Bo Dallas wants to celebrate his long standing NXT Title reign with his Bo-lievers.
Match 1: Adrian Neville vs Wesley Blake
Winner: Adrian Neville via pinfall
A guy that’s never been seen before against a top title contender? That doesn’t bode well for the cowboy.
Neville is quick to an arm wrench, then has to roll out of one from Blake. Neville goes to to a headlock takeover then levels Blace with a shoulder and an arm drag. Blake grabs the hair to get free but eats a back drop and a second rope missile dropkick. Chop in the corner drops Blake to his knees, who stops the next chop attempt with a quick boot. Blake drives shoulders into Neville but the high flyer kicks his come back into high gear with forearms and a low dropkick. Neville heads right up top and lands the Red Arrow dead on to win it.
Devin Taylor brings in the BFFs – Summer Rae, Charlotte and Seltzer Banks (I listened to it 10 times – She absolutely said Seltzer). Devin reminds Charlotte about her attack on Bayley. Charlotte touts that she’s a Flair and rides jets and such. Charlotte’s eyes are completely dead throughout this and it’s sincerely frightening. Summer says it’s time for the BFFs to rise and says that Natalya isn’t really a diva. That accomplished basically nothing.
Match 2: Xavier Woods vs Alexander Rusev
Winner: Alexander Rusev via submission
Woods making this Funky intro, without the Funkadactyls, while Tensai (half of the team he stole this music from) watches and cheers him on is wonky. Lana announces Rusev, who is now sporting more traditional trunks, which matches with the style he’s worn on the WWE house show road.
Woods uses his speed to open up early and finally ground Rusev with a dropkick. Rusev immediately powers Woods to the mat with a big right hand. Rusev mounts and drops rights on Woods. Rusev puts Woods in the corner and kicks at his legs, then lands a round kick to the face for two. Rusev stands on Woods’ head and pulls at his arm, which the ref starts a count on for some reason. The ref gives up and Woods starts fighting back. Huge flurry of strikes from Woods and a shining wizard for two. Rusev shoves him to the ropes and hits a jumping side kick, followed by the Accolade which Woods taps out to immediately.
Rusev doesn’t release until Lana says so, then puts the Accolade right back on. For some reason, Sin Cara’s music hits and he makes the save. Cara takes Woods toward the back. This is like Universe Mode just got turned on in WWE 2k14 or something. How utterly random.
Match 3: CJ Parker vs Antonio Cesaro
Winner: Antonio Cesaro via pinfall
I hope the end game of this match is Cesaro lands such a brutal European uppercut that it knocks the gimmick out of Parker. There cannot be a person around who gives the slightest crap about this gimmick, especially as he’s supposed to be a babyface.
Clean break and Parker throws a peace sign. Parker tries a senton after an arm wringer and gets knees to the back. Soccer kick to the back from the Real American then a huge back body drop. Cesaro clamps on a chinlock which Parker tries to escape by humping the air. Parker boots Cesaro on another back drop attempt then hits a Harlem side kick. Shotgun knees in the corner from the moonchild followed by a high cross body for two. Parker takes Cesaro up for an airplane spin and comes out dizzy, but Cesaro is perfectly fine. Quick crack of the neck and it’s time for the Cesaro Swing. Neutralizer follow up is more than enough to seal the deal.
Sami Zayn comes out on a crutch before Cesaro can celebrate too much and says that his 2013 was a banner year. Zayn points out that his 2/3 falls with Cesaro was one of the best matches of the year, but he needs to fix the result. Sami wants a rematch and Cesaro walks up the ramp to deliver an emphatic “no”.
Devin Taylor welcomes Miz to NXT and he’s at a catchphrase in 5 seconds flat. He says we might need a Miz TV. Parker says he doesn’t understand why he gets booed. Miz is at catchphrase number 3 with the “really” shtick. He says Parker is full of disrespect. For his trouble, he gets slapped by a hippie. NXT seems like a great place for Miz to hone his craft a bit. Honestly, my throat gets tight when he starts spewing his Miz TV nonsense and the false bravado behind it. He’s full of “get the **** off my TV” heat…the bad kind of heat.
Match 4: Natalya vs Summer Rae
Winner: Natalya via submission
Despite being in the back for the chat with Devin, Charlotte doesn’t come out with Summer and Sasha.
Nattie with a quick headlock takeover then she nips up out of a headscissors. Natalya bridges out of a jackknife pin and powers out of a backslide attempt, then runs over Summer and hits a low dropkick. Summer sends Natalya to the ropes and hits a spin kick for two. Summer locks in an Indian deathlock then sits up over Natalya for leverage…which backfires as Nattie rolls her over to break it. Summer tags her with a back elbow and works Nattie’s leg on the rope Bret Hart-style. Summer goes for another launch onto Natalya’s knee, but she launches her to the floor with her leg. Summer throws a fit on the floor then walks into a drop toe hold. Natalya hits a snap suplex and a clothesline but ducks too soon for a back drop. Summer ducks a discus lariat and tries another spin kick, but Natalya catches her leg and straps on a Sharpshooter to win it.
Devin welcomes Cass and Enzo this time to give an update on Enzo’s leg. Aiden English interrupts and dismisses Devin. English begins to warm up to sing and Enzo runs his foot over. Yeah, that’ll be enough to keep a rivalry going.
Bo Dallas Banner Raising Ceremony
Bo makes up chants that the crowd showers him with. Having the longest reign with a title that only two others have held isn’t really that impressive when you sit there and name those two. Bo thanks random people that are “in the crowd for him”. The 224 day banner is unveiled. Now, that doesn’t really make sense since the reign is…you know…still going on. Neville reenters the scene and looks like he’s smelled something terrible. Neville isn’t out here to congratulate Bo; he’s here on behalf of everyone to tell Bo to shut up. Neville says he plans to take the NXT title from around Bo’s waist. Bo says he could beat Neville faster than it took Neville to beat the “nobody” he pinned to earn his title shot. Triple H sends a feed to the Titantron and settles this with a big IF – If Neville can last 4:45 in a match with Bo, he gets his NXT Title rematch live on the WWE Network.
Match 5: Bo Dallas (NXT Champion) vs Adrian Neville, Beat the Clock challenge
Winner: Adrian Neville via beating the clock
Bo rushes Neville in the corner and gets slapped. Repeat in the other corner followed by a beil from Neville. Neville tosses Bo to the floor, who sweeps his leg and throws him out. Neville dodges a repeat, but Dallas sweeps him to the floor using the apron and tries for the easy countout win. Neville slides in at 9 and Bo pounces on him. Suplex and a two count for the champ, then a series of knee drops and another two. Bo pressures Neville in the corner then scoop slams him for two. Dallas hits a series of short arm back elbows until Neville ducks one and lays in kicks. Neville hits his forearms, sole butt and low dropkick. Neville wants Red Arrow, but Dallas rolls to the floor with 30 seconds on the clock. Neville watches the clock and mocks the champ, then tosses him to the floor and dives out to beat the clock in simple fashion.
Bo tries a cheap shot and puts himself into the ringpost, so Neville puts some punctuation on the match with Red Arrow and a visual pin.
Weird to have Neville kick off the show with a glorified squash. Neville continues to show that he has the best shooting star press in the business, plus he throws a corkscrew in AND lands it dead on every time. These guys are really learning that “WWE style”, with Neville having his comeback down (see Match 5). Forearms, gut shot, low dropkick to head. Every time. Is this a bad thing? Not necessarily. But it gets so predictable when we see it out of guys like Bryan and Punk as well who are capable of stringing together more than just the same thing each time.
Rusev dominates and wins decisively, then Sin Cara spawns in NXT to save Woods with no warning. I don’t even know what the point of that is. Rusev is likely to be main roster-bound quite soon.
I’m fine with Cesaro coming in every week and swinging a goof around. Parker isn’t over at all, his airplane spin draws boos – There needs to be a change and soon. Oh hey…they’re doing it.
Good amount of offense from Summer this match. Seems like working with Natalya and Sara del Rey is proving useful, because this isn’t the Summer we saw months ago. This is competence and understanding of where she is in the ring. That’s real, honest progress and I applaud it. Shy of her dumping herself on her head at the end of the match there, that was pretty solid.
So uh…why is JBL even the general manager at this point? Tell Steph to get the sand out of her vajayjay about a hand in her face that improved a segment 10 fold and get us Dusty back. Seriously, what a petty pile of crap. At least that explains the jobber match Neville had earlier in the show. That’s about what I expected from a boisterous Beat the Clock challenge, and that’s just fine. Predictability is not necessarily a bad thing. Launching NXT’s live status on the WWE Network with a babyface title change, soon after the heel champ raises his banner is a great idea and one I expect them to execute. Now typically that would mean Bo Dallas is heading to the main roster, because that’s how developmental works. Do I want to see Bo on Raw/Smackdown on a weekly basis? Nope. And that’s a bad place for him to be.
Next week? No idea. The first live NXT? A huge title match and a great opportunity for the man that gravity forgot.
As always, if you like what you read here, let me know in the comments or on twitter @sbfantom. I sincerely would like to hear what people think and strike up some conversation!
Tags: adrian neville, alexander rusev, Antonio Cesaro, Bo Dallas, Natalya, NXT, Renee Young, sin cara, Tensai, The Miz, triple h, WWE, xavier woods