NXT Inquisition for (2/19/20) (Strong vs. Dream)

Another Wednesday, another amazing edition of NXT takes from the Full Sail Arena as we are entrenched in the fallout of NXT Takeover: Portland and prepare for the Road to Wrestlemania as Sunday’s event will be felt throughout the entire edition of NXT on USA. With big matches between Jordan Devlin vs. Lio Rush for the WWE NXT Cruiserweight Championship and Velveteen Dream vs. Roderick Strong, we start with a promo from the much hardware-lighter version of the Undisputed Era. Tonight’s show features Roderick Strong and the Velveteen Dream.

Frustrations aside, Adam Cole remains the only member of the UE and he didn’t waste time telling us he told us so. And while stating the Era are the “measuring stick of NXT”, Velveteen’s ominous digital logo came up on the tron with his voice behind it putting Roddy on notice when it comes to trying to beat him: do it for Marina. As much fun as watching Dream torture the former NXT North American Champion, you can tell this rivalry may go on for quite sometime on the black and gold brand.
Nonetheless, we flash back to Portland from Sunday as Nigel, Beth and Mauro discuss Johnny Gargano’s actions as he struck Ciampa in the head with the NXT belt and costing him his chance at Goldie.
While the trio stated that we can only hope to get answers from Gargano, the first match of the night is our NXT Cruiserweight Championship match between the Man of the Hour and the Irish Ace.

NXT Cruiserweight Championship: Jordan Devlin vs. Lio Rush

These two superstars literally can main event anywhere but this was a great opener for the night. As expected much evasion and counters from both men as we cut to commercial as Lio almost caught a roundhouse kick to Devlin. As we come back Devlin is on control and is keeping Lio grounded. Some strikes to the face including a standing double knee to the dome dazes Lio early on. Even with some sudden fight back from Rush, including registering two knees to a moonsaulting Jordan, the Ace seem to be controlling the pace of the match after a beautiful Half & Half German Suplex and a two count pun.
As much as the build up of Lio Rush since his return last year, Devlin has to be opening some eyes to the mainstream audience with his work. Even with his small build, he was dissecting Rush like a veteran. Between the Butterfly Suplex to a Abdominal Stretch, Devlin was a tactician in the ring. Even with Lio attempting to fight back including an attempt at The Come Up, Devlin countered with a Elevated Backbreaker Suplex seemingly winding the match down to prepare for a Devlin Side.

Momentum shifted once again with Lio hitting a flying across Body and a kick out at 2 of the pin, but Devlin once again stunted Lio’s comeback with a wicked Springboard Cutter; adding a Penalty kick to a standing Rush who had rolled onto the outside.

As I said, this is a main event anywhere and both men were showing it to the Full Sail crowd with this match. Even with being dazed and confused, Lio Rush began to bounce back again hitting a corkscrew plancha from the ring apron to a overly cocky Jordan Devlin and bringing him back inside. After missing more top rope offense, Lio lands a back heel kick to Jordan whose momentum spins him around to land one of his own on Lio as these two literally attempt to knock each other out. The match pace picks up as a prone Devlin jumps up to knock Rush off the top as he prepares for The Final Hour. While Devlin attempts to bring Rush off the top rope, he’s brought down with a Hurricanrana off the top, then a successful hit of The Come Up laying the champion down for The Final Hour. But this quickly turns for the worse as Jordan moves out the way and finds the energy to hit the Devlin Side and the win.
Winner: And still the NXT Cruiserweight Champion, Jordan Devlin
As the Irish Ace once again proves why he’s the top tier in the Cruiserweight division, we hear from NXT’s resident harlot Dakota Kai and her new BFF who owes Bayley money, Raquel Gonzales…

As Raquel states the reason she came out to defend Dakota, stating Tegan Nox gets opportunities other superstars do not and standing on Kai’s side since people treat her like a outcast, William Regal interrupts Dakota from giving Gonzales’ her props for coming out. His statement was simple: Nox vs. Kai in 2 weeks on NXT… in a steel cage!
As that bombshell was dropped, we see Tomasso Ciampa determined to find out answers of his own as he heads to the ring from backstage. From commercial, we see the departing Cathy Kelly speak with Rhea Ripley who all but confirms that she will be seeing Charlotte Flair at Wrestlemania.

Back in the NXT Arena, Austin Theory is headed towards the ring for a match until the Psycho Killer changed his Wednesday night plans and enters the ring with a mic.

As he states he should’ve seen Gargano’s attack coming. But as he continues his monologue, Theory tries to interrupt him and step up but Ciampa tells him quickly, “not tonight man”. But even with Ciampa stating he knows why Johnny did it, Austin decides he’s going to go for the mic and quickly realized why you never mess with Tomasso Ciampa.

From pillar to post, or rather barricade to barricade, a beatdown like no tomorrow ensued until Ciampa walks away. We cut to Chelsea Green and Robert Stone as we prepare for her match against Kayden Carter before commercial.
Returning from commercial, we get a quick promo from the Prince, Finn Balor, who after disposing of Johnny Gargano, states everyone wants to know what his next move is… which we will all find out next week! Back in the area, we prepare for a high flying paring of the Raul Mendoza and Joaquin Wilde versus the soon to be recognized as NXT’s #1 tag team…. the Grizzled Young Veterans.

Grizzled Young Veterans vs. Raul Mendoza and Joaquin Wilde

This was a high profile… squash match. As much as Wilde and Mendoza tried to keep up with the inaugural NXT UK Tag Team Champions, they’re were no match. Wilde had an impressive moonsault from the corner to get the hot tag, and Mendoza started hot with a corner clothesline to James Drake and Jumping Enziguri to Zack Gibson, the aforementioned landed devastating back suplex to Mendoza quickly slowing down his momentum. Drake gets tagged in and lands a running corner dropkick to Wilde, and then hit the Ticket To Ride on Mendoza for the win.

Winner: Grizzled Young Veterans
After, Zack Gibson once again restated his peace on how him and Drake dominated NXT UK, as he stated on that show last week, and that they are here in America and NXT to show why they are soon to be recognized as the world’s number one team as we go to commercial.
As we come back, we also get the reminder about NXT UK’s next Takeover event, Takeover: Dublin, taking place on April 26th! Back in the arena, the current NXT Tag Team Champions, The Broserweights made their entrance to speak on their win in Portland and their match against the BritAm Brawlers.
Even before they speak on their celebration, we find out Matt Riddle got the BROsermobile impounded from Pete Dunne, and Matt Riddle says the trophy partied too hard after they won the titles including the Dusty Classic trophy which we’ve found out has been suspended for 30 days for violating the Wellness Policy. Outside of the laughs, Lorcan and Burch interrupt and we get our match.

Oney Lorcan and Danny Burch vs. The Broserweights

As much as I’ve enjoyed Lorcan and Burch’s odd pairing, Dunne and Riddle are the new pairing that just works so seeing both of these teams is another example of NXT’s DEEP roster at this current moment. Dunne and Burch, familiar from NXT UK battles, start off with a technical master class from putting moves hold on and escaping. Then Lorcan and Riddle get tagged in with a light exchange until Riddle shows off his power lifting Lorcan into a gutwrench position; which prompted Dunne and Burch to come in and Dunne catching Burch into the same position as the tag champs both hit a gutwrench suplex. Dunne aids Riddle in a corkscrew Broton landing on Lorcan, then a basement shotgun dropkick to knock Oney out the ring into a commercial.

Back from commercial, we start seeing the tandem offense of Lorcan and Burch paying off as they have Riddle grounded an all momentum halted at the moment as Burch holds a single leg crab on The Stallion transitioning into a STF. But with the crowd behind him, Riddle gets out of it and turns it into a Bro To Sleep to get the tag to Dunne. And when Dunne gets in, he goes off…  clothesline, snap German Suplex to the corner, X-Plex into an arm bar and tries to split Burch’s fingers but Burch rolls Dunne up for a 2, releasing the hold.

Both Dunne and Danny both tussle until Burch makes the mistake to push Dunne into his own corner and a blind tag is made which leads to a double team Powerbomb / Enziguri from the champs on Burch; which prompts Lorcan to break up the pin attempt.

Takeover quality match so far as this one was hard to call but there is a reason why Matt Riddle and Pete Dunne are the tag team champions. Towards the end, Riddle tags in but Burch puts Riddle in the crossface until Dunne comes in, lands a vicious kick to the head of Lorcan who attempted to stop him with a German Suplex, then another kick this time to Burch’s head to break up the hold.

As Riddle trying to make for the corner and a tag in Dunne, officially, he catches a European uppercut from Burch, who gets a front kick,then a pop-up Superman forearm, and a powerbomb for his troubles. Riddle rolls Burch up but Danny puts him down with a wild right hand which leads to him falling into his corner for a tag to Dunne to his an Enziguri on Burch and he falls into HIS corner for a tag to Lorcan.

Lorcan flies in with a European uppercut and running Blockbuster. Lorcan has the advantage with Pete in the corner but we all know what Dunne can do to do the digits of your fingers and Oney, attempting a running European uppercut, found out first hand … literally. Separated fingers leads to a Dunne tagging in Riddle as they land their Bitter End / Bro To Sleep knee which I’d want to call The Bitter Bro to a victory.

Winner: The Broserweights

As the tag team champions celebrate with their fellow bros, we look into the Undisputed Era’s locker room as Roderick Strong prepares for his main event match with Velveteen Dream as he states he needs to do this for himself as we cut to commercial.

Once we return, we see the above tweet played live on air as the Forgotten Sons don’t appreciate the Grizzled Young Veterans trashing America in their promo earlier in the night or being mentioned on NXT UK as a team their overlooking. It looks like we will eventually get this epic clash soon but in the meantime we get the NXT North American Champion Keith Lee, fresh off his WWE Backstage appearance, about to speak on the mic until he’s interrupted by Kona Reeves. And he quickly pays for it with a Pounce…. in the words of Keith Lee, “you can ring the bell”.

Keith Lee vs. Kona Reeves

Now this, this is a squash match. Reeves never recovered after the Pounce. He gets up, Lee lifts him in a Fireman’s Carry. Big Bag Catastrophe. Win. Pointless but statement made.
Winner: Keith Lee

As Lee celebrates, Dominik Dijakovic comes out to the ring as the crowd chants ‘feast your eyes’ and say he’s not ready to move on yet from Keith Lee stating “you and I both know that I had you beat at Takeover. If it weren’t for my lower back going out on me…” which quickly gets cut off from and abundance of if’s from Lee mocking Dominik. Lee follows up with a statement: “You can say ‘if’ all you want, but what matters is I won the match.” Even with saying he always hear the same excuses every time him Dijakovic step in the ring it doesn’t stop the crowd from chanting “fight forever”. Lee finishes with “and based on that, you didn’t win that match but they’re with it and I’m always for a challenge. If you talk Regal into it, we can fight forever”.

Back from break and Kayden Carter is making her way to the ring to once again upset Chelsea Green. Robert Stone is on the mic at the top of the ramp presenting his brand… “Could I have your attention please. Representing the Robert Stone Brand, she is the face of the women’s division: Chelsea Green.” Green makes her down the ramp for this rematch.

Kayden Carter vs. Chelsea Green

Every time I see Kayden Carter, I see money. Athletic, strong, and as fast as any other woman on the brand, the girl has talent and kept Green guessing throughout the match with counters throughout including a nice double leg roll up, Green kicks out and lands a nice side kick to Green. Chelsea Green, however, had a much better showing then before. Carter attempted to hit Green with the roll up pin again in the corner but Green “countered” by stepping on Carter’s hair but as she stomping on the ambitious superstar, the EST of NXT rolls into the ring…

And in her best Kayne West impersonation, Bianca Bel Air says on the mic that “I’mma let you finish but I got something to say” which leads to her making one challenge to Charlotte Flair even though she “don’t even go here”. After emphatically stating she’s going to whip that ass, Carter tries to catch Green again with a roll up but Chelsea kicks out which leads to Green going for a backslide but Kayden kicks out.
Kayden lands a superkick after a kickout of Green’s own roll up, but after Chelsea rolls out of the ring to speak with her manager… adviser… whatever Robert Stone does, and Carter goes after her, Green rolls in and Kayden follows but is tripped up by Stone in the process. This leads to a Reverse Unprettier for the win.
Winner: Chelsea Green

As Green celebrates Mauro states the possibility, not forgetting Bianca Bel Air’s interruption and will we see Charlotte vs. Bel Air on NXT TV. Time will tell as we prepare for the main event of the evening as our screen is focused on Velveteen Dream whose literally up in smoke. Roderick Strong enters the ring not to soon after and we begin our main event of the evening.

Velveteen Dream vs. Roderick Strong

Gone for the past 4/5 months, Velveteen Dream showed literally no ring rust at all. And to challenge Roddy Strong was a big test but this match was solid top to bottom.

Starting with his submission style, Strong starts off grabbing Dream’s legs going for a single leg and sending himself to the ropes for a break. Strong gets up and almost eats a wicked right hand but Strong rolls to the outside for a breather and makes his way to the apron as Dream’s mind games on the former North American Champion started up early.

Strong is almost in but Velveteen Dream takes off his weight belt and attempts to throws it at Strong until the ref takes it away allowing Strong to pace himself and letting him back in to once again get back in the ring and go for another takedown. A lot of simple grabbing and rolling around with these two which was moreso to show the hate between these two until Dream lands a spot on dropkick as Strong re entered the ring.

Dream tries to wrestle Strong down but the strategist Strong is pokes Dream in the eye and starts to take advantage stomping down on Velveteen and landing a signature backbreaker for his trouble as Dream rolls to the outside. Non characteristic of Strong as he goes to the outside after Dream and once again catches offense for his trouble a gets a  clothesline. But Strong retaliates pushes Dream into the ring apron, resets the count but as Roddy tries to continue the outside offense, Dream counters and sends Strong into the ring steps as we go to our final commercial break of the night.

As we come back, back Roddy has Dream in a Sleeper Hold but Velveteeen begins to fight his way out of it.

Roddy attempts a Double underhook suplex but gets a back body drop for his trouble as he starts to build momentum as both men trade fists until a ‘malfunction at the junction’ with both men knocking heads in the corner. As they rise back to their feet, the trading of fists begin again but Dream gets the upperhand and hits a clothesline, corner head smash and two back breakers of his own. A little sloppy motion as Strong looks like he was going for a back body drop by Dream kind of lands on his head, grabs a double underhook which leads to Roddy fighting out of with a nasty forearm. Strong tries to follow up but Dream counters with a DDT, pin and kick out at 2.

Velveteen Dream looking at a window of opportunity to win the match starts his ascent and hits a double axe from the top. Once again it seems like a botched attempt at a back body drop but Strong sold it as a hit to Dream’s stomach as Dream lands a counter back elbow and goes for a spring board from the corner but Roddy pushes Dream who lands on the bread basket on the top. Strong begins to meet him to up there as both men fight for advantage but Dream loses this fight as Strong lifts him into a Top Rope Backbreaker, pins and another kick out for the Dream.

Not looking to lose his advantage Strong powerbombs Dream and goes for the Stronghold for the submission victory but Dream kicks his way out of the hold.

Once again both men exchange strikes but as Strong attempts a high knee Dream superkicks Strong out the air and hits the Dream Valley Driver. As Dream takes off his baby blue suit and reveals his new tights with the face of Marina Shafir disrespectfully plastered on the front and back of them.

But as Dream goes up top to hit the Purple Rainmaker, the rest of the Undisputed Era run towards the ring but Dream dives off the top, taking out Cole, Fish, and O’Reilly. As he comes back in the ring, Dream springboards in and eats the high knee Strong attempted earlier. A pin attempt but a kick out from Dream, as he reverses Strong’s backbreaker attempt into another Dream Valley Driver which gets the win.

Winner: Velveteen Dream

After the match the rest of the Undisputed Era storm the ring taking their shots on the Dream literally leaving him on the mat as they throw up the U E as the show ends for the week.

John Caul is a longtime wrestling fan since the Attitude Era. A former color commentator for several independent companies and former owner of independent wrestling company Imperial World Wrestling, John currently spends his time interacting with wrestling fans on Twitter while enjoying podcasts such as Cheap Heat and Jobber Tears.