Air Date: 13/4/16
The show opens with William Regal running down some of the matches, including the TV debut of Shinsuke Nakamura.
Austin Aries vs. Angelo Dawkins
This is Aries’ first match on NXT TV after a fairly lacklustre debut on Takeover. This was a nice little showcase match, Dawkins played his part well and Aries showed a few signs of greatness. I haven’t loved Aries the last few months, but I still have hope he can get back to the highs I remember from him. Aries pins Dawkins with the Discuss 5-Arm ** ½
Samoa Joe is interviewed backstage about his loss to Finn Balor. Joe says that he isn’t done with Finn and is going after Apollo Crews next week.
Alexa Bliss vs. Tessa Blanchard
We got a nice little story early on of Tessa outwrestling Alexa, which pissed her off leading to some stiff strikes. Unfortunately that story quickly fell apart as Alexa slapped on a headlock to grind everything down to a halt. We got a nice fiery comeback from Tessa which was shut down by Alexa who seemed pissed the hell off in the best way possible. Solid little match. Alexa pins Blanchard ** ¾
Finn Balor is interviewed about who he thinks should be the next number one contender, and cuts a pretty bland promo about being a fighting champion and also talks about Nakamura. Balor is fun in the ring but he still can’t cut a promo.
Johnny Gargano and Tommaso Ciampa vs. The Vaudevillains (Aiden English and Simon Gotch)
English and Gotch have been called up to the main roster, in the least hyped call up I can remember, so this is most likely one of their last NXT matches. These two teams had a pretty good little match, Gargano busted out some dives that I would never expect for a random TV match. It’s another real indictment of English and Gotch that they lost clean a week after debuting on the main roster. Ciampa submits Gotch ***
Tye Dillinger is interviewed backstage about his match with Nakamura tonight and cuts a pretty good passionate promo.
Tucker Knight vs. Baron Corbin
Corbin is another guy that made his main roster debut recently, winning the Andre the Giant Memorial Battle Royal at Wrestlemania. Unfortunately he still bores the hell out of me in the ring, even being the worst part of this match as Tucker’s firing up was magnificent to watch. Corbin pins Tucker with End of Days **
American Alpha meet with Enzo and Cass in an empty arena next. They want a match with American Alpha, not necessarily for the titles.
Bayley vs. Liv Morgan
I think this is my first time seeing Liv, and she showed some promise here for sure but this was a very short little match. It’s surprising to me that Bayley hasn’t been called up yet, but I guess without her the NXT women’s division is completely empty. Bayley pins Morgan **
After the match Bayley gets on the mic and cuts a good promo about how she is going back after Asuka.
Shinsuke Nakamura vs. Tye Dillinger
This match got by completely on the charisma of both men, which isn’t a bad thing per se. The crowd was super into Nakamura, and just wanted him to do his schtick, and both guys played into that dynamic really well. Nakamura pins Dillinger ** ½
NXT was a pretty easy watch this week, although everything is currently in Wrestlemania mode so nothing substantial happened and it’ll probably be a few weeks until anything of note actually happens on these shows. Until then, expect more squash match filled shows.