Greeting, NXTians! We’ve got a fine show this week, headlined by Sami Zayn doing battle with Tyson Kidd and supported with a strong looking undercard – we’ve got The Vaudevillains taking on the Realest Guys in the Room, Sasha Banks squaring off with Alexa Bliss and the return to NXT of Adam Rose, plus – it’s the one you’ve all been waiting for! The match to end all matches! The rivalry to end all rivalries! It’s only Xavier Woods vs CJ Parker! No wait, come back! Please?
The NXT Review: 17/07/2014 – (She Was A) Hotel Detective
Jul 18, 2014 - 7:15:00 AM
The NXT Review: 17/07/2014 – (She Was A) Hotel Detective
The Vaudevillains vs Realest Guys in the Room
The continued development of the shtick of The Vaudevillains is a beautiful thing to behold. They’ve gone from just turning up in black and white, to announcing their combined height, and now having a man coming out to announce them on their (magnificent) titantron video as well as having individual spotlights. Still one of the best things in wrestling. Enzo and Cass are as over as ever with the NXT Universe, Amore now singing their theme song and rapping along with it as he’s on his way down the ramp (not like R-Truth, he’s just really into it and singing along without a microphone).
Dear Aiden starts us off with Enzo, and the latter skirts a lock up to start with before getting caught in a wristlock. English keeps him down for a moment, but Enzo twists out of it…nope, Aiden reverses it right back around. Amore finally gets free, whipping his opponent into the ropes and dropping him with a drop toe hold before walking up his back. He delivers some punches which I think I’m contractually obliged to call ‘Road Dogg-esque’ as the commentary team divulge that he broke his leg at a foam party. What a dude. English comes out of the corner with a big blow to the back and goes for a suplex, but Amore reverses it and manages to tag in Big Cass. All the history between English and Cass, and the big man is absolutely dominating now, pounding his man with forearms and knees. Aiden slips out of a body slam and gets Gotch in, but he’s immediately beaten down...but who’s this? It’s the Legionnaires! They appear to distract Big Cass, and Simon Gotch takes advantage with a roll up for the win! The opportunistic swine!
The Realest Guys in the Room have some words from the ring with LeFort and Louis as the Vaudevillains make their way to the back. A shame about the ending, as this was sort of just getting going – I was looking forward to seeing Gotch against Cassady, just in case we got to see him really display some strength in there. That would have been good character-wise as well as showing that they could battle bigger guys (after all, they’re going to have to take on The Ascension at some point in time). What was there was good, it has to be said – Amore looked sharp after his lay-off, and Cass has managed to become quite a great big guy – but it lacked a little bit of something. I think I’m so used to seeing teams working together, isolating a man in their corner and such, on NXT that it’s odd to not have that. At least Enzo got a microphone backstage:
‘Goin’ upside his noodle with the whole kit ‘n’ kaboodle’!!!
The Ascension are backstage – Konnor urges Viktor to preach, and the latter says that any of their opponents are always the hunted. That’s…er…about it, to be honest. Nothing to see here, move along.
Ooh, there’s an excellent little video package about the demise of the Beautiful Fierce Females, highlighting Charlotte’s win at Takeover and the subsequent returns of Summer Rae and her ego, which led to pretty much all the trouble. I’m going to miss these wonderful women all teaming together. It was a blast while it lasted. Anyway, Charlotte vs Summer for the Women’s Championship is next week on NXT.
Xavier Woods vs CJ Parker
Woods dominates the opening stages, eventually connecting with a headscissors takedown after coming off the ropes and ducking a clothesline, but for his trouble he ends up Irish whipped hard, his neck connecting with the bottom rope. I’m not sure what Woods was trying to do, it looked like he wanted to slide out of the ring but ran out of room to actually do it. Parker levels him with a clothesline and then pounds him fists and feet on the mat before locking in an arm-trap chinlock, but Woods breaks it and comes back with a European uppercut. He ducks some wild right hands and connects with a pair of flying forearms…right, this is the thing with Xavier Woods. He’s in the middle of the ring, Parker is lying to one side of him. So instead of going for something logical he walks to his next spot, forcing Parker to crawl to a corner that is two thirds of the ring away. It’s like…I talked about this on The Right Side of the Pond a couple of weeks ago when I was talking about Naomi – she’s got a list of spots that she’s going to do, and if you’re not in position she’s going to get ready to do one of them anyway, then wait for you to get in the right spot. It really breaks the flow of a match up and makes it look really stupid.
Anyway, Woods charges into the corner and gets dropped to the apron by Parker for his troubles, but connects with a kick to the head of the dirty hippy. Woods then repeats the sin I’ve talked about above, leaving Parker wobbling about in the middle of the ring while he sets up for a springboard DDT. That earns a two count, so he goes up top for a big crossbody…but he misses and eats canvas! Parker goes for the scissor kick, but Woods ducks and locks in a waistlock. The Doctor goes for an O’Connor roll off the ropes, but Parker jackknifes down into a pin and the ref takes a bloody age to make the count – Jesus. Parker wins like that, but this is the same ref who messed about in the Summer/Bayley match a couple of weeks ago. He’s also, fact fans, the ref that confused The Uso’s on Raw recently and counted a pin on the illegal man, and allowed Cameron to tag in to a tag match without being anywhere near any corner of the ring, let alone her own. Here, the finish is supposed to be Parker winning because he has hold of the ropes, but because he takes so bloody long Parker has to let go of the ropes. Jesus. I think this is the ex-TNA referee that WWE recently hired? If so…well, there’s probably a reason TNA considered him not good enough, you know? As if watching Woods take on Parker wasn’t enough shit, they threw that guy in there to make it a triforce of crap.
Sami Zayn turns up backstage to talk like a normal person – he’s pretty sure we’re now seeing the real Tyson Kidd, the one that’s conceited and a chauvinistic coward who’s insecure about being overshadowed by his wife’s success – all the success she’s had, including losing repeatedly to AJ with the Divas title on the line, losing to Charlotte for the NXT Women’s Championship, not being relevant for over two years. All that success. Anyway, tonight’s about embarrassing Tyson Kidd and Zayn’s going to do just that. Oh, he’s so good at just doing simple promos, is Zayn. I get that it’s a fairly standard promo, it doesn’t call for a lot of fire or anything, but he does everything with ease – hits the plot points so we know what has happened, and tells us what’s about to happen and why. He’s not great on the mike, but he’s good and that’s better than a lot of people.
Alexa Bliss vs Sasha Banks
Alexa’s wearing all her bling bling as she blows glitter out across the fans and skips her way to the ring, the chirpiest and happiest person on the show for sure – she gets a little PIP promo to put over her previous victory and say that Sasha is about to see lightning strike twice. Sasha Banks swaggers her way to the ring – I’m sure I describe her as ‘swaggering’ way too much, but still. She’s one of the best characters on NXT, I think it has to be said, and she pulls some duck faces at Alexa from across the ring while talking smack.
Bliss, though, ducks out of the way of her flailing in and goes for an O’Connor roll straight off the bat! One count only, but that calls back to their previous match – and so does this, as she goes for the tilt-a-whirl inside cradle for another one count! Banks isn’t standing for this any longer, and connects with a beautiful dropkick before flinging Bliss headfirst to the mat, then pulling her hair back to stretch her out. She whips Alexa into the ropes – but gets telegraphed and sunset flipped! Bliss gets a two count, but Banks fires back with a knee to the gut immediately. She scoops Bliss up into the corner and then uses the ropes to assist her in dropping a pair of knees to the gut which earns a two count. The Boss of NXT locks in a deep cravate, keeping the Flighty Fairy down and wrenching at her neck, talking smack all the while. Bliss gets to her feet and fires back with elbows to the guts and hard forearms…and then meets Banks with a hard elbow in the corner! A boot to the face and she goes for a second rope 450, but has to roll through as Banks rolls into the corner, connecting instead with a dropkick! Banks, though, blocks a clothesline with her bare hands, turning Bliss around…lungblower! And she floats over into a crossface, right in the middle of the ring! Bliss has to tap!
I sometimes forget what a bloody workhorse Sasha Banks is. She’s probably the most underrated and underutilised women in the NXT division, having had to take all those losses as the BFFs split up. This re-establishes her as a force to be reckoned with – she pretty much just trucked right through Bliss here, bar a brief rally before the finish, and it was glorious. I mean, if I were Banks and facing off against Bliss…yeah, I’d be trucking straight through her as much as possible. The two are direct opposites in terms of characters – one’s a dominant, fierce Boss and the other’s a glitter spewing, flitty fairy, and the former wanting to end the latter is something that makes a lot of sense to me. Hugely enjoyable match, even if it was a bit on the short side.
Tyler Breeze is backstage! He is looking at his phone while Devin tries her best to talk to him, asking him when he’s going to cash in his shot at Adrian Neville – all everybody does these days is rush. To the supermarket, to the mall, and now to the conclusion that he doesn’t want to fight Adrian Neville. But Devin, these things take time! The Versace mansion wasn’t built in a day! And as he suffered a tragic hand modelling accident (I will never get tired of those words. I will also never get tired of Enzo breaking his leg at a foam party. If the two are related, I will lose my sugar.) he couldn’t even compete that night. However, his agent is drawing up a contract – but as we all know, legal contracts aren’t drawn up in a couple of hours! So just in case you’ve got Breeze withdrawals here, once again, is the MTV Euro Award winning video ‘Prince Pretty’! And as you know, that is considered the very best thing. Kind of a shame they couldn’t have just given five extra minutes to Banks and Bliss, though.
Oh, Tyson Kidd is fed up of his time being wasted by Devin talking to him about his family when she should just be talking about FACTS like when he beat Sami Zayn last week. Accidents happen in the ring, Natalya can look after herself – but it won’t be an accident when he wins later. How exciting for him.
Jason Jordan vs Adam Rose
Jason Jordon, as he is labelled by his titantron, or Jason Jordan, as he is labelled by his NXT name tag? Which do we go for? Who messed up? The highlight here is Jordon’s PIP, where he vows to solve the mystery of just how Tye Dillinger became injured while partying with the Rosebuds…
With the day just ending, a smoky haze filled the office as the man reclined in his chair. The phone on his desk suddenly rang, snapping him from his reverie. He stretched to pick it up…
‘Jordon Investigations – for when you’re missing your Mrs’
‘Hi, I’m…really worried…my partners, they’re missing…can you help me find them?’ sniffed the voice on the phone.
I put down the whiskey and rocks I’d just poured myself. Ever since I’d lost my partner, Tye Dillinger, due to excessive bunny partying I’d been taking odd jobs on the side to look into other missing people. This person clearly needed my help, and if nobody else would take the job I would have to. I breathed out the last smoke from my cigarette, crushing the butt into my NXT branded ashtray.
‘When did you last see your partners Mr…’
‘Slater. Well, Drew and Jinder, they were both at my side when I fought this tiny bull fella…we were more than partners, we were bandmates…I just miss them so much…’
‘Did you see them at all after this occasion?’
‘Just once – I was having a shower, and this Adam guy and his friends came in to the changing room and offered to take them all to Sonic…’
Another case where the missing people were last seen with those Rosebuds. Somehow, I felt like this ran deeper than just missing people – this could be a whole conspiracy. First Tye, and now Drew and Jinder. I had to find them…and interviewing Captain Comic seemed like the ideal place to start.
Adam Rose wins with the Party Foul, but Jordon impressed more, hitting a gorgeous bridging throw, a great dropkick and generally hitting hard and fast. He’s the Ziggler of NXT – we’ll never see the best of him, but he’s got potential through the roof in terms of athletic ability. Rose is…I’m not sure about Rose now. I hate him on the main roster, partly because he’s not been given anything good to do but mostly because he’s terrible. I loved him when he debuted on NXT, and still think the entrance is killer, but there’s little to no substance behind it.
Devin’s guest at this time is Kalisto, who’s all Spanishy Spanish with her – he wants to talk about his future losses…but then everything goes black and white and The Vaudevillains interfere! Please tell me they only ever operate in black and white. The footage of them wrestling should be black and white too. Anyway, English holds up a sign to ask where Kalisto’s partner is – turns out El Local and he parted ways, but he’s going to have a new partner to face the throwbacks next week, which leaves them speechless! Geddit? Because they’re in a silent movie! Oh that Kalisto, he’s such a card!
Sami Zayn vs Tyson Kidd
Here come Kidd and Zayn, neither doing anything of note on the entrances. Zayn wants to get going the moment the bell rings, but Kidd ducks through the ropes, chickenshitting his way around the lock up and smirking at his opponent. He dives out of the ring next, with the crowd chanting that he’s a chicken and Nattie’s husband. Kidd finally locks up and gets the better of Zayn momentarily, but the instant Sami gets going again he bails on the ring. I’ve got to say, this is a brilliant extension of Kidd’s character and it really works for him to be bailing on the ring like this. But he now charges in and gets decked with clotheslines! A big back body drop, and Zayn looks for the Helluva kick this early on only for Kidd to skirt him and dive out of the ring again. Crumbs. Ooh, and a big penalty kick from Kidd when Zayn comes out to get him back in the ring, followed up by a suplex onto the steel ramp. Goodness me, that kick was right on the button. Kidd rolls Sami back in the ring and goes for a cover, but time has run on too much and he only gets a one count so he goes for a chinlock. He continues to attack the head, slamming Sami headfirst into the turnbuckles and pounding him down to the mat, then locking him in a tree of woe and landing a low dropkick to the face. He chokes Sami with a knee across the throat, using the ropes for leverage, and you can really see the target for Kidd here – he connects with a neckbreaker and goes back to the chinlock to keep the focus on that ginger noggin.
Zayn manages to fire up with some rights to the midsection and knocks Tyson down, then comes off the ropes and connects with the dropkick, sending Kidd to the outside. And he bounces off his calves on the top rope to land a big moonsault to the outside! Zayn’s working up a head of steam, and he hits a cross body off the top rope for 1…2…no, Kidd just kicks out! He goes for the wristlock tornado DDT, but Kidd drop toe holds him into the bottom turnbuckle, headfirst, and hits a slingshot legdrop over the top rope to the apron. That buys Tyson a two count, but he takes too long to come back and Zayn blocks him with a back elbow. Sami looks for the Blue Thunder Bomb, but Kidd reverses twice to hit a release German suplex for another two count! Excellent scouting from Kidd there, and he goes for the top rope elbow drop…but misses! Blue Thunder Bomb! 1…2…no! Kidd somehow kicks out!. Zayn goes to get him in from the apron but gets met with a kick to the temple…Blockbuster! This one is over…no it’s not! Somehow Zayn kicks out at 2 and a half and Kidd goes for the sharpshooter…reversed into a pin NO Kidd turns it round into the sharpshooter! Zayn is in the middle of the ring and he crawls, nearly to the ropes but Kidd pulls him back! Sami scratches and stretches and finally gets the bottom rope, but he is damaged and Kidd goes up top again…mystical jump to nowhere and Sami makes him pay with an STO. And he floats over to a Koji Clutch! Bang in the middle of the ring, and Kidd has nowhere to go! He has to tap!
This was a masterclass. It was expertly wrestled by both guys, but also worked in terms of character – Zayn is this resilient guy, one that will fight and fight and fight, only giving up when he absolutely has to. He kicked out of most of Kidd’s signature offense, fought his way to the ropes in the sharpshooter and then finally found a way to win. But the way he won was great in terms of Kidd’s character – he tapped the moment he was in trouble. There was no fight on his part, because he’s so tired of all the crap he’s getting, plus he’s playing the chickenshit guy who doesn’t want to get hurt too much, so he chose to tap almost immediately. He looked so frustrated with himself for tapping out easily when he sat on the ramp at the end that I think even he sees he should have put up more of a fight. Great work from both guys.
NXT MVP: Sasha Banks!
I think I underrate Sasha Banks way more than I should – as I said, she’s the darndest workhorse on NXT, pulling out all the stops and now has a super cool finisher to go with all her excellent technique and characterisation. If only she could act, she’d be the total package. But this week she was incredible.
17/07/2014 – Sasha Banks
10/07/2014 – Sami Zayn
03/07/2014 – Enzo Amore
26/06/2014 – Adrian Neville
19/06/2014 – The Vaudevillains
12/06/2014 – Colin Cassady
05/06/2014 - Charlotte
I pretty much enjoyed everything that wasn’t Xavier Woods vs CJ Parker. Hand up if you saw that coming? I also have realised how much I hate Adam Rose wrestling on NXT – for some reason, I can tolerate him on the main roster because he’s doing that Santino thing, but on NXT that doesn’t work as well for me. Honestly, I was more surprised that he didn’t stop halfway through and try to sell Jason Jordan some greasy fast food.But everything else was great - Vaudevillains vs Realest Guys was a little too short but was great while it lasted, Banks vs Bliss was exactly what the former needed and the main event was terrific. NXT has continued its run of great programming post-Takeover.
And it looks like it might continue next week too! Summer Rae will do battle with Charlotte with the NXT Women’s Championship on the line. Kalisto and a mystery partner will face off against The Vaudevillains. And…actually, that’s all they announced, isn’t it? Let me tell you one thing though, guys – Lan’s legs will make their return to NXT! Hurrah! Until next week stay safe when crossing the road, NXTians, and drink more hot chocolate! TTFN!