Notes In Observance – WWE NXT 5/4/16: Guaranteed Change

WWE NXTBy Nicholas Jason Lopez


“Notes In Observance” features random thoughts and analysis on recent television shows. Quick results can be found at the bottom of the post.






(Aired 5/4/16)

Guaranteed Change 

– Needless to say, this show’s natural exclamation point came on Eric Young’s NXT debut, as he crashed NXT Champion Samoa Joe’s Full Sail University homecoming promo. This was initially hyped as Joe’s first appearance live since beating Finn Balor for the belt at an NXT live event and that part didn’t disappoint. Joe had an extra swagger in his step and expressed that he was a man who stood by his word and now that he was Champ, it was now “The Era Of Joe” and anybody who disagreed would get beaten/choked out. Perfect cue for Young to walk out, unannounced upon underwhelming theme music. The crowd completely dug this for a mark-out moment. Even though his look and mannerisms felt like he crossed right over from TNA, his “World-Class Maniac” character was the best work of his career and thus, didn’t feel out of place here. We liked that Young directly established that both of them were already familiar with each other and his talk of “change,” pointing to Joe’s belt saying he “collects those.” For great heat, Joe immediately left the ring and said that EY didn’t belong in the same ring as him and next time, he’d kick his ass. We didn’t think it’d become the night’s main event, but for what it was, it was a great setup. By golly, it feels like we’re watching TNA circa 2015.

– Not sure what yet another squash victory does for Nia Jax, but at least Tessa Blanchard looked good for about a minute there. Give us something new with Jax. Her popularity is sinking fast and it was never that high to begin with.

– Thanks to the enthusiastic crowd, Austin Aries and Tye Dillinger had a fun little match that eventually served to be a glorified squash for Aries. Dillinger was immensely over with the crowd and we hope one day, he’ll get a legitimate push. Dillinger had more cheers here than even Aries if you could believe it. Luckily, Dillinger even had a moment where he almost upset Aries, but it led to the eventual finish, where Aries hit his signature 450 Splash for the pin.

– Going off the previous week’s angle where The Revival, angry former NXT Tag Team Champions who were putting the tag team world on notice until they got their gold back, attacked The Hype Bros. after their victory, this was a welcome progression. The match between the two teams showed the heels’ ferocity, as they dominated Zack Ryder until he tagged in to Mojo Rawley, who switched the momentum until the heels performed a “blind tag” and suckered him into the Shatter Machine to get the definitive win. This continued their mission to getting their gold back, setting themselves as pure threats to NXT Tag Team Champions American Alpha.

– Looks like Alex Riley’s last glory days will involve getting swiftly kicked around by Shinksuke Nakamura. It wouldn’t be on this show though, as Riley talked a big game backstage in a promo where he said it was “time to rage.” Yup, legit.

– No Way Jose flashes a catchy theme song and a fluid fighting stance along with being over with the Full Sail crowd, but beyond the “pomp and circus dance,” his moveset was no hip shaker. Noah Kekoa did do a plausible job of selling for the Dominican dance machine, but we’ve yet to be convinced that NWJ will be anything more than an “only in NXT” gimmick. Also, you’d think they’d have a more flashy finisher for him than a lousy Full Nelson Slam.

– Aries’ backstage promo expressed happiness about his victory over Dillinger, putting himself over as “The Perfect 20.” He also said some interesting lines where he would forego an “initiative” to get noticed in NXT, where he seemingly fell under the radar after causing a big buzz with his initial appearance. Wonder where this will lead.

– It was hyped in a video that Balor would return the following week, as it was teased that the “demon would be embraced” since Joe took his Title, his “obsession.” We’re believably stoked for that.

– Coming off that great first segment, we were a bit taken aback at how average the Joe-Young main event felt. Joe got many moments of control, even diving between the ropes to attack Young with a forearm. Young also hung in there, at one point lifting the Samoan beast off his feet for a good near-fall. It was all for naught by the end, as Joe finished him off with a Muscle Buster/Coquina Clutch combination. Having Young lose in his first match was bold, but the purpose of putting Joe over in his new “era” was even bolder. We liked how he showed he was ready for Balor no matter what.






Quick Results

  • Nia Jax def. Tessa Blanchard via pinfall
  • Austin Aries def. Tye Dillinger via pinfall
  • The Revival def. The Hype Bros. via pinfall
  • No Way Jose def. Noah Kekoa via pinfall
  • Samoa Joe def. Eric Young via submission 

About Nicholas Jason Lopez

Just a 29-year-old Brooklynite. Nothing more, nothing less. Currently a freelance journalist with two websites - Pro Wrestling Opinion and The Music Bugle - he has also been published on sites such as The Bensonhurst Bean, Sheepshead Bites, Review Fix, College University of New York Athletic Conference, Dying Scene, Brooklyn News Service, All Media NY, and Yahoo Voices. He has also interned for The Home Reporter/Brooklyn Spectator based out of Brooklyn, NY.

Posted on May 15, 2016, in NXT, WWE and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. Leave a comment.

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