In the first hour of WWE NXT, Austin Theory loses twice and then ends his career. Plus: a bunch of other stuff of mild interest. Welcome to Bleeding Cool's WWE NXT Report. We watch NXT, so you don't have to. You're welcome!
WWE NXT Report for October 21st, 2020 Part 1
The show opens up with KUSHIDA already in the ring. Velveteen Dream begins his entrance, but Tommaso Ciampa attacks him from behind. They brawl to the ring, and a match gets started.
KUSHIDA vs. Velveteen Dream vs. Tommaso Ciampa
- No theme song, no pyro, just a match. I can't hate on that. I can hate on this match, though.
- Is there a story behind this match, though? Aside from these guys randomly attacking each other recently?
- Ciampa dominates. Dream sells. KUSHIDA KUSHIDAs. Commercials happen. It's your typical overly-long, technically proficient, ultimately forgettable NXT match. Sorry. Ciampa is boring, Dream's real-life drama makes it impossible to enjoy him as a character, and KUDHISA… well, he's fine. Just not in this match.
- KUSHIDA wins with a German suplex on Ciampa after Dream hits Ciampa in the face with his cast.
Winner: KUSHIDA (and the fans because it's over)
Adam Cole cuts a promo via Facetime on an Ipad on a pole while Undisputed Era stands backstage. Cole isn't cleared yet, which is why he's not here. Roderick Strong then says he and Bobby Fish will win the NXT tag team championships from Breezango. NXT takes a commercial break.
From a commercial with a cool spooky voiceover, here's the Halloween Havoc card: Io Shirai vs. Candice LeRae. Johnny Gargano vs. Damian Priest. Rhea Ripley vs. Rachel Gonzalez. Dexter Lumis vs. Cameron Grimes. Plus, Spin the Wheel, Make a Deal. It should be fun. At least we know most of the matches before the night of the show.
After the break, we get a Rhea Ripley video package. Then Ember Moon comes to the ring to face Jessi Kamea.
Ember Moon vs. Jesse Kamea
- It's a match to hype up Ember Moon, who just returned to NXT after being totally wasted on the main roster and then getting injured. Kamea doesn't get squashed, which is nice, but the offense she does get is there to show Moon struggling with and overcoming her ring rust. As such, it's an unusually well-thought-out match for WWE.
- Moon taps out Kamea with what I guess is a new submission finisher.
Winner: Ember Moon
Dakota Kai assaults Moon after the match. "If you think you can just use me to put yourself back in the spotlight, think again," she tells her. That was a pretty good match, short and to the point, and advancing a story. Backstage, Bobby Fish has been beaten up, and his leg is hurt. He didn't see who attacked him. NXT takes a commercial break.
Austin Theory is in the ring after the break. Another one whose real-life issues, combined with WWE's lack of transparency, have made him unwatchable for me. Bronson Reed comes out. Where's he been? Silly question, I guess. Probably COVID, like every unexplained absence from WWE.
Bronson Reed vs. Austin Theory
- The match starts off with… McKenzie Mitchell telling us Bobby Fish is on his way to the hospital, and so Kyle O'Reilly will take his place in the main event match to challenge Breezango for the NXT Tag Team Championships.
- Meanwhile, Reed beats the crap out of Theory. He wins with a splash.
Winner: Bronson Reed
Theory grabs a mic and starts complaining. He says he's the future of NXT and the future of WWE. "I'm 23, dammit, and I've done more in this business than you've done in your entire stupid 15-year career, Bronson Reed!" He tells Reed to get back in the ring because he's not leaving until he beats him. Ummm…
- The match is back on.
- Reed hits a Samoan Drop to pin Theory again in like ten seconds.
Winner: Bronson Reed
McKenzie Mitchell talks to Xia Li and Kacy Catanzaro. Li thanks Catanzaro for facing her. She says it's very important to her to have this match and win. Catanzaro wishes her luck and leaves. Li says it's the biggest match of her career. She has to win. She's weirdly fixated on this. I guess we'll find out why eventually. NXT takes a commercial break.
After the break, Austin Theory mopes to the parking lot. He says, "that's it. I'm done. I quit." He gets in his SUV and drives off, probably to get COVID at a boat party. Legado del Fantasma come to the ring for a six-man tag. Jake Atlas, Isiah "Swerve" Scott, and Ashante "Thee" Adonis are already in the ring.
Legado del Fantasma vs. Jake Atlas, Isiah "Swerve" Scott, and Ashanta "Thee" Adonis
- You know, I don't want to seem like I'm just constantly hating on WWE. But I'm constantly hating on WWE. Do you know what grinds my gears about a match like this? I could get into a feud between these guys, but the problem is they've been facing each other in various combinations week after week, which is the only way WWE knows how to develop a feud: by having the people feuding wrestle each other over and over. But by the time the feud gets going, you're already sick of it. Or at least I am.
- It's a fine match, I guess. Whatever.
- One silly spot, happening right before a commercial break: Swerve hits a flip off the top turnbuckle to the outside (because that's how every WWE match goes to commercial break) right into the middle of three people but somehow manages to miss all three of them.
- This match goes on seemingly forever, but eventually, Joaquin Wilde blind tags himself in and gets the pin on Swerve after a leg sweep combo with. Mendoza.
Winners: Legado del Fantasma
This feud has burnt itself out for me already. But if you're not burnt out on NXT, there's another hour left to go, and you can read about it by clicking through to part two of our WWE NXT report.