NXT Recap: Episode 516

Last week on NXT: Io Shirai is evil now. Velveteen Dream is waiting on a challenger for his North American Championship. Damian Priest is really into archery. Jordan Myles won his first round Breakout tournament match against Boa. The Street Profits beat the Brit-Am Brawlers and immediately were challenged by the Undisputed Era.

Matt Riddle vs. Arturo Ruas

  • Arturo is fresh off the Evolve 10th anniversary show where he impressed many fans that were watching.
  • Both Riddle and Ruas have an MMA background and the beginning of the match is a lot more like the beginning of a fight.
  • I remember when Paul Heyman was rumored to take over TNA way back when, he wanted to get rid of all the old guys except for Kurt Angle and center the product on hybrid MMA/Pro Wrestling because he saw that as wrestling future. Now in 2019, Brock Lesnar is on top of the game with this hybrid style, and WWE’s “developmental” brand is starting their show with the exact style. Dixie Carter’s biggest mistake was not hiring Heyman at that time.
  • This is legit exactly like an MMA fight but with more exaggerated strikes, so it’s hard to write about without going move for move. The match even ends with a knee strike and Riddle just punching the fuck out of Ruas while mounted.

And I’m Like… The crowd weren’t reacting because the match was very entertaining and different. There wasn’t much to cheer at, but there was a lot to be entertained by. Really enjoyed it as it was something different, not sure I want to see it all the time.

Then, as you can see from the video above, Killian Dain showed up to show out. Riddle is getting his ass handed to him by Dain in a Tool shirt. The crowd boo’s while Dain destroy’s. Oh yeah, if you didn’t watch the video Killian Dain hit a senton on Riddle and broke through the stage.

Street Profits bring us a “Street Talk” episode. They are a lot different than on RAW. They are serious and quiet. They are talking about how The Undisputed Era can’t bring the smoke that the Profits are ready for.

Mia Yim jumped Marina Shafir at an NXT Live event and slammed a car door on Marina’s body.

Dexter Lumis vs. Bronson Reed

  • Dexter Lumis is weird. I bet Dusty Rhodes would have been a major help to this character. Lumis’ character’s before this were “serial killer like Thin Man from Charlies Angels” Then in NWA he was like “dude who does weird art about his opponents” and now he is “mysterious serial killer”. So this is probably Dexter in full form. Dude is all about character and could do some very interesting things. Demon Finn vs. Dexter or Fiend vs. Dexter would be great. Lots of possibilities.
  • Bronson Reed’s character is legit “Australian Strong Style”. Trying to be this huge tough unstoppable force, but Lumis at the moment has dominated the match so far.
  • Dexter Lumis belly button as unsettling as his character.
  • Dexter has Bronson in a chinlock and licks Bronson’s face. That excited Lumis but angered Reed, which turned the match around. This match is unlike any other match in the Breakout tournament. Dexter Lumis is enthralling.
  • He still has those weird Thin Man qualities in his wrestling and it’s super hard to pin down.
  • Bronson Reed hit a great comeback and wins the match with a big splash from the top rope.

And I’m Like… Fantastic match. Showcased Lumis and his character, makes him memorable. After the majority of the match being in Dexter’s favor, Reed hits a comeback and win to give him some shine as well. Both men looked very good here.

Tyler Breeze is doing an Aaron Sorkin walk and talk with Queen Cathy. Breeze is letting us know that he is going to form a group because everyone in NXT has a group. Tyler Breeze asks Jaxson Ryker if he was “Buddy Murphy”. It’s weird to see serial killer Dexter Lumis and Jaxson Ryker on the same show. Last time they were together Gunner was saving Christie from Samuel Shaw’s murderous advances.

Recap of Evil Shirai being Evil. Shes going to eat Kacy Catanzaro alive next week.

Apollo Crews vs. Kushida

  • Apollo getting that huge “welcome back” pop. Poor Apollo gets more love by the fans than the actual company. Won’t even put a YouTube video of the match up.
  • A few minutes in and I am reminded why Apollo is so beloved. He is all talent in the ring, but his mic skills are lacking. WWE makes everyone “speak for themselves” and Apollo’s image would be helped with a mouth piece for him. A Lio Rush, Paul Heyman or Courtney Moore.
  • Both wrestlers are fan favorites but Apollo has taken the more aggressive approach while Kushida fights from underneath. Kushida is just a smidge faster than Crews and that’s what leads to the momentum shift in the match.
  • Kushida is hitting all of his signature moves during his comeback. It’s nice to see Kushida wrestle competitive matches against stars the crowd knows and respects, while familiarizing us with his move set. Real star making build.
  • Apollo Crews shows he has a lot left to give by hitting crazy power moves and strikes to stop Kushida. I thought the match was in its final stages with Kushida’s comeback but then Apollo out here hitting triple German’s and standing shooting stars.
  • So Kushida hit a rolling armbar while both men were on the top rope and I audibly gasped. That lead into the Sakuraba Lock being applied for Kushida’s win.

And I’m Like… Crazy how WWE hasn’t promoted this match or showcased it on Social Media much because it was just as good as Gallagher vs. Gable. The most underappreciated shows have the best matches. WWE is amazing when you look into the forest. Glad to see Apollo shine again.

Keith Lee cuts a promo with Queen Cathy about how he is being passed over and over looked. It seems that he is getting a couple ideas to become a monster because he isn’t getting the opportunities that are promised. His first target is Damian Priest.

Adam Cole comes to the ring to cut a promo about his BBC tour. Which will never NOT be funny to me. Just like the line in “I got 5 on it” where dude is talkin about weed but says “taking sacks to the face”. Cole says he is putting his championship on the line tonight. Cut to a video of Gargano letting a wrestling school student wear the NXT Championship.

NXT Championship Match

Adam Cole (c) vs. Twan Tucker

  • Adam Cole doing his best Rocky movie impression being Apollo Creed. Twan Tucker comes out saying he didn’t come alone and Johnny Gargano’s music hits.
  • The is no referee. Johnny just jumps Cole and Tucker PASSES UP A CHAMPIONSHIP OPPORTUNITY!! To let Gargano get some punches in. I’m sorry but Twan, what are you doing man?!

Gargano is the king of long term feuds.

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