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WWE NXT results, recap, reactions from January 14, 2015: All Killer, No Filler

In the spirit of NXT's breathlessly paced debut on Wednesday night and in honor of Champion Sami Zayn...LET'S GO!


Nice back and forth between two talented cats (pun intended).  Finn Bálor starts fast and stays in control until Tyson Kidd side-steps a slide and drives the Irishman into the barricade.  Kidd goes on offense before he's eventually caught with a Pele Kick.  Big dragon screw leg whip over the top rope flips position again in favor of the Fact Man, but the Irishman manages to get a rope break on a Sharpshooter.  That leads to the finishing sequence - a reverse underhook DDT and the double foot stomp for a pin.


  • Tyson's cat jacket.  WANT.
  • Does everyone have their logo above the ring?  It would probably be wasted on anyone else, because I doubt we're getting that upshot while Wesley Blake hangs over the top turnbuckle, but it's another very cool innovation for Bálor on the coolest entrance in town.
  • This was an eight minute clinic on making showy, innovative offense look real and painful as hell.
  • Finn's sell on the floor of the kick Kidd delivers after the leg whip was Ziggler-esque.
  • Not a big fan of commentary tonight (Renee Young and Alex Riley being a nightmare combo), but I'm becoming more of a Rich Brennan mark every week.  Particularly love how 99% of the time he's calling moves like Reverend Kain, but there's that 1% every show where he turns into me and yells "what was that!?!?"
  • Understand that Bálor has a rocket strapped to him, and rightfully so.  But a large part of me wishes Tyson got the call here in some form or fashion.  I'd like to see this feud continue, and there's just not room for everyone in the title program.


It's the brawl we deserve, but not the one we need right now.  They brawl to the floor, causing me and probably a lot of you to think we were going to get a quick double countout.  Instead, Baron Corbin throws Bull Dempsey back in, allowing Dempsey to level him with a splash.  But Corbin rolls away from the diving headbutt, yanks him into End of Days and that's all she wrote.


  • Before this match rolled, Bull got the only mic time of the night.  He's a good talker.
  • Beyond that, I was worried this would be a let down and it's possible that that colored my judgement, but I don't think so.  I have as little desire to ever see Dempsey wrestle again as I did coming into this contest, and I have just as many questions about Corbin's ability to be anything other than a squash machine with a commanding presence.
  • He was able to make End of Days look convincing on the big man, though.


Becky Lynch and Natalya start off trading holds, until Lynch rolls out to confer with Sasha Banks and catch her breath.  The babyfaces tandem slide into their opponents.  Charlotte & Natty bust out the tandem manuevers on Becks, but The Boss gets a tag and connects with a Blank Check/H.B.I.C/Market Correction (you decide what to call the double knee drop to an opponent cradled across the middle rope, Cagesiders!  I'm voting for AntonSirius' nomination).  The former Divas champ fights out of a choke submission and gets the tag.  The Women's champ hits some chops and a neckbreaker, but when her partner has to chase off interference from Lynch, Banks hits a neckbreaker of her own and rolls the Nature Girl up with the help of a handful of tights.


  • This was a nice enough little match, but I'm kind of salty it got burnt off here.  This four minutes would have been a great spot for a quick singles match between Lynch, Carmella, Alexa Bliss or Blue Pants and a newcomer to build up an established act and bring some fresh blood into the division.  Instead, the only feud in the women's division gets more time, while we get robbed of what should have been a ten minute, main event caliber tag.
  • Stop calling the Women of NXT "Divas".
  • My favorite thing Renee did tonight was bring up Natalya and Becky's history from Japan.  Why do the men get presented as indy gods and this is the first we've heard of Rebecca Knox?
  • The champ was by far the least polished worker in this match, which isn't to say she's not still the total package who can really go far, but I'm picking her fourth in my fantasy draft.  Her chops looked especially weak tonight, and I'm not sure I understand what's becoming a signature spot where her suplex attempt gets reversed and she hits a neckbreaker.  Is she counting on the suplex being turned around on her?  It's a cool spot, but not something you should use week after week.  Or am I just cranky?
  • If we're sticking with The Boss as the #1 contender, which this pinfall victory would seem to indicate, they have to pull the trigger on the title change this time, right?


Code of Honor is adhered to and the champ takes control early.  Neither man can truly get an upperhand due to their familiarity with one another, and another face-off leads to their trading forearms.  A dive to the floor takes us to break, and when we return, Adrian Neville busts eardrums with a loud uppercut to Sami Zayn in the corner.

Zayn catches a roundhouse to connect with a Blue Thunder Bomb, but Neville somersaults out of a half-and-half suplex and hits his second spike hurricanrana of the night for a nearfall.  The Brit and the referee check on the champ, but uses one of the Geordie's own tactics to look in a Koji Clutch out of nowhere.  Half-and-half hits after Neville gets the break, but a Helluva Kick misses and Sami gets his clock cleaned with a kick when he tries for the diving DDT on the floor.  Both men miss with their finisher, but the champ eventually hits the corner exploder suplex and a Helluva for a clean win.

While both men regroup, Kevin Owens slips into the ring and leaves his fellow French-Canadian laying with a pop-up powerbomb.  KO is in mega-heel mode, putting his boot on Sami's neck and kicking his belt at his head before stalking off up the ramp.


  • Think someone pointed out in the comments last week, but adding SZ to the belt in Sami's entrance graphic is such a nice touch.
  • Other than that...what do you want me to say?  Another classic in a string of classics from these two.  I loved the counters of counters - they've built their rivalry up such that it is reminiscent of Tanahashi-Okada, Punk-Cena and, yes, Steen-Generico where each match stands alone, but is also a chapter in a longer story that's rewarding for fans who've followed along the whole way.
  • Been thinking a lot lately about the lack of storytelling depth on this show, though.  I hope Neville sticks around, not just because I believe he'll be better utilized and presented on NXT, but because I'd like to see them use the equity he has built up with fans to establish a hot non-title feud with someone.  Even with great matches like tonight's opener, NXT too often feels like the main event and everything else.
  • GIF me that belt kick, internet.  It's so fun to hate Owens, and they're wise to build him without giving him a microphone, because if he talks too soon, too early, he's bound to get cheers.  And that's not a knock on Full Sail.  I want to cheer him too.  But every time he silently destroys my main man Zayn, I love hating him a little bit more.

I had a couple of nits to pick, but they're mostly with ongoing presentation and not this particular episode.  An episode that, while not R Evolution, was pretty much an hour of wrestling goodness.

Grade: A-

Show me what you're working with, Cagesiders.

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