NXT 2.0 arrived on Tuesday night and marked a new era in promoting the development of WWE into a network TV show.
We’ve seen a slew of changes from the show’s layout to talent and even its champion.
The Capitol One Wrestling Center that NXT painstakingly created during the pandemic is no longer.
The whole atmosphere of the CWC was very dark, from the lighting to the surrounding cages. His presentation was very present on the heavy metal scene that Triple H enjoys so richly.
Now it’s a cacophony of bright colors in an oval frame. The ring is now the center of what looks like a bowl of seats and the new atmosphere is palpable.
Bron Breakker – aka Bronson Rechsteiner, son of Rick Steiner and nephew of Scott Stiner – took part in Game 1 of NXT’s New Era.
Surprisingly, he defeated LA Knight, a man who would go on to fight for the NXT title later that night. He didn’t sign for the company until February of this year. His name was Rex Steiner for about a week, which is infinitely more impressive than the name he now bears.
Brooks Jensen, also known as Ben Buchanan, is another son of a former WWE star in Bull Buchanan.
He only signed last month, but in this episode of NXT he was put on a team with Josh Briggs, presumably to ease the transition. They lost to the Imperium.
Trick Williams (Matrick Belton) made his debut as a replacement for recent NXT Breakout Tournament winner Carmelo Hayes.
Hayes has suggested he needs someone to watch his back and Williams is the man to do it. Tey attacked Duke Hudson, apparently turning Hayes’ heel.
Ivy Nile aka Emily Andzulis made her NXT debut this week, but not with some action in the ring. Instead, she was announced as the newest member of Diamond Mine, the team run by Roderick Strong and Malcom Bivens.
Tony D’Angelo aka Joe Ariloa appeared in a vignette and spoke about an amateur wrestler, the money is in him for NXT. He signed in the same batch as Bron Beakker in February.
Last but not least, Cal Bloom made his debut as Von Wagner and immediately had a shot at the title. He replaced Kyle O’Reilly in the Fatal-4-Way Match for the NXT Championship, after O’Reilly was attacked backstage by Pete Dunne and Ridge Holland, but failed.
Which brings us to Tommaso Ciampa who becomes NXT champion again.
The 36-year-old was reunited with ‘Goldie’ after two years of separation. His original run as champion saw him as one of WWE’s most hated heels and an injury kept him from dropping the title to Johnny Gargano as planned.
Now Ciampa offers a veteran guide as the champion in place of the injured Samoa Joe, who was forced to drop the belt. With this young generation of talent, it looks like Ciampa will be tasked with making the next star.