Tye Dillinger has been the elder statesman in NXT for years now, but that time has finally come to an end. The Perfect 10 debuted on Smackdown a few weeks ago, and had his final televised NXT match by defeating Eric Young in a steel cage, but he was still on NXT’s last couple tours of live events, including making some hockey memories in Missouri.
And this past weekend, Tye finally said his final goodbyes (at least for the time being) to the brand when NXT rolled into Southern California on its west coast tour. Dillinger had taken to Twitter to encourage fans to make it out to Saturday’s San Diego show, and essentially told everyone that it would be his final match as a full-time part of the NXT roster.
Dillinger was once again victorious in his final match, although he didn’t figure into the finish. He and Hideo Itami took on NXT Champion Bobby Roode and Andrade “Cien” Almas in the main event, and Itami pinned Almas to get the win. After the match, Dillinger made a victory speech and took a lingering curtain call a la Shinsuke Nakamura in Orlando, while the NXT roster came out onto the stage to applaud him.
And of course, Dillinger’s own colleagues paid tribute to him on social media when the night was over.
And because Tye Dillinger is a true locker room leader and always does things the right way, he took the time backstage to put over an NXT newcomer, Bianca Blair, who will likely be making her way to television after TakeOver.
A full night for Dillinger, and a lovely sendoff for the man who had previously been an NXT lifer. He’ll now be dedicating himself to Smackdown full-time, and just might have his sights set on Kevin Owens in the near future.