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    Sunday, February 4, 2018

    Smark Hen-XT (1/31/18): Brothering Softly

    (Sorry Karl Anderson)

    Four days removed from a phenomenal show that was TakeOver: Philadelphia, NXT warms us up a week before a new chapter to TakeOver: New Orleans officially begins.

    For this week's main event, Roderick Strong and Tyler Bate reminded the City of Brotherly Love and the NXT Universe that they are two of the best in the world as they faced off to determine the number one contender to Pete Dunne's WWE UK Championship.

    While this was fun to watch, I wish that this went longer to allow the storytelling of the match to breathe. Roddy hurting Tyler's back all throughout the match to avoid the Tyler Driver '97 was a good story that could have been much better if it were stretched out much longer. Not much time was allotted for wrestling in this episode, after all.

    Tyler also lost against TJP in a tournament match that will crown the new Cruiserweight Champion on 205 Live, so I wonder if his back-to-back televised losses are an angle. Similarly, Roddy was also announced to be in the tournament. Is this some kind of a crossover between different divisions and shows?

    Anyway, on with the show.

    • Nikki Cross def. Lacey Evans: People sure missed their sinister sister from SAnitY a lot! Despite Lacey getting a few offenses in, Nikki did a quick work of her in this match that only lasted for a couple of minutes. As usual, Nikki was just pure entertainment in this.

      But this wasn't a one-woman act, as Lacey also did good in her character being all snooty and snobbish. It's refreshing to see her deviate from the goody-two-shoes, Liberty Belle-esque character we usually get from someone with her look and background, and anything that goes against the norm (when done correctly, of course) is always great.
    • TM61 (Nick Miller and Shane Thorne) def. The Ealys (Gabriel and Uriel): It was a pretty good comeback match. While Nick Miller and Shane Thorne got a loud reaction from the Wells Fargo Center crowd, I expected a much bigger pop from them, because they were gone for a year, dammit. But then again, maybe that's something that will change as the NXT Universe sees more of the returning Aussie duo. Nick Miller's moonsault and Shane Thorne's Fosbury flop were just delightful. *Kisses fingers*

    The NXT TV after TakeOver is always just a recap episode, so there is generally nothing to see here aside from the main event. The real stuff will go down next week as NXT kicks off its build to TakeOver: New Orleans. B-

    Photo from WWE.com

    Ardelle Costuna works at a news organization somewhere along EDSA whenever she's not watching wrestling. As someone who just recently turned to Japanese wrestling (full-time ish), she is a sucker for no-sold German suplexes, kick-outs at one-count, and whatever the hell Tetsuya Naito is doing right now. Send her your (joshi) puroresu match recommendations and watch her swoon over Kenny Omega, and Jake Lee at @aandthejets.
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    Item Reviewed: Smark Hen-XT (1/31/18): Brothering Softly Rating: 5 Reviewed By: Ardelle Costuna
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