NXT Review – Dusty Rhodes Tag Team Classic Gets Underway

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9/2/15 – Scott Strandberg – @wrestlerosters

Jason Jordan and Chad Gable def. Neville and Solomon Crowe by pinfall in the first round of the Dusty Rhodes Tag Team Classic

Gable and Crowe started with an impressive mat-based exchange, until Crowe hit a flapjack. Jordan hit Neville with a belly-to-back suplex, but Neville fought back with a sunset flip for two. Neville hit two dropkicks, but Jordan answered with another belly-to-back.

Crowe tagged in, only to receive a German suplex from Jordan. Gable locked in a bow-and-arrow submission, but Crowe fought out and reached Neville. Neville hit enziguiris on both Gable and Jordan, then set up for the Red Arrow on Jordan, but Gable pulled him out of the ring.

Neville hit a top-rope moonsault on Jordan on the floor, as Crowe hit a plancha on Gable. Neville tossed Jordan back into the ring and tried to springboard, but Jordan caught him and hit a facebuster. Crowe tagged himself in, but Jordan hit him with another German suplex.

Gable tagged back in and Jordan lifted Crowe into a bridging side suplex from Gable, earning the pinfall.

Scott’s Thoughts: As with this week’s other first-round matchup, it was nice to see Neville return, but giving Jordan and Gable the win was the right choice. Crowe just hasn’t connected with fans whatsoever, so it wouldn’t make much sense to give him the rub from Neville for more than one show. The match was fast-paced and exciting, and made for a solid main event.


Rhyno and Baron Corbin def. The Ascension by pinfall in the first round of the Dusty Rhodes Tag Team Classic

Viktor hit a somersault shoulder tackle on Rhyno to open things up, and Konnor added a big boot on Baron. Baron drove Viktor off the apron and into the ring post, following up with a spinning side slam for two. Viktor fought back with an STO, reaching Konnor for the hot tag.

Konnor hit Stinger splashes on both Rhyno and Baron, then planted Rhyno with a flapjack. The Ascension set up for The Fall of Man, but Baron distracted Viktor and Rhyno Gored Konnor to earn the pinfall.

Scott’s Thoughts: It was fun to see The Ascension back in NXT, but the right choice was to give the victory to NXT full-timers Rhyno and Baron. This was a solid, well-paced match that kicked things off nicely.


Alexa Bliss def. Blue Pants by pinfall

Alexa dominated the early-goings with strikes and submission holds. Alexa earned a near-fall with a crucifix, but Blue Pants fought back with kicks and a Northern Lights suplex for two. Alexa fought back with a Blitz Flip and a Sparkle Splash to polish off Blue Pants in short order.

Scott’s Thoughts: That was certainly squashier than expected.


Apollo Crews def. Martin Stone by pinfall

Crews hit a dropkick, but Stone fought back with a clothesline. Crews hit an enziguiri, a gorilla press and a standing moonsault to finish the match.

Scott’s Thoughts: Crews has out-of-this world athleticism. The sky’s pretty high for a guy like this.


Eva Marie def. Billie Kay by pinfall

Billie hit a big boot for an early two-count, but Eva answered with a vertical suplex. Eva hit a running senton for two, but Billie answered with clotheslines and a T-bone suplex. Billie covered Eva, who did not kick out in time, but the referee simply counted to two and then stopped. The crowd booed relentlessly until Eva hit a shiranui to end the match.

Scott’s Thoughts: I had honestly started to type something about how Eva looked less awkward than usual tonight, and then she forgot to kick out of the suplex. Eva Marie is terrible.


  • Samoa Joe and Finn Balor announced that they’ll be teaming together for the Dusty Classic. Joe said that he respects Finn’s reverence for the NXT Championship, but assured him that he’s focused on winning the Dusty Classic. Not to read too far into anything, but this is one way to plant the first seed for a Joe/Finn feud…
  • Tyler Breeze interrupted William Regal’s backstage conversation with Johnny Gargano and Tommaso Ciampa, complaining about his lack of tag team partner. Regal told Breeze that he would tag with Bull Dempsey against Gargano and Ciampa next week. It’s pretty cool to see Gargano and Ciampa in NXT.