This might be kind of light due to a busy day and a general feeling of malaise that NXT generates in me the past few weeks. Let's see how it goes on a night where Renee Young replaced William Regal in the 'A' commentary trio.
- Tyler Breeze made quick work of Angelo Dawkins before announcing that he has submitted his MTV Euro award winning video for #MMMGORGEOUS to the Oscars for consideration as a documentary film.
- NXT Champion Adrian Neville would like Breeze to cut the crap and act like the #1 contender he is supposed to be.
- Total Divas' JoJo is backstage interviewing now, and learns that Natalya is a Rosebud and her husband is a lemon. Tyson Kidd wants a match with the visiting Adam Rose for later in the show, and that's a FACT.
- Next week will kick-off a tournament to determine the #1 contenders for the tag team championship.
- Women's Champion Charlotte defeated a game Becky Lynch.
- Dawkins no longer wears a backpack and Urkel glasses, so I guess he's back to the enhancement talent drawing board.
- Prince Pretty starting his post-squash promo with "well, that was annoying" might have been my favorite thing on the show. I'm preaching to the choir, but this character is so great. Other highlights tonight were his fur-covered finger splint and attempt to torment us with a third helping of his video.
- I get that Breeze is super entertaining and you want to cheer him, Full Sail Live, but take your "what?" chants for the champ and shove them in Mojo Rawley's favorite weapon. That goes double for your "CM Punk" chants during the women's match. Seriously, what was that?
- One of the best promos Neville has delivered, and good on him for not letting the crowd distract him - although I would have loved it if he had a retort for them. As it was, the snap chat line pretty much won them back.
- Wow, how is JoJo instantly the best backstage interviewer on NXT? Damning with faint praise, maybe, but I do think Devin Taylor has improved. This young lady seemed much more comfortable and engaging that Devin ever has, though.
- Wow, Tyson Kidd is going to keep "fact" over. Good for him. I like that he changes up the delivery on it depending on the situation. Gonna need some kind of payoff to his and Natty's marital discord, though.
- They usually run NXT tournaments as starting with eight competitors, but I can't get anywhere near eight different tag teams. I tap out after Enzo & Cass, Vaudevillians, Team Lucha, and Les Legionaires. Even with the two teams they debuted later in this show, that's only six. Do they bring in some folks from Superstars or is this going to basically start with a semi-final round?
- Imagine I'm going to have a mob with pitchforks at my door for this, but I wasn't crazy about the women's match. Charlotte right now is kind of like Randy Orton - working so methodically to get over as a heel that her matches are a drag without the right opponent. And Lynch is still putting on too much of a stereotypical indy performance. There's wasted movement that doesn't result in offense, like early on when she put her leg across the back of Charlotte's head while she was leaning over and then just did a standing back flip. She could sell better, too...there was a leg drop toward the end for which she used the leg the champ had been working over for five minutes. Back to the champ - not only does Bow Down to the Queen come out of nowhere, but none of the Nature Girls' offense during a match sets it up. It was better than last week's affair, but still pretty mediocre.
- Becky's new entrance theme is dope, although I worry she comes across a little bit like a Paige clone.
- A backstage segment makes me think about the Powerpuff Girls, and Bull Dempsey suggests a partnership with Mojo Rawley when he might as well have just said "let's feud later".
- LOLASCENSIONWINS, and somebody tell Konnor not to get clever on the microphone.
- Remember the CJ Parker/Xavier Woods program? No? Well, WWE wants you to.
- The Rawley - Dempsey team is triumphant in their debut match against The Mechanics, who are a returning Scott Dawson and something called a Dash Wilder.
- Bull seemed a lot more comfortable on the stick in the ring then he did in a pre-tape, strangely enough. Rawley still reminds me of a roided up Michael Rapaport.
- I remain an Ascension convert. Their music makes me want to see them kick ass, and then they come to the ring and kick ass. But the decision to let them play to the crowd is probably a mistake. The decision to let Konnor try to be funny in their promos is definitely a mistake. Anni-YAH-lation? Get the $#(& out of here.
- Maybe Big E and Kofi Kingston will come down and take care of their new manager's shower dodger problem? Watching the replay of Woods' confrontation with CJP, you can definitely see him practicing his righteous doctor schtick.
- Nice to see Dawson back from his leg break. I think he has potential to be a Jamie Noble-type down the road. I wish they'd let him do something other than these redneck tag teams, though. The announcers were selling the pair as more the Charlie Bronson/Jason Statham kind of mechanic than the Mr. Goodwrench kind. But if that was the case, why the gimme caps?
- Really expected Bull & Mojo to lose and just start beefing, based on the set-up in the interview where Dempsey promised to make him feel the wrath of the wrecking ball if he screwed up. But I guess they need teams to pad out the tournament. Then they can feud when they bow out of the bracket.
Segment Three / Main Event
- Rich Brennan has been bumped backstage, and he talks to Bayley about the break-up of the BFFs. Charlotte joins in to warn B away from even thinking about a shot at her title.
- Tyson Kidd and Adam Rose deliver a solid match that still had very little business being on NXT.
- Bayley was solid in her promo shot, and I thought Charlotte nailed hers in a way that I haven't seen her do in the past. Loved the threat to not utter her name again. Would have liked to see a little more spunk from the Hugster, though. I understand not confronting her outright at this point in the program, but maybe she could have seethed more than looked puzzled after the champ strutted off-stage?
- Pretty much to the point where Rose's entrance makes me angry. I guess I'm a lemon. It doesn't need to be that long, and the trust fall should be saved for after squashes or exiting in-ring talking segments and such.
- Part of the reason the entrance irks me is because I like the way he's integrating the character into his ring work, and I think if the focus was more on that than the opening theatrics we might be onto something. Or could at least salvage something. The lollipop schtick with Natty was cute. We got DAT SPINEBUSTER. Let him work longer matches and explain why he's a bad ass underneath the goofy party boy.
- One of the most impressive things about Tyson Kidd's NXT rebirth is how well he works as a grounded heel, when for most of his career he's been a high-flier. He's a really talented performer, and it's great that he's getting a chance to showcase it on a quality show.
- Really enjoyed the finishing sequence, with DAT SPINEBUSTER leading to Rose measuring Kidd for a Party Foul, having that reversed into a Sharpshooter which became a slingshot into the bottom rope when Adam tried to force the break.
- The roll-up kind of ruined that buzz, though, and reminded me that this match didn't do anything but provide more evidence of what we already knew: Tyson's a dick and Natalya is conflicted about it. Where was Sami Zayn? Adrian Neville? Justin Gabriel? Is this just a side-show between the married couple now?
There was nothing wrong tonight, per se. The tag tournament is much needed. At least Neville and Breeze are interacting. But I'm just kind of bored. And where in the blue hell is Solomon Crowe!?!?
Come at me, bros (and sis...s?).