A packed house enjoyed the action, entertainment and excitement as WWE NXT made a successful Miami debut on Friday, July 24 at the Fieldhouse at the BankUnited Center at the University of Miami in Coral Gables.
NXT champ Finn Balor, the innovative Tyler Breeze and the always huggable Bayley participated in a special meet-n-greet to usher in the historic event.
As the champion, Balor is carrying the ball extremely well. Not only did he put smiles on faces at the meet-n-greet, but he and Samoa Joe sent fans home very happy by tearing the place down with an epic main event -- suitable for a future NXT live special on WWE Network.
Other established NXT talent along with a few newer creations provided quality entertainment for the entire family and superfan Tye Dye Guy.
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Fans reacted strongly for Uhaa Nation, which continues to grow strong, and what better place to support Uhaa than at The U. He is one to keep a close eye. Really good look, good build, charismatic and very agile, especially for his muscular frame. Stellar drop kick. Uhaa Nation defeated Mike Rallis.
Crowd applauded both after a near perfect match as The Perfect 10 Tye Dillinger defeated Scott Dawson. Dillinger’s scorecards, including ‘10’ signs in various shapes and sizes, also perfect.
Fan favorite Bayley won a three-way over bodybuilder Dana Brooke and a non-dancing Emma.
Blake and Murphy (with Alexa Bliss) retained the NXT tag team titles over The Vaudevillians (Aiden English and Simon Gotch). Another quality battle. Blake bled, but the NXT trainer quickly responded. Bliss interfered, costing the old school duo the titles.
The arrogantly mouthy Angelo Dawkins impressed by working over the crowd and Dash Wilder, who delivered some comedic moments.
The captivating and innovative Tyler Breeze defeated Bull Dempsey. Good match and some funny spots with Breeze shouting and Dempsey trying to catch his breath and taking a sip of water from a fan.
John Cena isn’t the only polarizing figure in WWE. Part of the Miami crowd cheered Eva Marie and the other portion booed her. As long as you get a reaction -- positive, negative or both -- that works. Good ring entrance for Eva Marie. Red is her color. On the mat, it takes time to develop skill, ring psychology. Don’t judge a book by its cover, especially when the book is not finished being scribed.
Eva Marie, who also co-stars on “Total Divas” on E!, teamed with the powerful Lina to defeat cute tag team Jessie McKay and Cassie McIntosh. Seated ringside, Ata Maivia Johnson and Jonathan Coyle also tag teamed to watch family members teaming. Lina is related to Ata, and Eva Marie is Jonathan’s wife.
Referees Shawn Bennett and Drake Wuertz did a good job as did Miami’s own Norman Smiley working behind the scenes. The ring announcers were the lovely and talkative Dasha Fuentes and the beautiful Zahra Schreiber. Before the show, Fuentes walked around ringside, asking fans questions about NXT. The jack-of-all-trades Ryan Katz video recorded that and all the action.
The NXT staff along with the Fieldhouse workers just excellent. The Fieldhouse is an extension of the BankUnited Center, making the perfect intimate setting for NXT fans -- full to capacity.
Glad to see NXT in Miami with great talent and a great crowd at a great venue. Plenty of fans got their popcorn and their tickets. A win-win for everyone and hopefully that means an NXT return in the not so distant future.
NXT has become a Florida institution from the opening of the WWE Performance Center in Orlando to the action-packed WWE Network shows and live specials filmed at Full Sail Live at Full Sail University in Winter Park (near Orlando), to the exciting live events throughout north and central Florida -- and now South Florida.
NXT in West Palm Beach
The following night NXT concluded its three-day South Florida swing with a stellar crowd in West Palm Beach at the Palm Beach County Convention Center.
The Havert L. Fenn Center in Fort Pierce drop kicked off the tour with solid attendance on Thursday, July 23, and then Miami the next night and West Palm Beach for the finale.
Longtime fan Greg Goode of Fort Lauderdale sent this report on the West Palm Beach show.
Uhaa Nation pinned Solomon Crowe by press slam and reverse somersault.
Dash Wilder and Scott Dawson beat Angelo Dawkins and Sawyer Fulton. Wilder pinned Dawkins.
Bull Dempsey pinned Mike Rollis. Bull did three push-ups before the match, after Rollis did 10. Bull won with the splash off the corner top rope.
Eva Marie and Lina defeated Jessie & Cassie. Lina recorded the pin.
The Vaudevillens (Aiden English & Simon Gotch) over Blake & Murphy (with Alexa Bliss).
In a three-way, Bayley pinned Emma and Dana Brooke, but Brooke was on her stomach instead of her back.
The Perfect 10 Tye Dillinger vs. Samoa Joe. Surprisingly good and of course Joe went over.
Tyler Breeze challenged NXT champ Finn Baylor in the main event.
Fans chanted ‘Happy Birthday’ to Balor. Then Breeze pulled out a Minion balloon with a gift for Balor. It was a Breeze T-shirt. Fans chanted ‘put it on,’ and the birthday boy did. Then everyone chanted ‘take a selfie,’ and they did with Breeze’s phone, of course.
After the match started, they had some heated exchanges. Breeze got upset and popped Balor's balloon. Balor proceeded to rip off the T-shirt. Balor won with the Coup de Grace (stomp off the top rope).
Birthday cake angle afterwards. Happy Birthday cued up, and Bull Dempsey brought a cake to the ring. A jealous Breeze grabbed the cake from Dempsey. Balor then pushed Breeze who lands with cake in his face.
Fun ending to a fun evening.
NXT on WWE Network
Catch NXT on WWE Network 8 p.m. ET Wednesdays and on-demand.
NXT on tour
NXT on NXT
Visit http://www.wwe.com/shows/wwenxt for everything NXT and tour dates.
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