By Graham "GSM" Matthews
Eric Young Interrupted NXT Champion Samoa Joe
Well, this was a surprise (and by that I mean I was shocked when I read the news last week about Young arriving in NXT). I honestly didn't think WWE/NXT would pick up Young, and although I wasn't his biggest fan in TNA, this is a prime opportunity for him to reinvent himself and reignite his career, a lot like Joe has over the past year. Speaking of whom, I liked his first promo as champion and he will flourish as NXT's heel champion if he can maintain the momentum he currently has. The back and forth between him and Young was short and sweet and effectively set up the main event for the evening.
Nia Jax def. Tessa Blanchard
We got our first look at Blanchard during the last set up tapings from WrestleMania Axxess and like I said last time, she's a beaut. I can't speak much about her in-ring ability because Jax squashed her in the matter of a minute, but she certainly wasn't incompetent. Jax is back to the basics in making short work of her opponents, which is where she thrives anyway, but it doesn't seem as if she's made strides as a wrestler over the past few months. Maybe working with Asuka in the future will change that.
Austin Aries def. Tye Dillinger
Dillinger scored a significantly louder reaction than Aries when he entered. Is Aries not connecting with the masses yet or is Dillinger just that over with the audience? I think it might be a combination of both. Regardless, they had a very fun five minute match and I actually would have loved to have seen it go a little longer. The 450 Splash from Aries to finish off Perfect 10 was a nice change of pace. Dillinger may be NXT's resident enhancement talent, but you know he's doing something right when fans are buying into his nearfalls over an established veteran such as Aries. The Greatest Man Who Ever Lived continues to tread water, so hopefully he finds direction sooner rather than later.
The Revival def. The Hype Bros
I appreciated how they wasted no time in holding this match following The Revival's attack on The Hype Bros just last week. The match wasn't much of note, but it was exactly what it needed to be with The Revival virtually dominating Zack Ryder and Mojo Rawley. I'm glad they seemingly haven't lost their luster since losing the NXT Tag Team Championship and I look forward to their eventual rematch with American Alpha.
No Way Jose def. Noah Potjes
I freakin' love No Way Jose. I know I probably shouldn't, and admittedly, the gimmick is a guilty pleasure of mine, but Full Sail University ate up every second of it. It was a standard squash match and he didn't show anything more in the ring than he did in his debut, but his energy is infectious, I'm telling you. Similar to Adam Rose, No Way Jose could have a short shelf life if his character isn't fleshed out more, but so far, I'm getting a kick out of it.
NXT Champion Samoa Joe def. Eric Young (Non-title)
If you told me exactly one year ago that the main event of this edition of NXT would be Samoa Joe vs. Eric Young, I most definitely would have called you crazy and asked you if you were mixing it up with an episode of TNA. I'm sure there will be criticism from fans that WWE is scooping up "washed-up" TNA talent, but let's face it: they were horribly handled in a company that has been mismanaged for years. Every other TNA star that has come over to NXT has shined and Young should be no different. The match was solid albeit unspectacular, and I wasn't too upset over Young losing clean in his first match simply because he isn't and shouldn't be a main event level performer. He does have plenty of potential otherwise, though, to be a good hand in the upper-midcard in NXT.
You could definitely tell this was the first show in the fresh set of tapings simply based off the electric atmosphere at Full Sail University. That alone made the episode enjoyable, and while none of the matches were particularly memorable outside of the main event, the hour flew by and everything seemed to serve a purpose. Plus, Young's NXT debut was obviously newsworthy. I didn't mind that they didn't kick off or further any existing feuds, but they should sooner rather than later since I believe the next TakeOver is in early June, nearly one month away at this point.