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Hall’s WWE NXT Review 1.31.23

January 31, 2023 | Posted by Thomas Hall
WWE NXT Tyler Bate Axiom Image Credit: WWE
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Hall’s WWE NXT Review 1.31.23  

Date: January 31, 2023
Location: Capitol Wrestling Center, Orlando, Florida
Commentators: Vic Joseph, Booker T.

It’s the go home show for Vengeance Day and that means it is time for the hard sell, which is one of the things NXT tends to do best. In addition to the build towards the show, we also have the long awaited Creed Brothers vs. Indus Sher match, which has been postponed at least once before. Let’s get to it.

Indus Sher vs. Creed Brothers

Jinder Mahal and Ivy Nile are here too. Julius and Veer slug it out to start with neither getting anywhere. Brutus comes in to slug away at Sanga in the corner but Sanga takes over with the power. It’s back to Julius, who gets dropped throat first onto the top rope to put him in trouble as well. A reverse Beverly Bomb crushes Julius again and we hit the chinlock.

Julius fights up and manages to get over to Brutus for the hot tag. Everything breaks down and Julius (eventually) muscles Veer up for a powerbomb. The sliding lariat is broken up by Mahal though, sending Nile after him. Julius accidentally knocks Nile off the apron, allowing Sanga to grab a chokeslam for the pin at 9:57.

Rating: C+. If they can get some better gear, the Creeds feel like they are ready to become stars. They work well together, they have already had some success and Julius feels like he could be a top guy one day. On the other hand you have Indus Sher, who are your latest monster foreigners team. Unfortunately that comes with a heavy dose of Mahal, so their ceiling is pretty low.

Tyler Bate and Axiom watch bate facing someone named A-Kid in NXT UK, with Bate saying A-Kid reminds him of Axiom. There’s nothing to that of course, but they’ll face each other tonight.

Zoey Stark vs. Indi Hartwell

This is over Hartwell accusing Stark of attacking Nikkita Lyons last week and Stark saying Hartwell didn’t do well in the Royal Rumble. Stark starts fast and hammers away, with a sliding lariat connecting for two. We’re off to an armbar but Hartwell fights up and slugs away to start the comeback. Some standing clotheslines set up the spinebuster for two on Stark, who is right back with a German suplex. Hartwell’s springboard is broken up and the flipping knee to the face gives Stark the pin at 6:14.

Rating: C-. Hartwell continues to exist and there just isn’t anything to her at the moment. She’s ok enough in the ring but I don’t remember the last time she showed any fire or anything resembling energy (save for Dexter Lumis’ cameo). On the other hand you have Stark, who feels like she should be a bigger deal but every promo she has brings her back down.

Schism is ready to win the Tag Team Titles at Vengeance Day, but first they have to qualify for the title match tonight.

Apollo Crews came to Charlotte early to feel the energy. He sees himself taking out Carmelo Hayes 2/3 falls and if Trick Williams gets involved, so be it.

Here is Wes Lee for a chat. He is ready to go back on the road in four days, where he has one of his biggest tests to date. That would be Dijak, who is going to give him a beating but then Lee will rise as North American Champion. Cue Dijak to say that Lee had the chance to hand the title over but wouldn’t do it. Lee promises to rise up and retain the title, but here are Mr. Stone and Von Wagner to interrupt. Stone thinks Wagner should be #1 contender and Dijak doesn’t approve. Lee wants them to fight now and that is just what happens.

Von Wagner vs. Dijak

The brawl is on fast and we take a break thirty seconds in. Back with Wes Lee on commentary and Dijak striking away. Dijak’s discus lariat is cut off with a boot to the face but Dijak flips out of a chokeslam. High Justice gets two on Wagner but he’s able to go up top. Dijak catches him, only to get caught in a swinging double underhook slam. Back up and Dijak grabs a crossface chickenwing of all things, followed by Feast Your Eyes for the pin at 8:38.

Rating: C. My goodness can we please stop with the “ring the bell, wrestle for thirty seconds, take a break” nonsense? Just have the match start after the break. Other than that, this was a good enough power match as Dijak gets some momentum going into his title shot. Granted I’m not sure how much value there is in beating Wagner, who is one of the most worthless people around here.

Dijak and Lee stare each other down.

Tony D’Angelo and Stacks are ready for something next week, with Stacks saying he took care of it. Now they’re off to take care of something else.

Nikkita Lyons has undergone surgery and is on the way to recovery.

We see a video on Nikkita Lyons being attacked in the parking lot, with about ten different women being seen in the parking lot at the same time. This was shot more like an investigation piece and that’s an interesting way to go.

Video on Grayson Waller vs. Bron Breakker for the NXT Title at Vengeance Day. Waller is inside Breakker’s head as Breakker continues to need to try to control his emotions. The build for this has worked but it feels like we’re just waiting to see what wacky idea Waller has to cheat Breakker out of the title.

Tyler Bate vs. Axiom

Bate takes him down by the arm to start but Axiom uses the referee to flip his way to freedom. Axiom sends Bate crashing out to the floor and we take a break. Back with Bate hitting his airplane spin but Axiom kicks him in the face for two. A superkick hits Bate, who is fine enough to cradle Axiom for two more. Bop and Bang sets up the rebound lariat but the Tyler Driver 97 is countered into a backdrop. Bate powers up anyway but a hurricanrana gives Axiom two. The third attempt at the Tyler Driver 97 finally connects to finish Axiom at 10:03.

Rating: C+. Best match on the show so far by a wide margin as you have two people who can go rather well in the ring. Bate continues to look good when he’s in the ring but it happens so infrequently that it’s hard to get behind him. Axiom is still a very good hand, but how far can you get with such a ridiculous gimmick?

Post match Bate leaves and Damon Kemp runs in to jump Axiom. Bate makes the save.

Isla Dawn and Alba Fyre seem to have joined forces.

Trick Williams and Carmelo Hayes are ready to beat Apollo Crews at Vengeance Day.

We get a sitdown interview between Roxanne Perez and Toxic Attraction. Perez is happy that she did well in the Royal Rumble but Toxic Attraction is sure that they’re going to beat her at Vengeance Day. Toxic Attraction says it’s 2-1 on Saturday and Perez walks out. Jayne and Dolin say they’re on the same page. Perez storms into their room and the big fight is on, with agents having to break it up. This went way longer than it needed to and makes last week’s fake Toxic Attraction split feel like a waste of time.

Dani Palmer vs. Stevie Turner

Palmer flips out of a wristlock to start but Turner shrugs it off and hits a neckbreaker. The chinlock goes on but Palmer fights up and hammers away. Back up and Turner hits a pump kick into a swinging DDT. A Side Effect finishes Palmer at 2:55.

Kiana James is on the phone and says she’ll see someone later. Fallon Henley comes in to accuse her of messing with Brooks Jensen. They argue until Katana Chance and Kayden Carter come in to accuse them of not focusing on the title match. This has been your NO ONE TALKS LIKE THIS segment of the week.

Drew Gulak vs. Charlie Dempsey

Hank Walker is here with Gulak. Feeling out process to start and we take a break less than a minute in. Back with Dempsey cranking on both arms before switching to a Fujiwara armbar. Dempsey switches to a German suplex for two and cranks on the leg, only to have Gulak reverse into an armbar of his own. Dempsey switches into a crossface chickenwing but Gulak dives for the ropes, sending Dempsey into Walker by mistake. The distraction lets Gulak grab a rollup for the pin at 8:42.

Rating: C+. This is the kind of match that is always going to have a place on the card and they did it well. Sometimes you need to just have a wrestling match and the screwy finish gave Gulak an out. Both of these two can do the technical stuff very well and it was a nice change of pace from the usual stuff around here most of the time.

Von Wagner is livid but Mr. Stone says this isn’t working. Stone says he knows nothing about him other than he is big and strong. If Wagner wants to move up in the wrestling business, show who he is inside. Stone: “HELP ME HELP YOU!”

Vengeance Day rundown. The show does look good.

Edris Enofe/Malik Blade vs. Schism vs. Chase U

The winner goes to the Tag Team Title match at Vengeance Day. Blade and Chase start things off but Reid grabs Chase from the apron to take over. A spike shoulder breaker on the floor plants Chase and Fowler comes in for a belly to back slam. Chase fights up but Schism takes out Hudson, meaning there is no one for him to take.

A powerbomb into a Backstabber gets two on Chase but he gets over for the tag to Hudson to clean house. Blade tags himself in and gets to clean house with Enofe. The G9 gets two on Reid with a bunch of people making the save. Blade and Enofe hit the stereo flip dives but Chase tags himself in for a Tower of Doom. The spelling stomps hit Reid and the Fratliner sends Chase U to Vengeance Day at 10:35.

Rating: B-. Now that made sense! Chase U almost never wins any kind of a match of consequence so putting them over here makes them feel like a bigger deal. No they aren’t going to win the titles, but putting them in a four way match where they don’t have to be involved in the finish is a smart move. Let them feel important for once, as the crowd is already way into them.

Post match all of the teams in the Tag Team Title match pop up, with New Day being rather excited about Chase U winning.

A long Vengeance Day hype video wraps us up.


Indus Sher b. Creed Brothers – Chokeslam to Julius
Zoey Stark b. Indi Hartwell – Flipping knee to the face
Dijak b. Von Wagner – Feast Your Eyes
Tyler Bate b. Axiom – Tyler Driver 97
Stevie Turner b. Dani Palmer – Side Effect
Drew Gulak b. Charlie Dempsey – Rollup
Chase U b. Malik Blade/Edris Enofe and Schism – Fratliner to Reid




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The final score: review Good
The 411
This show had some quality to it but my goodness it felt long. It felt like Vengeance Day was ready to go last week and then they had to fill in another week of building towards it. There wasn’t enough to make two hours interesting here and it hurt a lot. At the same time, NXT still needs to work on its character development segments, as a lot of the talking is cringe worthy. Not a horrible show, but they really need Vengeance Day to be a hit.

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WWE NXT, Thomas Hall