Reviews

WWE NXT Spotlight 09/23/15 plus NXT Texas Thoughts

Welcome one and all to another installment of the NXT Spotlight right here at TJRWrestling. On tonight’s show we have a huge debut in the women’s division and we also have a Takeover: Brooklyn rematch as The Vaudevillians defend their NXT Tag Titles against BAMF.

Before we get to the actual show, I just wanted to touch on my experience at the NXT: Texas live event I attended in Austin, Texas last Friday. If you’d like to see my results I wrote up for the good folks at PWInsider, you can see those here. (Spoilers inside the results.) These are just some of my personal thoughts as I was watching the show.

I was never able to attend an ECW show in their prime, but I can only imagine that this NXT show was the closest I’ll ever get to the feeling those fans had in 1997 and 1998. The venue was designed for concerts so the sightlines weren’t that great, but that almost added to the experience of it all. Chants of “We can’t see shit!” were said in humor and in slight frustration. But the crowd of probably about 1200 fans there, sold out, was just rabid all night and really made for a memorable night.

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When Enzo and Big Cass opened the show, you could’ve convinced me there was 12,000 fans instead of 1200. The pop was enormous. If I remember one thing about the show, it’ll be how loud it was when everyone was going word for word with Enzo’s promo. Bayley was tremendous. It was surreal almost to see a crowd so heavily invested in a women’s match. She soaked in every second of the ovations she got. Samoa Joe and Tyler Breeze put on one hell of a match that the crowd ate up every second of. It was funny, it was entertaining, it was athletic, and it was physical. I really hope NXT shows the entire match of The Vaudevillians vs. The Mechanics from the Dusty Rhodes Tag Team Classic. I told you guys last week I hope they film that match in Austin, and sure enough I got my wish. I thought it was the best match of the night. Pure tag team psychology and just really fun to watch. Lastly, Finn Balor is a rockstar. Everyone came to see him and he did not disappoint. It’s a true gift when you have all eyes on your every move in a match. When he would get out of a sightline for a group of fans, you’d see them all stand up and lean towards where they could see. No one wanted to miss a moment of his work. It was something to behold. If you have an opportunity to go see one of thier live events, I cannot recommend it enough. It’ll remind you why you’re a wrestling fan almost immediately.

With all that said, let’s get on with our show!

Eva Marie vs. Carmella

Hey look it’s my new favorite diva! I love how WWE has given me three matches of Eva since I took over. It’s like they know. The announcers bring up Eva’s last match with the botched finish of Eva not getting her shoulders up. Good that they’re acknowledging that. Eva then cuts a promo in the second screen where she thanks the ref for not “caving to the pressure of the obviously biased fan base and realizing I had my shoulders up.” HA! That is awesome. You can hate Eva Marie, but that promo is how you get legit heat. Whoever’s idea it was to turn a negative into a positive, that was brilliant. The match starts with Carmella sending Eva into the corner and really attacking her with shots to the turnbuckle and then throws Eva to the outside. Eva is upset and gets back in but Carmella catches her in a pin, but she kicks out. Eva then hits a knee to the stomach and takes over the match. Now she’s the one working over Carmella in the corner while chants of “You can’t wrestle” rain down. Carmella gets out of the corner but Eva hits a big boot right to the face. She gets a two count after that. Eva mocks Carmella on the mat and then hits her with a suplex after Carmella tried to block it. Eva continues to mock Carmella by doing the “How You Doin’?” chant. Eva really playing up the heel role for the first time. She goes for another suplex but Carmella turns it into a small package but only a two count. Eva goes right back on the attack and then locks on an arm submission. New chant of “All Botch Everything”. Now Carmella fights back and hits a couple Thesz presses. Then she rams Eva Marie into the turnbuckle a couple times and then goes for a pin and Eva doesn’t kick out whatsoever but the ref stops the pin at two. That time it was deliberate/intentional. Looks like Eva had her foot on the rope but the camera angle didn’t show it. Eva Marie tosses Carmella to the outside when she tries to follow up and they use that as an excuse to count out Carmella, even though it didn’t look like she landed all that hard, and Eva Marie picks up the win that way.

Winner: Eva Marie by countout

Eva Marie plays up the win quite a bit as the crowd rains boo’s all around her. I love her swagger. She’s embracing the heel role beautifully.

Nia Jax is still coming soon.

We get a recap of the announcement of the 30 Minute Ironman match set for Takeover: Respect between Bayley and Sasha Banks.

Tyler Breeze vs. Bull Dempsey

Tyler’s current seasonal residence is in Cairo, Egypt. I know these are the things you want to know. Tyler does his best to avoid Bull early after the bell rings and then jumps in to hook a headlock but Bull powers out. Bull knocks him down and then messes up Tyler’s hair. Tyler gets angry and then walks into an atomic drop. Bull charges Tyler in the corner and he tries to dump Bull over, but Bull lands on his feet and lays in some shots to Tyler. Tyler manages to send Bull hard to the floor to create some separation. Bull crawls back in the ring and Breeze stomps on Bull as we go to a break.

We return from the break with Tyler still on top and a headlock on Bull. Bull finally breaks out but uses a lot of energy doing so. Tyler drops some elbows on the shoulderblades and then gets a two count and goes right back to the headlock. Bull gets out and turns it into a back body drop of sorts. Tyler throws a couple of punches but Bull hulks up and then hits Tyler with some jabs and then a headbutt to the stomach. Bull hits a butt bump in the corner to Tyler and then sets him up for his top rope sit down splash. Tyler rolls out to the apron, but Bull throws him back in the ring and sets him up a second time. Bull takes too long and throws Bull off the top rope and then covers him for a pin with his feet on the ropes and the ref counts to three.

Winner: Tyler Breeze

A cool video package for all three NXT: Texas shows is shown.

Asuka Debuts

William Regal is in the ring and announces Kana as the hottest free agent and possibly the biggest star they’ve ever signed to NXT. I wish I knew more about Kana/Asuka but unfortunately I do no. She comes out wearing a mask and then the screen behind her turns from Kana to Asuka and she removes the mask to show how happy she is to be there. Asuka is pronounced “As-Ka” so I guess the U is silent. Asuka says she’s happy to be in NXT and it’s a dream come true and that she wants to become a champion. She signs her name to her contract and Regal follows suit to make it official. Regal goes to shake her hand, but here comes Dana Brooke and Emma. Regals tells them that this is rude of them but they want a mic. They talk down to Asuka and tell her they’re the NXT welcoming committee. Emma says that if she plans to survive in this women’s locker room, she needs to realize that her and Dana run this place. Dana says they ran Charlotte and Becky out of NXT. If Asuka doesn’t play nice with them, things will be over before her career even starts. Playtime is over. They tell Asuka to leave and she walks off. Asuka gets to the top of the ramp and then turns around and smiles at Dana and Emma and then leaves completely.

Cameras catch up to Tyler Breeze backstage and ask him about his opponent that’s been announced for Takeover: Respect, Apollo Crews. Tyler blows off the notion he has to go against Apollo. Apollo shows up and acts like he won’t let Breeze walk by, but he does eventually. Breeze looks disgusted.

Kyle Edwards is back in the control room to talk about the Dusty Rhodes Tag Team Classic. So much for hoping they’d show the complete match of The Mechanics vs. The Vaudevillians as they just show the finish to the match and announce The Mechanics advance. Next week on NXT it will be Finn Balor and Samoa Joe vs. Enzo and Cass, with the winner of that going against The Mechanics in one semi-final match. In the other semi-final, it will be Rhyno and Baron Corbin going against the winner of The Hype Bros vs. Gable and Jordan. Kyle sends it to a backstage promo with The Hype Bros. Ryder mentions the match will take place this weekend and Gable and Jordan have no chance to beat them. It then turns to Gable and Jordan and they talk about how the road ends here for the The Hype Bros. Good promos by both teams.

NXT Tag Team Title Match
The Vaudevillians (c) vs. Blake and Murphy (w/Alexa Bliss)

I don’t know how I feel about the fact they just showed The Vaudevillians losing in Austin, and then going straight to a title defense of theirs. It just seems odd. We have about 12 minutes left in the show. Simon Gotch and Blake start the match. Blue Pants shows up immediately and goes to take out Alexa and even the sides. Alexa is ran to the back and now The Vaudevillians work over Blake. Blake reverses a headlock from Aiden English after he tags in, and takes advantage of the match. Blake drops English with a shoulderblock and then when Aiden goes for a dropkick, Blake hooks the ropes and English hits nothing. Murphy tags in the match, but Aiden fires up and sends both of them to the outside with a couple armdrags. Aiden follows them to the outside, but he gets distracted by Blake which opens up Murphy to drop Aiden back first into the apron.

After a break, Murphy is back in the ring with Aiden and drops him with a European uppercut and then gets a two count. He drops Aiden into his corner and tags in Blake who puts both feet up in the middle rope and Murphy slams Aiden’s head into them. Blake gets a chin lock and wears down Aiden more. Pretty sure Blake and Murphy are going for an Iron Man theme with their tights and it’s pretty cool. Simon wants the tag but Blake cuts him off and then tags back Murphy. Simon is fired up on the outside as he waits for the tag. Aiden sends Murphy to the ropes and finally breaks free. Murphy tries to block a tag attempt and Aiden hits a massive palm strike and then gets the tag to Simon. Simon cleans house and hits a big knee to Blake. Then hits a high angle back suplex. He gets Blake up in a fireman’s carry and tags in Aiden. Rolling senton and then goes to the outside with Murphy. Aiden on the inside goes for his second rope senton splash but Blake gets the knees up. Murphy disposes of Simon and tags in the match. Aiden is sitting up in the ring as Murphy goes to the second rope and hits a double knee. Aiden kicks out at the last second. Aiden then catches him in a desperate small package but only a two. Blake and Murphy try a couple team but Aiden dumps Murphy to the outside, Simon tags back in and they hit the Whirling Dervish on Blake and retain their titles.

Winners: Still NXT Tag Team Champions, The Vaudevillians

We go to Enzo and Cass to talk about next week’s match in the Tag Team Classic. Enzo and Cass talk about how important Dusty was to them and how much they want to win. They respect their opponents but next week respect goes out the window. Balor and Joe now talk about the match. Balor admits he’s friends with both of them but friendships go out the window. Joe says they have a singular purpose, which is to win the Tag Team Classic. Joe says they’re the two toughest dogs on the lot, and you can’t teach that. The show ends.

K-Tank’s Final Takes

– I swear I’m not trolling any of you, I really am a fan of Eva Marie. Just realize that we’re a little over six months away from WrestleMania and really it’s either going to be her or a fast tracked Nia Jax facing Bayley for the title. I’m sure you think I’m crazy, but that’s reality. I’m not saying she’ll beat Bayley, but she’s definitely going to be in line for a shot with how they’re portraying her.

– I like a Breeze/Crews angle so much more than a Breeze/Bull angle. I’m looking forward to their match at Takeover.

– Asuka’s debut was what it was. She spoke in broken English, but the crowd was really into her. Not sure I’d put her in a feud with someone as green as Dana, but maybe her and Emma can have some good matches. By the way, Emma was looking better than ever tonight.

– The Brooklyn match for The Vaudevillians and BAMF was much better than tonight’s match was. Now that The Vaudevillians are eliminated from the Tag Team Classic, not sure what they’ll do for the next few weeks while that’s all finalized.

We’ll be back next week for the big quarterfinal match which should be a really enjoyable match, so long as we get to see the whole thing. Until next time, buy The Hype Bros t-shirt.