2/13 Zim’s WWE NXT Review: NXT Tag Team Title Tournament Finals, Wyatt Family vs. Neville and Grey, Corey Graves vs. Alex Riley, Paige vs. Summer, Paige featured heavily
By Zack Zimmerman
February 13, 2013 NXT on Hulu Plus
Taped January 31 at Full Sail University
A video preview hyped the NXT Tag Title Tournament, culminating in the finals to crown new champions, tonight…
Mike Dalton made his full ring entrance. He was followed by Axl Keegan, but as Keegan reached the ramp, Paige flew past him into the ring and went straight for ring announcer Summer Rae. Summer escaped to the back and Paige got on the mic. Paige promised that until Summer steps back out there, the show will not continue. She smacked Axl Keegan and demanded he get out of her ring, to which he complied.
NXT GM Dusty Rhodes theme played and he came onto the stage. He said that the show doesn’t revolve around Paige and ordered her out of the ring. Just then, Summer Rae emerged from the back and hid behind Dusty. Paige went after her and they got into it briefly but the refs and Rhodes kept them apart… [C]
Zim’s Zag: More good stuff from Paige. She showed her badass streak last week and continued it here. The attitude definitely goes a long way towards giving a smaller Diva a believable mean streak.
Backstage, a trainer was checking out Paige’s shoulder, apparently bothered from the quick scrap she got into… Alex Riley made his ring entrance to a decent reaction. Out next was Corey Graves.
1. Alex Riley vs. Corey Graves. Riley started off hot with some nice offence in the opening minutes. Hit hit some clotheslines, a big body slam, and finished off his run with a nice dropkick. Graves took control when Riley telegraphed a back body drop and Graves kicked Riley’s knee out from under him. Graves went to work before settling into a rest hold chinlock
Tony Dawson announced that Paige vs. Summer would take place on this show. Graves went for a suplex, but Riley countered with one of his own. Riley followed up with a spinebuster for a near-fall. He charged into the corner with a big back elbow, but Graves reversed the A-Bomb attempt and hit a chop block to the bad knee of Riley. Graves locked in the 13th Step and got the submission victory...
Corey Graves defeated Alex Riley in 5:00.
Backstage, the trainer was wrapping Paige’s shoulder…[C]
Zim’s Zag: Good match from these two. Riley is generally pretty solid and I continued to be impressed with Graves. He knows his character really well and looks completely comfortable as a performer.
Back from break, the ring announcers recapped the Diva’s clash from earlier and sold Paige’s injured shoulder. Summer Rae made her ring entrance followed by Paige, who looked all business.
2. Summer Rae vs. Paige. Paige went right after Summer with a Thesz press, but Summer kicked Paige’s shoulder and continued to target the injured body part. Paige fought back with a shuffle kick to the gut and stomped away at Summer in the corner. Rae took back control when she slid out of the ring and pulled the injured arm down across the rope. Back in the ring, Summer followed up with a big spinning back roundhouse kick that kept Paige down and earned her the three count…
Summer Rae defeated Paige in 2:30.
Zim’s Zag: Good, albeit short, match from the Divas here. It wasn’t a gem, but they had a story to tell and told it very convincingly. I say it every week, but I love the spotlight segments NXT gives the future Divas.
Backstage, a woman was absolutely giddy to hand Sasha another letter. “Beauty so rare, deserves more fanfare, romance is near, but I must ask my dear, for the reveal to be great, one more week you must wait.” Rather than running off as usual, Sasha began to grow impatient with her secret admirer… [C]
Scott Stamford narrated a preview for next week’s show featuring Big E Langston vs. Conor O’Brian and an interview update with Tyson Kidd.
Zim’s Zag: You know, if there is one thing that the main brands could learn from NXT, it’s how to give a preview for next week’s show and give some reasons to tune in. It’s a small thing, but I love it.
Byron Saxton stood mid-ring for the intro, with Dusty Rhodes behind him holding the new NXT Tag Team Championships. Out first was the team of Adrian Neville and Oliver Grey who had new theme music. Out next was the Family, with Wyatt coming to the stage, microphone in hand. “We are bigger than you, we are stronger than you. We are dangerous. We are monsters.” Wyatt claimed before sending Rowan and Harper to the ring.
3. Adrian Neville and Oliver Grey vs. The Wyatt Family (Luke Harper and Eric Rowan) for the vacant NXT Tag Team Championships. Harper again forced Rowan out of the ring to start (possibly my favorite part of their act). Grey got Harper outside the ring and hit a suicide dive onto the big man right in front of Wyatt. He rose from his rocker showing slight concern as the show went to break… [C]
Back in the ring, grey was wearing Rowan down in the corner. The babyfaces made frequent tags and targeted the shoulder of their opponent. Rowan finally fought back and tagged in Harper. He didn’t have control for long before Neville got back in the match and went after Harper with kicks to the chest. Neville landed a huge backflip over the top of Harper before nailing a dropkick and tagging in Grey. Rowan got back in the match as well and Grey continued to work on the shoulder.
Rowan showed some signs of green when he worked his offence too close to the babyface corner, and looked foolish for allowing Neville to tag back in. Again, both teams made tags. Grey found himself on the ring apron with the ref distracted, allowing Wyatt to interfere and give his Family the upper hand. Dusty Rhodes made his way over to Wyatt and ordered him to the back. Wyatt protested but ultimately complied as the show went to its final break… [C]
The Family had Grey draped over the turnbuckle and took turns laying in forearms to the chest. They made frequent tags and Rowan hit a great looking pumphandle backbreaker for a near-fall. Rowan settled into a bearhug, but Grey fought out. He hit right hands on Rowan and back elbows on Harper. Harper tagged in and tried to prevent Grey from making the tag, but Grey went right through his legs and tagged in the Man that Gravity Forgot.
Neville came in firing on both members of the Family with big running forearms and kicks. He hit a tilt-a-whirl DDT on Harper for a two count. Neville rolled to the apron where he hit a rope-hanging kick and ascended the top rope. He dove, but was caught in the face by a stiff big boot. Harper made the cover, but Grey was able to break it up. Rowan sent Grey to the outside and the Family looked to be in control. Harper set up for his discus lariat, but Neville ducked and Harper ended up hitting Rowan. Neville took advantage with a big running gamengiri and climbed to the top once again. This time, Neville landed a picture-perfect corkscrew Shooting Star on Harper to earn the pinfall victory and the Tag Team Titles for his team.
Adrian Neville and Oliver Grey defeated The Wyatt Family to win the NXT Tag Team Championships in 15:00.
Zim’s Zag: Very solid match with a hot ending. Some of the action in the middle wasn’t great, but it didn’t drag at any point. Harper is fantastic, with Rowan a few steps behind. Neville showed some new offense and good fire for his team, while Grey really hasn’t shown much other than hints of some technical mat-work skills. I wish NXT tag matches featured some more double-team maneuvers rather than the frequent tag approach in every match. It would definitely add to the excitement, but they have their formulas and stick to them.
Tony Dawson tried to interview the elated new champs. “Adrian, we’ve done it!” Grey yelled. Neville grabbed the mic and simply said “First ever NXT Tag Team Champions!” A recap showed the corkscrew Shooting Star once again. The new champs embraced and made their way up the ramp where held their titles over their heads as the show closed.
Zim’s Zag: I really liked this week’s show a lot. Two of the three matches weren’t very long, but they were good in the time they had and more importantly, advanced the storied involved. Graves winning keeps him on track for the top, and Paige losing to Summer with an injured arm will surely set up a rematch with even more of Paige’s pride at stake. The tag match is definitely one to watch as well. Again, it wasn’t a fantastic match, but everyone involved showed what they can do and had plenty of time to do it. Grey and Neville don’t have the chemistry that the Family does, but hopefully winning the championships will lead to further growth from the potential-filled Brits.
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