clock menu more-arrow no yes mobile

Filed under:

WWE NXT results, recap, reactions from August 14, 2014: Fierce contention

Not sure about anyone else, but I had hellacious stream issues with WWE Network tonight.  I couldn't get the show to load on my laptop or Roku, and finally got it rolling on my phone at about quarter after nine.  On the app, it was really choppy and would freeze to load often.

Will that effect my feelings about the show?  This is a loaded card with two matches I am very excited for, so hopefully not.  Let's find out!

Segment One


  • The typical stellar WWE production package reminds us how awesome Tyler Breeze and Sami Zayn's #1 contender match at Takeover (1: The First One) was, and catches us up on Prince Pretty interactions with NXT champ Adrian Neville since.
  • Mojo Rawley tags himself in and his nascent team with Bull Dempsey out of the #1 contenders tournament, as The Vaudevillains advance to a showdown with Aiden English's old rivals Enzo Amore & Colin Cassady.
  • Dempsey does what most NXT watchers have wanted to do for the last six months - beat the snot out of Mojo.
  • Sasha Bank tracks down Bayley in the locker room to talk trash before their match to determine the #1 contender to Charlotte's NXT women's championship.


  • Bull Dempsey's theme song kicks ass, and I think they've raised the singlet in the front.  Maybe it's just me, but I find it less nauseatingly distracting than it was.  I'm not sure having the colorful logo on the back really fits the gimmick, though.
  • Renee Young is coming along as an announcer, although she still does too much commentary and not enough play-by-play for what I assume her future role will be.  The decision to put her with the more polished team of Tom Phillips and Byron Saxton is a good one.  But, please, can we keep her off of Vaudevillains matches?  The wacky facts were less prevalent than the last time she called English & Simon Gotch, but they're still much more distracting than funny.
  • Also, I miss William Regal.
  • The Vaudevillains get credit for their complementary moveset and especially the rolling senton into second rope senton team finish, but Bull stood out for me the most in this match.  It's hard to tell in squashes and tag matches, but he looks to have a good motor.  And, dang, does he make even basic strikes look painful.
  • The least surprising tag team break-up ever felt pretty satisfying.  Not sure if we're headed for a feud or if this was a way to write Rawley off television for a while.  The last several times we've seen him he's been chumped out in no uncertain terms.  Maybe they have Dempsey squash him to continue his build -  at present there's no way he'll be taken seriously by anyone for anything beyond that.
  • I know I'll be savaged in the comments for it (I'm getting used to that), but tonight cemented my opinion that Sasha is more of a complete package right now than Bayley.  Just so we're clear I LOVE BAYLEY and SHE'S THE BEST WOMEN'S WORKER IN NXT, AND POSSIBLY THE WWE.  I'm not convinced in her ability to translate her character into more serious situations yet, though, especially on the mic.  Banks, on the other hand, has shown the ability to translate her schtick from comedy, to intensity, physically and verbally.
  • This throw away backstage segment sealed it.  I get that B is playing anxious and still building confidence to confront heels, but that doesn't translate clearly enough if you haven't been watching NXT for months.  Her current delivery isn't strong enough to avoid the same fate that befell Emma in the big leagues.  The Boss is a sassy sparkplug who likes to act refined but shows her roots when pushed.  All of that is apparent in everything she does.  It's as close to Dunn-proof a delivery as we're likely to see.
Segment Two


  • Banks and Bayley deliver a classic, and the Huggable One becomes the #1 contender to the title with an inventive twist on the WWE women's match classic...the roll-up.
  • Charlotte comes out for a tweener-ish face-off with her next challenger at the top of the ramp.
  • Kalisto & Sin Cara advance to face Sami Zayn & Adam Rose in the semis of the tourney to decide who gets the next shot at The Ascension, in a match that should be as much fun as it is nonsensical.
  • Marcus Louis & Sylvester Lefort talk trash about Enzo & Cass to Veronica Lane.


  • Was Sasha's 'tron logo always her Kanye glasses over her name?  Regardless, it is NOICE.
  • It's a tough call for match of the night, as both of the big ones delivered, but I think I preferred the women's bout by a smidge.  Bayley showed progress in adapting her character to an important match (very glad they left the back spin spot out of this one), and she and Sasha have great chemistry.  Bell-to-bell this was more entertaining than the main event to me, and it certainly had a more satisfying finish.
  • Love how they played with the over-reliance of women's matches on roll-ups throughout.  In lieu of a chain wrestling series at the start, they rolled through several pin attempts each.  Then Bayley kept her front face lock on Banks when The Boss tried to rotate out of it and make it a pinning maneuver before one of the breaks.
  • Yes, this non-title women's match got two commercial breaks.  Unfortunately, one of them contained Sasha's new spot where she does a double knee drop to the midsection while her opponent is draped across the middle ropes in the corner.  They replayed it, but I need to see that bad boy full screen.  Banks' knee strikes are real gems; she delivered a few that looked like they hurt like hell before Bayley turned her inside out with a clothesline at about the two-thirds point of the match.
  • The Boss' mocking laughter when she kneed B to the floor just before the finish was probably my favorite thing of the night.  Unless it was the finish, which was really smart and perfectly executed.
  • Wikipedia says that Sasha's backbreaker-into-crossface finisher is called the BO$$ Lock.  Not bad, but I think we can do better.  Can't we, Cagesiders?
  • Don't know why, but Kalisto is not clicking for me.  I'm not the target audience, but I find the "Lucha" chant and hand gestures annoying.  Still can't figure out why they're hiding him in tag matches.  Some of his spots are really cool, but maybe he's having trouble stringing them together in a WWE-style match?
  • Honestly, Sin Cara stood out more for me tonight.  I dig what I have seen of Hunico under the hood - he mixes strength with the lucha style in a way that makes him a more unique presence.
  • I already can't remember much of anything about Blake Murphy and Buddy...wait, what were their names again?
  • Stop trying to make Sylvester Lefort happen, WWE.  Marcus Louis kind of looks like a Looney Tunes villain up close, so he's got them going for him.  I hope that this segment isn't telegraphing an exit from the tournament for Amore & Cassady in order to feud with Les Legionnaires.
Segment Three / Main Event
  • Tyler Breeze and Adrian Neville finally hook it up for the title, and take a little while to get going before nailing it in the bout's second half.
  • Tyson Kidd silently watches from the announce table before getting close, and eating a superkick from the champ for it.
  • "Natty's wife" (my second favorite Full Sail invention of late, after "Bayley's Gonna Hug You") triggers the disqualification by pushing Neville off the top rope before a Red Arrow attempt - and triggers a brawl that ends with Sami Zayn chasing off both heels.


  • The seasonal residence has moved to Santorini, Greece.  They better never drop that wrinkle (or "Tyler Breeze has entered/exited the building" announcements) from the gimmick
  • I appreciate that they've slowed down Breeze's work to fit his heel character, but sometimes I wish we could get a little more flash from the Mayor of Cutesville.  Stuff like his drop kick, the bulldog into the turnbuckle and his tornado DDT are so nice that I'd love to see a little similar energy earlier in his matches.
  • The champ has come a long way with his transitions since his feud with Bo Dallas.  There's a lot less waiting between spots than we used to get from the Jumpin' Geordie.  His springboard into Breeze's drop kick was a little clunky (the camera caught him waiting for Tyler to get set and he clearly wasn't doing anything but jumping into kick) and he got caught calling something when he was whipped into the stairs on the floor, but those are nits I'm picking.  All he needs is a story and it'll be time to see what he can do on Raw and Smackdown.
  • Tyson Kidd helped sell the action with his facial expressions.  He's been a welcome addition to this show and I'm glad he's staying around the title scene.
  • That said, I wish they would have gone with something else to prolong the Breeze/Neville issue other than another DQ.  When the show was running low on time, I found myself wishing that WWE did time limit draws.  Even with the interference cover, this looked like Tyler was going to lose to Adrian's finisher - and he and this story deserve better than that.
  • They kind of teased a #Mmmgorgeous face turn, and I kind of marked for it, when Prince Pretty attacked Kidd.  But it makes sense that the heel would be pissed that another heel ruined his shot.
  • Any Sami is welcome, but his run-in here makes me wonder again why he's still in the tag team tournament.  I'm thinking (with no knowledge of spoilers, so remember to black bar those in the comments if you bring them up) that we're headed to a 4Way at Takeover 2 (The Quickening) with some tag matches along the way, and his teaming with Rose confuses that a little.  But they're probably just putting over Team Lucha, so it's a minor booking issue in the long run.

All this show needed to be great was for the tag matches to not be offensively bad, and they weren't.

I'd probably have put the two main event caliber matches on two separate shows to balance out the quality, but maybe we're in for one of those runs of phenomenal episodes NXT goes on every once in a while.  Here's hoping for that, and it doesn't mean that this one wasn't pretty spectacular in its own right.

Grade:  A

Tag!  You're it!

Sign up for the newsletter Sign up for the Cageside Seats Daily Roundup newsletter!

A daily roundup of all your pro wrestling news from Cageside Seats