04th Jan2021

‘WWE NXT’ Review (Dec 30th 2020)

by Nathan Favel

Welcome to this week’s NXT review, right here on Nerdly. I’m Nathan Favel and Brodie Lee has passed away Lee got a quick video at the beginning of the show. It’s better than nothing. As for this show, you get the Gargano/Ruff re-match for the North American Title in the main event. Hey, I did that without a joke. I guess you could call me…a c—-sucker! HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA!!!!!!! Wait…why would you call me that? OOOOOOOO…you son of a b—-! I’ll get you my pretty and you’re little dog too! HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA!!!!!! Suck it Emerald City! Go f— a munchkin! HAHAHAHAHAHAHA!!!!!!!! NXT starts… days ago.

Match #1: Bronson Reed def. Isaiah “Swerve” Scott

The following is courtesy of wwe.com:

Bronson Reed took the punishment to Isaiah “Swerve” Scott early on, until Scott played possum to lure him into a devastating chop block. “Swerve” continued to show a new, more sinister side of himself to the NXT Universe throughout, but Reed’s power won out. Reed went to the top to flatten Scott with a Tsunami splash, coming away with a “Colossal” victory.

My Opinion: 2.7 out of 5

Match #2: The Grizzled Young Veterans def. Breezango

The following is courtesy of wwe.com:

With The 2021 Dusty Rhodes Tag Team Classic only two weeks away, The Grizzled Young Veterans set the tone for what could be another deep run in the tournament. Zack Gibson & James Drake staked out a big win, knocking off Tyler Breeze & Fandango after hitting Ticket to Mayhem.

My Opinion: 3 out of 5

Match #3: Mercedes Martinez def. Valentina Feroz

The following is courtesy of wwe.com:

Mercedes Martinez continues to leave no doubt that she is all business since returning last week. She dominated in this bout, disparaging Valentina Feroz as she beat her down, putting her away with an Air Raid Crash.

My Opinion: 2.5 out of 5

Match #4: Pete Dunne def. Roderick Strong

The following is courtesy of wwe.com:

As expected, there was no love lost between longtime rivals Pete Dunne and Roderick Strong, who established a break-neck pace from the opening bell. The match featured similar intensity to their WarGames clash earlier this month. However, this time it was Dunne getting the last laugh, pinning Strong after connecting with the Bitter End.

My Opinion: 3.9 out of 5

Match #5: Gran Metalik & Lince Dorado def. Legado del Fantasma

The following is courtesy of wwe.com:

Empty-handed from the NXT Year-End Awards or not, NXT Cruiserweight Champion Santos Escobar was content to take a victory lap, touting what he and the rest of Legado del Fantasma had accomplished in 2020, declaring themselves the leaders of lucha libre. Gran Metalik & Lince Dorado took issue with that, making a surprise appearance on the black-and-gold brand to step to Escobar, Joaquin Wilde and Raul Mendoza. NXT General Manager William Regal ordered a tag team bout to take place on the spot, and Metalik & Dorado made the most of their impromptu opportunity. Dorado spiked Mendoza with a poison rana before Metalik walked the top rope to deliver an elbow drop for the win.

My Opinion: 3.1 out of 5

Match #6: (Main Event) Johnny Gargano def. Leon Ruff – NXT North American Championship Match

The following is courtesy of wwe.com:

The Way made their presence felt early at ringside on Johnny Gargano’s behalf, with Austin Theory trying to distract Leon Ruff. But Ruff was on top of his game, as confident as ever after his recent exploits, including his previous win over Gargano. Johnny Wrestling was poised to avoid another upset, though. Ruff demonstrated his fortitude, kicking out after several big maneuvers, including a massive superkick and a powerbomb, even scratching and clawing his way to a rope break from the Gargano Escape, further frustrating the champion. Ruff seemed on his way to victory after landing a huge diving cutter on the outside, but Gargano narrowly beat the three-count following an ensuing frog splash by Ruff. One mistake proved costly for the underdog, as Gargano splayed Ruff face-first on the turnbuckle before hitting the One Final Beat DDT to put Ruff — and his so-called “championship curse” — to bed.

My Opinion: 3.8 out of 5

News Of The Night:

  1. The Dusty Rhodes Tag Team Classic is coming back in two weeks with Adam Cole and Roderick Strong as one of the teams.

Final Verdict: 3.5/5

This was a good, solid show. The opener was disappointing in that it was a squash with a bit of relish on the side. Swerve shouldn’t be getting squashed at any point, but Reed needed the big win, so they sacrificed one star for another. I hate that kind of booking. Remember when big prospects were protected, instead of pitted against each other in random bouts? Who did Swerve piss off to get turned heel and pissed on in a job booking decision? The tag bout in the second slot was of fine length and decent quality. Nobody looked weak or feeble, which is always a plus. Elephants fart hippopotamuses. The Lucha House Party showing up was good fun. It was nice having some lucha libre on here. Mercedes Martinez looked just fine in her return with the squash match. Pete Dunne and Roderick Strong had another excellent match between each other. I didn’t think it was ever in question that they’d have a good one and they proved me right with this latest bout between the two. Dunne winning was the right call and I have no issues with it. The promo with Finn Balor and Kyle O’Reilly was good and the turn towards the brawl with Karrion Kross and Damien Priest worked for making their match at New Year’s Evil look more interesting. Gargano and Ruff had a pretty strong match overall and made the angle of The Gargano Curse worth waiting on. I sure do like gnawing on my sack. As prize fights go, you’re getting one that had the challenger getting lucky for the first half and power through with some snappy counters in the second to look formidable. Ruff probably should have won here just to solidify him as more than just a one-hit wonder, but Gargano winning is no big mistake either. I felt like this whole show was a nice capper for the year of 2020, but perhaps some ambition may have lifted this card beyond just being a nice two hours. Still, I did enjoy myself. 2020 was a good year for NXT, but it didn’t do much to raise NXT beyond just being a glorified developmental league spliced together with a Ring Of Honor rip-off. If I were to tell people about NXT, I’d say it’s a nice homage to 80s National Wrestling Alliance/Jim Crockett and early 2000s indy wrestling, but not much outside of being an homage to either. Maybe 2021 will be different for NXT, but I doubt that.


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