7/25 Gutteridge's WWE NXT Review: Sheamus vs. Luke Harper, Paige vs. Emma in the Final of the NXT's Women's Title Tournament, Tyler Breeze vs. Angelo Dawkins, The Ascension vs. Mickey Keegan and Aiden English
By Darren Gutteridge
WWE NXT on Sky Sports 3
Taped June 20 in Winter Park, Florida
[Q1] Before titles, a video package recapping the NXT Women’s title tournament aired. It featured both Paige and Emma saying what it meant to them to get to the final...
After titles, Tom Phillips introduced himself and Brad Maddox on commentary, and introduced the first match as the final of the Women’s title tournament. Emma came out first to no audible reaction, but the camera did show a fair few people dancing. They did pop when Emma flipped into the ring. Paige was greeted by a much louder reaction. Byron Saxton handled the introductions in the ring...
1. Paige vs. Emma in the Final of the NXT Women’s Title Tournament. Loud, duelling “Let go Emma” / “Lets go Paige” went on during the early back and forth. Emma reversed a backslide by getting to the ropes and applying the Tarantula. After the ref broke the hold, Paige kicked Emma through the ropes, sending her to the floor before the first commercial break... [C]
[Q2] When we returned Emma was back in the ring and back on offence, throwing Paige to the corner. Paige tried to slip out between the ropes when Emma charged at her, but Emma grabbed her and slammed her into the mat. She followed this up with a low cross body to a seated Paige for a two count. Emma tried to wear Paige down with a headlock for a long time, putting Paige down with a forearm when she did eventually escape. Emma switched to a waistlock, which Paige broke by backing into the corner.
Paige tripped Emma up and applied a sloppy looking cloverleaf. Emma held on long enough to kick Paige off and roll her up for a pin. Paige kicked out at two, and Emma attempted the Emma Lock, but Paige rolled under the ropes before it was locked in. Paige fought off Emma, and climbed to the top rope. Emma met her up there and brought her down with a superplex. Paige broke the subsequent pin by putting her foot on the ropes. When both ladies got to their feet, Paige nailed Emma with a couple of kicks, before putting her down with the Paige Turner to win the title...
Paige defeated Emma in 9:46 to become the first NXT Women’s Champion.
The ref handed Paige the title, and she seemed to start crying in the ring. Divas from NXT and the main roster came out to congratulate her. HHH’s music hit, and he walked out in his suit, clapping. He got in the ring and raised Paige’s hand. Phillips announced that Tyler Breeze will debut next, and Sheamus will take on Luke Harper in the main event of the show...
A promo package aired of WWE’s recent tour of Japan and Taiwan...
Gutt Reaction: A predictable outcome, but the match to get there was pretty good. Emma had the lion’s share of the offence, which Paige sold effectively with her increasing desperation. I also can’t remember the last superplex spot in a Divas match. And as if further proof of WWE’s high opinion of Paige was needed, she gets an endorsement from Trips, the best endorsement in the company these days.
Angelo Dawkins stood in the ring, awaiting Tyler Breeze. The camera showed a pair of ruffled boots walking up and down the ramp, before panning out to show Breeze. He took selfies of himself on his phone as he walked to the ring. The ref took ages to start the match as Breeze continues taking pictures in the ring...
2. Tyler Breeze vs. Angelo Dawkins. Even after the bell, Breeze continued taking pictures. Dawkins attacked him, but Breeze started raining down forearms. Dawkins tried for a few roll up pins, but Breeze escaped them and kicked Dawkins in the ribs. He grabbed his phone and took another photo before taking Dawkins out with a spinning heel kick...
Tyler Breeze defeated Angelo Dawkins in 1:17.
Cue more pictures...
Backstage, Rick Victor appeared in purple mood lighting, saying it was “the beginning”. He claimed the time had come to reduce heroes to ashes. Conor O’Brian entered the picture, saying they were the Ascension, and they will rise again. A graphic said they were up next...[C]
Gutt Reaction Good lord does Breeze need another gimmick quirk. The photo taking got annoying real fast. Not good, “heel heat” annoying, but “go away” annoying.
[Q3] The Ascension came out to the usual sarcastic screams. Mickey Keegan and Aiden English followed them out, and English looked ... odd, rocking a thin handlebar moustache and beige trousers. The “Should be on a register” look, some may say...
3. The Ascension vs. Mickey Keegan and Aiden English. O’Brian started off with shoulder tackles before tagging in Victor, who lit English up with chops. The Ascension kept up the quick tags, eventually taking out Keegan on the apron and hitting English with a sky high slam. They put him away with a running high/low combo...
The Ascension defeated Mickey Keegan and Aiden English in 1:53.
The Ascension sang Queen songs to a baffled crowd. I’m only joking, they roared like morons like always...
Bo Dallas and Sami Zayn vs. Antonio Cesaro and Leo Kruger was advertised for next week...
Gutt Reaction: “Been there, done that” with the Ascension. Victor added a quicker tempo to the match than is typical of O’Brian singles matches and previous Ascension tag matches, but otherwise it was as uninspiring as ever.
Sheamus received a nice reaction for his entrance, before Luke Harper made his way out with Bray Wyatt and Erick Rowan...
4. Sheamus vs. Luke Harper. The two big guys exchanged similar moves early on in a “one-upmanship” contest. Harper ended up on the apron following a clothesline, and Sheamus attempted his 10 chest clubs, but Rowan distracted him. Sheamus grabbed him and hit him with the 10 clubs instead, but this allowed Harper to recover and blast Sheamus with a running forearm. Sheamus fell to the floor, and got hit with a clothesline from Rowan as Harper distracted the ref... [C]
[Q4] Harper was throwing Sheamus around the ring when we returned. Following a headlock, the two men engaged in a punching contest, which Harper seemed to win, only to get caught with a powerslam from Sheamus. Sheamus started his “moves of doom” run, but Harper escaped White Noise and hit Sheamus with the Black Hole slam. Harper went to the top rope, but Sheamus rolled out the way of the flying splash, and capitalised by hitting his rolling fireman’s carry slam. Harper kicked out of the follow up pin at two, and Sheamus climbed to the top rope. Harper charged him, but Sheamus jumped over him and went for the Brogue Kick, only for Harper to duck it and hit the discus clothesline for another close two count.
Harper nailed Sheamus with a clothesline in the corner, but Sheamus booted him when he tried for a second one, and managed to throw Harper into Rowan on the apron. He followed this up with White Noise, and got the “Brogue” chant going. He nailed Harper with the Brogue Kick for the 1-2-3...
Sheamus defeated Luke Harper in 9:53.
Wyatt was shown laughing in his rocking chair after the match. The commentators questioned what he was up to as he walked to ringside to clap Sheamus. The Family retreated up the ramp and Sheamus played to the crowd as NXT ended...
Gutt Reaction: It has to be said – I’m really digging Luke Harper right now. His in-ring work is solid-to-good, but his character work is just as good as Wyatt’s, and he seldom even speaks! He portrays a crazy man with 100% conviction at all times, from the “Yeah, yeah, yeah” ramblings to his wild eyed expressions and constant glances to Wyatt. He worked a good main event here with Sheamus, and he didn’t look out of place or overawed by facing a main roster guy.
It was smart to hold off on Wyatt vs. Sheamus, but those disappointed by not seeing that match shouldn’t be disappointed by the alternative presented tonight. Wyatt’s reaction at the end seem to angle at a feud with Sheamus down the road, either on NXT (he wasn’t advertised for the next tapings) or the main roster (but don’t expect them to reference NXT on Raw or SD).
The last episode of the tapings started and ended strongly, but dipped in the middle. The women’s title final was better than expected, as was the main event, but Breeze’s debut and the Ascension match were underwhelming. Looking ahead to the next tapings, we won’t be seeing any new faces next month, which is disappointing, but reports praised the tapings highly. Things might be about to heat up nicely on NXT, so now may be the time to catch up.
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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