It’s not quite a title change on a non-televised Thursday night house show, but as part of the marketing plan to ensure hardcore wrestling fans buy tickets to see NXT whenever they’re in your area, WWE chose the Download Festival in England as the place where they finally debuted former TNA World champ Bobby Roode after months of teases and rumors:
.@REALBobbyRoode has shown up unexpectedly at #NXTDownload!!! What does he have up his sleeve? pic.twitter.com/dhMBkE1XpU— WWE NXT (@WWENXT) June 11, 2016
After a crowd shot at TakeOver: Dallas and a bizarrely awesome cut scene at this past Wednesday’s The End... where The It Factor surprised General Manager WIlliam Regal by casually walking behind him during an interview, Roode showed up in Donington Park today and defeated Angelo Dawkins in his first ever WWE match.
No word yet on his contract status. Fellow TNA ex Eric Young appeared at a previous taping and worked a one-show angle with NXT champ Samoa Joe and hasn’t reappeared since. This could be a similar per-appearance deal for Roode, or it could be something more regular akin to Austin Aries contract.
Regardless, it was a nice bonus for the fans at the metal Fest.
We’ll have more on Roode’s status for you when we have it - and a full rundown of NXT’s second day at Download later today.