TripleR Presents: Oliver's Weekly NXT Review (5/30/13)
May 30, 2013 - 8:51:37 PM
Good day NXTians! How the devil are you all? Hope you’re well and you’ve not been hit by any natural disasters in the past week. There’s so much to talk about on the NXT front, not least the impending arrival of Bray Wyatt and the Wyatt Family to the main roster as a single entity. Seriously, I think those seventy eight seconds got me more excited than a lot of Raw has for a long time. That, plus the impending influx of a huge amount of fresh faces from the independent scene, makes this a pretty darned exciting time I sure you agree. This week on the WWE’s best hour of entertainment, we have a battle royal to determine the number one contender for Big E Langston’s NXT Championship! And on top of that, we get some Emma-tainment tonight, as she takes on the bitchy Audrey Marie. All that and Stephanie McMahon in…
The NXT Review: 29/05/2013 – The One With Mason Ryan’s Beef Mode
What better way to start an episode of NXT than with the name on everybody’s lips, NXT Tag Team Champions the Wyatt Family. They make their way slowly to the ring, backed by their creepy theme music, as Travis Tyler and Sawyer Fulton watch on from the ring. Harper pushes Rowan out of the ring in a bid to start off against Tyler and takes it straight to him with big strikes and a huge European uppercut. Harper tags his brother in and then throws Tyler into a body slam from the big ginger, and they seem to be working the back of Tyler here, with repeated blows to the back and body slams. Rowan tags out, and then stacks Tyler across the top rope in the corner, where Harper just unloads on him. So far so good for the most exciting thing in wrestling right now. I think someone in the crowd is chanting ‘this is boring’ – hey dude, **** you. Tyler final slips out of a slam attempt and makes a tag, but Harper literally kicks his face off. I’m pretty sure he’s now facing backwards. Harper with a body avalanche – clearly learning from his master – and then a big discus clothesline for the win.
Well well well. It’s been quite a while since we’ve seen a good old fashioned tag team squash on NXT, but that’s what this was. The Wyatt Family look lethal coming out it, and that’s presumably the point. Man, is it going to be a lot of fun with these guys on the main roster. Just…don’t mess with them WWE. Please. They’ll creep the living hell out of kids, in the same way that The Undertaker used to do to me, and that’s a great, great thing. As for Tyler and Fulton – they didn’t get to show enough of anything here for me to make assumptions about them. Neither of them looked bad, per se, but they were dominated so much that you just can’t say anything about them.
Stephanie McMahon is here! She puts over the WWE as a cultural trailblazer and NXT as a developmental system, and…here we go…here it is…it’s an NXT women’s title! Not Diva’s! Hurrah! Paige, Summer Rae, and Emma all get name dropped, and they’ll compete in a tournament on NXT, along with main roster WWE competitors, to be crowned the NXT Women’s Champion. And it all starts next week! Women’s! Hurrah! This was actually really good, putting over the women’s division as a serious division, and integral to the success of not just NXT but also WWE as a whole (hah! Treat it with some more respect, then!) and introducing a shiny new belt, too. It’s pretty.
Emma-tainment! Emma-loution! The Emma is over like rover with the crowd now in NXT, and she gets distracted by some bubbles on her way to the ring. Emma should be one of the favourites for the NXT Women’s Championship, in my book. Here comes the low rent Mickie James that is Audrey Marie. Seriously, it’s kind of a shame that Audrey Marie has gone, but I don’t think I’ll miss her all that much. She’s alright in the ring and stuff, but just wasn’t doing much of note.
Emma stops Audrey Marie from starting off and demands her music is played as the crowd chants her name. The music man obliges, and Emma busts a move for a bit before Audrey Marie pushes her to the ground. Emma does not look impressed, and skips out of the ring in the corner to send Marie flying into the turnbuckle, sliding back in for a sunset flip and a two count. Marie powers Emma to the mat by the arm and lands the dancing darling right on her face, but Emma counters into a pinning combination that Audrey reverses into a gut wrench suplex. Emma then telegraphs an Irish whip into a backslide which Audrey Marie powers out of, only for Emma to somehow reverse it into a tarantula. Now that was some good stuff. Emma’s tarantula is now called a Dil-Emma, because word play. With Audrey Marie sat in the corner, Emma hits a low crossbody and then rolls through into the Muta…I mean Emma Lock! That looks good, although I think it might need some work to become really slick. Anyway, Audrey Marie taps out in short time, and Emma dances with the crowd to celebrate.
That positions Emma nicely for a good run in the Women’s (!) Championship tournament, as she looked pretty dominant here over Audrey Marie, who we won’t be seeing again. Like I said, I don’t see that as a loss. I think Emma possibly needs a couple of extra moves in her arsenal – the low crossbody, Emma Lock and Dil-Emma is about all she has right now, and that’s kind of fine, but I’m not sure how much more pinning combinations I can take. That said, I still love her forever.
Renee Young is backstage with Scott Dawson and Garrett Dylan, who seem to be running with a Southern rednecks gimmick. One of them is drinking, the other is picking their teeth. Stereotypes! We love ‘em! Before any of them can really speak, Sylvester LeFort, their manager, interrupts and cancels everything with the words ‘come on guys, let’s make some monaaaayy’. Huh, looks like the Southern rednecks have a French manager. How interesting. At least their mouthpiece looks like he’s going to be good.
Jake Carter seriously looks like The Miz, it’s disconcerting. Brandon Traven, on the other hand, looks like a skinny Rhyno. Dawson and Dylan come out with their manager – Garrett Dylan is drinking, for what it’s worth. Well, he is, but it’s BBQ sauce. How strange. Sylvester LeFort is an entrepreneur who lives on the French Riveria. I know this, because Brad Maddox knows this. The crowd have caught on to the Jake Carter/Miz comparison, as ‘let’s go Miz’ chants rain down from the cheap seats. As Vader’s son, I expect big things. He and Dawson kick us off, with Dawson hitting a big uppercut, but ending up being wailed on by Vader’s son. Dawson sends Carter to the apron, though, and as he distracts the referee Dylan takes advantage, pulling Carter off to the floor. Dawson starts to take it to Carter, but only gets a couple of near falls before tagging out to Dylan. D-Squared look like a classic pair of brawlers, they’re both really taking it to Carter with punches and stomps. Just as I say that, Dawson locks a chin lock on Carter. Always proven wrong. Never mind. Maddox says that Dawson looks like ‘the type of guy who doesn’t flush when he goes to the toilet’. Carter finally breaks his way out of the hold and gets a tag to Traven on the apron, who throws a sweet looking dropkick but then immediately gets distracted by Dylan and absolutely destroyed by a clothesline from Dawson. Well, that didn’t last long. With the advantage back, Dawson tags Dylan and the two combine to hit a spinebuster/sitout double axehandle double team for the win.
Now that was something interesting. I really enjoyed the pairing of D-Squared, certainly a pair of interesting characters, and their brawling style was great to watch. LeFort as a manager looks like being a good mouthpiece for the pair, too. It’s curious that they’re building up another heel tag team when you have heel champions – maybe they’ll come a cropper against a face pairing down the line. But that was certainly an impressive debut for them, and they’ve caught my eye.
Derrick Bateman’s not dead! Here he is! What a swansong he’s got for him here, against the reigning and defending NXT Champion Big E Langston. Ooh, and he’s had a haircut too – very smart, D-Bates, very smart indeed. I miss Derrick Bateman. I think I’ll always miss him, the same way I miss Trent Baretta. Big E gets his steam pyro on his entrance and the crowd chants five along with him – Big E is so over down in Orlando that it does make me wonder whether he can work as a face in the future. He’s got a certain charisma about him, even if he is a bit so-so in the ring.
Bateman flies out of the box, striking, dropkicking and chopping Big Eric in the corner. He mounts him and starts raining blows down…oh, Big E just picked him up and dropped him on his head. One big body block, one Big Ending, and that’s it. As Big Ernie remonstrates with the referee for not counting to five, the crowd encourage him to hit the Big Ending again, and he obliges. Brad Maddox is not happy.
Bye Derrick Bateman. I think you’re in a better place now.
Some of these eighteen men I’ve not even seen before. I admit, I’ve missed Sakamoto out of that picture there, mainly because he has a giant head in his picture, so it was hard to fit in him. Anyway, enough about me! Let’s talk about this! But before that – next week, Kassius Ohno and Corey Graves will square off with the Wyatt Family in a non-title match. How exciting. Big E Langston is on commentary now, joining Maddox and Phillips to scout his future opponent. Corey Graves gets his own special entrance, and that women in the crowd just will not stop shouting that he sucks. Christ, she’s annoying. Bray Wyatt, Kassius Ohno and Adrian Neville all enter to cheers, and then comes Bo Dallas to a Cena-esque mixed reaction. Mason Ryan slides in and we are go here!
Ohno and Bray take it to each other in the early going in a corner. This is going to be a bugger to comment on. Graves is trying to eliminate Sakamoto early, but the main fight going on is Wyatt and Ohno, with Wyatt gaining the upper hand. Big Ermintrude puts everyone over on commentary, but says he’s better than them all. Ryan is bossing this so far, and there goes Sakamoto. And Briley Pierce. Both kicked out by Mason Ryan, who then back body drops Curt Hawkins out of the ring, followed by throwing Alexander Rusev out. Wyatt is being double teamed by Ohno and Graves amidst the melee, whilst in the background Ryan takes out Baron Corbin and Knuckles Madsen in quick succession. Man, he is Kane in 2001-ing this battle royal, as Mojo Rawley, Yoshi Tatsu and Dante Dash all get sent skittering by the big Welsh man. And Aiden English! Wow, Mason Ryan has clearly got the secret of Beef Mode from Brad Maddox tonight. He hoists Sami Zayn up in a military press and sends him skittering on top of everyone who he just eliminated. Is Neville next? The Welsh giant gets him up to powerbomb him out of the ring…but no! Neville reverses it into a hurricanrana and eliminates the rampaging Ryan! Six people remain – Adrian Neville, Conor O’Brian, Corey Graves, Bray Wyatt, Kassius Ohno and....Bo Dallas, I think.
O’Brian absolutely dominates everyone in the ring, and Wyatt and O’Brian slug each other in the middle of the ring. O’Brian gets sent reeling into the ropes but bounces back with a big boot that sends Wyatt falling out of the ring…but he only fell over the second rope, not the top rope, so is not eliminated. The Ascension goes corner to corner, hitting a pair of body avalanches on both Dallas and Neville, but his attempt to hit Corey Graves with the same is countered by a big boot. Woah, Ohno hits a huge discus knee to the jaw of O’Brian that sounds sickening, and then teams up with Graves to eliminate The Ascension. Wyatt’s back in and eliminates both Ohno and Graves though! We’re down to three, as Wyatt takes it to Dallas in the corner with repeated blows to the midsection, then a body avalanche and Sister Abigail on his brother (but I don’t think they want us to know that). Neville with a huge enziguri from out of nowhere! Wyatt is eliminated! We’re down to the former tag team champions in this one, and they stare each other down. Dallas skins the cat with Neville watching on, desperately trying to force him off the apron. Dallas pulls Neville over, but only one foot touches the floor! Wow, that was close. The entire arena is firmly behind Neville, and as the two slug it out in the centre of the ring every strike he makes is cheered while Dallas gets booed. Dallas gains the upper hand, but Neville reverses an Irish whip into the corner and charges straight into a back bodydrop! He just hangs on to the top rope, and flips over Dallas back in, but gets thrown back to the outside then connects with a huge kick to the head! Neville up top…corkscrew shooting star…no! Dallas got the knees up, and takes advantage of a weakened Neville to throw him out, as the crowd audibly shouts ‘no; as one, and win the battle royal and become number one contender!
Blimey, that was fast paced throughout. Dallas grins in the middle of the ring on his knees as Big Evan says he’s going to dominate him when they meet. This was what I feared would happen, guys, I’ve got to say – I cannot see fun times ahead when Bo Dallas is champion. But, it is what it is, and at least they might book some kind of story for the championship now, huh? Mason Ryan looked like an absolute beast in the battle royal, eliminating guys left right and centre – maybe this Ryan push will work out fine after all. We’ll see. To be entirely honest, we saw little to nothing of anyone else in this thing – Ohno’s running discus knee thing was sweet as a nut, but otherwise there are few stand out moments outside of Ryan’s domination and Neville’s close shave. That said, it was a great thing to watch, and I really enjoyed the match, as quick as it was.
If you’d told me this would happen last week, I’d have slapped the taste clean out of your mouth. ‘There’s no way in hell Mason Ryan could impress me!’ I’d have said, with a disdainful look upon my face, before walking off with my nose aloft. This week, though, I’d have come crawling back with an apology. It is, admittedly, a low week in general, with only D-Squared briefly flickering as potential MVPs, but Ryan earned this with his performance in the battle royal. I hesitate to say that I expect big things in the future, but I think we could soon see the emergence of Mason Ryan as a force to be reckoned with. Just perhaps, it will work out after all.
29/05/2013 – Mason Ryan
22/05/2013 – Sami Zayn
15/05/2013 – Conor O’Brian
08/05/2013 – The Wyatt Family
01/05/2013 – Summer Rae
24/04/2013 – Adrian Neville
17/04/2013 – Emma
10/04/2013 – Kassius Ohno
03/04/2013 – Adrian Neville
20/03/2013 – Leo Kruger
13/03/2013 – Bray Wyatt
This show went a mile a minute – I don’t think I’ve watched an episode of NXT to date that flew past as much as this one. And it was really, really enjoyable – even watching Derrick Bateman’s swansong wasn’t anything horrific, despite being squashed by Big E Langston in a matter of seconds. I’m already really looking forward to the Women’s Championship tournament – I don’t know if I’m reading too much into it being called the Women’s Championship specifically or not, but I feel like it’s a good step towards marking out NXT as different again from the rest of WWE. Unfortunately, Bo Dallas feels like a step backwards on that front, a sort of Cena-lite character in the NXT universe, and one that the crowd really are fed up of seeing. You win some, you lose some, I guess. Maybe they’ll pull a Nevill/Dallas program out for the title though – I’d certainly be on board with that happening.
NXTians, I’ve got a confession to make – I’m off on holiday! That’s right, tomorrow morning I’m heading off to the Yorkshire Dales for a week for some much needed R and R. But fear not, this little review isn’t going anywhere! When I return, I’ll review as soon as possible next week’s NXT, when the Women’s Championship tournament begins and I’m sure Bo Dallas and Big E Langston will have words! Until then, you lovely people you, as always stay safe when crossing the road and drink more hot chocolate! αντίο!