6/20 Gutteridge's WWE NXT Review: Bray Wyatt vs. Adrian Neville, Xavier Woods vs. Jake Carter, Sasha Banks vs. Summer Rae, Sami Zayn vs. Angelo Dawkins, Kassius Ohno, Corey Graves and the Wyatt Family all in action
By Darren Gutteridge
WWE NXT on Sky Sports 3
Taped May 23 in Winter Park, Florida
[Q1] A video package highlighted last weeks NXT World Title match between Bo Dallas and Big E Langston before the titles rolled...
After titles, Adrian Neville made his entrance to a very nice pop. Tom Phillips and Brad Maddox checked in on commentary as Bray Wyatt came out, flanked by Erick Rowan and Luke Harper. They showed a video of Neville eliminating Wyatt from the No. 1 Contender Battle Royal three weeks ago...
1. Adrian Neville vs. Bray Wyatt. Wyatt kept Neville grounded for the opening minutes, eventually throwing him over the ropes. Neville hit Wyatt with a roundhouse kick when he came towards the ropes, and looked to be going for the Red Arrow, but Harper threw him off the turnbuckle to cause a DQ...
Adrian Neville defeated Bray Wyatt via DQ in 2:09.
The Family got in the ring and started beating up Neville. Kassius Ohno and Corey Graves ran down to make the save. They pulled Harper out first, throwing him into the steps, and then threw Rowan into the ringpost. They got in the ring, and Wyatt rolled to the outside.
As the Family regrouped on the ramp, Dusty Rhodes’ music hit, and he came out to book Neville, Ohno and Graves vs. The Wyatt Family for later on in the show. A graphic then showed Sasha Banks vs. Summer Rae will also take place tonight... [C]
Gutt Reaction: A means to an end. I’m happy they held off on giving away this as a one on one match, as I think, if Wyatt sticks around as Big E did after his main roster jump, this could be a feud to revisit. Wyatt can more than make up for Neville’s lack of mic skills to make it compelling.
[Q2] NXT debutant Angelo Dawkins stood in the ring as we returned, as Sami Zayn made his entrance to another good crowd reaction...
2. Sami Zayn vs. Angelo Dawkins. Zayn took Dawkins down with some nice deep arm drags before Dawkins took control with a body slam. The commentators pointed out that Dawkins competed in football, wrestling and track at college. Zayn managed to get to his feet following a headlock from Dawkins, and after breaking the hold, he hit a leg lariat. This set him up for his springboard Tornado DDT, which put Dawkins down...
Sami Zayn defeated Angelo Dawkins in 2.54
The commentators hyped Summer Rae vs. Sasha Banks before we cut to a video package on Leo Kruger. He said some people may think he’s creepy, but he merely requires more understanding. The package ended with Kruger saying "Everything you know is about to change", followed by "Ta-Ta"...
Gutt Reaction: Another nothing match. I’m all for establishing Zayn, but he only landed maybe four moves in that match against a no-name guy (for now). That doesn’t help anybody. Obviously he can’t be beating main roster guys every week, but at least let him show off his skill set and be dominant in matches everyone knows he is going to win, especially if he is going to play the role of the underdog against guys like Cesaro. The Leo Kruger video was fantastic. I hope he gets called up over the summer as he is more than ready.
Sasha Banks entered the arena as a graphic for the NXT Women’s Title was shown. The title was again sat on commentary, and Phillips recapped the tournament so far as Summer Rae came out...
3. Sasha Banks vs. Summer Rae in a NXT Women’s Title Tournament Quarter Final match. After building early momentum, Summer grabbed Bank’s hair, screamed in her face and slammed her into the mat for a two. The two descended into a brawl following a few roll up pin attempts, until Banks caused a break and slapped Summer several times in the chest. Banks followed this up with a springboard armdrag, but Summer kicked out at one. Summer got up in the corner, dodged an onrushing Banks, and put her in a reverse DDT position. She screamed "Bye bye, Sasha!", before putting her down with a leg drop (along the lines of Melina’s old finishing move)...
Summer Rae defeated Sasha Banks in 3:31 to advance to the Semi Finals of the NXT Women’s Title Tournament.
A graphic for the updated brackets showed that Rae will take on the winner of Emma vs. Aksana...
Backstage, Xavier Woods introduced himself, and said "You may remember me from such NXT episodes as episode 141, episode 145, episode 155 where I beat El Local, and episode 157, where I beat El Local".
Troy McClure’s POV: I like this guy. He must have seen me in such films as "Today We Kill, Tomorrow We Die" and "Gladys, the Groovy Mule".
Woods said he will now be making his return, and we should get ready, as "although the roof is not my son, I will raise it". Woods’ watch beeped like the ones in old school Power Rangers, and he said he had to leave; it was "morphin’ time"... [C]
Gutt Reaction: A Simpsons and a Power Rangers reference in one promo. I know it’s pandering, but it’s pandering directly to me, so I’m on board. It’s a good job I’m here and not some old school, die hard guy, as he would have had likely no idea what just happened. Will a promo-intensive character like this translate to the main roster? I’m unconvinced, but for here and now, I like it. Also, Summer Rae, when she gets more seasoned, can be a very effective, if not entirely original, heel Diva.
[Q3] Xavier Woods came out to a very "Saved by the Bell"-esque tron video. He body popped his way to the ring, where Jake Carter was waiting...
4. Xavier Woods vs. Jake Carter. Woods started with a quick pace, building to a head scissors. Woods applied an arm lock off of an armdrag, which Carter powered out of by backing Woods into the corner, and hitting him with elbows. Carter hit a snapmare on a seated Woods, and went to the top rope. He went for a double axe handle, but Woods caught him in the midsection on the way down.
Woods fired up with a few punches before landing a dropkick. He kip-flipped up, and backed into the corner. He shouted "It’s morphin’ time!" and hit a clothesline out of a head-spring. This set up his finisher, called the "Lost in the Woods", which is a foot jawbreaker similar to Gail Kim’s Eat Defeat. He covered Carter for the 1-2-3...
Xavier Woods defeated Jake Carter in 3:08.
Gutt Reaction: Woods showed some nice crispness in that match whenever he was on offense. A solid if unspectacular reintroduction, and hopefully this is the start of a more sustained presence on the roster.
Woods started break-dancing before we went backstage to Renee Young, who introduced Sami Zayn. Young said Zayn had an impressive victory early tonight, but Zayn stopped her and said it wasn’t meant to be impressive, it was meant to be a message to Antonio Cesaro. He said he doesn’t take exception to losing, but he does take exception to being beaten up after a match. He said the score was 1-1, and asked Renee what that usually means. She answered ‘Round 3’. Zayn looked down the camera and said she was right, and now it’s Cesaro’s move...
In another backstage area, Sylvester Lefort was stood talking to Garrett Dylan and Scott Dawson. Lefort said "they" didn’t know what they were doing, as Dylan and Dawson should be No. 1 contenders for the Tag Titles. Dusty entered and said he had heard all the talk from Lefort, so he wanted to give Dawson and Dylan a chance to prove themselves. He booked the two vs. Graves and Ohno in a No. 1 Contender match for next week. Lefort thanked him, and said it was now time to make money...
Bo Dallas appeared on a mobile video in his car, shouting very loudly that he wanted to thank everybody. He said he wasn’t there this week, as he was too busy, but he wanted to show he wasn’t a liar. He said he was going to go to Disneyland, and he did. A photo aired of Dallas in Disneyland with the NXT Title and a Mickey Mouse hat. He told his "Bo-lievers" that he will be on NXT next week, and then started singing "Don’t Stop Bo-Lieving"...
Big E Langston was advertised to appear next week...
Gutt Reaction: Good, realistic intensity from Zayn, which only came off better when followed by the tacky feeling Lefort/Dylan/Dawson act. It still makes no sense why Lefort would manage a team like Dawson and Dylan, and they don’t seem to intend to explain it fully. Interestingly, Bo Dallas just showed more charisma in a mobile video than he has in total over the last year of NXT. Channelling Justin Bieber and his "Belieber" crap will only infuriate the Full Sail crowd more, and the Disneyland photo was a great idea. I’m more hopeful for his heel run now, but I still think it would be very hard to translate it to the main roster.
The faces made their entrance separately first, followed by the Family...
5. Adrian Neville, Corey Graves and Kassius Ohno vs. The Wyatt Family. No team really took a strong foothold in the match until Harper put Graves down with a big boot going into the commercial... [C]
[Q4] Harper was still on the attack on Graves when we returned. Wyatt tagged in to keep the pressure up, until Graves dodged a legdrop and tagged Ohno, as Wyatt tagged Rowan. Ohno initially got the better of Rowan, but was thrown to the outside. Harper attacked him, before throwing him back in the ring and isolating him in the Family’s corner. Harper ended up throwing Ohno to the corner, and then the two just seem to run into each other in what looked like a botched comeback spot. Wyatt tagged in, but Ohno gave him the slip and tagged Neville.
Neville exploded into the ring, taking Wyatt down with a springboard dropkick, and then hitting a standing Shooting Star Press for a two count. Wyatt rolled to the outside while Neville took Harper off the apron. He looked to be building up to a dive over the ropes, but Rowan got in the ring to cut him off. Neville managed to put the breaks on, and allow Ohno to run in and hit Rowan with a dropkick. Ohno, Rowan and Harper ended up on the outside, and Neville took all three men out with a dive over the ropes. Neville got back on the apron to once again hit Wyatt with a roundhouse kick, and went to the top rope for the Red Arrow. This time, Harper pulled Wyatt out of the ring, causing Neville to hit the ground hard, and allowing Wyatt to roll back in and get the 1-2-3...
The Wyatt Family defeated Adrian Neville, Kassius Ohno and Corey Graves in 9:48.
The Family backed up the ramp as Graves checked on Neville in the ring and NXT came to a close...
Gutt Reaction: A good quality 6-man. We’ve been spoilt for good 6-man tags recently thanks to The Shield, and this wasn’t strictly up there with them, but it was still fun. The Family really looked like a force for the most part, easily isolating both Ohno and Graves, which is odd considering their positioning as the biggest threat to Harper and Rowan’s tag belts. But neither of them took the fall, so I expect their pursuit of the Family to continue, with or without Neville, which is good, as this story has overtaken the NXT Title as the most compelling thing on NXT.
This NXT just wasn’t my cup of tea. While sprinkled with one or two good promos and a fun tag match main event, the short matches throughout gave the show an uneventful feel, and I’m disappointed by the lack of follow up on last weeks title change (outside of Dallas’ video). I’m much happier with a three match set up, giving all three time to breathe, but that’s just me. If you’re a fan of a frenetically paced wrestling show, give NXT a go this week.
Also, this weeks episode marks the one year anniversary of this show! Look for an article over the weekend I wrote to commemorate the occasion.
Thanks for reading. If you had any comments or thoughts on the show or this review, add me on Twitter via @Dazatheg
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