NXT

On to the NXT One – What is Forever 21? Edition (Aug. 6)

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After the last episode we saw of NXT, the bar was set pretty low. I’m thankful they did do a better job this week, as this episode was used well to progress the different programs. There was enough meat in this edition for me to officially be psyched for Takeover, as this show was heavy on story lines.

Charlotte vs Bayley

I was convinced their match would be scheduled for Takeover: Brooklyn, but I didn’t mind it as the opener for this show. At the same time, this could have also been the main event for this or any other episode of NXT. The first half was slow, and a little plain, but they picked it up once Charlotte locked in the head scissor and proceeded to roll Bayley around the ring. That combo could have been the spot of the match, but then I saw Bayley execute a spinning elbow from the second rope. I thought the hurricarana was an impressive spot, but the setup took too long and felt awkward. It’s been quite some time since we’ve seen the reverse pressure figure four spot, and I thought it was a nice touch. To be honest, I was worried that Charlotte would have won after she kicked out after the first Bayley-to-belly. Everything after that made it look like Flair woud win, but luckily she didn’t. I felt this was an emotional match and it was probably Bayley’s biggest win.

Kevin Owens Interview

If I took anything away from this interview, it would be a tease of an Owens-Regal feud. When Kevin presented the idea of a ladder match, I marked out inside. If this turns out to be anything like his ROH ladder match with El Generico (Sami Zayn), we’re in for potentially the greatest NXT match to date.

Baron Corbin vs Steve Cutler

Is this the third week in row where they’ve given us a Corbin squash match? It was fun for the first two weeks, now it’s just coming across as repetitive and not so fresh.

Tyler Breeze vs Aaron Solow

There’s nothing to say about this contest as it was based only around the post match announcement. They couldn’t have picked a better opponent for Jushin Thunder Liger. Breeze was in desperate need of a program, and I believe their two in ring styles will mesh well. Hopefully this is a sign that they care a lot about Tyler.

Finn Balor Interview

Why couldn’t they have Michael Cole interview Balor? I don’t mind Byron Saxton, but his ability to conduct a serious sit down interview isn’t quite there. I just had a hard time taking this one as seriously.

Hype Bros vs Scott Dawson & Dash Wilder

I was excited to see the Hype Bros. Hate or love them, these two know how to engage a crowd and entertain them. Most of this match was quite boring though, and the best part was undoubtedly Rawley’s hot tag. On an unrelated note, why did Dawson & Wilder beat Enzo & Cass if they were just going to lose within a few minutes last night? Their post match beat down let them regain some credibility, but the booking behind their last two matches is far from consistent.

Rhyno vs Samoa Joe

What year is this? Jokes aside, I liked how they promoted this match. They didn’t call it as two of NXT’s best, but two men that came to NXT to prove a point. The spot of the match occurred early on, and it was Joe’s suicide dive. I’ve been watching Joe wrestle for years, and I’m still surprised of how agile he is. After that I felt the match moved pretty slow, as if they used their energy within the first few minutes. This was a pace I didn’t mind, because these two ring veterans know how to make a slow pace work. With the use of some big moves, they kept me entertained for the most part. Now that Samoa Joe won cleanly, who does he wrestle at Takeover? That was the only question in my mind after this match.

Conclusion

Unlike like last week, this week was extremely story line heavy. For the most part the show was entertaining, didn’t leave me with a bitter taste. I’m still wondering if they could have put the women’s match after Samoa Joe vs Rhyno. That one was much more emotional and garnered a larger crowd reaction. With all segments taken into consideration, I’d consider this show slightly above average. The low point was Corbin’s match while the high point was the opening contest. Overall, I give this show a 6.5/10.

Side Notes

  • These Bull Dempsey segments are complete gold. I truly hope they continue using this gimmick for him and create more vignettes like last nights
  • The Vaudevillians vs Blake & Murphy at Takeover? No thanks, the first match was terrible, and I don’t want to see it again. Unless Enzo & Cass are being called to the main roster sometime soon, they deserve a spot in that match. I hate to sound like an angry mark, but those two have been the diamonds in the NXT tag division.

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