NXT #716 Results and Review – January 16th, 2024

It’s time for the most exciting 2 hours of Pro Wrestling of the week! NXT baby! I can’t believe how much I like this show, it’s crazy.

NXT Results & Reviews

Dusty Rhodes Tag Team Classic 2024 First Round Match

Carmelo Hayes & Trick Williams vs. Edris Enofe & Malik Blade

This is a First Round Match in the 2024 Dusty Rhodes Tag Team Classic. Carmelo Hayes convinced Trick Williams to get in on the tournament whilst he awaits for Ilja Dragunov to be physically ready to defend the NXT Championship against him.

Trick wanted to focus on the title match, but clearly Carmelo is doing this on purpose. Edris Enofe and Malik Blade have been a Tag Team since January 11th, 2022 when they entered the 2022 Dusty Rhodes Tag Team Classic, and they have had 3 Tag Team Title shots during their time as a team.

The Match:
We immediately get into the action as NXT usually does. Let’s be honest, Enofe and Malik Blade are both in AWESOME shape, but perhaps they need a gimmick that’ll make them stand out, or a sassy lady to manage them?

Trick and Melo were in control early, and it would be in Carmelo’s best interests for them to win this so Trick is forced to still focus on this tournament rather than Ilja Dragunov.

Malik Blade nearly killed himself on a dive to the outside! Trick is really coming into his own. This match got wild and hectic toward the end. Trick nailed Blade with a high knee to progress in the tournament.

No sense of issues with Melo and Trick during this one, as I said, the way Melo would want it. Enofe and Blade to go back to the drawing board I’m sure!

Winner/s: Carmelo Hayes & Trick Williams via pinfall in 12:08.

Fallon Henley Interview with Kelly Kincaid
You know what? Kelly does a great job with how well and excitable she speaks during these interviews. Fallon is confident she will win tonights Battle Royal and Fatal Four Way that follows, and the verbiage was fairly rehearsed but she will get there. I just miss when interview answers felt organic, but, at least nobody interrupted.

There’s a video package on the NXT North American title and its recent history. It ends with Oba Femi’s title victory last week, and Oba Femi is on his way to the ring!

Tatum Paxley is at it again!

They show Lola and Elektra earlier today talking about taking Lyra out, as Tatum Paxley freaks them out as she claims to be winning the battle royal so that Lyra doesn’t have to defend the title at Vengeance Day. See how easy it is to have little stories thread through the show?

Oba Femi Speaks

Oba Femi comes out and he’s wearing a nice white long sleeve. I am loving his promo skills, he comes across natural on the mic. It doesn’t feel rehearsed. I popped for him saying the Breakout tournament was a championship. I will CROSH TO DOST EVERY MAN WHO STUNDS IN MY WAY. Fantastic. The accent really makes him sound cool.

Dragon Lee interrupts and looks like he wants a rematch or something. Dragon Lee gives Oba Femi some encouragement and asks him to continue the tradition of the open challenge, and Oba says NO. THE OPEN CHALLENGES ARE NOW CLOSED. Dragon wants his rematch at Vengeance Day. Oba says he may consider it. Okay Oba Femi is now my favorite in NXT, sorry Ilja!

What now Dijak?

Eddy Thorpe meets some aspiring NXT guys backstage, and they all un naturally sit facing forward instead of toward one another. Trey Bearhill walks in, and all the boys walk off? Why?

Trey and Eddy have Native American backgrounds and talk about that, and they badmouth Dijak and Lexis King, and Dijak walks in to antagonize them.

Just like that, a match is set for later with Dijak and Trey. This stuff makes me laugh so much, how quickly stuff can escalate and how convenient people are running into one another.

Props to NXT though, they have stopped with the Backstage Interview Interruptions for the most part!

Trick and Melo are backstage pumped up over their victory and are only just getting out of their gear after everything that’s happened. Ilja Dragunov shows up and says he’s cleared to wrestle.

Their title match is going to happen at Vengeance Day, and now Melo is upset about the fact the Dusty Rhodes Cup finals are supposed to be Vengeance Day as well. The plot thickens again!

Tag Team Match

Lyra Valkyria & Tatum Paxley vs. Elektra Lopez & Lola Vice

Lola Vice won the NXT Women’s Breakout Tournament in 2023, which gives her the opportunity to have a shot at the NXT Women’s Champion anytime she wants, as if it were a Money in the Bank Briefcase. Due to that, she has had some confrontations with NXT Champion, Lyra Valkyria.

Lyra however has been dealing with Tatum Paxley being somewhat obsessed with her, to the point where Tatum is starting to have Lyra’s back at any given time, despite the fact Lyra is a little freak out by her!

The Match:
Tatum hilariously shows up dressed just like Lyra, and honestly it’s absolutely adorable. Lyra freaks out about it again.

The match begins, and I have to say Elektra Lopez is looking in fantastic shape! Lyra is in charge early and Tatum pretty much hit the same move as Lyra which was comical.

Once again, sorry, but I see ladies like Lyra, Elektra, Lola and Tatum… the WWE does NOT NEED SASHA BANKS! Lopez and Vice could be a great Women’s Tag Team on the Main Roster if they were given a decent shot.

Tatum hit a variation of the Juggernaut driver before the hot tag, Lyra got knocked back into the turnbuckle and Tatum got the tag followed by a big crossbody.

During this flurry, Lola Vice spin kicked Tatum in the head who took the bullet for Lyra, who then landed on Elektra as Lyra dumped Lola out, and it lead to a pin! The fans thought that was insanely entertaining, as did I. I even rewound it to watch it again!

Lyra’s reaction to Tatum winning was priceless, and it’s going to be charming to see her slowly but surely put trust into the young lady who is clearly obsessed with her.

Winner/s: Lyra Valkyria & Tatum Paxley via pinfall in 4:03.

What NXT is getting right, is that they keep everything snappy. They use the show to promote the PLE’s and NXT Specials. That is what TV is for. It’s not meant to have several 10-15 minute “great matches”, it’s meant to further stories, develop characters, and get over what they want over. It’s as simple as that.

Of course, there’s nothing wrong with having one off big time title matches here and there where it goes 20 minutes, if the story at the time permits it. This is what WORKED in the Attitude Era!

Arianna Grace, the Comedian

Backstage, we are in the Ladies Locker Room, and Arianna Grace gives a really passionate speech and nobody is listening.

This lady is honestly so good at what she does, she’s giving this Disney Princess style speech and by the time it’s over, everyone has left the locker room. I was actually cackling with laughter.

Singles Match

Joe Coffey (w/Mark Coffey & Wolfgang) vs. Ridge Holland

Last week, Gallus had a confrontation backstage with Ridge Holland which was pretty heated, and it has lead to a match between Ridge and Gallus leader Joe this week.

The Match:
Ridge came out the gate hot and it’s clear the guy is a pure athlete, he’s got a heap of fire, and I hope the angle with the injury to Ilja continues in some way. Ridge absolutely DEMOLISHED him man. That was actually super impressive.

After the match Mark Coffey and Wolgang attack Ridge Holland, and… they kept looking at the entrance way. Nobody was coming to help or stop Gallus from beating up Ridge! That’s why they kept pointing the camera, the cameramen were expecting security to come out, and they didn’t.

It’s a bit worrysome at the moment for Gallus and Joe Coffey, who have been on the losing end of some feuds lately, and big time matches, aside from the Hank & Tank situation.

Winner: Ridge Holland via pinfall in 2:27.

NXT Anonymous starts showing the ladies with Chase U, and Jacy/Thea Hail. They are excited for something they have set up for Chase U and Andre. Jacy then asks “Jasmine” if she wants to get some drinks. Interesting. Nothing is too obvious, there’s questions in the air.

Backstage Kilani Jordan is exercising and prepping for the Battle Royal later, talking about not wanting to be patient, and she ends up conversing with Brinley Reece about it, who appears to be quite hyperactive.

Baron Corbin Interview with Kelly Kincaid
Bron Breakker rocked up to the interview late as Baron was talking about being the leader of the team. Bron disputed that and said he was the leader of the team. Bron calls the team the Wolf Dogs. Baron is upset at the name. It’s hilarious.

Bron said it took him 3-4 weeks to think of the name, Baron is confused because they have only been together for 2, and Bron said he was thinking about it in the shower, and Baron asks why he was thinking of him in the shower. I burst into laughter.

Kelly then says that they’re both A-Holes, and I wish they just straight up said Assholes. Baron wants a different name and Bron says the Wild Boars. Baron is disgusted and walks off. Ridiculous.

Dusty Rhodes Tag Team Classic 2024 First Round Match

Chase U (Duke Hudson & Riley Osborne) (w/Andre Chase) vs. LWO (Cruz Del Toro & Joaquin Wilde) (w/Zelina Vega)

This is another First Round match in the 2024 Dusty Rhodes Tag Team Classic. Jacy Jane decided last week that NXT Men’s Breakout Tournament Finalist Riley Osborne would take Andre Chase’s place within Chase U for the tournament, so that Andre can focus on getting his life back together.

The LWO are back in NXT for the time being to be some ‘names’ from the Main Roster to have in the tournament.

The Match:
Chase U make their entrance and I have to laugh, because of Andre’s financial peril, he can’t brush his hair or keep his shirt tucked in. The LWO make their entrance and I like that they brought Zelina in for the show! I have a feeling the Latino World Order will be going through to the Semi Finals.

This was a really well put together match, a lot of highs and lows, but the pacing was great, and it didn’t come across choreographed, the spots were more like happenstance – and the fans were going NUTS. The LWO picked up the win in wild fashion with the Phoenix Splash from Del Toro.

The LWO head to the Semi Finals of the Dusty Rhodes Tag Team Classic, and Andre Chase claims that Jacy Jane is Chase U’s only hope!

Winner/s: LWO (Cruz Del Toro & Joaquin Wilde) (w/Zelina Vega) via pinfall in 9:43.

Adriana Rizzo is backstage getting ready because she’s nervous because the Battle Royal is her first match. I love we never knew she was a wrestler.

This conversation they’re having is so entertaining. They go on about how tough she is an all the guys and girls she’s smacked upside the head, but she only felt good about doing it because they deserved it.

We come back from the backstage area and Joe Gacy is at the announce table with Vic and Booker who are both looking very uncomfortable as Joe is pretending he’s apart of the commentary team. Dijaks theme song hits and Vic whispers to Joe Gacy “…what are you doing out here?”

Apparently last week Von Wagner was backstage with Robert Stone, and where Noam Dar and Oro Mensah walk in and Von Wagner wants a title shot, and it’s all rather fun stuff with Von pretending to not understand the rules of a Heritage Cup Title Match.

Singles Match

Dijak vs. Trey Bearhill

A confrontation took place earlier as Trey Bearhill conversed with Eddy Thorpe on their similar heritage and dislike for some heels, and Dijak interrupted, which lead to an argument, which lead to this.

The Match:
This is my first look at Trey in the ring, who is a little rough around the edges but it makes sense he would be. I think perhaps he needs to cover his chest up, but that’s me being nitpicky.

The commentary is good entertainment, as they discussed the many different names to call a superkick. Bearhill looks to be slightly rough at bouncing off the ropes.

Dijak yells at the commentary team, and Joe Gacy headbutted Dijak. Bearhill gets Dijak in the ring and nearly got the pinfall victory. This got a bit of time here, and Dijak won with a big spinning kick to the head.

Glad Dijak won! After the match Gacy attacked Dijak and they brawled up the ramp. Lexis King then attacked Trey in the ring and laid him OUT. He screamed at Trey for costing him his biggest opportunity of his career.

See, there’s so much going on and so many angles taking place!

Winner: Dijak via pinfall in 4:36.

Josh Briggs meets John Bradshaw Layfield

Backstage, Josh Briggs is sitting on his own, because even though he and Brooks Jensen aren’t a team anymore, they’re not allowed to hangout either. John Bradshaw Layfield shows up!

This was a little unnatural for Briggs to straight away ask for advice. JBL gives some encouragement to him and that Briggs needs to find out who he is. Then he walks off because again, hilariously, conversations backstage only last about 75 seconds in NXT.

Trick Williams and Carmelo Hayes are talking about the upcoming situation with Vengeance Day and Trick thinks he will be ready to do double duty at Vengeance Day, and Carmelo actually acts mature and says they should focus on the LWO next week.

It’s so devastating to see that Cora Jade is injured and will be out for close to a year. She was on her way.

WWE NXT Women’s Title #1 Contendership Qualifying Battle Royal

Gigi Dolin vs. Blair Davenport vs. Stevie Turner vs. Izzi Dame vs. Fallon Henley vs. Elektra Lopez vs. Roxanne Perez vs. Wren Sinclair vs. Arianna Grace vs. Lash Legend vs. Kiana James vs. Tatum Paxley vs. Thea Hail vs. Jakara Jackson vs. Lola Vice vs. Jaida Parker vs. Kelani Jordan vs. Karmen Petrovic vs. Brinley Reece vs. Adriana Rizzo

It was announced last week by NXT Women’s Champion Lyra Valkyria that there would be a Battle Royal to determine 4 women that would then battle in a Fatal Four Way Match, where the winner would challenge Lyra for the title at NXT Vengeance Day.

The Match:
Kiana James and Izzi Dame enter together, and I burst into laughter because Kiana had this absolute bitchy look on her face, and it’s like – what kind of human being is that? Adriana Rizzo made her entrance and we… didn’t get a close up. Ah, they’re in a commercial break.

At least SHOW THE LADIES ENTRANCES! Wren Sinclair, aka Madi Wrenkowski, my homegirl, is making her debut here too! Apparently, Wren was in the match where Cora got injured, so Wren is actually taking her place in the Battle Royal.

The match is under way and all I am concerned about it Wren Sinclair. Jakara Jackson got eliminated first. Lash Legend and Izzi Dame collided, and Jada/Adriana got eliminated.

Kilani got knocked off and she landed on one of the ladies at ringside and she was stuck on the announce table which is hilarious. We come back from commercial break and we see what she did to get back to the ring. Lola Vice eliminated Elektra and then Paxley eliminated Lola, which was hilarious, and oh NO LOLA AND ELEKTRA STARTED FIGHTING! That is hilarious.

Gigi Dolin ends up eliminated by Blair Davenport. Karmen Petrovic eliminated Blair and then Blair destroyed her by pulling her to the outside and kneeing her in the skull. Look at all these angles coming out from this?

Paxley then got eliminated by the sassy Lash Legend. Is Nikkita Lyons not in this? Arianna Grace picks up Karmen who is unconscious and she eliminated her, celebrated, then got dumped out by Thea Hale, and Arianna was crying on the outside.

Thea ended up being eliminated by Izzi Dame who is looking featured, because of her height. Izzi and Lash have another showdown, and I have to say Izzi appears to have gained more confidence in recent weeks.

The ladies are ON FIRE in this one, they’re showing so much passion. Wren Sinclair actually eliminated Lash which was insane. She nearly eliminated Kiana James too.

Oh man, do I feel proud of Madi. Kiana eliminated Wren, and it’s down to our final four!

These final four battle in a Fatal Four Way!

Winner/s: Fallon Henley and Kelani Jordan and Kiana James and Roxanne Perez in 17:35.

WWE NXT Women’s Title #1 Contendership Fatal Four Way Match

Fallon Henley vs. Roxanne Perez vs. Kiana James vs. Kelani Jordan

I literally just told you about this bro?

The Match:
If Roxanne wins, I riot. I can’t see anybody else winning this unfortunately. This surely will coincide with a Roxanne Perez heel turn.

Kilani hit a sweet Asai Moonsault on Kiana and Izzi Dame. Roxy and Kilani do some good work together because Fallon gets back in there, and it’s been a joy seeing her working more and more. She’s really raised her profile.

I know Tiffany Stratton was working at the Ranch last week, but does that stop her from being in this Battle Royal?

I have to give Kiana props too, she’s been terrific in the last 6 months. Roxanne hit a hurricanrana and Kilani hit a Frogsplash. It was pure suspense, Izzi Dame got involved, and Roxanne hit Pop Rox on Kilani to win.

Roxanne Perez gets back in the title hunt and will challenge Lyra Valkyria at Vengeance Day for the NXT Women’s Championship.

Winner: Roxanne Perez via pinfall in 5:07.

Valkyria comes out and lifts her title up, and gives Roxy a slow clap, as Roxy stares at her like a weirdo as we go off the air!

Final Thoughts: This show is clearly firing on all cylinders and is the perfect show for somebody with a short attention span.

They have completely cut out Backstage Interview Interruptions for the most part, the only thing I wish for is no commercial breaks during matches, but other than that, NXT is a near perfect weekly episodic TV program which does what it is supposed to do, and that is keep you hyped for what is coming next.

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Karlifornia is a Freelance Journalist for RealProWrestling.Com and TheRockpit.Net and Host on the Insiders Edge Podcast through his YouTube channel, the WZWA Network. He has been a die hard Pro Wrestling fan since 1998, and his favorite time period in wrestling is the Attitude Era/Monday Night Wars.

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