna Baszler def. Kairi SAne
These two have history dating back to the Mae Young Classic finals and I was happy that footage was shown before this bout to make it mean more. Baszler continues to amaze me with how far she's come as a performer despite not being in the business for very long. She has an awesome presence about her, while Sane is a star as well. I enjoyed this encounter for as long as it lasted. Sane losing clean wasn't ideal, mind you, but it did seemingly earn Baszler another shot at the NXT Women's Championship.
NXT Champion Andrade "Cien" Almas and Zelina Vega Addressed the Audience; Aleister Black and Killian Dane Brawled
This was another one of those money promos from Vega where she threw Johnny Gargano's latest loss in his face and gloated about Almas ending his NXT career last week. Almas did well with what he had to say as well, but his promo also illustrated how important Vega is to his act, because without her, he would be drowning with his promos. The brawl between Black and Dain was short and sweet and set up what should be a fun No. 1 Contender's match sometime soon.
Unlike the last few editions of NXT, this episode didn't feature anything too monumental or memorable. It was a solid show on the whole and an easy watch as always, but it felt more like filler than usual. However, the build for TakeOver: New Orleans has already begun, so the next month of NXT TV should be a blast. The third-annual Dusty Rhodes Tag Team Classic kicks off next week with TM61 vs. Authors of Pain.
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