“Yes, sir, we promised you a great main event…” The WWE video leads us into the show.
A video recaps what the participants of the first season of NXT did at the conclusion of Raw last night. That was a tremendous angle and an awesome way to close the show. I haven’t been this excited about an angle on Raw in a long time.
The NXT video plays and we are shown the season two roster. We go to the arena and the pyro goes off. The crowd comes alive as Michael Cole and Josh Mathews welcome us to the show. They talk about a paranoia that’s come over the arena following the attack from the NXT Season One rookies.
Matt Striker is in the ring and he mentions that the graduating class of the first season of NXT made a bombastic impact, destroying and injuring anyone and anything in their path. The question is now “will the second season’s rookies of NXT follow suit.” We’ll find out as Matt Striker welcomes us to Season Two of NXT.
The Season Two WWE Pros are introduced. The Miz is out first and he introduces his rookie Alex Riley. Riley comes out and shakes hands with his pro. They then make their way to the ring. John Morrison is out next and he introduces his rookie, the gigantic Eli Cottonwood. He’s looks like a cross between the Great Khali and Big Show in WCW. Cody Rhodes comes out to the stage and unenthusiastically introduces his rookie Husky Harris. Lay-Cool come out and introduce Kaval, the rookie we’ve all been waiting for. They pet his bald head and make him carry their Women’s Championships. That’s terrible. Mark Henry comes out and introduces the ultra-lame Jason “Lucky” Cannon. Intercontinental Champion Kofi Kingston comes out and proudly introduces his rookie Michael McGillicutty. MVP comes out to a nice reaction and introduces “Showtime” Percy Watson. This guy is so bad. Zack Ryder then comes out and introduces his new “bro” Titus O’Neil.
Matt Striker asks them to spread out and let the crowd get a good look at them. Striker mentions that votes came last season only from the pros. This season 50% comes from the WWE Pros and the other 50% comes from the WWE Universe. Go to WWE.com and vote for or against a rookie.
Season two will be different from season one. It’ll only be twelve weeks long so the pressure is upped. In three weeks the WWE Pros will cast their first Pro’s Poll and the WWE Universe will cast a Pro’s Poll as well. In six weeks we’ll have the first elimination. Striker wonders which of them will follow Wade Barrett and have a championship match live on PPV. Their opportunity to impress will come up next as WWE Pros and NXT Rookies will be in action. Husky Harris runs up to the microphone and says some stuff, causing a tuft with all the rookies. The Pros separate their rookies as we go to commercial.
Michael Cole and Josh Mathews again recap what happened last night at the end of Raw. Cole mentions that they mauled everyone but he managed to get away. Cole says children were crying in the stands, trying to understand what happened.
John Morrison & Eli Cottonwood vs. Zack Ryder & Titus O’Neil
John Morrison and Zack Ryder start out this first match of season two. The Goose calls for the bell and it’s on. They lock up and back up to the corner. Ryder breaks, gives a “woo, woo, woo” and slaps his chest. Morrison locks up and pushes him. Morrison then hits a forearm and tags in Eli Cottonwood. Ryder looks extremely intimidated by the gigantic Cottonwood and tags in Titus O’Neil.
Cottonwood kicks O’Neil and gets a headlock on. O’Neil whips him off and takes a shoulder block but doesn’t go down. Ryder distracts Cottonwood and he gets taken out with a shoulder block for a one count. O’Neil talks some trash. Cottonwood fights back and sends him to the corner for a clothesline. Morrison is tagged in and he hits Jeff Hardy’s slingshot dropkick. O’Neil rolls out of the ring and is frustrated as we go to break.
We come back from the break to see Morrison grounded by Ryder with a chin lock. Morrison fights up and punches Ryder down. Morrison sends him into the ropes and hits a jumping heel kick for a near fall. Morrison sends him to the ropes but lowers his head and eats a kick. O’Neil is tagged in. Morrison ducks a clothesline and hits a pele kick for a near fall broken up by Ryder. Cottonwood runs in and big boots Ryder out of the ring. Morrison then hits Starship Pain on O’Neil and picks up the win.
Winners by Pinfall: John Morrison & Eli Cottonwood (1-0)
Match Rating: *
Matt Striker asks for John Morrison’s Pro opinion on his rookie. Morrison says he held his own and asks what the crowd thought. They cheer. Morrison says a lot of people are happy and some aren’t but everyone has an opinion and that’s what matters.
Striker then asks the Pros on the stage (they were grading the entire time). The Miz is the only one who speaks and says he wasn’t entertained so they failed.
A video package plays for Alex Riley. He had some pretty funny outtakes. Riley wishes he had a Rocky Balboa story but he was very fortunate. His mother was Miss Virginia and his father was a New York Jet. Riley says he has the mic and ring skills to be successful. Riley says we’re dismissed at the end. This guy is great. He’s an early front runner for the show in my opinion.
MVP & Percy Watson vs. Cody Rhodes & Husky Harris
MVP and Cody Rhodes are in the ring and MVP tags in Watson. Watson gets the crowd into it and stands in the ring like a cartoon character. I hate this guy. They lock up and Rhodes gets a quick side headlock. Watson whips him off and takes a shoulder block. Rhodes taunts the crowd and waits for Watson to get up. They lock up and Rhodes gets a hammerlock. Rhodes gets a headlock and gets backed to the corner. They break and Rhodes kicks him down. Rhodes sends him to the corner but Watson slingshots over and hits a clothesline. Watson picks him up and takes a jawbreaker. Rhodes kicks him in the face and tags in Husky Harris.
Husky Harris looks like a slimmer version of Haystacks Calhoun. Google that. Harris kicks away and puts him in the corner. Harris gets in a three point stance and avalanches him in the corner. Harris hits a gut wrench suplex and tags in Rhodes. The referee missed the tag and forces them to redo it. Rookie mistake I suppose. Rhodes kicks Watson before he makes a tag and taunts MVP. Rhodes hits a beautiful suplex for a near fall.
We come back from the break to see Rhodes still beating on Watson. Rhodes drops a knee and stomps the midsection a few times. Rhodes puts him in the corner and tags in Harris. Harris takes some shots and hits a nice body slam. The name is lame but I love his burly style. Harris goes into the ropes and hits a NASTY senton splash! That’s one of my favorite moves in all of wrestling, legit. That gets a near fall. Harris misses an elbow and MVP is tagged.
MVP punches him down and hits a pair of clotheslines. MVP hits a throat thrust and a face buster. Harris falls in the wrong position for the BALLIN elbow so MVP body slams him in the right position. MVP hits the BALLIN Elbow Drop and waits for his finisher. Rhodes causes a distraction and the referee holds Watson back. Rhodes comes off the top rope but MVP kicks him out of mid-air. MVP hits a throat thrust on Harris and tags in Watson, who hits an ok looking Float-Over DDT for the win.
Winners by Pinfall: MVP & Percy Watson (1-0)
Match Rating: * 1/2
Matt Striker asks for their thoughts. Cody takes the microphone and says Husky Harris looks awfully familiar. Not only does he look like someone from his own family, he looks like the crowd. Rhodes wants to talk about “Showtime” Percy Watson. Rhodes says MVP can try to mold him into a WWE Superstar but he’ll take Harris and mold him into the next breakout star. MVP says Watson got into trouble but worked out of it. MVP believes he’s ready for primetime.
A video plays for Michael McGillicutty. He talks about his lineage of Larry “The Ax” Hennig and Mr. Perfect. It’s time for him to make an impact. McGillicutty says his time is now and he will shine. I saw a Perfect Plex in there. McGillicutty says there was a time when they called it “ruthless aggression.” It’s back and he’ll continue the Hennig legacy.
We’ll take a look at the end of last night’s Raw next.
All the rookies and pros are in the ring, looking across the ring at one another. Matt Striker says now is the time to look at the actions at the end of Raw. As we watch they cut to the arena where they’re making sure no one charges the ring. That was an unbelievably amazing angle. They showed it in its entirety.
Back in the arena everyone looks disturbed by what happened. Striker asks Kaval for his thoughts. Kaval says it’s unbelievable that the first season of NXT would do such a thing. Kaval then says that’s how you make a statement in WWE. Lucky Cannon is asked the same and says what they did was cowardly. 8 on 1 on John Cena, beating up the referees and stage hands but agrees that is how you make a statement. Husky Harris says he doesn’t agree with everything they did but he doesn’t care because he’s here to win NXT and that’s it.
Alex Riley sneezes and says he’s allergic to Striker. Lame… Percy Watson says that isn’t appropriate behavior. The crowd seems to like this guy. Eli Cottonwood says John Cena deserved every bit of it. Titus O’Neil and dares season one to try that on them. His thoughts are if you’re going to fight, make it a fight. If you want to win, make it a win. Ok… O’Neil then says if Zack Ryder pushes him like he did earlier, then John Cena won’t be the only one in the hospital.
Michael McGillicutty wonders what the heck everyone just said. The NXT Season One rookies made an impact and that’s all that matters. McGillicutty continues but Striker takes the microphone away. That sucks. Striker says there’s a concern in the locker room about the safety of their superstars but nonetheless welcomes them to WWE.
Michelle McCool and Layla then smack Kaval. The Pros then take out the NXT rookies and dismantle them. It’s an “initiation” according to Michael Cole. That should quell any possible rebellion or mutiny. I liked that ending.
Quick Match Results
John Morrison* & Eli Cottonwood (1-0) def. Zack Ryder & Titus O’Neil* (0-1)
MVP & Percy Watson* (1-0) def. Cody Rhodes & Husky Harris* (0-1)
Bump of the Night: Harris’s senton splash on Watson!
Match of the Night: MVP & Watson vs. Rhodes & Harris ** 1/2
That was an excellent way to start season two following that epic angle from Raw last night involving the season one class. They opened up the show with clear, concise rules on how this season will go. Unlike last season we’ll have a say in who wins and it’s only twelve weeks long. No more making stuff up as the show goes. It’s got direction and it was tremendous.
The rookies looked good tonight. The only one that was shaky on the microphone was Titus O’Neil. I don’t know what he meant but it sounded ridiculous. Alex Riley had a good showing in his video but the sneezing thing in the ring was just bad. The attack of the pros at the end was well done. They are really doing a lot to make this show successful. Those who saw it tonight saw a good show. Better yet they’d be hard pressed for a reason to not tune in next week. This is the show that should have happened for season one.
The matches were actually pretty good I thought. The first match didn’t really see much in the way of the rookies fighting but it wasn’t bad. The second match, though, was very well done. The match itself was pretty basic but we saw some great things from the rookies, particularly Husky Harris. I hate the name but I have to admit that I really like the guy and his style. It’s rough and tough and reminds me of the burly style from the 70s and 80s. He even has that look. For some reason I was thinking of Dick Murdoch. It’s still the first episode and there’s a lot of season to go but I like what I see from him so far.
Final Rating: ***
E-Mail – MikeyT817@hotmail.com
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