Welcome back one and all, and Welcome to this weeks NXT Review: April 1st edition. Now, this is going to be a very special edition of NXT, and here is why,
As some of you may know, This is WrestleMania week. However, due the current global circumstances that are taking place, There will be no NXT TakeOver this WrestleMania weekend. However, WWE & NXT seems to be the only sporting events that are still taking place. They are pre-recorded, but we, as fans are still getting to see the wrestling that we all love. So my highest respect and appreciation goes out to the men and women behind the scenes as much as the talent in front of the camera.
This week’s NXT was set to be an incredible show, so lets take a look was to be expected of the April 1st edition of NXT as announced on WWE.com
Keith Lee defends his NXT North American Championship against Dominik Dijakovic and Damien Priest
So, you may have noticed above that I mentioned that this was going to be a very special edition of NXT. This match was originally scheduled to take place at NXT TakeOver Tampa Bay, but this week on NXT we were given a Triple-Threat match for Keith Lee’s NXT North American Championship.
It is April 1st, but this is no joke. Get ready for a match of the year candidate.
Second Chance Gauntlet Match tonight to determine final entrant in No. 1 Contender’s Ladder Match for the NXT Womens Championship
On this weeks NXT, we were set to find out who the final entrant for the No. 1 Contenders ladder match for the NXT Womens Championship would be. Dakota Kai, Shotzi Blackheart, Kayden Carter, Aliyah, Deonna Purrazzo and Xia Li would battle it out for that final spot. Remember, on last weeks NXT Review, we noted that Xia Li was taken out backstage before her match with Aliyah, who seemed to be impressed with the fact that she didn’t have to face Li, Now we had these two Superstars in the same ring this week on NXT. Who out of these six Superstars would claim that final spot?
Velveteen Dream takes on Bobby Fish
As we learnt from Adam Cole last week on NXT, as he calming stated that his fellow Undisputed Era member Bobby Fish is hungry to take on Velveteen Dream in one on one action. This week on NXT we were treated to another NXT TakeOver level match as Bobby Fish was set to face the Velveteen Dream in singles competition.
Once again, we are now caught up with what to expect from this week’s NXT. Lets get back on the road to WrestleMania, stopping of at NXT for an explosive night of entertainment.
Velveteen Dream vs Bobby Fish
The first match of the night was indeed The Velveteen Dream taking on a former NXT Tag-Team Champion and Undisputed Era member, Bobby Fish. Dream began to taunt Fish early in the match, attempting to get into the mind of Fish. Bobby Fish had some minor offence early into the match but the was derailed by Velveteen Dream who seemed to go on to have complete control of this match. That control seemed to diminish at one point as Dream showed signs of an injured left leg. That did not stop Dream however from jumping off the top rope onto his opponent. Fish then sent his opponent flying into the barriers on the outside.
Fish seemed to have the upper hand, zeroing in on his opponents vulnerabilities. Fish turned this match around as he was in the driving seat, having Dream exactly where he wanted him, Fish attempted the first pin fall of the match with a close 2 count. Fish then went for a submission move on Dream, yet Dream somehow got to the bottom rope to force Fish to release the submission move. Quickly, The Dream, took advantage once he saw his small opportunity, Dream hit his signature Dream Valley Driver and picked up the One-Two-Three! pin fall for the victory. Dream quickly grabbed a microphone after the match, to make it clear to Adam Cole, that The Dream is coming for the NXT Championship.
Dexter Lumis vs Jake Atlas
The eerie Lumis took on Atlas in a singles match. Lumis was incredible fierce with both his attack and mannerisms. Lumis had such an intimidating intense stare. Atlas attempted to take down Lumis with his agility and speed. However Lumis completely dissected Atlas. Lumis attempted the pin fall, but Atlas kicked out at 2. This seemed to be a huge mistake on Atlas’ side as Lumis just seemed to become more and more enraged. Lumis abruptly ended the match with a vicious submission move.
This man is one to watch. His persona is one like no other, with just a blank stare during and after the match. As a viewer, my eyes are peeled on Lumis, going forward.
Six Women Gauntlet Match to determine the final entrant to the No. 1 Contenders Match
This match started with Shotzi Blackheart taking on Deonna Purrazzo in a gauntlet match. Purrazzo was dominant early in this match, looking to put Blackheart away quickly. Blackheart looked to fight back intensely until Purrazzo delivered a nasty pump kick right tot the face of Blackheart. As this match went on, it was clear that Purrazzo was leading this match. Blackheart propped herself up onto the top turnbuckle in a seated position, Purazzo climbed up to attempt to take our Blackheart, yet Blackheart managed to force Purrazzo down to the mat and deliver a diving senton to pick up the One-Two-Three! pin fall. Purrazo has been eliminated by Blackheart. Xia Li was next to join the match with some offence at first, but this was a surprisingly short encounter as Blackheart eliminated Li via submission. Blackheart was on fire in this match. Next up, we had Aliyah sprinting to the ring hoping to take advantage of Blackheart who had already been in the ring with two other superstars.
This was quite an impressive performance between Blackheart and Aliyah, Yet Blackheart once again picked up the victory via submission, eliminating Aliyah. Blackheart was really killing it. Kayden Carter was the next Superstar to enter this gauntlet match. Lets not forget the importance of this match, as the winner will be the final entrant to the No. 1 Contenders match for the NXT Womens Championship. Once NXT came back from commercials, we saw that Blackheart immediately took out Carter. What is Blackheart made of? What a match this is! The next Superstar to enter the ring was the New Zealand native, Dakota Kai, who knew that she had to take advantage of this situation if she wanted to be in the No. 1 Contenders match for the NXT Womens Championship. Kai does not let up and continues a strong attack the the impressive Shotzi Blackheart. Blackheart delivered a series of adrenaline filled clothesline’s to Kai. Kai rolled to the outside of the ring. Blackheart immediately performed a suicide dive through the middle rope onto Dakota Kai. Both Superstars managed to make it back into this ring, but Dakota Kai delivered a powerful pump kick to the face of Blackheart, picking up the One-Two-Three! for the pin fall victory. Dakota Kai will be joining the No 1 contenders match next week on NXT. Now, lets not take anything away from Shotzi Blackheart, who put on one hell of a performance!
Winner: Dakota Kai
Kushida vs Joaquin Wilde
This was an exciting wrestling match to watch. The speed, power and sheer talent that these two Superstars posses is something to be appreciated. Although, I feel that this match would have fit better if places after the Lumis vs Atlas match. Reason being, that the women’s gauntlet seemed to be a hard match to follow. Kushida and Wilde were very impressive in this match, with Kushida picking up a submission victory!
Kushida and Wilde did show a great sign of sportsmanship by shaking hands after this match, which is always cool to see.
Update: (After the commercial, NXT cameras cut outside of the performance centre as Wilde was leaving the area, Sarah Schreiber was looking to grab an interview with Wilde, until two masked men, grabbed Wilde and threw him into the back of a SUV and drove off). What!?
Keith Lee vs Dominik Dijakovic vs Damien Priest
Finally, we had a Triple-Threat match for the NXT North American Championship as Keith Lee took on both Dijakovic and Priest. As mentioned, this was originally due to be held at NXT TakeOver Tampa Bay. Lets remind ourselves that the champion does not need to be involved in the pinfall or submission in order to lose his championship as per Triple-Threat rules. When NXT returned from commercials, Dijakovic was knocked to the outside of the ring, and Lee was fighting Priest in the corner of the ring on the turnbuckle, it looked like Lee was looking for a Superplex. Dijakovic made his way back into the ring and it looked that Priest and Dijakovic had formed a temporary bond in order to double-team against Keith Lee.
Priest delivered a series of devastating Chokeslam’s during this match. Lee seemed to get back in control of this match as he delivered a Spirit Bomb to Priest, but Dijakovic managed to jump back in to the ring to break up the pin fall attempt. Priest and Dijakovic’s double team continued as the pair attempted to continued to wear down Keith Lee. Lee was so resilient as he managed to jump up to the top rope in attempt’s to cause damage to both men, yet Priest and Dijakovic once again teamed up to tackle Lee. Priest was acted suspicious outside the ring until it was discovered than he had his retractable night-stick weapon in hand, Priest damaged the knee of Dijakovic in a reversal to a move performed by Dijakovic. Keith Lee then had a window of opportunity to retain his championship as Lee rushed over to his opponent to deliver his devastating finishing move to pick up the One-Two-Three! pin fall victory!
What a match, and what a show.
The next stop in terms of NXT, is WrestleMania 36 this weekend, where we will see our NXT Womens Champion defending the Championship against the multi-time, former WWE Womens Champion, Charlotte Flair.
This will be unmissable.