This is the last episode of NXT to air matches taped from the WrestleMania Axxess event from a few weeks ago. Two matches on this card were set up previously, Samoa Joe vs. Apollo Crews and American Alpha vs. Enzo Amore & Colin Cassady.
I won’t remark on every backstage segment but I’ll hit all of the matches and anything else that I choose to cover. Also, I think I’m guying to start rating matches in these reviews. First up is the tag match that we knew we were going to see…
American Alpha def. Enzo Amore & Colin Cassady
This is the first time these two team have wrestled against each other and it was pretty much for the purpose of Enzo & Colin to do the honors on their way out. This was a hot start to this show because both of these teams are beloved. There was a cool spot near the end of this in which Big Cass dove through the ropes to block a corner spear by Jason Jordan, but it was futile. The seven-footer took himself out and Jordan just speared Enzo in another corner a few moments later.
This wasn’t a classic bout or anything but I’m glad we were treated to a TV match between these two teams. Hopefully we’ll get another one sometime in the future.
Mitch’s Rating: ***1/4
No Way Jose def. Alexander Wolfe
I guess I didn’t realize that this debuting wrestler’s actual name is going to be No Way Jose. I just assumed that he would debut as Jose Something or other, but I was wrong. Wrong or not, I was very much enjoying this guy’s NXT debut.
This was also Alexander Wolfe’s NXT debut as well, but he was just the enhancement talent on this night. I’ll go ahead and say that No Way Jose lived up to the ridiculous energy of his theme song. He danced quite a lot, did a funny airplane spin spot where he made a big deal about stopping and spinning in the other direction, and utilized a baseball-inspired heart punch as his finisher. The guy was a blast to watch. Thank God he’s in NXT because that crowd will likely embrace the silliness of his shtick.
Mitch’s Rating: **1/4
Baron Corbin called Austin Aries’ win at TakeOver: Dallas “lucky” so Aries planted the seeds for a rematch in during a backstage interview. He never looked at the camera, which was weird.
The Drifter was backstage strumming on his guitar when he was interrupted by GM William Regal. Regal informed him that he’d be facing Shinsuke Nakamura next week. That’s great that we get Nakamura next week but geez, I can’t say I’m excited about his opponent at all.
Nia Jax def. Deonna Purrazzo
I was sort of hoping that they’d give Deonna the win here. She’s been on TV frequently and seems competent enough. Instead, this went short and predictable. Nia got a win and while I don’t have a problem with her I didn’t have a reason to care about this match at all.
Mitch’s Rating: *1/2
Bayley was backstage talking about a match between Asuka and Eva Marie next week, which has me SUPER STOKED. There’s no way that won’t be good.
Samoa Joe def. Apollo Crews
This match started a little slow for me but Joe’s offense looked great throughout the whole ordeal. When Joe attacks, it’s explosive and believable. Thinking about an inevitable encounter between him an Nakamura has me excited. Hopefully that’s penciled in for sometime in the next 6 months.
The formula was pretty simply for this bout. Joe dominated most of this match, but Crews reversed a suplex in the final four minutes or so. There was some back and forth and Apollo tried going for his Powerbomb that he first sets up in a high back body drop position, but Joe countered it. This led to an STO out of the corner that might as well have came from a grizzly bear because it was with authority. Joe locked in the Coquina Clutch after this, making Apollo tap out in what was likely his last match on NXT.
Mitch’s Rating: ***1/2
For the most part, this was a solid show. Nothing was a break out classic that you’ll kick yourself for missing but it was about as good of a 45 minute show as possible. The opening and closing matches were above average and the debut of the goofy No Way Jose guy was fun. The only thing I flat out could’ve done without was the Nia Jax match.
Next week should be can’t miss because Nakamura is on the card and we get Asuka vs. Eva Marie. Eva gets about the best heel reaction in WWE other than Roman Reigns, so it’ll be good. People will be begging for Asuka to kick her head in.
That about does it for NXT this week. Keep up with all that do by following me on Twitter @MitchNickelson. I also write regularly for other sites like WhatCulture, 411Mania, and ProWrestlingDotBiz, so Twitter is the best way to keep up with everything. Thanks for reading.