By Graham "GSM" Matthews
NXT Women's Champion Sasha Banks and Charlotte def. Dana Brooke and Emma
While she's much more comfortable in the heel role, it's logical to start slowly transitioning Banks into a babyface considering how much the Full Sail University audience adores her. Charlotte coming to her aid made sense and it was a cool throwback to their days as the BFFs. The match itself was good by NXT women standards (which are pretty high) with Brooke and Emma nothing losing anything in defeat, though it could have used more time. Was it just me or did Charlotte come off like a heel afterward when she demanded a title shot? I'm not saying she's on the verge of turning, but she teeters the line between babyface and heel more often than she should.
Solomon Crowe def. Marcus Louis
I really wanted to rally behind him, but the Crowe character has seemingly been missing something since his arrival in NXT. That said, Crowe calling himself the "little monster" and at least attempting to reinvent himself is a step in the right direction. This was the first match of his that he wasn't completely dominated, so it was a nice showcase of his skills and I hope he can continue to shine in future matches/appearances so he can finally live up to his potential.
The Vaudevillians def. Enzo Amore and Colin Cassady in a No. 1 Contender's Match for the NXT Tag Team Championship
Having this match go on last in addition to giving both teams interview team was certainly effective in making the match feel more special. Both The Vaudevillians and the duo of Amore and Cassady earned the right to contend for the title, so either tandem could have won here. They contested a solid match with some suspense down the stretch, and it was easily one of the better tag matches we've seen out of the NXT tag team division in recent memory. The Vaudevillians winning was a pleasant surprise and I look forward to seeing them reenter the title picture and possibly be the ones to dethrone Blake and Murphy as champs.
I'm a fan of the "less is more" approach, meaning having less yet longer matches, and that's exactly why this show was successful in my book. The women's match was a fun way of opening the show, the Crowe squash was beneficial, and it was cool to see the tag team division showcased in the main event for once. It was also awesome to have the NXT Championship match from Beast in the East relayed in its entirety and even if you've already seen it, it's worth a second viewing; it was that good. Plus, we have a great Charlotte vs. Banks title match to look forward to next week, so it's nice to see NXT picking up steam again as we begin building toward the next NXT live special in late August.