There is no love in the air as the superstars of NXT 2.0 celebrate Vengeance Day. In the main event, the young champion of NXT 2.0, Bron Breakker, must defend the NXT Championship against el jefe of Legado del Fantasma, Santos Escobar. Escobar has made no secret that he considers the “young pup” Breakker out of his depth as the top dog, but Breakker has never backed down and is out to prove his bite is far worse than his bark. The finals of the 2022 Dusty Rhodes Tag Team Classic will also take place, as Nash Carter and Wes Lee of MSK look to become the first ever two time, and back-to-back winners of the prestigious tournament. But standing in their way are the dangerous newcomers, the Creed Brothers, Julius and Brutus, of the Diamond Mine. The Creed Brothers have demolished everyone in their path to this point, but who will reign supreme with history up for grabs?
Two huge title matches will also take place, as Carmelo Hayes defends the NXT North American Championship against Cameron Grimes, and Gigi Dolan and Jacey Jayne of Toxic Attraction defend the NXT Women’s Tag Team Championships against Persia Pirotta and Indi Hartwell. Finally, kicking off the show is not just a weapons match, not just a steel cage match, but a Weaponised Steel Cage Match between the “Bruiserweight” Pete Dunne, and the well connected rookie, Tony D’Angelo. These men have previously met inside the War Games match, and beaten each other with all manner of weapons, but one man is sure to get their final vengeance in this match tonight.
+ Bron Breakker (c) vs Santos Escobar (w/ Elektra Lopez, Joaquin Wilde & Raul Mendoza) (NXT Championship): overall this was good, but it probably did go longer than it needed to just because it was the main event of the show. I think something all wrestling companies need to learn is that the main event of a show doesn’t always have to be the longest match, and simultaneously but separately, not all championship matches need to be or even should be long matches. Breakker is a prodigy for his skill level, and against a guy like Escobar — who should legitimately be main eventing Raw or Smackdown at the top champion right now — this was always going to be good
+ MSK (Wes Lee & Nash Carter) vs Diamond Mine (Julius Creed & Brutus Creed) (w/ Malcolm Bivens, Roderick Strong & Ivy Nile)) (2022 Dusty Rhodes Tag Team Classic Final): I’ll be honest, I need to Google the names of the MSK boys every single time I write these reviews, because they are such boring characters. Wade Barrett on commentary made reference to The Creed Brothers facing off with Alpha Academy (Chad Gable & Otis) one day, and let me tell you I am all for that. I have high hopes for The Creed Brothers, but they are high hopes with a big asterisk next to them, in that WWE, and specifically NXT, has already squandered the Authors of Pain, The Ascension, The Revival, SAnitY, The War Raiders/Viking Raiders and Heavy Machinery, all of whom appeared to be on the same trajectory
+ Carmelo Hayes (c) (w/ Trick Williams) vs Cameron Grimes (NXT North American Championship): this was a good match, but I think it’s time we all acknowledged just how good Cameron Grimes is. Trevor Lee was always underrated, but I really turned the corner on him (and stopped solely making references to how much he looked like David Finlay) when he got to NXT. It’s weird that Hayes is portrayed as a gifted rookie when he has only a year less experience than Grimes, and both should be in the upper midcard on Raw or Smackdown rather than languishing in NXT, but what are you going to do? This was probably the best match on the show
+ Pete Dunne vs Tony D’Angelo (Weaponised Steel Cage Match): for only having a few matches, and even fewer big ones like this, Tony D is really good. Of course it doesn’t hurt to have someone like Pete Dunne in there, and both men were aided by the use of the weapons for big spots. I enjoyed this – except, Vic Josephs on commentary made a ‘Casey Jones’ reference when one competitor had a cricket bat. Casey Jones from the Ninja Turtles most famously used a hockey stick. I feel like this isn’t the first time someone has made that obvious mistake
– Toxic Attraction (Gigi Dolan & Jacey Jayne) (c) (w/ Mandy Rose) vs Persia Pirotta & Indi Hartwell (NXT Women’s Tag Team Championships): I cannot stress how big of a fan of Pirotta I am; she is constantly improving, and is already arguably better than at least half of the others in this match. This was a really bad match overall, and a large part of that was because of Hartwell and especially Jayne
> the show opened with a cinematic text exchange between the members of Toxic Attraction. It had super lame acting and really cringe worthy dialogue, but at least it was something a bit different for NXT 2.0
> Grayson Waller and LA Knight had their segment, which was perfectly fine but nothing special. What is special, though, is Waller in general. He showed something really breakout in the War Games match, and a recent stint with AJ Styles shows that they must be high on him, and I can’t wait to see where he goes next
Should you watch this event: Overall, this was a good show. Between Persia Pirotta, Grayson Waller, Tony D’Angelo, The Creed Brothers and Bron Breakker, NXT’s future is arguably the brightest it has been in some time, and add in the more experienced stars like Grimes, Hayes, Pete Dunne and especially the likes of WALTER (I refuse to call him Gunther, no matter what they say) and Escobar, it might finally be time for NXT to have a bit of an upswing.