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    Friday, July 19, 2019

    Smark Hen-XT (7/17/19): The Bay-Bay Tour Concludes

    It's been quite a while since Adam Cole made his presence felt inside Full Sail University. Sure, there were vignettes of what he dubbed as the "Bay-Bay Championship Tour." The promos were great and added fuel to the Gargano/Cole Feud but it's always different when he steps inside a ring.

    This week marks Cole's return to the ring in a "supposed" title defense—"Supposed" because the match never really happened. Cole cut a simple promo about his recent exploits and how he's a fighting champion before teasing the challenger's vignette which made it seem like Johnny Gargano was about to get a title opportunity. Obviously, it was not to be as he revealed it was one of Johnny's students who was getting the opportunity.

    Upon the reveal of Twan Tucker as the challenger, Tucker came out with a swerve of his ownhe brought his mentor along with him. Gargano wasted no time and headed straight after Cole with a flurry of lefts and rights and circled the arena while brawling. Both men were able to return to the ring with the night ending with Cole tapping out to a Garga-No Escape while referees pulled Johnny away.

    It actually feels great that this was their first confrontation after NXT TakeOver XXV because it does have a fresh feeling to it. It may be the same feud and TakeOver: Toronto will be the fourth match between them but at least they spent time keeping both men from each other so that it isn't oversaturated.

    On that note, I do hope this is the last time they face each other because both of them need to freshen up their characters. Gargano needs to move on against Cole while the latter probably needs to do the Matt Riddle match so that Riddle can get the opportunity to challenge for the NXT Championship. The way I see it though, Cole is going to be the champion for a little bit longer and The Undisputed ERA may all reign supreme in the near future.

    The matches on the show were pretty fun and helped move their respective storylines forward. Riddle/Ruas helped reintroduce Killian Dain (and Ruas himself) to the brand, the NXT Breakout Tournament continued with its final first-round match and KUSHIDA/Crews helped KUSHIDA in making a name for himself by letting him win over an NXT alumnus in Apollo Crews. While we're back to three matches this week, the content was actually full and entertaining.

    Grade: B+


    • I enjoyed the Matt Riddle vs. Arturo Ruas matchup because of the MMA influences. The stoppage finish was a nice touch as well. It keeps things a little fresh and different for Riddle considering his background.
    • I don't think they're making Matt Riddle lose to Killian Dain but it does make Riddle look like a credible threat shall he defeat Dain.
    • Dexter Lumis is a creepy-looking big man. I'm a bit surprised that he has high-flying moves in his arsenal because he's such a humongous guy.
    • I hope Apollo Crews' return isn't a one-time thing. He's barely utilized anywhere and even when he is, he's mostly a jobber to other Superstars. In NXT, at least he'll have a fighting chance.
    Are you happy that there'll be a fourth Gargano/Cole match? Now that the first round of the NXT Breakout Tournament is done, who's your pick to win? Hit us up in the comments section below.

    Photos and videos from WWE


    Miguel “The Migz” Llado is your supposed style icon and NXT reviewer at the Smark Henry offices. A lover of everything music, wrestling, videogames, and food, he lives his life tweeting his mind off (@the_migz) and ‘gramming random food items and locations (@tha_migz) as he sets on his journey to completely do things spontaneously. You can also add him on PSN (MigzLlado) to show your WWE2K19 (or any PS4) skills. When not being a smark, he lives his life being (and trying to be) an awesome architect, musician extraordinaire and armchair fantasy booker.
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    Item Reviewed: Smark Hen-XT (7/17/19): The Bay-Bay Tour Concludes Rating: 5 Reviewed By: Migz Llado
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