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STAND & DELIVER IV - 4/6/2024


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I wonder if Kimona Wanalaya can dance on top of the Wells Fargo Center?¬† ūü§Ē

The afternoon of Mania weekend, and we can't have you supporting... ugh... "independent wrestling", so, it's Stand and Deliver! 

THE CARD~

FOR THE NXT CHAMPIONSHIP - Ilja Dragunov (c) vs. Tony D'Angelo

FOR THE NXT WOMEN'S CHAMPIONSHIP - Lyra Valkyria (c) vs. Roxanne Perez

FOR THE NXT TAG TEAM CHAMPIONSHIP - Wolfdogs (Breakker / Corbin, c) vs. Axiom / Nathan Frazier

TRIPLE THREAT MATCH FOR THE NORTH AMERICAN CHAMPIONSHIP - Oba Femi (c) vs. Dijak vs. Josh Briggs

Carmelo Hayes vs. Trick Williams

Shawn Spears vs. Joe Gacy

Thea Hail / Fallon Henley / Kelani Jordan vs. Jacy Jayne / Kiana James / Izzi Dame

--

Just gonna assume they're gonna add a "Loser Leaves NXT" stip to the Hayes/Williams match. 

 

 

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I'm really hoping we get a Wolf Dogs v Axiom/Frazer rematch, because they had a really good TV match and they are going to burn the house down on the big stage. 

 

Last year's SAD was "where I came in" after a decade of not paying attention, and NXT has been my favorite WWE show since (in part because its stupid parts are 90s Wrestling Stupid and not Modern WWE Stupid), so I have high hopes. Trick v Melo should be emotionally satisfying, all the title matches should be good and fun, Perez as heel champ is gonna be delightful if they go there. I will be sad to see the inevitable dissolution of the Wolf Dogs, because those guys are MAGIC together. How the fuck did Corbin flop so hard on the touring roster when he's so good in Orlando? 

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Gonna go out on a limb and predict that the women's and tag titles will change hands and both the men's singles champs will successfully defend. The Wolf Dogs are almost certainly losing so Bron can go on tour full time, and I don't really get why they turned Roxanne heel unless they want to see whether she can get the fans to take her seriously when she's not a plucky underdog. The only way Ilja loses is if he's being called up before Battleground. North Am title, hell I don't know. I'd like to see Dijak get some gold but for some reason I think Oba retains.

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The opening tag match really smoked. Frazier and Axiom are two of the better fliers on the roster and seemed to have an answer to anything the larger opponents threw at them. I'm really surprised there was no title change as Breaker is ready to be on the main roster full time and Corbin is..well..Corbin.

NA match really over-delivered for me. Femi is still green but good at doing hoss stuff, Dijak is always solid in the big guy who is surprisingly agile, and Briggs held his own. I thought breaking up Bro Country was a bad move as it seemed a case of the sum being greater than the parts, but Briggs looks like he might have some solo potential.

The women's trios match was definitely a thing that happened. It might be just me but a lot of the current crop of NXT women just kind of run together. Maybe it's the cringey names or not enough of them having that established of characters?

What I caught of Lyra/Roxanne was fine. Maybe it's because I get Perez and Cora Jade mixed up a lot but I'm just kind of tired of her, even though she's good in the ring.

Tony D has improved a hell of a lot as far as his wrestling ability goes, but the gimmick is really holding him back. Ilya is one of the best guys on the roster right now in terms of looking unhinged and explosive on offense but also making his opponents look good. There was never any doubt of the outcome here but the match was fine if a bit long.

Main event was solid but I guess I was expecting a bit more intensity for a feud blowoff match.

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After seeing Knuckles in the crowd, I had the voice of Warner Wolf in my head ... "AND KNUCKLES WAS AT THE GAME!"

A bit of nitpick, but does NXT even try with its ring announcing? No weights, no where they are from. It's "HERE'S WRESTLER A! AND THEIR OPPONENT, WRESTLER B!" This is the first time I've seen NXT matches in full -- is this par for the course?

Tony D'Angelo has promise, but needs something better than "FBI Version 2" to move up.

Main event was OK, but the ref bumps were a bit absurd. Also, a high knee doesn't seem like a big finisher in a main event.

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Bron/Corbin vs. Axiom/Frazer was pretty darn good. Pretty similar to their Dusty Cup match with Axiom and Frazer going all out before the bell even rang, but some how they went even bigger and better. That big splash from Corbin was neat. I love that the audience completely would have bought it as a finish. Kind of glad Wolfdogs retained since I'm loving Bron and Corbin as a team though I do wish they had left out the part that Bron had yet to win a S&D event until after the match.

Oba vs. Dijak vs. Briggs was a a great battle of monsters that saw every guy looking good. Oba isn't quite the athletic beast Dijak and Briggs are, but he looked great when bringing on the power alongside Briggs and Dijak bumping so big for him. I do find it funny how Briggs was the only one going in who was arguably face and of course was the only on booed. The finish was kind of perfect as well being another big moment for Oba. They are doing a great job with Oba in these matches, and Oba to his credit has been carrying himself well both in the ring and as a general aura. I only wish he could talk a bit better. 

Thea/Fallon/Kelani vs. Jacy/Kiana/Izzi was good. Surprised this didn't open the show, but they built up a pretty nice match here with everyone having some good moments. Izzi got in a surprising amount of time here and looked pretty solid. She may not be as overly impressive as your Kelanis, Lolas, and Sols, but you can see why she got the spot on such a big show beyond just being the pin eater. She is pretty solid support right now. 

Was nice to see them use this as an opportunity to announce a new Women's belt. Been wanting to see a secondary women's belt in WWE for while. NXT's division has enough strength to justify it. I like that they went the NA route.

Roxanne/Lyra was pretty good and noticeably better than their Vengeance Day match pre-Lola. Both felt a lot more motivated opposed to trying to hold back. Was nice seeing Roxanne so focused on working the arm, and Lyra did a mostly solid job selling throughout with it holding her back at least once or twice. Was pleasantly surprised to see Roxanne more or less win this clean. I thought it was the right choice given how well Roxanne has been doing as a heel. I also ended up right with the crowd really only being behind Roxanne. Lyra has been good, but she is a bland face. I think the crowd might have turned on her had she won opposed to the slight apathy they had towards. Hopefully they use this as an opportunity for change especially given some of the finer points of her feud with Roxanne.

Tony/Ilja was nice and rough with the two actually meshing together better than expected. I like that Tony respected Ilja too much to do his usual cheap antics. I think this is easily one of D'Angelo's better matches in NXT. 

Trick/Melo was good. Good action, good fire from Trick, and Melo was great dicking around as a heel.

Everything here delivered and was damn good fun to watch. Not sure what was MOTN for with how good everything was, but this was a damn good show overall.

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That was a fun show even though, aside from the tag title match it was pretty predictable. I had a tiny twinge in the back of my mind when I saw the Wolf Dogs had merch that they might retain, but I was still shocked. But the match was everything I wanted it to be.

I knew he wasn't gonna, but I wanted Dijak to win the NA title. I cannot believe they did the office chair spot, that was stupid as hell but it looked great.

Trios match was fine. I think all 3 members of the face team are gonna be huge if they're properly cultivated, but I'm never sure they will be.

Waaaay too many long breaks. If you're gonna sell ad space on the barricades, why is this the only PPV that doesn't have LED monitors in the barricades?

Women's match was probably the best Valkyria has looked. I think it's absurd that Perez wasn't called up in last year's draft and won't be again this year, but if they're gonna keep her on NXT another year then making her a messy-ass heel is the right way to do it.

Dragunov/Di Angelo was good, but never really blew me away or took me out of the Intellectual "well, if Tony wins then Ilja's getting drafted."

Main was pretty much what I expected; a good match elevated by the emotion.

 

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While probably lacking any blow away matches, this felt like one of the best overall recent NXT events. 

I'm fine with Wolf Dogs retaining if simply because they're so much fun in and out of the ring together and the only reason to end their reign would be Bron's Smackdown status. (Which I don't think is *that* big of a deal with Smackdown being taped on Fridays and NXT on Tuesday. Dom was doing Raw and NXT for a while.)

The NA triple threat match was probably the best Briggs has looked as a single competitor so far. While a good portion of the match ended up just being Dijak/Briggs, Oba looked good with all the stuff he did. The Death Valley Driver by Dijak to Briggs off of Oba's shoulders was a pretty insane feet of strength. I do have to wonder if it might be time to just call Dijak up to the main roster.

The six women's match was a good feature for all those involved. Seems like we still have a future Jayce/Thea match in our future. Also looked like there might be a heel turn in the future for Fallon with her seemingly not super thrilled with Thea getting the win both after the match and in the digital exclusive interview.

Honestly wasn't crazy about the Roxy/Lyra match. For whatever reason it just feels like they don't have that much in-ring chemistry together. I assume we're getting closer to Lyra snapping on Tatum.

Ilja really seems to be getting to that Gunther level where he can work so many great but different style matches against so many opponents. Saying that this was probably Tony D's best singles match is probably not saying that much but I like where this program has left him after the kinda fluffy tag title reign.

For it being their first match together and where Trick is as a wrestler, I thought the main event was good. If they want to run it back again, I think they left a lot of places where they can go. If they move Melo to the main roster, I think they left Trick in a good place to move into a program with someone else. 

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19 hours ago, colonial said:

A bit of nitpick, but does NXT even try with its ring announcing? No weights, no where they are from. It's "HERE'S WRESTLER A! AND THEIR OPPONENT, WRESTLER B!" This is the first time I've seen NXT matches in full -- is this par for the course?

Yes, it is. Alicia does a great job, but if the purpose of NXT is to prepare talent for the main roster, might as well work on doing a proper ring announcement.

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1 hour ago, The Natural said:

What are the most must see matches as I'm short on time? Thanks in advance.

The first 2 matches are full of crazy astonishing shit, Roxy/Lyra isn't a great match but was emotionally satisfying, Trick v Melo was better than Roxy/Lyra and also emotionally satisfying. Skip the trios and Ilja v Tony D.

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2 minutes ago, Cliff Hanger said:

The first 2 matches are full of crazy astonishing shit, Roxy/Lyra isn't a great match but was emotionally satisfying, Trick v Melo was better than Roxy/Lyra and also emotionally satisfying. Skip the trios and Ilja v Tony D.

Cheers!

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6 hours ago, The Natural said:

What are the most must see matches as I'm short on time? Thanks in advance.

I must have watched 30 hours of wrestling this weekend, and the opening tag match on this show is my second favourite at worst. I don't know what has happened to Bron Breakker, maybe Axiom and Frazer are just that good, but he looked like an actual megastar, rather than someone who just fits the bill enough that he'll be pushed like one whether I like it or not.

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1 hour ago, SturmCRF said:

I must have watched 30 hours of wrestling this weekend, and the opening tag match on this show is my second favourite at worst. I don't know what has happened to Bron Breakker, maybe Axiom and Frazer are just that good, but he looked like an actual megastar, rather than someone who just fits the bill enough that he'll be pushed like one whether I like it or not.

Cheers, pal.

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I thought the women's title match was a far better match than the last time Roxanne and Lyra faced one another. Lyra has been fine in-ring wise if not all that exciting character wise. I feel like a heel turn against Tatum would serve her well. 

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