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March 5, 2016

WWE And NXT ASF 2016 Coverage Day One: Triple H & Arnold, Exclusive Interviews, TNA Stars, More


Wrestling Inc was live on the scene today in Columbus, Ohio as the WWE and NXT held the second WWE Experience at the Arnold Sports Festival. The show was full of matches, surprises, Q&As and autograph signings. Wrestling Inc even spoke to a few of the NXT stars. We'll have full day two coverage tomorrow as well!

- Corey Graves, Tom Phillips and Dasha Fuentes welcome us to the event, and Corey Graves makes the crowd boo Phillips because his mic won't work.

Matches

* Apollo Crews defeated Dylan Miley with a standing moonsault. This was a really slow paced match which Miley controlled with a lot of grounded holds.

* Billie Kay defeated Mandy Rose with a kick to the face. Mandy Rose worked as a babyface during the match.

* Johnny Gargano submitted Riddick Moss with Garano Escape. Dasha accidentally called Gargano Tommaso Ciampa.

* Bayley retained the NXT Women's Championship over Emma with a Bayley-to-Belly. Bayley is over beyond comprehension in Columbus. She gave her shirt to a girl in the crowd, who broke down in tears.

* American Alpha defeated the Vaudevillains with Grand Amplitude. Gable and Gotch put on a mat wrestling clinic in the opening moments. American Alpha are also over big time.

* Finn Balor retained the NXT Championship over Baron Corbin with Bloody Sunday. Seeing Balor pull off Bloody Sunday on Corbin was really impressive.

* Eva Marie defeated Peyton Royce. This was not a good match. Eva Marie still doesn't look live crowd ready.

* Tye Dillinger defeated Tino Sabbotelli. Tino looks a lot like Jessie Godderz in person.

* Asuka submitted Alexa Bliss via the Asuka Lock. Bliss got a big pop from her hometown crowd, then heeled them. This was an excellent match.

* The Revival retained their NXT Tag Titles over the Protein Brothers (King Constantine & Thomas Kingdon) when they cheated. Protein Bros did not look ready to be in the ring, but Dash and Dawson are really good, so it wasn't easy to tell.

* Kishan Raftar defeated someone whose name I'm still trying to find out.

* Nia Jax defeated Billie Kay via leg drop.

* Apollo Crews defeated Riddick Moss and said he expects gold around his waist in 2016. This match was really long.

* Tye Dillinger defeated Johnny Gargano with his finish. Dillinger heeled it up and turned on the crowd after working as a babyface earlier.

* American Alpha defeated The Revival via DQ in a title match. This was a fantastic match.

* Peyton Royce submitted Alexa Bliss, making the hometown girl 0-2.

* Sami Zayn defeated Samoa Joe via pinfall after the Helluva Kick in an awesome match. Easily the best singles match of the show.

Wrestling Inc Interviews

- Wrestling Inc was able to talk to Chad Gable & Jason Jordan, who told us about their Steiner Brothers inspired gear.

- We also spoke to Alexa Bliss, who is a hometown girl in Columbus. She talks about competing at the Arnold Sports Festival in the past, her relationship with Blake & Murphy, as well as possibly moving to the main roster.

Surprises

- Triple H showed up, which was a big surprise, and had Arnold Schwarzaneggar with him. Arnold loved the crowd and spouted off his one liners, including "IT'S NOT A TUMOR."

Arnold says he watches WWE all the time. He also snapchatted in the ring. They talked a little bit about Arnold hosting Celebrity Apprentice soon. They also held a Q&A, where Triple H is asked about several things. He says Arnold was his hero, and he loves his one liners. He mentions that his favorite match is the Hell in a Cell match with Undertaker. A "pinch me" moment was 2,000 kids chanting his name in India. When asked about the Diva's revolution, he says he never saw a difference between men and women, and is open to the idea of a Divas tag division.

Q&As

- Braun Strowman was the first Q&A and says that he'd like to see Matt Bloom inducted into the Hall of Fame for all of the contributions he's made in NXT. He says that traveling is the worst part of wrestling, and eats 7-8 times a day, taking in about 5-6 pounds of meat. When asked about Brock Lesnar, he says he hopes to lock horns with him in the near future. He also says that his size gained him a unique opportunity to bypass NXT, and he seized it. He also said the Wyatt Family has taught him friendship.

- Gable & Jordan did an impromptu Q&A, and Graves told the crowd they'd rather be American Alpha 1.0 than Team Angle 2.0. Jordan says his favorite superstar was Mr. Perfect, and Gable's was Sting. Gable tells the crowd if he could face any team, it'd be the Rock N' Roll Express.

* Cesaro did a Q&A and said that he'd be back in a couple of months. He's most proud of his feat of strength of swinging Great Khali. He hopes Tyson Kidd will be back in action, but he needs another check up. He remembers Sami Zayn and Daniel Bryan arguing for two hours, only for Zayn to agree with him when they get to the venue. He hopes he can get to the main event, but says that fan support is crucial.

- Eva Marie and Mandy Rose's Total Divas Q&A went a couple of minutes, and Eva Marie showed up late for it. They both say Charlotte is the Diva they'd want to face because she has the title.

Familiar Faces

Several familiar faces were at the Arnold Sports Festival. Even though he didn't appear for WWE, David Otunga was there, and stopped by to see former WWE Divas Champion Kaitlyn.

Also, TNA stars Bobby Lashley and Jessie Godderz were in the house.

Kurt Angle was also there, as he was inducted into the International Sports Hall of Fame.

Tryouts

- Much like last year, WWE held live tryouts in front of the crowd. They were conducted by Matt Bloom and mainly consisted of drilling. There weren't any big indy names or anything of the like that I heard of.

Autographs

Most of the NXT stars participated in autograph signings, which for the second year in a row, had the longest lines of the entire expo. The line went all the way around the stands, then people had to line up going up the stairs as well.

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