As of the episode of NXT which aired on October 12th, we’re half way through the first round of the second-ever (annual, maybe?) Dusty Rhodes Tag Team Classic. This seems as good a time as any to look back at what we’ve seen so far.
The first match of the tournament saw the relatively new Authors of Pain (managed by WWE Hall of Famer and fellow Minnesotan Paul Ellering) against the Bollywood Boys in their debut on NXT TV. Predictably, the Authors of Pain won.
Later in that same episode we saw the NXT tag team champions The Revival take on the team of Andrade “Cien” Almaden and Cedric Alexander. The Revival took part in the first tournament last year and have since gone on to become the first ever two time NXT tag team champions, whereas their opponents are still pretty new to the promotion and had never tagged together before. The Revival won, which surprised me as I didn’t think they’d want the champions to progress all that far in the tournament since they don’t really have anything to gain by it. More interesting, after the match Andrade Almas attacked Cedrick Alexander in an apparent heel turn.
The next week (the episode which aired last night), we saw Glorious 10, a pairing of Tye Dillinger and Bobby Roode a lot of people were excited for take on the debuting SAnitY. I’m not familiar with any of the members (there are four of them) of this new team, but the announcers made it seem as though someone with more knowledge of wrestlers outside of WWE would know who they are. Right from the start, SAnitY was brutal and just destroyed Tye Dillinger. When he sought help from his partner, Bobby Roode walked away, no doubt setting up a feud between them which should be entertaining to see play out. SAnitY got the win.
Finally, we saw TM61 versus Riddick Moss and Tito Sabbatelli, who were both making their NXT TV debut (though I saw them both perform at a recent NXT Live event.) The match went on longer than I would have expected and neither of the new guys were especially impressive. TM61 won the match.
To summarize, as of now we have the Authors of Pain, The Revival, SAnitY, and TM61 progressing to round two. There are still four matches left in the first round and they will be airing over the next couple of weeks. Of those, I’m particularly looking forward to No Way Jose and Rich Swan teaming up against Tony Nese and Drew Gulack.
What do you think of this year’s Classic so far? Did any of the matches go differently than you expected? What match are you most looking forward to? Let me know in the comments.