I know Mandy Rose came back to NXT and Karrion Kross choked out Samoa Joe immediately after successfully defending the NXT championship against Johnny Gargano in the night’s main event but Adam Cole’s promo work stood out to me yet again as the highlight of NXT television this week.
I’m now fully prepared to say Cole is one of the best promos in all of WWE.
Despite the fact that he’s much smaller than the likes of Kross and Joe, you hardly get a sense of as much because he’s such a good talker he sells you on beating them anyway. He’s nifty with one-liners, he’s got a good catchphrase — if you can call “bay-bay” that — and he’s believable. I buy what he’s selling.
That’s the most important point of all. Cole’s promos aren’t just memorable — I’m still marveling over his telling Kross “you know what they do to make me feel special? They ring the freakin’ bell” — they make you want to see the match that will inevitably come from them. That’s the point of a promo, yes, but that’s lost among many of the promos we actually get in WWE these days.
I enjoy Bronson Reed’s work in the ring but he’s a good example of what I mean here. Cole had just cut a promo on Joe, calling him a coward before saying “you are nothing more than an overpaid security guard in a suit. I’m not scared of you.” Reed showed up to confront Cole and his big line was “People consider you NXT’s golden boy; I consider you my golden opportunity.”
That’s the kind of line that reads well enough but it’s hard to make that work in a live setting standing across from another man you want to fight. There’s nothing memorable about it.
Really, I wouldn’t hate it if the word “opportunity” was never used in a WWE promo again but I digress.
Again, this isn’t to take away from Reed, because he’s still great, it’s simply to help showcase just how good Cole is on the microphone right now.
Here are all the highlights from NXT this week:
- Ember Moon vs. Dakota Kai
- Xia Li sets her sights on Raquel Gonzalez’s title
- Bobby Fish comes calling for The Diamond Mine
- Bobby Fish vs. Tyler Rust
- Sarray vs. Gigi Dolin
- Dexter Lumis vs. Santos Escobar
- Kyle O’Reilly tells Adam Cole to name the time and place
- Ikemen Jiro vs. Duke Hudson — First-Round NXT Breakout Tournament Match
- Tommaso Ciampa & Timothy Thatcher confront Pete Dunne & Oney Lorcan
- Bronson Reed promises to shut Adam Cole’s mouth
- Kacy Catanzaro & Kayden Carter vs. Aliyah & Jessi Kamea
- Cameron Grimes relishes his new role as LA Knight’s butler
- Karrion Kross vs. Johnny Gargano — NXT Title match
- Samoa Joe goes hunting for Karrion Kross
- Sarray shouts out Mandy Rose following win
- Mandy Rose teases big plans for NXT
- Duke Hudson’s destiny is to win NXT Breakout Tournament