TripleR Presents: Oliver's Weekly NXT Review (10/9/13)
Oct 11, 2013 - 2:45:57 PM
Welcome back, NXTians, to the review that is not quite sure what Drake is doing in a Fifa 14 advert (why is that same thing on before every episode of NXT I watch on Hulu? And why does it have Drake in it?) – The NXT Review! Last week, Sami Zayn nefariously conned his way into Bo Dallas’ main event without an invitation. What repercussions will there be for our high flying hero this week? And how will Graves and Neville handle having lost their NXT Tag Team Championships to The Ascension? Most importantly of all – will the greatest tag team of all time, Emmarella, come back? All that, plus the debut of the perma-hyped Mojo Rawley, in…
The NXT Review: 09/10/2013 – The One With Bo Dallas, Sad Puppy
Apparently Rob Van Dam is turning up on this episode of NXT to do…something. Wrestle sloppily, at a guess. Before we go any further, it’s important that you know that RVD is the wrestler I hate the most in all of wrestling. Yup, even more than Mr. Anderson. I might well not be capable of being subjective during his match.
On to the proper action, then – these two fell out during the Bo Dallas Invitational last week, when they couldn’t agree on who should have a shot at the NXT Champion. Cesaro assaulted Kruger from behind, and here we are, because if you’ve got an issue with someone, you’ve gotta sort it out in the ring! It still surprises me that the whole ‘We The People’ schtick is getting over – the weirdest thing is when Zeb Colter is ripping a crowd apart for being from whatever city they’re in, but then the moment he puts his hand on his heart everyone joins in. It’s odd, no?
Cesaro flies out of the gate here, levelling the South African with a running dropkick and then ripping his shirt off. The Swiss Sensation stays on his man, pounding on him with rights and kicks in the corner, but Kruger comes out of the corner with a series of chops. He whips Cesaro across the ring, but the Real American stops himself against the ropes – only to get clotheslined to the outside. The mercenary follows him out, raking the back of Cesaro and then slamming his head into the apron before rolling him back inside the ring. This is all Kruger now, as he stomps on his opponent and then chokes him from the outside, before using the apron to assist his efforts. Cesaro rolls to the apron and catches Kruger with a shoulder to the gut, giving him a momentary advantage that he uses to full effect, ramming his knee into the gut of his rival and then kicking him square in the face to knock him to the mat. He uses the ropes to give him some leverage and delivers a double stomp to Kruger’s chest, before slipping a boot across the throat of the European – cheeky, Cesaro, very cheeky - and he continues his cheeky ways by choking Leo against the ropes. He hauls Kruger back to the middle of the ring and kicks him in the back, before trying a suplex…but Kruger blocks it once, twice, and then connects with one of his own! The pace has been a little slow up until now, but I guess that’s to be expected as both are more power oriented guys and looking for big moves. It’s building nicely at the moment, though, so maybe that pace will up a bit.
Kruger takes charge now, wailing on the torso of Cesaro with rights and lefts, before stomping a mudhole into him in the corner. He connects with a side Russian legsweep, my third favourite wrestling move of all time, but that only gets him a two count from the referee. With Cesaro staggered, he looks to whip him across the ring but Kruger gets reversed and then Colter’s charge comes roaring in with a European uppercut, Kruger just managing to kick out of the ensuing pin. A double stomp from Cesaro again only gets a two count, and he looks to be getting frustrated now, connecting with elbows onto the South African and urging him to get up, before connecting with a one-armed lifting sideslam sort of thing…I think that’s the best way to describe it, at least. Regardless, it still only gets a two count, and Cesaro goes out of his comfort zone to the top turnbuckle now, but Kruger cuts him off and connects with a superplex! Cesaro rolls to the apron, but Kruger hits him with a forearm and knocks him off, then nails a suicide dive! Back in the ring and the mercenary hits a big spinebuster, and looks for The Slice…but Cesaro dives under the bottom rope to avoid his incoming opponent, and slams Kruger into the steel steps when he looks to keep the pressure on him. The Real American looks for a count out victory but Kruger makes it back in at a six count, only to be thrown out on the other side of the ring again, and Cesaro slams him back first into the apron and looks for another count out…Kruger gets in at 7 and a half this time. And again gets thrown back outside! Cesaro connects with a gutwrench suplex on the entrance ramp that looks absolutely viscious, and makes his way back into the ring to again get a count started against Kruger, who starts to crawl to the ring at about six…and finally gets in at nine! Cesaro looks flabbergasted, but Kruger is struggling, with the Swiss Sensation having to pick him up by the chin to hit a series of right hands and then multiple European uppercuts. Oh wow, he then just scoops him up like a baby into a torture rack position and drops the South African onto his back from that position. Amazing strength from Cesaro, as ever. He goes for the Neutraliser…but Kruger reverses into a back body drop! Cesaro looks for a running European uppercut but Kruger hits him with a back elbow…but walks out into Swiss Death! 1…2…no! Kruger kicks out! He urges Kruger to get up and locks in the neck wrench. The mercenary tries to fight to the ropes, but Cesaro eventually pulls him to the mat and locks his legs around the midsection. Kruger looks to be fading…but no, he finds his feet…only to get annihilated by a short arm clothesline. Neutraliser! This one is over!
Cesaro celebrates, but he’s not finished yet. With a smirk to himself, he takes to the top turnbuckle and flies off with a knee drop to the head! Kruger looks absolutely destroyed and in a lot of pain after that. Hey, this was a pretty good match, all told. The opening half or so was a little bit too slow for my liking, but it picked up really well during the second half and became really compelling. My guess is this isn’t over following the post-match antics, and I’m kind of looking forward to seeing the go at it again. Hopefully they can build off of this next time round.
It’s the Nature Girl! Woo! I keep hoping that Charlotte’s going to see a suit jacket somewhere on the floor on her way to the ring and just drop an elbow on it. One day, maybe. One day. Anyway, she is taking on…Bayley’s with her! Drop everything! So Charlotte is taking on…Renee Young is on commentary again to cut off Alex Riley making allusions to having a threesome with her! Drop everything! Right, tonight Charlotte is taking on Santana Garrett, who I believe is a local-ish competitor and is, I’m reliably informed by zzzorf, a SHINE regular. Let’s see how she does up against the gymnastic abilities of her opponent.
The two lock up, and Garrett pulls her through with an armdrag, but keeps the collar and elbow tie-up locked in, and Charlotte then repeats the act herself. Charlotte now transitions into a wristlock, but Santana flips through it into a lock of her own, only for the Nature Girl to cartwheel through it into another wristlock. Garrett goes for an Irish whip, but Charlotte reverses only to get caught with a back elbow when following up and get slammed into the turnbuckle. Santana comes off the ropes and delivers a boot to the gut of a seated Charlotte, but a cover only gets her a two count. She now connects with a side Russian legsweep and holds it through into an armbar, which is an absolutely terrific move. Oh, who’s this? It’s Summer Rae and Sasha Banks! Summer and her protégé walk to ringside and watch on as Charlotte struggles to get out of the hold in the middle of the ring, Bayley cheering her on from ringside, and she finally turns it into a pinning situation and forces the hold to be broken. Charlotte now with a series of chops and then she locks in Charlotte’s web for a two count. And now she’s distracted by Sasha Banks on the outside, allowing Santana to go for a quick roll up for a two count of her own. The Nature Girl isn’t fazed though, and she scoops up Garrett onto her shoulders for a really messy looking spinning flapjack, and then sort of hits the frontflip cutter to give her the win.
Short little match, and Charlotte still looks a bit messy in the ring – that flapjack was dangerously close to having Garrett land face first on the mat, and she failed miserably to actually connect with the cutter, just frontflipping over her opponent, with Santana having to fall on her to make it look right. I quite liked the look of Santana here, so I hope this was a tryout and she gets picked up – that Russian legsweep into an armbar was really quite smart. Oh, Summer Rae has the microphone, hang on a second – she has a message for every Diva in the back of the locker room. Not the front of the locker room, just the back. She just wants to clarify that she is the First Lady of NXT, and that Banks is the Boss of NXT (?) and that they are BFFs – Beautiful Fierce Females. They’re going to run NXT, and the WWE…and now that Paige is officially out of action thanks to Sasha there’s nothing anyone can do about it. Or is there? As the two turn their backs, who should strike but the Nightmare for Norwich herself! Paige charges the ring and headbutts Sasha, but Summer stops her and the BFFs beat her down in the middle of the ring. The crowd want Emma…and here she is! She sees off the threat and checks on Paige in the ring. We’re going to have ourselves a tag team match, playa! This rivalry continues, and I’m kind of interested in it, but can’t Paige defend the title a bit more? I think she’s only defended it once since she won it, which isn’t really good enough, I don’t think. They should start making that belt the focus of the storyline, and not Summer and Sasha – at the moment those two are more integral to the women’s division than the champion, and that’s not the way it should be. The two get interviewed again after going backstage and lay down the challenge for a tag match next week, so I guess that’s happening.
Man, they could build such a good English stable in NXT right now. Burch, Neville, Grey when he’s back, Paige…give them Regal as a spokesman too. A kind of loose stable, one that is seen together but not necessarily an official one, they just hang out backstage and talk about the Lake District. Anyway, Burch tonight has the tough test of the debuting Mr Hyped himself Mojo Rawley, who charges to the ring and looks absolutely stacked as he bounces around the ropes and high fives fans at ringside. He’s got a heck of a leap on him, as well, and the crowd are already into it, chanting Mojo as the two lock up.
Burch actually gains the advantage to start with, despite being much smaller than Rawley, striking him with right hands and talking smack, but Mojo soon reverses an Irish whip attempt, only to get caught with a back elbow. Rawley gets a couple of shots in, but it’s still all Burch, who locks a chinlock on Rawley and slams him down when he tries to get to his feet. He connects with a series of elbows for a two count, and then locks in another chinlock. He keeps Rawley down with a knee when he tries to get up, but then Mojo ducks a clothesline and shows off some impressive speed, hitting a couple of running shoulders and then a pair of body avalanches into the corner. He connects with Naomi’s Rearview, then off the ropes jumps high and sits on Burch’s chest for the three count.
Huh. That was kind of a crap finisher, as I think for someone of his size he could use something more impactful, something that lifts his opponent. There must be a way to tie in all his impressive attributes, his size, speed and leap…I guess a spear is out of the question given Roman Reigns, but a big spinebuster wouldn’t be too bad. Just something other than a bum to the chest. That’s kind of weird. Still, I like him, and think he’ll go a long, long way if he can put together something more impressive to end his matches with.
Paige and Emma are backstage, and Paige says she didn’t need Emma’s help earlier on, but Emma doesn’t think it looked like that. They get interrupted by Tony Dawson, who informs them of the challenge from the BFFs, and Emma didn’t like having bubble solution thrown in her eyes, while Paige is pretty pissed about being attacked from behind. Challenge accepted! As Tony walks away, Paige says she’ll get the win because she’s the champ, but Emma says that won’t be for long and starts to do the Emma in her face. Paige isn’t amused, and says she will hurt her if she carries on. But that’s on for next week! A match! Hurrah!
Fighting Legionnaires come out with some snazzy new theme music, a weird sort of spacey Jimi Hendrix jam, all twiddly guitar and sparse. But enough about them, I mean, Rusev doesn’t even where shoes! Dude needs to get some shoes. The Realest Guys in the Room are still the most over guys in the room as well, and Enzo comes out fired up with Big Cass. Enzo plays to the crowd, encouraging them to introduce Big Cass, and says he feels like he’s in Cheers right now, leading to Big Cass singing ‘where everybody knows your name’! When Cass looks at the two sloppy jalopies in the ring, only one word comes to mind. Has Enzo got to spell it out for you? S-A-W-F-T SAAAAWFT!
Rusev and Cassady start off, and Big Cass gains the advantage in the corner, whipping Rusev across the ring, and although he gets caught by a back elbow he fights back with a knee to the gut and a couple of big right hands. Enzo gets a tag, but he is too SAWFT to hurt Rusev, who no sells a right to the face and then catches Enzo off the ropes and drives knees into the ribs. Dawson gets a tag in and hits a back elbow, assisted by Rusev throwing Amore across the ring. Dawson hits multiple knee drops to the head, but they’re not enough to give him a win so he hits a suplex and follows it up with short arm clothesline for another two count. The crowd are chanting ‘sloppy jalopies’ at Multicultural Society as Dawson hits a saito suplex, and Cass has to make the save on the pin attempt. As he goes to leave the ring, Rusev charges over and sends him head over heels out of the ring. He heads back to his own corner, where Dawson tags him in legally this time, and he hits a body avalanche to Amore in the corner. He locks in the Accolade Camel Clutch, and this one’s over as Enzo taps out.
Rusev throws him out of the ring, and Dawson sets up Big Cass for Rusev to charge into in the corner, and again he locks in the Accolade on the bigger man. What have the Realest Guys in the Room got to do to get a break around here? After looking impressive in the tag team turmoil match, I was kind of expecting something competitive here, but it was little more than a squash victory for Multicultural Society. What a shame. I feel like the time for Amore and Cassady is now, and that should be capitalised on – make them legit, have them win some matches and challenge the Ascension. The alternative is watching the new champs move from Fly Down to Rusev and Dawson, and that doesn’t fill me with joy the way that a competitive match with the most over team on the whole roster does.
Oh, Renee Young is backstage with Sami Zayn! He asks how Renee is (she’s fine) and says that he’s absolutely joyous, having pinned Bo Dallas in his invitiation last week to give himself a shot at the NXT Championship, and next week he’s going to win the title…
Oompa Loompa do-ba-dee-doo,
Sami your actions last week weren’t cool,
Oompa Loompa do-ba-dee-dee,
You have made Bo look an absolute tool.
He thought you were friends,
Then you hurt his feelings,
You don’t have to fight him,
Let’s team up and fight things.
Oompa Loompa do-ba-dee-doo,
Sami said yes, after he takes the title,
Oompa Loompa do-ba-dee-dee,
Bo looks sad now – that’s un-Bo-lievable!
So, Bo comes in, looking like a puppy that has just been kicked for getting too excited. He’s pretty sad, he though Sami and he were friends but then Sami screwed him over last week with his naught trick. Bo tries to keep avoiding Zayn by asking to form a team with him, and Sami accepts – but only after he has won the NXT Championship from him! Dallas isn’t too happy about that, and says it’s un-Bo-lievable. But our title match is set for next week – Dallas vs Zayn. Should be a ripsnorter!
Right, here’s me trying to objectively review a Rob Van Dam match when he’s taking on Aiden English. This is going to be tricky, NXTians, I won’t lie, because, as I said at the start, RVD has been my least favourite wrestler in the world for as long as I can remember. And given that he’s taking on one of my NXT favourites, it’s really not promising for Mr 4:20 himself in this one.
The Artiste comes out requesting his spotlight and singing a jaunty little number about being a sports entertainer in the 21st Century and kicking someone in the teeth until there’s money coming out the rear. He’s going to shove his boot down his opponents throat until they choke, right here in the DOUBLEYOU DOUBLEYOOOOOU EEEEEEEEEEEE. Oh Aiden. You are my favourite. Hey look, here’s Ricardo Rodriguez introducing his ‘buddy’ (read: supplier) Rob Van Dam. The NXT Universe is going wild for the ECW original as the two lock up and he transitions quickly into a side headlock, but English powers out and takes a bow. The Artiste stays on top with a boot and a side headlock, but RVD slips out and takes him down with leg scissors into a pin attempt, and then misses a spinning heel kick as English bails to the corner. The NXT roster member comes out of the corner with a boot, but gets caught and has to sell when RVD waves a leg in his general direction. RVD leaps into the corner and rolls up, flipping English through with a monkey flip and then clotheslining him to the outside. RVD skips to the outside – watch out Aiden, he’s going to get high! – and soars off with a moonsault. He rolls English onto the apron and hits a slingshot legdrop from the inside of the ring to the outside. RVD goes for a pin, but the Artiste kicks out at two and begs off as RVD comes to follow up. He goes for a boot, but RVD blocks and spins him round into a body slam to set up rolling thunder…but English bails from the ring and runs around, RVD giving chase. English slips back in, and as RVD tries to climb through the ropes he kicks the second rope into his groin. With the Artiste on top, he stomps on RVD and then connects with a suplex, before locking in a rear chinlock. RVD tries to get the crowd behind him, but English wrestles him back down to the mat when he tries to get back to his feet. It works for Van Dam the second time, though, and he locks in a small package when English tries for a suplex, then blocks an attempt to drive him headfirst into the turnbuckle and kicks the Artiste in the head. Pair of clotheslines from RVD get followed up by a thrust kick, and this time RVD connects with rolling thunder. RVD gets up and nails the five star frog splash to give him the win over Aiden English.
God I hate RVD.
Realest Guys in the Room!
Can we all just agree that it’s about time they pushed these guys to the moon? Or just put them on Raw and Smackdown. Seriously, I think next to Sami Zayn and Emma, these two are the most over people on the whole NXT roster.
09/10/2013 – Realest Guys in the Room
02/10/2013 – Emma
25/09/2013 – Bo Dallas
18/09/2013 – Aiden English
11/09/2013 – Sasha Banks
04/09/2013 – Sami Zayn
28/08/2013 – Summer Rae
21/08/2013 – Sami Zayn and Antonio Cesaro
07/08/2013 – Enzo Amore
31/07/2013 – Bray Wyatt
24/07/2013 – Paige
I enjoyed a lot of the show this week, the opening match was strong and everything else at least had something enjoyable around it, but it sort of felt like a holding episode before they really nail us with some strong storyline stuff next week. I suppose it’s expected when you’ve done so much tale telling in the past two weeks that there has to be an episode where it’s less about the storylines and more about just throwing some matches out there, but there were at least three matches here that had no real reason for existing – Mojo Rawley’s debut can be excluded from criticism, I guess, because it was a debut after all, but both Charlotte vs Santana and English vs Van Dam had nothing behind them, which makes them feel a bit flat after what we’ve seen before that. Maybe we’ve just been spoiled. For what it’s worth, in those two I enjoyed Santana a lot, and think she has something to really offer if she becomes a permanent fixture on the roster (she is, at least, better than Charlotte who was really, really poor in that one) and English was an absolute delight as ever. But there was no reason for them being there, as evidenced by the face that Summer and Sasha’s promo didn’t even have anything to do with Charlotte and Bayley after the match – they just skedaddled and left them in the ring to talk about Paige and Emma. Kind of odd. So a mixed bag, with a good opening match and the Realest Guys in the Room being big highlights. Oh, and that Bo Dallas/Sami Zayn interaction was really good, too, I’d almost forgotten about that. Backstage bits and promos carried the show, really.
Another week in the book, and NXT keeps winding its merry way towards next week’s main event – Dallas vs Zayn with the NXT Championship on the line! Plus, Paige and Emma will look for revenge against Summer and Sasha and…I don’t know. Something else. Maybe we’ll see the new NXT Tag Team Champions too? Until then, NXTians, stay safe when crossing the road and drink more hot chocolate! Adijo!