Competing for the first time since TakeOver: Rival, when he was brutalized by Kevin Owens, Sami Zayn had a monstrous task in front of him, in the form of the vicious Rhyno. Though Zayn has said he plans on using his rematch clause to challenge Owens for the NXT Title, The Man Beast made it clear that he feels the line for a title opportunity starts behind him. Who would stake their claim to a future title match in this week’s main event?
CJ Parker tried to get a one-week head start on Earth Day with a victory over Solomon Crowe, but the enigmatic hacker could not be stopped this week. Crowe clobbered Parker with a springboard clothesline on the ring apron, then dove onto the eco-warrior on the arena floor. Though Parker battled back and seemed to be on the verge of victory, Crowe mounted a comeback of his own, eventually locking on the Stretch Muffler to win by submission.
Former United States Marine Steve Cutler came out swinging against Baron Corbin, but there was little he could do to stop The Lone Wolf’s rampage. Corbin left Cutler reeling with a big clothesline, then put the exclamation point on another quick victory with the End of Days.
Enzo & Big Cass, the No. 1 Contenders to the NXT Tag Team Titles, had their hands full this week with the new team of amateur wrestling standouts Sawyer Fulton & Angelo Dawkins. The two mat wizards muscled their way into control over the smaller Amore, tossing him around the ring with ease.
To make matters worse, NXT Tag Team Champions Blake & Murphy made their way to ringside to apologize to the lovely Carmella once again for knocking her off the ring apron at the Arnold Sports Festival. The champions presented the bombshell with bouquets of flowers, much to the dismay of Enzo & Big Cass. Meanwhile, Amore was able to tag in Cassady, who went on a tear, bulldozing through Dawkins & Fulton, hitting the East River Crossing on Dawkins and then tossing Amore onto him for the win!
Fresh off competing in the Fitness International at the Arnold Sports Festival, Dana Brooke made her highly anticipated NXT debut, taking on fan favorite Blue Pants. Though the cerulean-clad competitor took advantage of her opponent’s self-obsession in the opening moments of the bout, Brooke eventually showed why she calls herself “The Total Diva.” The blonde bombshell pummeled Blue Pants into the canvas, before showing off her superior strength, picking up the victory with a devastating slam!
Sami Zayn tried to wear down the massive Rhyno in the opening moments of the main event, but could not match strength with the powerful Detroit native. The former NXT Champion had to use his speed and agility to evade the raging Man Beast. That only seemed to infuriate Rhyno, who bludgeoned Zayn when he caught him.
With Rhyno in control, things looked bleak for Zayn, but the fiery French-Canadian refused to give in, showing signs of life with quick bursts of offense. Still, The Man Beast was unrelenting, hurling his massive frame at his foe in the corner and muscling Zayn around the ring. In the end, Zayn’s never-say-die attitude shone through, as he evaded a Gore and connected with the Helluva Kick to earn a hard-fought win!
- Numbers in parentheses indicate the length of the match.
- (c) refers to the champion(s) heading into the match.
- Solomon Crowe defeated CJ Parker (5:20)
- Baron Corbin defeated Steve Cutler (0:24)
- Realest Guys (Enzo Amore & Colin Cassady) (w/ Carmella) defeated Shoot Nation (Angelo Dawkins & Sawyer Fulton) (3:50)
- Dana Brooke defeated Blue Pants (2:10)
- Sami Zayn defeated Rhyno (12:55)