The Best And Worst Of WWE NXT 8/21/19: Myles To Go

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Previously on the Best and Worst of NXT: We TookOver Toronto with the best version of Io Shirai, an amazing triple threat match, and an NXT Championship main event that went about 35 minutes too long.

If you missed this episode, you can watch it here.

If you’d like to read previous installments of the Best and Worst of NXT, click right here. Follow With Spandex on Twitter and Facebook. You can also follow me on Twitter, where everything and everyone is terrible.

And now, the Best and Worst of WWE NXT for August 21, 2019.

Best: Hello, My Name Is Jordan Myles, And I Have Come To Share With You The Most Amazing Book

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First of all, I want to point out what a spectacularly dickish move it was for Adam Cole, a man who leads a faction of four guys, to say that NXT’s Mt. Rushmore would just be, “Adam Cole’s pretty face, face four times.” Even Ric Flair would be courteous enough to pretend Tully Blanchard was important when Tully was right there. Second of all, Roderick Strong has started looking AND sounding like Jerry Seinfeld when he gets upset and starts yelling.

Third of all, in case you missed it, Jordan Myles won the Breakout Tournament on the TakeOver: Toronto pre-show episode and has decided to cash in his title opportunity against Adam Cole. He should’ve challenged dude to a ladder match for the title if he was gonna show up for the promo dressed like a soldier of the army of the Church Of Jesus Christ Of Latter-Day Saints. Cole vs. Myles is gonna rule, though, and is the perfect little stop-gap title defense between the end of Network NXT and the beginning of whatever the hell the show becomes on USA.

Speaking of that …

Worst: Leave The Memories Alone

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With NXT’s impending move to The Chrisley Network, it’s hard to articulate what I’m feeling. As someone who has been watching since the Hulu era (and the game show era before that) and has seen NXT grow into what it’s become, I’m proud and happy for everyone getting more exposure and a bigger payday. At the same time, despite all the promises that not much will change, nothing WWE’s done in the past 15-20 years has instilled enough good faith to think the show won’t slowly devolve into Yellow Smackdown, and my precious little niche product aimed directly at me will be lost forever.

I think back on Kevin Owens’ promo about NXT TakeOver: Brooklyn, the first TakeOver that wasn’t live from Full Sail, and how disrespectful it was for fans to claim they love a product and its performers but don’t want to see them grow. It’s still true. But then I think about everything Kevin Owens did on this week’s episode of Smackdown, from begging for a fine to be lifted to being fast-counted by an unstoppable and indifferent evil general manager in a customized referee shirt, and I wonder about the value of truth.

If it turns out great, I’m along for the ride. If it doesn’t … well, at least somebody inside the WWE system proved they can still write, produce, perform, and sell a wonderful, wrestling-based wrestling show for six straight years. And at least there will be something else to watch on Wednesday nights.

This Week’s Matches

Mia Yim gets a strong, rebound win against Vanessa Borne — at least it wasn’t Aliyah — and then makes the crucial mistake of turning down a position as the Fourth Horsewoman of … MMA, I guess? There’s already a Four Horsewomen of NXT and we’re never gonna see Ronda Rousey in NXT to complete the Four Horsewomen of MMA of NXT (of Anaheim), so maybe they need a new squad name. Anyway, Mia turns down a chance to wear a shirt that says LET’S DANCE or whatever and gets beaten up. I wouldn’t be surprised if we eventually see her change her mind, because Shayna Baszler needs some functional lackeys who can actually have matches.

Grizzled Young Veteran Shane Thorne takes offense to his former The Mighty Don’t Kneel stablemate Bronson Reed’s by-the-numbers “I’m looking for an opportunity” promo at the Performance Center and they have a match about it. Like Thorne’s win over Joaquin Wilde a couple of weeks ago, it puts over Thorne as a ring general smart enough to use his environment and surroundings to get leverage over his opponents and win in what might be seen as an “underhanded” or “opportunistic” way, but without cheating. I’m into it. Wrestling (and NXT, especially) desperately needs more jerks who make you hate them because they’re better than you, not just because they point and yell into a microphone about how they hate “each and every one of you.”

Finally there’s the main event, aka “the match we didn’t have space for at TakeOver.”

I liked how this was put together, with Riddle trying to get the jump on Dain like Dain keeps getting on him, and Dain focusing on Riddle’s injured ribs from the TakeOver melee. It’s pretty shocking to see Matt Riddle straight-up get his ass kicked until there’s blood coming out of his mouth — or there’s just blood on his face from getting snake-eyed onto the ring steps, either/or — but it goes a long way toward making Killian Dain a believable threat. Riddle has been pretty much kicking everybody’s ass since he debuted, even when he loses, so Dain’s already an A-1 nemesis. Plus, now everybody who was in Sanity is doing better than Eric Young. Even Sawyer Fulton’s over on Impact teaming up with oVe.

The fight continues outside the building (on Dot Com) where Riddle is at an extreme disadvantage. Brother is barefoot, in August, in central Florida. I walk outside on a summer parking lot in Ohio in bare feet and feel like I’m doing the Tony Robbins Hot Coal Ritual. I’m going to hope these constant ass-kickings are to put Dain over and give Riddle’s character some vulnerability, and not a message to shut the fuck up about how awful WCW guys look 20 years past their primes.

Also On This Episode

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Speaking of things from 20 years ago, even Velveteen Dream sounds kind of embarrassing doing Mastercard commercial slogans as promos. Imagine if Kenny Omega and the Young Bucks opened the first episode of AEW on TNT with “bud” … “weis” … “err.”

Mia Yim, how dare you interrupt William Regal while he’s on the phone with … I’m assuming Bobby Eaton? The NXT General Manager has no sympy!

Next Week:

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SCP-940 takes on SCP-385 in one-on-one action! Match class keter. See you then!