NXT was back at Full Sail this week. Show kicks off with Tommaso Ciampa walking to the ring on crutches. He calls out Johnny Gargano to come to the ring so he can explain his actions from Takeover Chicago. Johnny doesn’t show up. Ciampa blames him as well as the fans for the thought of replacing him in the ladder match after he injured his knee prior to the Takeover event. If he had to go away for a while, so would Gargano he stated. Takeover Chicago was his moment and once he returns he will be the most dangerous SOB in NXT. I loved this promo. Tied his legit injury in to a storyline. Spoke with confidence and showed a nice balance between heel and sympathetic figure. Was well executed.
We were suppose to get Bobby Roode’s Glorious Celebration this week, but in an interview he said we were not invited. He was in a car on his way to the event. Says it’s still his NXT and that he will return at this week’s show.
Our first match of the night was between the new United Kingdom Champion Peter Dunn vs Danny Burch. This was a good match. Loved the smash mouth, old school style between these two. We got strikes, grappling, nice headbutt from Burch. I thought at one point in the match Burch broke Dunn’s fingers. Both guys really laying in their stuff. Dunn picks up the win using his Bitter End Finisher. It’s like a pump handle slam into a DDT/Flat Liner. Cool move. Dunne gets on the mic and says he had to watch a boy hold a title since January that should have been his. It’s his division now. WWE really has a star in the making with this young man. Sky’s the limit for him no doubt.
Kayla Braxton tried to interview Velveteen Dream but he says the ambience in the area wasn’t right so he walks off. I don’t know how well this character will get over for Patrick Clark but he seems to be embracing it so far. Plus last week he showed improvement in the ring. So we shall see.
Next up is Andrade “Cien” Almas vs Cezar Bononi. Almas jumps out from the start with a dropkick and a double knee strike in the corner to Bononi. Barely lets him get any moves in. To my surprise Cezar gets the win with a counter small package roll up. Did not see that coming especially with how the match got started. Almas seems upset for a bit. Shakes it off and leaves the ring. Without a care in the world it seemed.
So we get The Mean Girls of NXT Peyton Royce and Billie Kay down at the performance center filming a video looking for something iconic sorta speak. They happen to run into Ember Moon who is signing off on some medical papers to clear her return to the ring. They don’t seem pleased about that. Royce and Kay have really come into their own. I like their chemistry and they seem to continue to improve every time I see them. I feel with Ember Moon being cleared now, we will see her compete for the NXT women’s title at Takeover Brooklyn this year.
Right before the Main Event we see footage of Hideo Itami backstage from Takeover Chicago losing it after his lost to Roode in the title match. Kassius Ohno tries to calm him down and Itami cusses him out. He starts tossing stuff around and storms out of the locker room. We see him later in the week with Ohno in the parking lot apologizing and shakes his hands to make peace. I feel we could see an eventual heel turn with Itami. May do him some good to get him going once again. My hope is that he can just stay healthy.
Last up is our Main Event. Kassius Ohno teams up with Roderick Strong to take on Sanity’s Eric Young and Alexander Wolfe. I thought this was a decent match. Roderick Strong’s offense was on full display in this match. Ohno’s as well who works pretty stiff but moves well for his size. We get some interference from Sanity’s Killian Dain on the outside of the ring. Then out comes the returning No Way Jose to even the odds. We haven’t seen No Way since right before Takeover Orlando WrestleMania weekend. Nice to see him back. Strong gets the win over Eric Young with a suplex into a back breaker.
All in all this was a another solid effort from the NXT brand. One thing I can always say about them with there show’s is that they are consistent. Even the ones that aren’t as good as others. We learned this week that Ciampa will be out with a knee injury, also in two weeks we will get a NXT women’s title match between Asuka, Nikki Cross and Ruby Riot. It will be a Triple Threat Elimination Match. That should be good. Let’s see what this week’s show will have in store. Hideo Itami returns to action to face Oney Lorcan. Bobby Roode returns this week too. Hopefully we get to see who his next opponent will be for the title.