10 Thoughts on NXT, Ohno vs Black, Sanity, Ember Moon

1. It’s NXT time and our main event tonight pits Aleister Black against his toughest opponent to date; Kassius Ohno!

2. Our first match of the night is Peyton Royce (accompanied by Billie Kay) taking on Ember Moon, who recently returned from injury. The story here is that Moon out-wrestles Royce at every turn, but the ref is a moron so Billie Kay has plenty of chances to interfere and even the odds. While Ember seems to have improved in the ring she is still pretty sloppy at times, while Peyton is getting better but still needs more seasoning. Moon wins with the Eclipse off the top rope.

3. Hideo Itami offers Kassius Ohno luck (I think) and Ohno says that they’ve got plenty left to give, which is enhancement talent talk if I’ve ever heard it.

4. Next up the Ealy Brothers are facing Eric Young and Alexander Wolfe from Sanity. No sign of Nikki Cross or Killian Dane, which is a shame as they might have prevented this match from being as dull as watching paint dry. Essentially a squash for Sanity as EY picks up the pin with a tag team jumping neckbreaker.

5. Video package hyping Sonia Deville’s MMA background, making her look pretty badass. Sonia is up next against Rachel Evers, a former power lifter who reminds me of a slightly chunkier version of Bayley. The commentators sell Deville’s strength as she kicks and elbows the crap out of Evers, but the crowd don’t seem to care. Deville picks up the win in short order with a seated wrist lock.

6. Recap of the backstage fracas between Bobby Roode and Roddy Strong sets up their match next week, with Roddy getting into a brawl in front of his infant son, which sort of makes Roode look like the better man.

7. It’s time for our main event, and it’s like someone has been listening to my frequent requests for Black to be given a chance to show what he can do against a decent opponent. Hunter, is that you? I’m sorry about all the bad things I said about you over the years…

8. Slow match to start as Ohno and Black feel each other out, with Ohno using his size advantage in the chain wrestling sequence. They’re definitely pacing themselves, as Black is yet to break out a kick five minutes in – but when he does, he takes immediate control. Ohno bails to the outside, then comes back in to exchange strikes and set up an ad break.

9. Back from the long-ass break (on a paid subscription service, no less) Ohno is in control, beating down Black in the corner. The methodical abuse continues for a few minutes including a couple of near falls for Kassius, but Black eats it up and eventually fights back, hitting a double stomp on Ohno’s ample belly. Fun back and forth for a while showcasing both men’s skills, then Black hits the Black Mass for the pinfall victory. Solid four star effort.

10. Overall an above average episode of NXT with one good match (Moon vs Royce) and a great main event. Good to see Black given the chance to shine and that Ohno is still able to keep up with the next generation…

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