Samoa Joe Relinquishes the NXT Championship: A Review

Just when you thought the black and gold brand had already hit the bottom of the barrel

Over the summer, WWE has done their best to gut NXT of most anything that would make it an enjoyable show to watch. While I admire their balls to the wall business strategy here, I can’t call it very smart to fire 60% of your talent in the hopes of reviving a 2008 reality show, whose best moments included “the Genesis of McGuillicutty.” I also miss the prime era of Top Model, but some things are best left in the past. For NXT, their best days seem firmly behind them, made even more evident by Sunday night’s unfortunate surprise announcement. Samoa Joe took to Twitter to deal another blow to an already waning brand; due to a recent injury, he has to relinquish his recently won NXT Championship. You truly hate to see it. In his video, Joe reminded us that his goals on returning to competition in NXT were to restore respect to the brand and it’s title. With the Samoan Submission Machine on the shelf indeterminately, all the colorful rebranding in the world can’t make that seem like a less than impossible goal.

Samoa Joe Relinquishing the NXT Championship

1.5

Joe's excellent promo skills soften the blow a little here, but there's only so much anyone can do.

Pros
  • At least this video proved my theory that if there’s anyone in the world I want to deliver just soul crushing news, it’s Samoa Joe. Even if he’s telling me my whole family died in a freak accident, at least he’ll sound hot as hell doing it. And I appreciate that.
  • We did get to see Karrion Kross get his ass handed to him after months as the flattest champ in recent NXT memory. It's best to hold onto the good times.
Cons
  • Literally the only sliver of hope to come from NXT lately was Kross’ defeat at Joe’s hands. What do we have now? Cameron Grimes’ weird suits? Rollins is already doing that, but better.
  • WWE really doesn’t have a great track record with “new eras.” I’m unsure if they totally understand what that phrase is supposed to mean. I'll be surprised if it signals anything more than a palette change on set.
  • I’m struggling to imagine anyone in NXT primed to take on that top spot. Pete Dunne seems the most likely candidate, but even backed by Holland he doesn’t quite fill Joe’s shoes.
  • I’m supposed to sit down on Tuesday night, turn on NXT, pretend the new neon paint logo isn’t a direct Dynamite rip-off, sit through two hours that may or may not contain Malcolm Bivens, and now I won’t even see Samoa Joe? The Ls just keep coming.
  • No clue when I’ll be able to get down to that tuba beat again. Let’s hope it’s before 2022.
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born on a ranch in texas, raised by cowboys. don't fact check this.

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