The Tyler Breeze character experienced a two-year run on NXT from the summer of 2013 until his main roster call-up in the fall of 2015. Throughout his time with the black and gold brand, Breeze had the opportunity to mix it up with a number of top international stars including Sami Zayn.
During a recent interview with Ikuzo Unscripted, Breeze pointed to his NXT TakeOver match with Zayn in May 2014 as the first that received a “this is awesome” chant.
“Yeah, it was probably the first time everything started to click about what we do, was probably that first TakeOver match with Sami Zayn,” Breeze said. “That was really when I started to realize what wrestling was, and I went, ‘Oh, okay. Ah, okay. I’ve been doing things wrong,’ and then I figured it out.”
Fatal 4 Way
Later that year, Breeze, Zayn, Adrian Neville, and Tyson Kidd would battle in a four-way bout for the NXT Championship. By that point, Breeze knew NXT was becoming something special.
“That fatal four-way is always one that’s really up there, like if I was ever to try and sum up my career or sum up what I do with one match or hook somebody with a match, it’d probably be that one just because of the elements to it and how special it was or maybe we didn’t realize how special it would become,” Breeze said. “At the time, we kind of had the idea that NXT was getting hot. The roster was really hot. The stuff Tyson was doing with Neville was great. The stuff that I was doing with Sami was great. We did the first TakeOver, it was awesome.
“We did the next one and it was getting better and better and better, and people were getting excited to — and I think even at the time — Sami was, they were getting with him. He was their guy that they really wanted to see as NXT Champion. They just really wanted to see it. So we kind of had the feeling that was going to be the culmination of, ‘Man, they think this is his night.’
“I think knowing that going in and the amount of time we had, and the amount of freedom Triple H gave us to go, ‘Hey, man, you guys can go like 40 minutes so have fun and do your thing and show why we’re investing in you guys as superstars, and why the crowd should be here watching because it becomes one of those can’t-miss type of events.’
“We really saw the writing on the wall of, ‘We’re going up.’ Like everything we’re doing is getting more and more popular and everybody is working their ass off. I think that four-way was a really good — not a kickstart because we were already kind of going before that point — but that really took us to another level.”
If you use any quotes from this article, please credit Izuko Unscripted with a h/t to WrestleZone for the transcription.