WWE NXT Weekly Roundup 31st March 2022
Welcome to another weekly dose of NXT from me, your NXT correspondent, Pixc. NXT Level Up will kick off my weekly roundup again with a brief summary of this before the NXT goings on, let’s see who makes some progress this week!
NXT LEVEL UP
Joe Gacy and Harland kick off the show, with Gacy claiming he and Harland brought NXT Level Up into existence, I have to admit it is plausible with his vendetta against exclusivity including the 205 live and cruiserweight title. He offers an opportunity to the jobber in the ring, known as Quincy Elliott.
Quincy Elliott vs Joe Gacy
They lock up and once free Quincy gives us a little jig. Gacy is in control throughout but Quincy’s size does make it a little difficult for him. Quincy has a big flurry, including a splash. Harland appears on the apron. Quincy blows him a kiss before looking to finish things with Gacy who is tied up in a tree of woe. Gacy was lying in wait and turns it around, then bounces off the ropes for his clothesline finisher.
This was a lot better than I expected, Quincy had some good moments and it does feel like it pushes the narrative of Gacy offering opportunities.
Winner Joe Gacy
Ivy Nile vs Kiana James
Ivy Nile instantly comes showing off her technical skills along with her strength with a couple of powerful knockdowns. A snap suplex has James reeling, then some running strikes and Ivy Nile tries a pinfall. Nile then locks in a submission hold to wear her opponent down. James sneaks in a roll up and after the expected kick out James has a strong sequence of offense. Another near fall and she goes for the suplex but Nile blocks it and locks in her trademark submission. Ivy Nile gives a smile and a shrug reminiscent of Pete Dunne and Bivens looks pleased.
A decent match, shows a little potential in Kiana James but Ivy Nile looks strong picking up the win, I would like to see them doing more competitive matches with Ivy Nile.
Winner Ivy Nile
Jacket Time vs Edris Enofe & Malik Blade
Blade hits a beautiful dropkick after some early back and forth. Jiro turns the match around tripping Enofe up and then tags Kushida in. Jiro is back in before long hitting them jacket strikes. Blade is back in and they hit a nice double team on Jiro.
Enofe locks in a submission, Jiro manages to escape to Blade tags in keeping his team on the offense, Kushida comes in to break a pinfall and we have a little lull in the pace of the match. Kushida is tagged in and has a flurry of offense. Jiro is tagged in and gets a near fall, the pace has quickened and as Kushida looks to finish things Enofe tags in and they hit a surprise double team offense to an unsuspecting Kushida to pick up the win, Blade keeping Jiro at bay.
Another decent match but nothing special some good moments and it flowed ok. I just don’t think it was main event material. I’d have had Ivy Nile and Kiana James put on a better match to end things personally.
Winners Edris Enofe & Malik Blade
Have to say Level Up this week was pretty average. I feel like it is living up to the name, as it where talent make some progress. We are seeing new talent grow and existing talent build momentum, mostly this is good but it doesn’t always make for the best show. Half an hour of wrestling though, so ideal for a quick burst if you want to catch some new talent.
Welcome back guys, for another round of NXT. It’s the go home episode before Stand and Deliver and I’m intrigued to see what happens, I’ve heard a few rumours and I’m ready explode on some messy booking!
Imperium vs LA Knight and MSK
We kick off with Imperium’s entrance, but MSK and LA Knight attack as the camera wobbles for effect. An explosive start but Aichner calms things down by holding down LA Knight. MSK get the momentum going for their team next but Imperium, once again single out LA Knight amd we finally get Walter in the ring, might as well not have bothered though as he quickly tags out.
We get some weird topical commentary about Italy not qualifying for the world cup and a “Will Smith” slap. Walter and LA Knight stand across from each other screaming at each other, neither are legal so the referee is between them. Walter has Wes Lee in a submission which LA Knight comes in and breaks then weakly tries continue his assault. The referee breaks it up with ease. Wes Lee continues to be in trouble, taking a lot of punishment!
LA Knight and Barthel are tagged in with LA Knight coming in hot, even knocking Walter off the apron! Nash comes in and a nice bit of poetry in motion occurs before Walter pulls him from the apron. LA Knight comes to deal with Walter and naturally Nash is fed to Imperium in the ring. They sneak a tag and Barthel holds him back for Aichner to hit a brutal looking clothesline, it’s over!
We get a stand-off with the Creed Brothers appearing at the top of the ramp. Honestly Imperium and MSK have both got to be up there as some of the best tag teams in NXT. They both put on great matches, this was another solid bout. I just think sometimes the frequent tags don’t seem needed, for me it breaks things up too much. While I can appreciate the mechanic, I’d definitely like some longer stints in the ring from people.
We get a recap of Io Shirai and Kay Lee Ray winning the Dusty Classic and their challenge to Mandy Rose, while I like the new idea of them challenging Mandy for the women’s title. This feels like a stupid reversal to what they should have done with Otis with the Money in the Bank. That didn’t happen so why did this? Finally realised Mandy Rose can’t carry a match and although I’m a massive fan, Cora carrying her seems a bit daft? Is this the beginning of the end for Toxic Attraction, will they lose it all somehow? Loved the tension at the end between Io and Kay Lee Ray, “may the best woman win!”
Dakota Kai is searching for Wendy Choo, nobody has seen her but her pillow and slippers lay tattered on the floor. The plot thickens! This is followed by Ivy Nile finding Tatum Paxley struggling to fix a punching bag up. Ivy Nile scolds her saying if she wants to be a part of Diamond Mine she “needs to kick ass not kiss ass.” Great line, look forward to seeing this develop.
Ivy Nile vs Tiffany Stratton
Before the match starts, we get a recap of Stratton’s rivalry with Sarray apparently, she found her necklace. Stratton starting off strong with a nice standing moonsault. Stratton seems to be on top but it also looks like Ivy Nile is just biding her time, remaining composed and calm. Nile hits a couple of running strikes in the corner before stretching Stratton in the middle of the ring.
Stratton doesn’t give up and once released tries to buy herself some time. It looks she might be about to finish the match but smoke drifts from the entrance way and Sarray appears on the apron distracting her. She goes for a scoop slam but Ivy Nile reverses it into her submission hold and Stratton taps out! Still undefeated then Ivy Nile.
A decent showing from Stratton and a nice way to give Nile another win. I wasn’t excited for the match and it didn’t have me jumping out of my seat but I was pleasantly surprised by Stratton and wasn’t sure if it feels like confusing booking or Stratton doing well. Nile has been made to be dominant on NXT so I’ll go with the former. Sarray and Stratton’s rivalry heating up though.
Winner Ivy Nile
Ciampa is up next, talking about his journey in NXT. Stand and Deliver looks to officially be his last match in NXT! As Barret says “it is going to get nasty!”
Dolph Ziggler segment next, hyping up the NXT champion. He slates Bron Breakker and hypes himself up as expected, claiming Bron Breakker is unknown and people weren’t interested in interviewing him. He is out to shock the world and keep that title!
Cora Jade is talking about her dreams next, getting Bayley vibes here, plucky underdog.
Legado del Fantasma vs Jensen & Briggs
Wylde looked to use his speed early on but Jensen gets the upper hand. Briggs and Mendoza get tags and Mendoza does seem to use his speed to gain momentum before getting caught in bearhug. They hit a double team and Jensen casually interacts with Elektra at ringside. Wylde hangs off the ring post before hitting a strike on a prone Jensen at ringside. That was different!
Jensen fights both of Legado del Fantasma off and Briggs comes in with the power. He gets a near fall on Wylde as Mendoza breaks it up. Elektra distracts Briggs allowing Wylde to get some offense in. Fallon Henley goes after Elektra and this distracts Wylde who was about to dive from the top. Briggs manages to catch him thanks to this and the two brawlers pick up the win following a nice double team move.
I quite like this rivalry, I was a bit annoyed when Hit Row vs Legado del Fantasma was abruptly ended because we didn’t get to see much from B-Fab and Elektra, but this paved the way I think for more rivalries of that nature. Elektra is the focus on that and Jensen and Briggs could easily have someone join them to make it four on four.
Winners Jensen & Briggs
Indi and Persia are once again backstage bickering about who the better couple is. This is getting a bit stale for me, Index worked because it was new and different this is just not working. I want to see Indi and Persia win tag team gold not have them split and fade into nothing. Duke is I think one of Vince’s favourites, I liked his poker gimmick but since then I’ve been bored of him. Dexter is unique and well worth putting some time into but they don’t he just seems to have floundered around since I thought Tony D’Angelo was going to feud with him.
Cameron Grimes is backstage with McKenzie and he is nervous for tonight’s triple threat last chance opportunity. It’s about delivering on the promise he made to his father. I hope he goes to the moon this weekend, big Grimes fan!
Toxic Attraction come out with all the gold! Mandy Rose is not happy about having to face multiple women at the same time. She thinks they have been dominating, she is going to send her opponents packing. They turn their attention to Wendy Choo and Dakota Kai. Wendy has apparently apologised, something tells me it was a beat down as they toss her things out of a bag in the ring.
They hype themselves up for Stand and Deliver but Dakota Kai’s music hits and she storms the ring. Toxic Attraction gain the upper hand but Raquel Gonzalez’s music hits and she storms the ring. Gonzalez sends them packing and then backs into Dakota Kai, it is unclear what the reaction will be at first but the crowd chants for them to reunite and Dakota Kai jumps in to hug her former best friend, then she sees the tag team title on the ring floor and they hold it aloft.
This is where I lose my shit! First of all, they had a massive rivalry destroying their friendship not too long ago. Secondly the booking of the Dusty Classic could have stopped the need for this to be a thing, didn’t need Kay Lee Ray and Io to challenge Mandy Rose by winning the Dusty Classic, there are other teams they haven’t beaten. Realistically Toxic Attraction haven’t impressed me beyond their heel work. They haven’t done enough, so this just feels like bringing Kai and Gonzalez back together to put the champs over, which leads to believe that I have to suffer through more Toxic Attraction at the top. You’ve proven that Mandy Rose can’t carry a match, hence the two additions, you know Jacy Jayne and Gigi Dolin can’t either hence the experienced Dakota Kai and Raquel Gonzalez being in this one. Just wish you didn’t force them into the top spot so soon, but in reality, I was expecting worse when I heard the match was booked, it made zero sense but it does seem semi-viable now.
McKenzie is backstage with Carmelo and Trick now. They hype up the triple threat and his involvement in the booking of these qualification matches. Grayson Waller arrives with Sanga to interrupt him. They go back and forth trying to one up each other before Waller claims “oh and by the way, mine is bigger than yours” pointing at Sanga. Trick and Carmelo get in a tizzy that he might have been thinking about something else. Funny stuff.
Von Wagner vs Bodhi Hayward
Bodhi is all business striking at Von Wagner and forcing him to push him away. He then pushes him in to the steps before getting back in the ring. Bodhi looks to hit a big move but Von Wagner gets his big boot in the way. It gets a bit chaotic next as we have the Japanese announce team of Kushida and Ikemen Jiro chiming in, Jiro then gets distracted by Sofia who is standing in the crowd.
Finally we are brought back to the action and Von Wagner looks to be in control. Bodhi gets a roll up but only a near fall and Von Wagner is back on top. Bodhi again comes back though and looks to finish Von Wagner. No such luck though as he is slammed to the ground and that’s it, game over!
Bodhi looked the better of the two in this match for me. Von Wagner attacks Kushida and then drags Ikemen Jiro into the ring beating him down before tearing his jacket up. Sofia and Von Wagner have a stare at each other, makes no sense yet for me.
Winner Von Wagner
Tony D’Angelo is hyping up his match vs Ciampa. More of him saying he wants to be the new don of NXT.
Joe Gacy vs Draco Anthony
Gacy tries for a handshake but Anthony is not interested and he slaps his hand away. Gacy was ready swinging for him and Anthony dodges it. Anthony for no reason goes over and stares at Harland, when he returns to the action Gacy is doing some weird upside-down taunt and he is spooked.
Gacy then gets control of the match until Anthony fights out of a submission. Anthony looking good has Gacy down but only a near fall at this stage. Gacy hits a springboard clothesline from hell and it’s over!
Gacy always looks strong in the ring but in this one Draco Anthony looked great. There must be a reason for Gacy winning and I think in essence it does extend the rivalry a little longer, curious to see how this one develops.
Winner Joe Gacy
Hype for our main event at Stand and Deliver with Bron Breakker out to rescue the NXT title from Dolph Ziggler. Can he recapture the title? I’m not sure in all honesty.
Nikkita Lyons vs Sloane Jacobs
They lock up and Nikkita gets the first knock down. Nikkita then kicks her opponent down and gets a near fall. Sloane gets a few strikes in before suffering a Samoan drop. She then hits her split leg drop and gets a provocative pinfall victory!
As expected, this was just a little filler. Lash Legend appears on the titantron and says after Stand and Deliver they have unfinished business, she claims to the bigger superstar and Nikkita doesn’t seem bothered at all, shrugging it off and taunting to the crowd. Not sure these two colliding is anything special yet. Lash has been great on the mic but I’m not quite convinced of her character, ability in the ring or future potential. Nikkita Lyons however seems like she does have potential even though she maybe isn’t particularly good on the mic at this point.
Winner Nikkita Lyons
Diamond Mine are backstage with Malcolm Bivens hyping up Roderick Strong for his match tonight and the North American title ladder match but also the Creed Brothers for their tag title match. Brutus gets a text wishing him good luck for the match and gets irate thinking it is “those dudes who jumped us” with Julius calming him down. I’d love to see these guys with all the gold!
Image courtesy of ITNWWE
Roderick Strong vs Cameron Grimes vs A-Kid
Some strange three way back and forth action starts us off. Everyone taking it in turns to have the upper hand before they all have a stare down. Grimes breaks it with a taunt causing Strong to run in and take a swift kick to the chest. A-Kid hits a nice dropkick after being lifted up by Grimes.
A Kid dives on Strong on the outside. Grimes gets dropped by Strong on the apron and we see Solo Sikoa who has already qualified looking on from the ramp way. We get some picture in picture action, I’ve given up caring about the action here, it can’t important seen as they put adverts over it. Strong almost gets a double stronghold, there is more chaotic back and forth with Strong saving the match breaking a pinfall on A-Kid.
Grimes downs Strong but A-Kid dives on him and all three men are struggling to stand. A slug fest ensues with strikes flying in all directions. Strong looks to be in control, knees and backbreakers for both his opponents! Cameron Grimes however has other ideas, coming in with the Cave In on Strong, it’s over he did it!
I’m so pleased for Cameron Grimes. Everyone gets their final say in the aftermath, with the final words coming from Cameron Grimes, punctuated with the first strike at Carmelo Hayes and they all brawl as the show closes. Great feel-good moment for Grimes but the match kept Strong and A-Kid looking good in my opinion, with the Spanish superstar relatively new to NXT, I think his time will come.
Winner Cameron Grimes (Qualifies for Stand and Deliver Ladder match)
This was a good show, I think it started well and ended well. There were some good segments in between and although I was expecting a disaster after hearing some of the booking, it wasn’t terribly done. I’m looking forward to Stand and Deliver, how about you?