I don’t go to WWE events too often because of the price, traffic, parking, not wanting to support guys I don’t like as champion and storylines I don’t like, etc., but when I heard NXT was touring on through where I live, I knew I had to go. I’ve watched NXT every week since subscribing to the WWE Network back when they first launched and I’ve always wanted to see it live. Even though the show hasn’t been up to par with what it used to be, and the roster was depleted a bit more recently, the show was awesome and I had a great time!

No Way Jose vs. Sanity

One of the brief moments Nikki Cross stopped running around.

The event began with No Way Jose beating Eric Young with a roll up after Eric crashed into Killian Dain on the apron. The match was a lot of fun and Jose got a great pop from the crowd, especially when he danced with the referee and ring announcer before the match. Sanity was really over too, and the audience ate up Nikki Cross’ zany antics at ringside as she ran around and generally flipped out the whole time.

After Eric lost, he challenged anyone else to come out and face Sanity, insisting that no one was “crazy” enough to do it. D.I.Y.’s music hit and they had a really good match with Alexander Wolfe and Killian Dain, eventually beating them with their “Meeting in the Middle” finisher. D.I.Y. was really over with the crowd and someone even had a “Too Sour” sign and Tomasso too soured (inverted too sweet, with your index and pinkie finger touching) them after the match.

D.I.Y. vs. Sanity

Killian Dain took a lot of crap from the crowd who chanted “shave your back” and “fuzzy wuzzy” at him.

After that a recorded promo from Brazilian superstar Cezar Bononi aired, but it was hard to hear over fans booing and chanting things like “we don’t know you” and “let’s go Blues”. I don’t think anyone missed out on much.

Sonya Deville vs. Aliyah

I’ve listened to the Mortal Kombat movie theme three times since seeing Sonya wrestle.

In the next match Sonya Deville beat Aliyah with a knee strike to Aliyah’s head. Before each women’s match the announcer specifically told us “the following is a “women’s division match,” presumably so we didn’t freak out when we saw women coming to the ring. The announcement got a good pop both times it happened though. The crowd was dead for the start of this particular match, but everyone eventually started getting behind Sonya Deville (the Tough Enough competitor who used to wrestle under her real name, Daria Berenato). Sonya still had her MMA gimmick and people just loved seeing her beat the crap out of this little girl with cat ears. Unfortunately we didn’t get to see Aliyah’s now infamous flat-back-bump-into-a-kip-up comeback.

NXT Patrick Clark

The Patrick Clark experience.

In the next men’s division match, “The Freak” Dylan Miley beat Patrick Clark. Clark got a ton of heat when he first came out with a microphone and cut a promo about giving us the “Patrick Clark experience”. Once the match started however, the crowd died down quite a bit. Even though the crowd was dead for most of the match, I was impressed with Dylan Miley, especially since I don’t think he’s been wrestling all that long. Patrick was good as well, and clearly should have won Tough Enough.

NXT Dylan Miley

Judging by Dylan Miley’s titantron, his gimmick is the Pacific Northwest.

Next up, Aleister Black beat Cezar Bononi with his Black Mass finisher. Aleister got a big pop when he came out, which was nice considering he hasn’t been in NXT that long. Their match was really great and Cezar Bononi was fine, although the whole thing seemed more like a display for Black to show off his moves that it was for Cezar to do anything.

NXT Aleister Black

So metal.

Before the show started fans voted via twitter on which one of three “classic” NXT matches they wanted to see during the intermission. Bayley vs. Sasha Banks (from Takeover: Brooklyn) won with 52% of the vote, leaving Neville vs. Sami Zayn with 30% and Seth Rollins vs. Jinder Mahal with 18%. I’m not sure which classic Rollins vs. Mahal match they were referring to, but I suspect they only had highlights for Bayley and Sasha and just threw some random matches in there to lose to them.

NXT Hideo

Shout out to the loud mouth jerk behind me who tried to get a CM Punk chant going during Hideo’s ENTIRE MATCH.

After the intermission the show really kicked it up a notch with Hideo beating Andrade “Cien” Almas with the GTS. This was probably the match of the night. Hideo looked as good as ever and Andrade played a great heel, taunting at every opportunity. At the start of the match the crowd got a “don’t get hurt” chant going for Hideo, which he didn’t respond to.

Ruby Riot

Billie Kay and Peyton Royce made sure they were announced as “The Iconic Duo”.

Next up we got our second women’s match where the team of Asuka and Ruby Riot beat The Iconic Duo (Peyton Royce and Billie Kay) with Asuka’s spin kick. Asuka got a huge pop when she came out and there were several “Ruby Riot” chants when Ruby was the face in peril. The match had a lot of comedy spots too, like synchronized butt attacks. It was fun, although I’m not sure I really needed to see the stink face ever again.


Asuka’s gonna kill you-

Asuka and Ruby Riot vs. The Iconic Duo

Or at least rub her butt in your face!

Then Bobby Roode beat Tye Dillinger with the Glorious DDT in what was as great of a main event as you could possibly want from a house show. There was good wrestling, a lot of spots that involved the audience, and, of course, references to local sports teams. Early on in the match Bobby left the ring and pulled a Predators jersey out from under the ring- the hockey team the St. Louis Blues were playing that night. After Roode paraded around in it, Tye borrowed a Blues jersey from a fan at ringside and brawled with Roode, pulling his jersey off. It was a lot of fun and the crowd loved it.

Tye Dillinger vs. Bobby Roode

This is wrestling.

One thing that really impressed me with the whole show was how WWE kept the audience engaged even when wrestling wasn’t happening, both with the ring announcer and their mini titantron (tinytron?) video screen. In the past when I’ve gone to house shows it’s just been like a series of matches, but this time the announcer (who’s name escapes me) would quiz fans and have them play games and vote on things that popped up on the screen. It wasn’t groundbreaking stuff or anything, but it was nice to have something other than ads to watch while waiting for the show to start.

Overall NXT Live was a great show. While I was disappointed that some of the advertised names weren’t there like Shinsuke Nakamura, there were still plenty of wonderful wrestlers there to make up for it. The crowd was lively too, which always makes a show better.

Tye Dillinger NXT Title

Maybe someday, Tye. Maybe someday.