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Vengence Day Reviews

Reverse Hipster’s Reviews

Wes Lee vs. Dijak North American Title 9/10 A-

What a strong opening to the PPV. In the beginning, the match seemed like it would be a serviceable match, but it evolved into a match that was hard to follow. I love this match because of how well Wes Lee was presented. Both guys were able to showcase their skills, but Wes very clearly won over the crowd. Despite his size, Wes Lee was presented as a true champion. He controlled most of the match. When Dijak was able to find an opening, he used his size and agility to punish Wes, but for most of the match, Wes was in control. Wes Lee captured the heart of the crowd with his summersault over the top to the outside. However, there were so many incredible spots, like the reversed powerbomb off the top rope or the signature Shawn Michaels superkick out of the air. Shawn Michaels's influence was all over this match. I have a suspicion he helped present Wes as a dominant champion despite his size because that as HBK was. Also, that superkick could be put in a side-by-side with the one HBK delivered to Shelton in the old Raw intro.

The action was so amazing that the kick outs were able to blow the roof of the building. The only knocks I have are that the standing chicken wing by Dijak looked like a resthold instead of a devastating maneuver. Also, I didn’t like Tony Diangelo coming in and tainting an otherwise great match.

Katana Chance & Kayden Carter vs. Kianna Jade & Fallon Henley NXT Women’s Tag Team Championship Match 8.2/10 B

At the beginning of this match, I was a little worried that Kianna and Fallon’s dynamic would undercut the champion's credibility because Kianna and Fallon were fending them off while fighting with each other. However, as the match went on, Carter and Chance started to establish dominance with their high-flying amazing tandem offense. In the end, Kianna and Fallon won the tag team titles. They were the perfect team to win the championships because Kianna is a heel and Fallon is a face. So Kianna cheated to win behind Fallon’s back, which both protects the former champs and moves forward the story between Kianna and Fallon. Also, I think Kianna and Fallon have a hotter story which will elevate the women’s tag titles.

Carmelo Hayes vs. Apollo Crews, ⅔ Falls 6.95 C-

This match should have been so much better. Carmelo and Apollo pulled out some cool athletic moves, but both Carmelo and Apollo are cool athletic dudes. They didn’t pull out anything in this match that was special. In addition to that, the match was poorly constructed by NXT. There was no rhythm. In this match, none of the moments seemed to build into meaningful parts of the match. It just seemed like they were doing stuff. Also, having Apollo tap out in the first fall and then lose without ever scoring a fall was a terrible choice. Apollo is a main roster star, and it should be a big deal that Carmelo beat him. However, the booking of this match made it look like it was easy to beat Apollo which damaged both stories. The interference at the end was interesting from a story perspective, but it definitely didn’t help the match. It just made the win by Carmelo even less deserving and meaningless.

New Day vs. Gallus vs. Pretty Deadly vs. Chase U NXT Tag Title Match 8.1/10 B

This match started slowly, but it picked up when things got to the outside of the ring. Kofi was thrown from the top rope into everyone on the outside, and then Andre Chase superplexed a member of Pretty Deadly into a crowd of people on the outside. It was insane. From that point on, Gallus put Duke through the announce table, and Pretty Deadly hit Spilt Milk on Kofi after catching him out of the trust fall. Inside the Ring, Andre Chase made an epic comeback in his hometown in a two-on-one against Gallus. However, eventually, he was overcome. Then Gallus took out Xavier Woods and won the NXT tag Titles. My biggest complaint in this match is that I don’t think New Day had enough spots in the match. New Day were the champions, and especially if they were going to lose, they needed to make more of an Impact in that match.

Jacy Jayne vs. Roxanne Perez vs. Gigi Dolin NXT Women’s Championship 8.05/10 B

The early part of this match was about the Toxic Attraction trying to beat Roxanne two-on-one. However, the match really began when Gigi ad Jacy inevitably deteriorated and fought each other. Jacy had the majority of the offense on Roxanne, but Gigi got the biggest reaction from the crowd. It is easy to see why Jacy was chosen to be the heel in their breakup. Roxanne is lucky to be so likable because once again I feel like she is the least important part of the title match. Her title win was overshadowed by the controversy with Mandy. Her Deadline win felt like an okay option when there were better options to win. Now it feels like she was interrupting this interesting story between Gigi and Jacy. However, you can’t deny her talent, and she showed that with a huge Pop Rox off the top rope for the win. That was one of the better winning spots of the night.

Grayson Waller vs. Bron Breakker NXT Mens Championship 7.1/10 C

The match was really bland throughout. There was really nothing done in this match that caught me by surprise. Even the superplex off the top seemed like the most basic move to do there. It's not just this match either. I didn’t like Samoa Joe vs Finn Balor years ago. I don’t think NXT does cage matches particularly well. Also, Bron was a pretty uninspiring winner. He's been cooling down, and Grayson was the perfect guy to take the belt off him. There was one moment in this match that was really engaging, and that was the finish. Bron beats Grayson up with his signature moves, but he doesn’t finish him. Bron was clearly annoyed at Grayson's disrespect, so he started talking trash and putting Grayson in his place. However, even beaten down Grayson wouldn’t acknowledge him and he mushed Bron. Bron got even madder and speared Grayson Waller in half and won the match. Bron got the win, but Grayson never backed down never gave in.

Rob's Reviews

Wes Lee vs. Dijak (North American Championship)

This was a hot way to start the night and a reminder of just how good both competitors are. Wes Lee particularly impressed me with his dynamic offense. It is impressive how quickly he has transitioned from a tag team guy to a guy who can hold down a midcard championship. I didn’t like the distraction finish with Tony D’Angelo and Stacks Lorenzo, as I think Lee could have credibly won on his own. I am glad that Lee is still the champion.

Final Grade: 7/10 Good

Kayden Carter and Katana Chance vs. Fallon Henley and Kiana James (NXT Women’s Tag Team Championship)

The commentators continually put over that Kayden Carter and Katana Chance were the longest reigning Women’s Tag Team Champions on any WWE show, which is both a testament to them putting together a quietly solid reign and the lack of solid reigns in the women’s tag team division in WWE. The wrestling in this match was nothing special. I liked the creative finish, and I think the result gives people something to talk about. As a trait, I dislike a heel/babyface team beating an established team, but it feels novel in the Women’s Tag Team Division. Fallon Henley and Kiana James are putting in some good character work, and maybe their reign can help the women’s tag team division as a whole.

Final Grade: 5/10 Average

Carmelo Hayes vs. Apollo Crews (2 out of 3 Falls Match)

While both guys are excellent wrestlers, this match was slow and never quite clicked for me. Carmelo Hayes was the right guy to go over, as he continues to have some of the most credibility in NXT, but I think Apollo Crews could have taken 1 of the falls. Dabba Kato’s involvement was a fun callback to Crews’s gimmick on the main roster, and I think neutralizing Trick Williams added to that moment in the match. However, Kato betraying Crews ultimately did nothing as no fans were attached to the duo. If this is their next plan for Crews creatively, it seems he is destined to struggle on NXT as much as he did on the main roster.

Final Grade: 5/10 Average

The New Day vs. Pretty Deadly vs. Chase U vs. Gallus (NXT Tag Team Championship)

I don’t think the crowd fully gave this match what it deserved. This was everything a multi-man tag match is supposed to be: fun, chaotic, and meaningful. The New Day successfully passed on their credibility to other teams and established Gallus as the new tag team champions. Pretty Deadly could go to the main roster tomorrow, as their unique gimmick and presence in the ring have shown they are ready for the spotlight. Chase U is hot with the NXT fans, and whenever their moment comes, it will be electric. My only complaint is that this could have used more time, as the finish came up kind of abruptly and undermined Gallus’s big moment.

Final Grade: 7/10 Good

Roxanne Perez vs. Jacy Jayne vs. Gigi Dolin (NXT Women’s Championship)

Credit to everyone in this match: they made creative, realistic, and entertaining spots for the story that we saw play out. Roxanne Perez took on Toxic Attraction 2-on-1, but it was never unbelievable. Accidental shots fired between Jacy Jayne and Gigi Dolin turned into explicit tension in the team that was adamant they were always on the same side. The result was the best storytelling in the ring all night. This is also the best Perez has looked in-ring for NXT, and she couldn’t have picked a better time to show up than in front of an arena crowd on NXT Vengeance Day. She is the best pick for NXT Women’s Champion for the foreseeable future.

Final Grade: 7/10 Good

Bron Breakker vs. Grayson Waller (NXT Championship, Steel Cage Match)

Grayson Waller was the best possible challenger for Bron Breakker. He made the feud interesting by frustrating and outsmarting Breakker. He made the match interesting by continuing on that story and hitting innovative offense like the modified front flip into an Unprettier. The cage ended up helping both guys because Waller couldn’t run away from Breakker and Waller used it to his advantage as a weapon. However, it wasn’t enough to beat the champion. Breakker is still the guy in NXT, and I’m not sure where Waller goes from here. We know Carmelo Hayes will likely be the next challenger for Breakker, but it really felt like Waller may have been the right guy to dethrone the long-time NXT Champion.

Final Grade: 6/10 Above Average

Rob's Final Grade's

It was awesome to see NXT in front of an arena again. The current superstars deserve that recognition and audience. Every match on this card was unique storytelling and good wrestling, but unlike NXT Takeovers in the past, this NXT event was missing an excellent match and/or that one big moment that gets people talking and makes you want to tune in next week. All of the singles champions retained, and there were no consequential storyline developments. For that reason, I can’t go much higher on my overall grade.

Final Grade: 5/10 Average

Reverse Hipster’s Final Thoughts 7.9 C+

Vengeance Day was pretty average outside of the very first match. Maybe the first match just set my expectations too high, but after the women's tag team match, there is a clear drop-off. I wish the rest of the matches had been as bold as the first two.

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