January 1, 2015 by gorillapressonline
The first NXT show, following the outstanding PPV Takeover [R]Evolution (the pre show was episode 253, the PPV #254 for some bizarre reason) starts with the usual promo recap, but who cares – when a PPV is this good, the recaps of it will never get old. [R]Evolution may even be PPV of the year, in fact.
Former champion Adrian Neville heads to the ring first, to open the show and addresses the NXT Universe (much to the audible dismay of the crowd, Sami Zayn isn’t at Full Sail tonight).
Neville says that the PPV main event was the greatest match of his entire career, a revelation that leads to raucous applause from the fans. Owens then issues a challenge to Neville and the Main Event for tonight is set.
Owens is in his element in this persona, sporting a lovely scab on his nose from the facepalm he suffered in his début match – his nonchalant, heartless heel is definitely going to be one to watch in the future and is the best decision NXT could’ve made for him. It’s been quite a long journey for Owens and he is already reaping the rewards from being at the top of his game while simultaneously situated within a talented roster, which will only further enhance his ability and enchant the audience in future.
Bayley is not the kind of Diva to back down from a fight and, despite having an injured knee, tonight she has issued a challenge to Becky Lynch after the Irish lass attacked her on the PPV pre-show during an interview.
Bayley has managed to summon an aggression from parts unknown that culminates with some impressive elbows as she attacks Lynch full-force at the turnbuckle. Lynch quickly shifts the momentum by targeting her opponent’s injured knee like an old pro, while a quick rope run is finished with a stiff big boot, allowing Lynch to roll up Bayley in some good groundwork, by turning the Four Leaf Clover on her injured knee, with Lynch refusing to let go even after she taps out.
It’s a nice, swift little opener for the show that suffers slightly thanks to its quick runtime which is the only downfall to NXT as of late – the product is solid, but an increase to a two-hour runtime could benefit the show endlessly.
Lynch takes the win, and no prisoners.
Next up, The Vaudevillians are backstage showing GM William Regal some footage of the finish of their stunning tag team match against the Lucha Dragons. It comes to light that, although Aiden English was pinned, he was in fact not the legal man in the match. Therefore, the only thing Regal can do is agree to arrange a rematch in the near future – a nice way to keep an enjoyable feud alive and interesting.
Bull Dempsey -v- Mr 450
The New York Nightmare is once again set to destroy his opponent in the quickest time possible, in this game of one-upmanship with Baron Corbin. Mr 450, this week’s wrestler to fall foul of NXT‘s resident wrecking ball, is Jesus De Leon who wrestles regularly for AJPW and FIP wrestling. NXT have a habit of bringing in talent to use on the road and at this time it is uncertain if he will be a full time addition to the roster.
Nevertheless, Dempsey makes quick work of him and, as the match finishes, Corbin once again pushes past his rival, ignoring him completely as they cross at the ramp – little things like this are great for building feuds, negating the need for endless run-ins and over-long matches, and it’s great to see how effective they can be in the short run time allotted.
Bull Dempsey picks up the win. Shockingly.
Baron Corbin -v- Local Wrestler
NXT Lone Wolf Baron Corbin has been making a name for himself the past few weeks by demolishing anybody who stands in his way in seconds, with the devastating End of the World finisher, and tonight is no exception as this bout lasts only 14 seconds, the fans lovingly counting each one out from the moment the bell rings.
Fireworks ensue afterwards, as Corbin and Dempsey finally clash, Dempsey pushing him before quickly dropping to the barricade and backing away, grinning at Corbin who looks royally pissed off.
This game will come to an end soon enough, but expect to see more scuffles between the two in the following weeks regardless.
Corbin wins in under twenty seconds.
Enzo Amore & Big Cass -v- The Ascension
Konnor and Viktor as well and truly angry after their defeat at the hands of Hideo Itami and Finn Balor at Takeover and sadly that doesn’t bode well for the bonafide G Enzo, as he and his buddy Cass are firmly in the sights of an angry Ascension.
With the team making the move to the main roster, the two behemoths are set to make amends for the loss. Enzo is too preoccupied trying to woo Carmella at ringside, and Konnor quickly capitalises by hitting Amore with a Massive Lariat making quick work of the duo.
Following the match, The Ascension demand a rematch from Itami/Balor, putting the loss down to beginners’ luck and assuring everyone there won’t be a repeat next time as they are set to rise.
The Ascension make Cass and Amore pay for their humiliating loss at the PPV and take the win.
A mouth watering prospect of a Main Event, with arguably two of the finest talents in NXT right now, facing off for the first time on the show. The chemistry between the two is evident from the get go, Owens works the crowd by rolling out of the ring and backing away from Neville. A beautiful dropkick lands square on Owens, followed by a Big Head scissors takedown. As Neville is trying to dictate the match Owens slows the pace, taking full advantage of underhanded tactics.
Owens is impressively aggressive with a smashmouth style of wrestling that actually makes him stand out from most of the roster, especially as it’s coupled with the athletic flourishes that make him one to keep an eye on in their own right.
Neville attempts to take down Owens with an over the top rope assault, which is deftly caught by Owens and then turned into a brutal gutbuster.
NXT are doing very well building Kevin Owens without it being detrimental to his opponents and this is testament to the booking in place, not to mention the storytelling and ring work that are firmly at the forefront here – the main roster has a lot to learn from this, certainly as of late.
Neville sells a spike from the rope perfectly and it looks fantastic. This is quickly followed by a great German Suplex as Neville manages to turn the tables with an impressive dive over the top rope, landing on his feet to make the feat even more astounding.
As Neville tries to re-enter the ring, Owens smashes his face from the ring post getting both men counted out in the fray. Owens then delivers a wicked powerbomb onto the ring apron to Neville after the match ends, in the same vein as the rather memorable one he did to Zayn at Takeover, once again proving he will always have the final say here.
It’s, by all accounts, the perfect way to end a decent follow-up show after a tremendous PPV, and it’ll also keep the heat firmly on Owens, leaving the whole NXT universe on tenterhooks.
Catch NXT on Thursdays on the WWE Network