7/11 Gutteridge's WWE NXT Review: The Wyatt Family vs. William Regal, Adrian Neville and Corey Graves, Sami Zayn vs. Leo Kruger, Summer Rae vs. Emma in the Semi Final of the NXT Women's Title Torunament, Ric Flair appearance
By Darren Gutteridge
WWE NXT on Sky Sports 3
Taped June 20 in Winter Park, Florida
[Q1] After titles, the graphic for the NXT Women’s Title appeared as Summer Rae made her entrance. Emma followed her out, and quite a lot of people were dancing in the audience...
1. Emma vs. Summer Rae in the Semi Final of the NXT Women’s Title Tournament. An "Emma-lution" chant started as the crowd tried to rally behind Emma while Rae was on the offensive. Following a suplex, Rae applied an arm bar, which Emma eventually escaped only to get caught with a dropkick. Rae switched to a headlock, but Emma escaped successfully this time.
Emma suckered Rae into the corner, ducking between the ropes as Rae ran into the turnbuckle, landing on the apron and attempting a roll up. Rae kicked out, but ended up back in the corner and got hit by a low crossbody. Rae again kicked out at two, and she managed to kick Emma when she got back to her feet. Rae attempted a sunset flip, but Emma countered with a pin of her own. After a few more reversals, Emma got the pin...
Emma defeated Summer Rae in 4:25 to advance to the Final of the NXT Women’s Title Tournament.
The crowd popped loudly for the win. Rae attacked Emma after the match, only for Paige to run down to make the save. Rae slid out of the ring and backed up the ramp as Paige and Emma had a stare down...
William Regal, Adrian Neville and Corey Graves vs. The Wyatt Family was advertised for later in the show, and Sami Zayn vs. Leo Kruger is up next...
Gutt Reaction: Solid if unspectacular from the Divas. Personally, I would have gone with Rae for the final, but the crowd reaction shows that Emma was the right choice. There had better be some new Divas in the pipeline though, otherwise this title division will be as thin as ... the actual Divas Title division.
Backstage, Bayley was stood gushing over Dusty Rhodes’ Hall of Fame ring. Rhodes praised her energy, but questioned why she hugged Alicia Fox during their match a few weeks ago. She said it was just her excitement at being on NXT and being in the WWE. She paused and looked shocked at someone entering the room. It turned out to be Ric Flair and his daughter Charlotte.
Flair and Rhodes hugged, and Dusty welcomed Charlotte to NXT. She said she was excited to debut, but Dusty informed her he hadn’t found her an opponent yet. Bayley said she would wrestle her, and Charlotte agreed. They shook hands, and Charlotte and Flair turned to leave. Bayley stopped Flair and asked for one "Woo!." Flair seemed reluctant, but then jumped back into the shot to rally off a few to the delight of Bayley. He left, and Bayley started Woo-ing, which annoyed Dusty...
Gutt Reaction: Almost immediately I’m greeted with two new Divas. Well, Bayley isn’t exactly new, but this was the first time she’s been shown talking on the UK edit of the show. She and Emma have the same deal – intentional awkwardness. The problem with the gimmick is it’s hard to tell what is deliberate and what is just bad acting. The characters enthusiasm is infectious though, and she and Dusty could entertain when paired together like this. My passing brother asked why "Stephanie McMahon was with Ric Flair." She does look a little like Steph, but it’s strange just how much this 27 year old woman resembles her 64 year old dad.
Back in the arena, Leo Kruger was hanging on the second rope, as Sami Zayn waited behind him in the ring...
2. Sami Zayn vs. Leo Kruger. Brad Maddox on commentary questioned why the fans are chanting "Ole!" at Zayn. I suppose it will have to be addressed at some point. Zayn got the better of the early going with a variety of arm drags. He went for the 10 punches in the corner, but Kruger stopped him at 9 and hit an atomic drop. Kruger ran the ropes, only to get caught with a dropkick from Zayn. Kruger rolled outside, and Zayn looked to build up to a suicide dive, but Kruger caught him with a forearm as he came between the ropes. Both men sold as we went to the first commercial... [C]
[Q2] Kruger was stretching Zayn out when we returned. He picked Zayn up and hit him with a big Double A spinebuster for a close two count. Kruger went top rope and looked for a diving forearm, but Zayn rolled out of the way. Both men got up, and Zayn got the upper hand with a flapjack dropkick. Zayn went to the top rope this time, and successfully hit a crossbody for another close two count. Zayn worked the crowd as Kruger went to the corner. Zayn charger, but got caught with a big knee. Kruger applied an arm bar, and Zayn struggled to get to the ropes.
Kruger landed a few punches, and looked to run the ropes, but Zayn pulled him back and hit him with a sweet sitout powerbomb. Zayn went back to the top rope, only for Kruger to cut him off and hit a superplex. Kruger stalked Zayn as he got back to his feet, dropping him with an armbreaker before applying the GC3. Zayn tapped...
Leo Kruger defeated Sami Zayn in 9:25.
The commentators praised both men for the match before we cut backstage to Regal, Neville and Graves stood with Renee Young. Young cut the chase and asked if the war with the Wyatt Family will end tonight. Neville said tonight was just a taste of whats to come next week, when he and Graves will beat Luke Harper and Erick Rowan for the NXT Tag Titles. Graves said there is always a lot of talk from Bray Wyatt, but tonight, he will let his fists do the talking. Regal told Renee how lovely she is, before saying he broke the fingers and headbutted the doctor who smacked him when he was born. Regal rattler off a perfect Geordie accent akin to Neville’s, before saying the Wyatt’s should take Graves' advice – take their beating and "Stay Down"...
Gutt Reaction: Awesome match. That’s up there with Zayn’s first match with Cesaro, and may have been Kruger’s best on NXT. Zayn was given more time on offense than usual, and utilised it very well, but Kruger always looked dangerous. Go out of your way to see it. The backstage stuff was also good. Neville continued last week’s small improvements, Graves was intense, and Regal was his usual blend of comedy and intimidating. And take it from me, that was a very good Geordie accent from Regal.
Mason Ryan was shown stood in the ring as Enzo Amore’s music hit, and he and Colin Cassady walked out. Enzo said Ryan got lucky last week. The cheap shot was "sawft." He said he and Cass don’t like Mason, and tonight Ryan has a problem. "1+1 = 3.14, meathead. Time to eat your Pi." WHAT?!?...
3. Mason Ryan vs. Enzo Amore and Colin Cassady in a 2-on-1 Handicap Match. Cassady and Amore jumped Ryan to begin with, only for Ryan to flatten both with shoulder tackles. He hit a clothesline on Cassady in the corner, and then caught Amore from a crossbody. Cassady managed to hit Ryan with a big boot to cause Amore to land on top him. Ryan kicked out, but the heels managed to get him into the corner. Ryan moved Amore out of the way, and looked to slam Cassady, but Amore hit him with a chop block, and this time Cassady held on for the 1-2-3...
Enzo Amore and Colin Cassady defeated Mason Ryan in 1:31.
Amore and Cassady quickly ran to the back as Ryan looked angrily on... [C]
Gutt Reaction: I still can’t decide on Amore. This is the ideal way to book him, yes, but the act only works if you embrace the stupid. He’s doesn’t get under your skin like a Miz type heel, he’s just idiotic. If Amore plays it silly all of the time, it can work, but does it have Santino longevity? I’m not convinced. Santino was always "loveable" when he worked heel, whereas Amore has no real redeeming qualities.
[Q3] Dusty Rhodes was stood backstage, and said things had gotten out of hand in recent weeks with Zayn, Kruger and Cesaro. He booked a triple threat NXT Title No. 1 Contenders match for next week between the three...
Bray Wyatt walked out with Harper and Rowan, and said "Praise William Regal." He said he had to hand it to their opponents because they keep coming back no matter what they do to them. He questioned why they keep coming back, putting it down to pride. Wyatt said they will realise in time that it was all a mistake, and tonight will be their ending. "Time itself belongs to Bray Wyatt." The Family entered the ring, and Neville, Graves and Regal soon joined them...
4. Adrian Neville, Corey Graves and William Regal vs. The Wyatt Family. The faces initially isolated Rowan, until he hit a shoulder block on Graves. Harper tagged in, but soon found himself in a figure four neck lock from Graves in the face’s corner. Regal tagged in and started back stomping on Harper in the corner as the ref counted. Regal tagged in Neville and distracted the ref so Neville could continue the stomping. Harper rolled out of the ring and the Family regrouped... [C]
[Q4] Harper had successfully grounded Neville when we returned, and isolated him in the Family’s half of the ring. Rowan tagged in and hit a big powerslam, followed by a pumphandle backbreaker for the matches first two count. Bray tagged in and kept Neville on the floor, but when he looked for the body splash in the corner, Neville side stepped him. Neville looked to capitalise with a crucifix pin, but Wyatt stood standing long enough to turn it into a Samoan drop. The Family once again went back to keeping Neville away from his corner, but Neville eventually got there after dodging an elbow drop from Harper, tagging in Regal.
Regal came in hot, building to an exploder suplex. Following an awkward lock up, he followed it up with the Knee Trembler, but Rowan broke up the subsequent pin. Regal sold the elbow drop from Rowan as Graves took Rowan to the outside with a crossbody over the ropes. Neville followed them over the ropes with a running dive. Back in the ring, Harper tagged in Wyatt, who taunted Regal, and quickly hit the Sister Abigail to score his team the win...
The Wyatt Family defeated Adrian Neville, Corey Graves and William Regal in 10:17.
Wyatt posed in the Jesus pose as NXT went off the air...
Gutt Reaction: Regal seemed a little out of sorts in closing stages of the match. It may have just been miscommunication between him and Harper, but it looked a little confused. Outside of that this was another solid 6-man tag main event, something NXT specialises in. The Wyatt’s looked strong, but none of the faces were really given time to show off their skills, especially Graves. It’s obvious that everything is geared to getting the Family over at the moment though, so it was mission accomplished on that front.
This was a better episode than what we’ve had for most of the summer so far. Two 10 minute matches, one of which in particular was very good, is far better than a tonne of short matches. Even the two short matches here served a purpose tonight, and they gave two good hooks for next week in the form of the triple threat No.1 Contenders match and Charlotte’s debut. Good work all around.
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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