Gutteridge's WWE NXT Hitlist: Sami Zayn vs. Justin Gabriel, Bayley and Becky Lynch vs. Charlotte and Sasha Banks, and Tyson Kidd sits down with Renee Young in a "nothing off the table" interview
By Darren Gutteridge
WWE NXT Hits
Sami Zayn vs. Justin Gabriel: A good match, but I think we've been spoiled in recent weeks with the quality of Kidd/Neville. Had this taken place when NXT was going through it's slump post-Arrival, I may have been higher on it. I'm not sure what to make of the Gabriel turn. It wasn't the most impactful of turns, coming off more like Gabriel just shrugging and joining in with Kidd. But that also makes sense in a weird way. Gabriel hasn't had a big setback, just lots of little ones, and maybe this loss was the straw that broke the camel's back. No big explosion, no shocking turn, just a frustrated man giving into his frustrations. It's a rare case of wrestling logic, be it intentional or unintentional.
Tyson Kidd's promo: A rare mention for a backstage bit, but I really liked Kidd's attitude in his interaction with Gabriel, and interview with Renee Young. On paper, it seems counterproductive, as he is essentially belittling NXT as the lesser leagues. But NXT has been called a stepping stone by everybody, both face and heel, at this point, so it's not like it's a taboo subject. And from his point of view, he would see it as a step back after his main roster time. Kidd is quickly becoming a true highlight on these shows.
Bayley and Becky Lynch vs. Charlotte and Sasha Banks: Is it bad that a passing grade for a Divas match can be obtained just by it being technically sound? I feel that is what 6+ years of meaninglessness and sloppiness in the Divas division has lead to. I'm not a fan of the finish because Lynch is new, and the BFFs had a tonne of outs with their on-going friction, but I think it was done in aid of getting to Bayley vs. Charlotte, which is a direction I do like, so I'll get over it.
CJ Parker vs. Steve Cutler: This was such a borderline call. If you personally gave it a miss, that's cool, but I always end up giving Parker the benefit of the doubt because I believe in the character. This is more a hit for the potential of the situation. I like the idea of a Woods vs. Parker feud, and I like that Parker has now latched on to a reason to succeed – he wants a platform to preach from, and winning gets him there. That's a clever wrinkle to add.
Overall Show: This amount of hits means it must be a hit overall, but the show was a middle of the road affair. Most segments had a balance of things I liked, and things I didn't, with no one segment really shining without a blemish.
WWE NXT Misses
Colin Cassady vs. Sylvester Lefort: This felt like the "Previously, on [insert name here]" segment you get on sitcoms. It re-established who Enzo Amore is, gave a quick "in a nutshell" description of the Legionnaires (they're French!), then got out of the way so the rest of the show could continue. Nothing terrible, just a very skipable segment.
Thanks for reading. Be sure to check out the Dot Net NXT podcast with Zack Zimmerman, exclusively for Dot Net members. Also, if you could swing by my website, thegutteridgelog.co.uk, that would be greatly appreciated! If you have any thoughts on the article, add me on Twitter - @DazatheG
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