Grizzled Young Veterans receive new gimmicks on NXT

Jul 20, 2022 - by Marc Middleton

The Dyad has finally been revealed.

Tonight’s WWE NXT 2.0 episode featured a backstage segment with The Schism – Joe Gacy and his masked henchmen. Gacy introduced the members of The Dyad to be Jagger Reid and Rip Fowler.

Reid is the former James Drake of The Grizzled Young Veterans, and Fowler is the former Zack Gibson.

The former Grizzled Young Veterans are no longer sporting facial hair, and both are now wearing contact lenses. Fowler apparently underwent the most significant transformation of the two.

Gacy recalled in tonight’s segment how The Dyad have sat under his tree for the past 10 weeks, surrendering themselves to his teachings, tearing down their own egos, and rebuilding themselves as pillars of inclusion and acceptance. Gacy then said The Dyad will be who they were always meant to be under his guidance. He announced that it was time for The Dyad to emerge, and that’s when he revealed their new identities.

Reid then declared that they have found redemption, while Fowler said they can all now find joy and finally, truly be recognized. Gacy said Reid and Fowler are the first, but not the last, to be un-shackled as many more will be joining them soon. He added that there is plenty of shade under The Schism’s tree. Gacy ended the segment by welcoming Reid and Fowler home.

There’s already speculation on Cameron Grimes possibly joining The Schism. Tonight’s show saw Grimes take a loss to JD McDonagh. Gacy watched the match from the platform above the WWE Performance Center crowd, smiling down at Grimes. After the loss, Gacy looked at Grimes as if he were disappointed. Grimes later snapped on a NXT camera when when approached for comments, and screamed about how he just wanted to go home. Gacy then appeared and said he understands how Grimes is feeling, and he knows exactly what he’s going through. Grimes screamed “not now!” again, this time at Gacy, and walked out of the building.

Reid and Fowler have been quiet on social media since late April, for the most part, but that changed after tonight’s reveal. As seen in the tweets below, Reid tweeted a new photo of his look and introduced himself.

“Hello everyone, my name is Jagger. #WWENXT,” Reid wrote.

Fowler also posted a photo of his new look, and thanked Gacy.

“Thank you @JoeGacy #WWENXT,” Fowler wrote, signing his name to the message.

Gacy responded to Fowler and wrote, “I’m so proud of you”

Reid has not updated his Twitter handle at @JamesDrake_GYT or his name, and his bio has not been updated as of this writing. Fowler can still be found at his @ZackGibson01 handle, but he has changed his name to Rip Fowler, and his bio simply says, “Schism.”

Reid and Fowler have actually worked several matches as The Dyad before tonight’s reveal. They defeated Javier Bernal and Dante Chen on the June 14 NXT, then teamed with Gacy for a six-man win over Roderick Strong and NXT Tag Team Champions The Creed Brothers on the June 28 NXT. They also worked two NXT live events with Gacy – losing to NXT Champion Bron Breakker and NXT UK Tag Team Champions Josh Briggs and Brooks Jensen on June 11 in Largo, and coming up short against Breakker, Apollo Crews and Solo Sikoa on June 25 in Venice.

It was reported just last week how Drake and Gibson were being re-named to Jagger Reid and Rip Fowler. WWE filed to trademark the Fowler name on May 4, and the Reid name on July 11. Before tonight, The Grizzled Young Veterans had been off NXT TV since losing to Legado del Fantasma on the April 19 episode. WWE started referring to the two as just Drake and Gibson, but then on that April 19 NXT episode, they teased a departure for the veteran tag team. That angle saw Drake and Gibson confront then-NXT Tag Team Champions Pretty Deadly for a title shot, but they were interrupted by Cruz Del Toro and Joaquin Wilde. The two teams brawled while Pretty Deadly watched, and later in the show Cruz and Wilde defeated GYV in a match. McKenzie Mitchell later interviewed Drake and Gibson after the show, where they expressed frustration over how they’ve been promising to win gold for some time after leaving their friends and family during the pandemic, to move across the world to become champions, and to be the team they knew they could be, only to keep coming up short. Gibson then apologized, declared that he’s “done” and going home. Drake then said we would not be seeing he and Gibson around NXT 2.0 any longer as he walked away, leaving his signature scarf with Mitchell.

Reid began working with WWE in 2017, and Fowler started in 2018. The Grizzled Young Veterans became the inaugural NXT UK Tag Team Champions in 2019, and held the straps for 230 recognized days. They later worked the 2020 NXT Dusty Rhodes Tag Team Classic but lost in the finals to The BroserWeights. Reid and Fowler have been working the main NXT brand since February 2020.

There’s no word yet on what’s next for The Schism, and if Grimes will be working with or against the group, but we will keep you updated.

Below are related shots from tonight’s show:

One Response

  1. stezton says:

    WWE and their obsession with changing names.

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