NXT 2.0 returns tonight (June 14)
live from the WWE Performance Center in Orlando!
Advertised for this week’s edition of the show:
- Inid Hartwell, Cora Jade & Roxanne Perez vs. Toxic Attraction
- The Creeds defend the Tag titles against Edris Enofé & Malik Blade
- Xyon Quinn vs. Wes Lee
- The Dyad competes “for the very first time”
- Giovanni Vinci in action
Before we dive in, a reminder that SPOILERS for this pre-taped episode are out there, including here. If you’d like to discuss them, please either do so in the SPOILER post, or use the SPOILER tag.
Now, here are our five questions about NXT tonight:
1) How will Apollo Crews fare in his second run in NXT?
When Crews was called up to the main roster back in 2016 after less than a year in NXT, I wasn’t the only person who thought, “huh.” Apollo’s in-ring abilities have never been questioned, but nothing happened in the year after he left Evolve for WWE developmental that said he’d figured out how to connect with an audience with something other than his wrestling.
For most of his time on Raw and SmackDown, we saw that skepticism was justified. He had some success, but nothing long-lasting or particularly memorable. Crews eventually started working a somewhat controversial Nigerian prince gimmick that at least got people talking. But when he returned to NXT last Tuesday — reportedly for the long haul — the accent and other trappings of that character were gone.
Will he get the time to establish his new/old character this time around? NXT 2.0 is supposedly a sink or swim environment, so I imagine there’s some kind of clock on Apollo. Is he here to put over NXT champion Bron Breakker before being wished well in his future endeavors? Where does the allegedly also re-assigned Commander Azeez fit in?
Last week moment with Bron and team-up with Solo Sikoa was a fun start. We’ll see if it develops into more in the coming weeks.
2) Is tonight’s trios main event be a preview of Great American Bash’s Women’s title matches?
Honestly, I’m pretty convinced Mandy Rose will reign forever… or at least until Nikkita Lyons gets back. The Tag belts are just bling for Rose’s henchwomen Gigi Dolin & Jacy Jayne, and that’s probably the best way they’ve been used in their brief history, if we’re being honest.
Point is, I don’t think it matters who Toxic Attraction’s next challengers are. So if a win tonight motivates Roxanne Perez to use her Breakout Tournament winner’s contract to challenge Rose and earns Indi Hartwell & Cora Jade a Tag title shot? Sure. Mandy and squad will still be champs on the other side of it.
3) Are we ever going to learn who The Dyad are?
Joe Gacy followed up his exit from the NXT title scene by telling us he doesn’t need symbols to spread his message, and shifting focus to the two hooded gentleman who’ve been following him around for the last month or so. Dubbing them The Dyad, he’s sending them out to compete “for the very first time” tonight.
Popular opinion has been the two hooded figures are Grizzled Young Veterans, but if so, their build up as Gacy’s acolytes makes me thing Zack Gibson & James Drake will either (a) wrestle in masks and be nameless for a while, or (b) be sporting new looks & names when they take off those cloaks.
Hopefully those new names will be more memorable than the ones Pretty Deadly got that I always have to look up (Elton Prince & Kit Wilson, and yes I had to Google it).
4) Will Wes Lee’s future be as a singles wrestler?
His feud with Xyon Quinn has positioned him as one, and he’s shown some pretty good fire as a solo character. But there was a hot second there where it seemed he might be paired up with Nathan Frazer, and I didn’t hate that idea at all. Mostly because I really like watching both guys wrestle (especially Frazer, who embodies the old JR-ism “quicker than a hiccup” more than anyone I’ve ever seen) and think they’ll stand a better chance of not getting lost in the WWE shuffle as a tag team.
5) Who’s getting the boot from Robert Stone’s latest group?
If you’ve watched NXT for the last few years, there’s on thing you know: Suit Man Stone can’t keep clients. Ever since we spotted Sofia Cromwell in the stands during a Von Wagner match, it’s been clear the clock is ticking on his latest squad. I’d assumed that, like every Stone angle to date, it would be our boy Bob getting fired by Wagner & Cromwell. But I’m starting to wonder if it might not be Von who’s sent packing. His push has n’t taken off, and now he’s losing to Josh Briggs (albeit with an assist from Brooks Jensen’s cast)?
Maybe Sofia should recruit Giovanni Vinci to the team?
Give us your questions and answers in the comments below. Then join us in our live blog, and we’ll see what Qs and As tonight’s show gives us.