In terms of developing stories, this episode of NXT was successful. Similar to last week, it appears the writers are doing their best to make each hour worth the fans time. With that being said, this show still had it’s flaws.
Nakamura vs Samoa Joe
The WWE didn’t spoil the result of this match on their website, so I guess that gave some fans a sense of excitement. At the same time, you’d have to be quite naive to think the title would switch hands. The match itself was rather strong, and it was great to hear how engaged this Melbourne crowd was.
All I can say is that I’m glad this feud is now over. After a long five months, it’ll be refreshing to see both men enter new chapters. For Joe, there’s nothing else for him to do in NXT, and I’d say there’s a good chance he makes a move up to the main roster sometime in January.
Tye Dillinger vs Eric Young
While this match didn’t last very long and ended with a DQ, it worked for both competitors involved. Dillinger got the much needed win to place himself in the fatal four way, and Sanity’s story with Damo continues to grow. This contest needed to end in a DQ, because neither of the two are in a position to lose clean. Along with this, both parties were able to leave this match looking strong, which is important.
No Way Jose vs Andrade “Cien” Almas
The great part about this mini-tournament is that we were given fresh match ups with meaning. Had Almas wrestled Jose with no purpose, chances are I wouldn’t care. This match also didn’t go for long, yet it allowed for both competitors to showcase their desire to win.
While Jose has now developed a losing streak, it was only right to book Cien as the winner. He’s starting to pick up some momentum as a heel, and it would great to see how he uses that persona in a main event setting.
Roderick Strong vs Elias Samson
Once this match and the main event came up, I wasn’t excited as I was for the first two. Sure, the drifter looked threatening in this short match, but did anybody think he was going to beat Roderick Strong? Strong is too big of a name to leave out of next week’s fatal four way.
One positive I took from this was the improvement of Samson. The more he appears on NXT television, the more comfortable he looks with his current character. I’m convinced if he keeps working with what he’s given, Elias can be a solid heel on this roster.
Oney Lorcan vs Bobby Roode
I can respect the fact that the two wrestled a competitive match, but similar to Strong vs Samson, I don’t think anybody bought that Lorcan could defeat Roode. This shouldn’t have closed the show, as it was far too predictable.
For the most part, I enjoyed this episode of NXT. My main gripe was the order of events, because it could’ve been done a lot better to make the show more entertaining. Firstly, the last two matches should’ve been at the start or middle of the show. Secondly, Almas vs Jose or Nakamura vs Joe would’ve been a better off as the main event. When I found out what the last two matches were, I thought to myself “oh, that’s it?”. The low point was Roode vs Lorcan, while the high points were the first two qualifying matches. Overall, I give this show a 6.8/10.