NXT Recap: Episode 502

Last week on NXT: It was NXT Takeover:Hangover, and I realized that the 500th episode of NXT was Takeover New York. Candice LeRae won a basic ass match against Aliyah. Jaxson Ryker won a basic ass match over Danny Burch. Street Profits beat Marcel Barthel and Fabian Aichner in what was easily the match of the night. There was zero character and storyline progression.

No Cold Open- Just the new theme song by SLipknot and the weird NXT roster video. You know the badass Raw one where they were fighting on a rooftop and there was fire and all that shit? This one is just the whole NXT roster standing in a room yelling at the camera in different directions.

North American Championship

Buddy Murphy vs. Velveteen Dream (c)

  • Dream walks out first soaking in the adoration from the fans. I love how he incorporates the Macho Man spin in his entrance.
  • This match is happening because Dream was cutting a promo at Wrestlemania and Buddy Murphy walked by after losing to Tony Nese. Dream talked some trash and well, here we are.
  • Buddy’s chyron is a Smackdown! theme so that’s cool.
  • I was gonna mention how refreshing it is to see a match start without a collar and elbow tie up. Then a collar and elbow happened!
  • Dream puts a headlock on Buddy and keeps asking “who is your Daddy?” Which is tremendous trash talk. Dream is such a good Profession Wrestler.
  • Buddy and Dream trade some moves in a catch as catch can style and the crowd chants “NXT”.
  • Buddy is telling Dream “everything you can do, I can do better”. Dream attempts to attack Murphy, Buddy rocks Dream, who powders to the outside.
  • Buddy goes for a dive but Dream slides in the ring onto his knees and stops Murphy. They lock eyes and Velveteen throws his arms up in the air and says “I’m the Dream”.
  • Buddy takes Dream’s arms and drives a knee right into Velveteen’s face. THAT WAS A MOMENT!
  • The one thing Velveteen does right is create moments. The dudes career isn’t even two years old yet and he already has a handful of memorable moments. From the “say my name” bit with Black, to the elbow drop off the top of the ladder, to the classic with Matt Riddle, to Ricochet flipping over the top rope to confront him, to the pool fight with EC3, to coming out on a couch drinking a chalice, to his entrances, to his “Dream over” vignette. The dude is absolute MAGIC.
  • Buddy is still able to gain control of the match and finally land that dive that eluded him. The crowd was stoked to see it. Buddy Murphy THRIVES in an environment where the crowd reacts to his moves. Wrestling on 205 Live is like wrestling in front of a sound vacuum. It must feel so weird to hear reactions during a match for Buddy Murphy.
  • Velveteen gets caught in the headlock and struggles most of the way. Eyes start glazing over and he is gasping for air. The crowd is clapping along to show their support. It’s a damn headlock and the crowd is reacting. Dream has IT. He can sell and appear to be in so much trouble. Really builds sympathy. He also has desperate offense that can be explosive, mixed in with bravado and confidence that shows after big offensive moves. He is turning into the perfect pro wrestler and it’s amazing to watch.
  • Buddy Murphy is killing it in this match, making everything look like it hurts as well as fighting for his life when he is on defense. These two are too fucking good.
  • The only downside is the Full Sail regulars who look bored because they are the most spoiled pro wrestling audience in America.
  • Buddy injects some 205 Live strategy and both men fight on the top turnbuckle. They both fall to the outside and both get in the ring at nine. These guys are leaving it all out there, we are witnessing something special.
  • A strike battle ensues and the crowd is yay/boo’ing like normal. Buddy is able to hit a great DDT, but it only got two.
  • Dream countered a leaping sunset flip into a Dream Valley Driver and Buddy kicked out. The crowd reacted and started clapping, Mauro is KILLING it with his excitement. Everything is clicking here.
  • Dream gets caught with a superkick and a sit out powerbomb and kicks out at two. Many in the crowd are giving it a standing ovation, but these dudes are still going! They are back to brawling on the outside. This match is out of control. Dream wrestled this a few days after his Takeover classic. Amazing.
  • Buddy was going to win by countout but he stopped the count so he could beat Dream.
  • That would be his undoing because Dream was able to get the jump on Murphy once Buddy got back into the ring. A DVD and Purple Rainmaker later, Dream is still champion.

And I’m Like… What more is there to say? We have two legitimate top 20 wrestlers in the world, wrestling in front of a crowd that appreciates it. Whoever booked this match should get a raise. Check this full match out if you can, cause damn.

Street Profits get a Snapchat promo where they go to William Regal’s office, knock on the door and The VIkiNG ExPeriEnce walks out of the office. They are wearing War Raiders shirts…. Street Profits vs. War Raiders for the straps next week.

Johnny Champion Promo

  • During Johnny’s entrance I got a bit to look at the crowd. I don’t see Anita in the front row. I was gonna get worried but she is in the third row, so we cool. Anita is that “grandma” that got in a confrontation with Tommaso Ciampa.
  • Johnny talks about how his long ass journey got him to the Championship.
  • SHOCK THE SYSTEM. 3/4th of Undisputed Era shows up. Roderick Strong is missing.
  • Adam Cole said he beat Johnny in the middle of the ring in New York. It was a two out of three falls match and Adam Cole got the first fall in the match. So he has a really good reason on why he should be champion. If it wasn’t two out of three falls, Adam would be champion.
  • They trade barbs and Johnny uses Adam’s catchphrases against him, even calling him a bay-bay.
  • Roderick finally shows up to attack Johnny from behind. At the moment Johnny has no friends and the Undisputed Era can just pick Johnny apart.

And I’m Like… Their Takeover match was the highest rated WWE match of all time. (In one person’s star rated opinion) so it will not hurt to have a feud with these two. This is a good way to start off the next couple of weeks to the next Takeover.

We are told that Kairi Sane was drafted to Smackdown Live!

Dijakovic vs. Aaron Frye

  • Something something Frye Festival joke.
  • Dijakovic doesn’t have a gimmick or a nickname. When he wrestled Luke Harper in what could be Harper’s last match, he was known as “The Rare Breed”. Not sure now.
  • Dijakovic hit a twisting kick to the face and that’s it.

And I’m Like… Dominate Dijakovic grabs the mic, to maybe establish a character? He is only in NXT because his family gave him that opportunity. They came here from Croatia. Dijakovic says his bloodline is full of opportunity? Then he calls out Velveteen Dream…. So his gimmick is decedent from immigrants whose blood is full of opportunity. That sure is, uh, something.

Undisputed Era catch up with Queen Cathy in the back talking about how they are stronger than ever. Regal shows up and says Johnny Gargano vs. Roderick Strong. Adam Cole is upset by it because he wanted to face Johnny.

NXT Women’s Championship

Kairi Sane vs. Shayna Baszler (c)

  • We are shown a rundown of the rivalry between Sane and Baszler. Starting at the first May Young Classic two years ago, which Sane won. The the championship match that Baszler won and the back and forth victories these two have traded. Great rivalry.
  • For Kairi to get called up and not Shayna shocks me. Not that Kairi isn’t qualified. Far from that. But, with Ronda not being around for the foreseeable future, there is a huge opening for Shayna and her friends to really make an impact. They would probably get lost in the shuffle though. Probably would be more special if they debuted randomly and not during a time when almost 10 NXT talents debut in three months.
  • Kairi looks emotional during her entrance. This is her last match on NXT and she is really soaking it all in. This is a end of an era in the NXT women’s division.
  • The next path Shayna will probably take is against Io Shirai. Which will be next level, if their matches from Stardom are any indication.
  • Sane attacks Shayna right off the bat and doesn’t let up. Commentary mentions how Kairi knows how dangerous Shayna is and needs to attack and not stop.
  • Shayna is able to get an advantage and almost wins the match after a knee to the face. Kairi is a master at showing emotion in the ring, whether it be pain, joy, anger or determination. Kairi Sane really knows how to emote.
  • Kairi is able to catch a running Shayna and lock in her Anchor submission. Shayna gets to the ropes and Sane holds on to the count of four. Kairi screams to the heavens and hits an InSane Elbow. Goes for a second one but Baszler is able to stop her on the top rope.
  • There is a battle on the top rope and Kairi is able to hit Baszler with a double stomp.
  • Kairi and Shayna are out of the ring, Kairi goes for an elbow drop but hits her elbow on the barricade. Baszler smells blood and starts twisting the hell out of Kairi’s arm.
  • The arm work is wince inducing. True story, Shayna once worked an arm over so well that I gagged at the visuals.
  • Shayna has some arm/wrist/shoulder submission on Kairi and my body is cringing, it’s so uncomfortable to watch. It was right on Kairi’s elbow dropping elbow.
  • The ref keeps checking on her to see if she is okay. The ref calls out the doctor to check on Kairi as the crowd counts to “Ten” like some dicks.
  • Io comes out to check on Kairi and Shayna is sick of that shit. She pulls Kairi into the ring and teases fucking up the arm some more. Shirai runs in and pushes Shayna. That DQ’s Kairi and now Sane can never challenged for the NXT Women’s championship again.
  • Marina Shafir and Jessamyn Duke attack Io and make her watch as Shayna breaks Kairi’s arm.

And I’m Like….. DDAAAAAMMMNNN! That is a hell of a way to kick off a program. From what I’ve heard, this was Kairi’s last stand on NXT. Meaning Io has to avenge her fallen friend. The match was really great before the finish. The finish was fantastic too, but was more story for the future than story for the match. NXT is firing on all cylinders lately, and it seems like losing some talent, will not hurt them at all.

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