NXT's Vengeance Day 2022
Pixc is back with a vengeance to run you through what happened at NXT Vengeance Day!
It’s time Rasslin fans for some Vengeance Day, I’m not convinced either but there are at least some gems to look forward to I think, provided Vinnie Mac doesn’t mess em up, on with the show then, Pixc here to give you the rundown of NXT’s Vengeance Day!
On a side note, is anyone else find John Cena’s voice really jarring and pointless in the new “Then, Now and Forever, together” intro?
The hype for the special starts with Toxic Attraction having a bit of banter, Tony D’Angelo get’s involved it’s very strange. More like pushing them down our throats in a new way.
Pete Dunne vs Tony D’Angelo (Weaponized Steel Cage Match)
Wow, we start off with the big one guys, let’s be honest this has to be a favourite to steal the show. Great rivalry and it is likely to end tonight, strange to start off but I do feel like WWE shifted to two main events bookending shows a while back.
Tony D’Angelo arrives in style with a fancy car, handing the driver some notes as he heads to the ring. Dunne explodes on him as he enters the ring though. The chair is the first weapon to be used. D’Angelo avoids the trashcan before slamming his opponent onto it, one all I believe? Kendo stick next and D’Angelo is the aggressor. He next goes looking in the toolbox but Dunne slams it shut on him, typical bruiserweight style with the finger smashing. D’Angelo cools Dunne off with fire extinguisher and suplexes him back into the cage. This has started off well folks, a real spot fest!
D’Angelo’s next move is to tie Dunne’s hands behind his back with cable ties. Dunne attempts to fight back even with no hands, he looks capable. Leg scissor locked in but D’Angelo powers out. D’Angelo responds to the crowds chants for tables by heading for a powerbomb. Dunne with an excellent counter manages to reverse it and then D’Angelo somehow cuts himself free and Dunne in the process, game on! D’Angelo goes for his old trusty crowbar, Dunne though has other ideas and puts him through the table with a running powerbomb.
We get a shock next, as D’Angelo is stopped by Dunne, stomp to the hands then a cricket bat broken over his back leads to a Bitter End, but he doesn’t get the pinfall, D’Angelo kicks out! D’Angelo gets his moment next with his fisherman neckbreaker move, but this time Dunne is able to kick out. He looks to finish things off with a crowbar but Dunne appeared to have his own and was ready for him. Grabbing a crowbar positioned against the ring post he beats D’Angelo to the punch and smashes his opponent twice with it before hitting a second Bitter End, game over D’Angelo is done!
This match was a spot fest, fast paced but ultimately, I still don’t think it was that special. I loved the rivalry and I enjoyed the match don’t get me wrong but maybe it was too short or didn’t have enough outside the spots. I have wanted another weaponized cage kind of match for a while, but I don’t know, something was missing here.
Winner Pete Dunne
We see a phone ringing, with Raquel Gonzalez on the other end of the blower it seems. It’s Cora Jade still in bed as anyone would be at 5am, Gonzalez is dragging her to training, she really wants that Dusty Classic win! Kinda like these segments, add a bit of flavour to the tournament and develop the characters and relationships between the superstars. Training montage follows. Cora is not impressed with this routine but Gonzalez is impressed with her.
McKenzie reminds us it’s the women’s Dusty Classic next week but tonight we finish the men’s tournament. The Creed Brothers hype themselves up with Malcolm Bivens. Then MSK get their turn, they are looking to make history and be back-to-back and two-time Dusty Classic winners!
We see both Carmelo and Cameron Grimes arriving earlier today too.
Toxic Attraction ( c ) vs Indi Hartwell and Persia Pirotta (NXT Women’s Tag Team Title Match)
Indi motioning as she walks to the ring for two-time tag champion, I’d be down with that. Toxic Attraction attack them from behind as they enter the ring and both dive on their opponents after they end up on the outside. Jacy Jayne looking great, showing no fear going after Persia but she gets caught and Persia is able to tag Indi in to the match. The opposing tag comes shortly after and Toxic Attraction take control getting some double team action in. Mandy Rose even gets involved and Persia comes to intervene, the referee deals with her but does manage to be directed to just see Mandy who clearly would have done some damage but turns it into her throwing Indi back in the ring, it was well done but she still gets told to leave ringside as we enter picture in picture, oh f*** back to poor placement of that then.
As I watch Toxic Attraction keep their momentum going during this squinty eyed portion of the match I think to myself, if they focused on their in-ring talent, these guys would be more over with me, ramming them down my throat in silly social media segments at the top of the show was not doing them any favours. A double takedown leaves Indi crawling to her corner for that hot tag as we return to full screen action!
Persia looking dominant as ever, she stacks her opponents up and goes for that pinfall but no luck, Gigi kicks out. She tags Indi back in for some double team action but Jacy flies in to break the pinfall that follows. Indi looks for the elbow from the apron, she springs up and Jacy Jayne appears out of nowhere to trip her up. Jacy Jayne comes in and just like that it’s over with a double team strike combo. Not gonna lie, that was predictable and they needed that win, green as they are they have the look and we all know Vince is all about the looks!
Winners and STILL NXT Women’s Tag Team Champions Toxic Attraction
Wendy Choo is looking to enter the Dusty Classic and approaches Amari Miller backstage. Seems Amari already has a tag team partner, she apologises profusely to Wendy, who takes it like a champ to her face. Wendy then sees Dakota Kai and offers her to join the tournament with her. Interesting pairing right there, I’d love to see them win it. In fairness, with the men’s I hate random pairings, but I guess there aren’t enough obvious teams on the women’s side of things.
Grayson Waller is seen arriving backstage, he escorts the officers into the arena, apparently, we are going to see an arrest.
Jensen and Briggs are in the bar next and Briggs wants to know how the date went. Jensen said it was nice. Turns out he’s in the friendzone, poor Jensen.
LA Knight comes out to ringside, this is it guys. Grayson is all selective with his evidence so LA Knight provides some of his own and exposes Waller’s contradictory restraining order. Waller whines at the officers as they leave then realises his fate is sealed, he braces himself and LA Knight attacks. He stomps a mudhole in Waller in the corner then Sanga tries to intervene but gets knocked from the apron. Waller then gets thrown unceremoniously from the ring and LA Knight lays down the challenge for next week, complete with a crowd pleasing “yeah!”
Indi and Persia are lamenting their loss and though it’s being teased, it seems they aren’t splitting up just yet. Persia doesn’t want to blame Indi and they seem to switch their focus to the Dusty Classic. Dexter arrives and takes Indi away, Persia seems a little down but Duke Hudson arrives and offers his hand, interesting development if you like the romance stuff they seem to be going with more.
Cameron Grimes is getting ready for his match next. First though, Ciampa is sat for a promo. He is out to prove Ziggler isn’t better than him, he is focused on the NXT title and both him and Ziggler will be no doubt watching the main event.
Carmelo Hayes ( c ) vs Cameron Grimes (NXT North American Title Match)
They have a little trash talk to start, which was quite nicely done, even a bit of mime from Carmelo. Grimes manages to get the better of the champ early on it seems. Trick looking on concerned as Carmelo seems a little tied up. Grimes is not scrimping on the trash talk with his traditional “kiss my grits” making an appearance.
Trick distracts Grimes creating an opening for Carmelo. A nice dodge by Carmelo using Grimes to propel himself around the challenger. More picture in picture then in the middle of another title match, one week of decent ad placement and we are back to not caring about the product. Side note guys, Pringles trying for another slogan, what’s wrong with “Once you pop?” Just greed honestly. Seems Trick got a cheap shot in during that squinty eyed section.
Grimes hits a Spanish fly out of nowhere and kips up ready to turn this match back in his favour. A hurricanrana then continues this offense planting Carmelo in the ring but only getting a two count, great sequence there. Grimes then looks like he’s hanging on by a thread, barely kicking out of Carmelo’s pinfall. Grimes then is quickly back with a pinfall of his own from a superkick. Carmelo kicking out again. Grimes follows up with kicks to the champ. Carmelo gets fed up of Trick but stands not knowing what to do, the referee does nothing and Carmelo lunges. Grimes manages to avoid him and Trick is almost knocked from the apron in the mix up. Grimes takes control hitting a poisonrana before punting Trick from the apron and hitting a crossbody on a standing Carmelo. Again the champ kicks out and I am certain that Carmelo will retain.
Carmelo ends up escaping to the outside, Grimes dives out to meet him with a Cave In but Trick takes the bullet and Carmelo sends him sprawling into the time keepers table. Carmelo brings the action back to the ring, he drops Grimes but it isn’t enough, he transitions into a submission but Grimes crawls for the ropes. Trick pulls the ropes away, again the referee does nothing but Grimes manages to get a pinfall, the champ kicks out. The champ heads to the top and hits a leg drop. Pinfall victory for your North American Champion.
I enjoyed this match but really why so many 2 counts? Why go for a pin after so little offense? Why get put down for a two count then suddenly in a few seconds does it put them down for a two count? The false finish excitement didn’t really work for me in this match, let them wrestle a bit, take things back and forth, Carmelo’s finish here didn’t do it for me either, I don’t feel his leg drop is worthy of a finisher, he has definitely had much better matches and Grimes looked the better performer in this.
Winner and STILL North American Champion Carmelo Hayes
We get some hype for the Dusty Classic final next.
Kay Lee Ray is backstage with her new partner for the Women’s Dusty Classic, Io Shirai. She is teaching Io the benefit of destruction, Io is starting to enjoy herself smashing stuff when Zoey Stark arrives with a cuppa. Io grabs it and smashes it on the floor then walks off claiming she likes Kay Lee Ray. Cue tension, Zoey says Kay Lee Ray is off to a better start than they had and Kay Lee Ray says “we’re gonna have some fun!” This tournament has so many potential betrayals in it and so much opportunity for building future storylines, I can’t imagine where it’s going to go.
MSK vs The Creed Brothers (Men’s Dusty Classic Final)
Malcolm Bivens getting his boys hyped before they make their way to the ring. Then the little rip off Cena gimmick of showing "never give up", revealing the other side, reading "nah you should" was amusing, but again more copycat bullshit, stay original Diamond Mine, don’t fall into the trap of the majoirty of NXT 2.0 guys.
Brutus and Nash starts us off, the Creed Brothers get some double team action in and I have to agree with Barrett’s comments that this a proper clash of styles, should be great. MSK get their double team action in next, Wes Lee taunts Brutus on the apron before running and diving onto Julius who was on the opposite side of the ringside area. Julius manages to drop Wes Lee on the ropes, takes a shot at Nash, then pounces back on Wes Lee sending him into the announce table.
Picture interrupts another match as the Creed Brothers have the high ground. I did notice Julius doing some great work keeping Wes Lee from making the tag, following him to his corner and cutting it off. Good time for Brutus to lock in a bearhug while we watching Pizza Hut adverts. Wes Lee dodges Brutus as we return to full screen action, he fights off Brutus and manages to make the tag, but so does Brutus. Nash manages to catch Julius’ leg to bring him down as they run the ropes. Nash is on fire in this section and he hits an assisted moonsault off the apron, innovative take on their otherwise nothing special move. Wes Lee hits a move from the top next having made the tag but the cover isn’t quick enough and Julius kicks out.
Julius takes some serious double team damage but Brutus manages to get in to save the match before the three count. You can tell we are heading for the finish as business has definitely picked up. Julius manages to catch Nash on the outside, strong move from the smaller brother there. Then he fires himself up in the ring drops the straps and hits the clubbing blow to Nash. That’s it they’ve done it; they won the Dusty Classic! Not so sure that finish was the best but they deserved to win it, no point giving it to MSK, great win for them as predictable as it was considering that their rivalry with Imperium seems set to continue, it’s on!
This match was alright, it took a while to get going and the finish felt a bit weak to me but I can appreciate it’s the feel good moment for Diamond Mine and the Creed Brothers getting this win, they have looked and played their part well, they could easily go to main roster and be a success down the line but for now I want to see them take those belts off Imperium, maybe not quite yet but this is a journey, let’s go! Malcolm Bivens seems beside himself with shock too.
2022 Men’s Dusty Classic Winners The Creed Brothers, Julius and Brutus
Another hype video for Nikkita Lyons.
Imperium then join us, Walter is again shouting “Nein” and claiming it is Gunter not Gunther. Walter is also watching the NXT title match, but wait we have an interruption, ladies and gentleman presenting all the way from the Uso Penitentiary, Solo Sikoa! He wants some of Walter, the two stooges step forward to fight but Walter pulls them back. Solo Sikoa steps back.
Ziggler is with us next and is telling McKenzie about Ciampa’s recent visit to Raw. He is also watching the NXT title match closely.
Bron Breakker ( c ) vs Santos Escobar (NXT Title Match)
What on earth are they doing with Bron Breakker? Another strange entrance for them, trying to hide the terrible breaker of chains one from before? Some trash talk from Santos and they lock up. Bron trying with him in the corner, Santos retaliates but it doesn’t work. Santos puts Bron on the back foot but it doesn’t last, Bron going straight back to work with a delayed vertical suplex. Santos takes a breather on the outside, Breakker gives chase then still remains on top when he gets back in the ring.
Wylde provides a distraction and Santos takes advantage knocking the champ from the apron before diving to the outside to seal his advantage. He sends Bron into the steps and looks for the pin throwing him into the ring. No luck on that pinfall, too early at this point. Santos to keep his momentum going though, doing some damage in the ropes and getting another near fall, likely due to that trash talking he did. Bron comes back swinging with punches in the corner. Santos shutting him down then gets them running double knees, another two count for the challenger.
Commentary trying to tell us Bron’s nose was on the steel, looked nothing like that to me. Say what you see, not what Vince thinks you should see, come on! Santos returns the action to the ring and has Bron down with a submission, wearing the champ down. Talking a lot of trash is brave Santos Escobar and he pays for it as Bron grabs his punch and fires back, slamming Santos down he looks for the finish. Mendoza and Wylde attempt to assist their leader. Both take a beating from Bron and then Elektra distracts the referee, the crowd is wound up as Ziggler comes in with a superkick. Santos goes for the cover and it’s only a two count, a sigh of relief from me and many others, I’m sure. Didn’t want it to end like that.
Ziggler screaming and having a tantrum he goes to get back in the ring, Ciampa arrives and rags him away, the two brawling. Santos hits a tornado DDT and goes to the top but he has to roll through from the frog splash. Bron manages to explode with a spear. Gorilla press slam and the pinfall, Bron retains, not that anybody expected different.
That match was a good showdown between two of NXT’s top talents in my opinion, Santos genuinely looked like he could pull it off even if it was through all the shenanigans. Having Ziggler come down and interrupt but Ciampa stop him ruining it completely gives us options for the future, it builds on a few rivalries but leaves it open to simmer a while too.
Winner and STILL NXT Champion Bron Breakker
Vengeance Day then, let’s be honest, the bar has been lowered considerably since the Black and Gold brand is no more. Dunne and D’Angelo put a spot fest that although exciting to watch seemed like a quick and easy hype match. The title matches and Dusty Classic were predictable as WWE usually is. Was it entertaining? Yes I think so, but was it what the fans who watch wrestling want to see? Probably not. I enjoyed it on the whole and as much as not everyone will agree, I look forward to more NXT. What about you guys, care to weigh in on our socials?