Are you ready? Then stop questioning your heart and join me, because it’s time for the DEBUT show of WWE NXT on SyFy!
The show kicks off with David Otunga making his entrance as R-Truth does his song and dance on the way to the ring. NXT’s host, Matt Striker, is in the back and reviews the concept of the show for those who may have missed it last week.
David Otunga w/ PRO R-Truth v. Darren Young w/ PRO CM Punk & Straight Edge Society
Darren Young requested this rematch from last week.
The match starts off with Darren being whipped into the ropes and hit with two consecutive arm drags. He is sent to the mat with a scoop slam, but kicks out of the cover. Young is whipped into the corner, but bounces back into the ring and hits a neckbreaker on Otunga. Young gets on David’s back and locks in a neck hold. The crowd is firmly behind Otunga.
David escapes the hold by lifting Young into the air and dropping him to the mat. He goes for the cover, but Young kicks out. Darren sends Otunga to the apron, then slams his neck against the top rope which sends David to the outside. When Otunga tries to re-enter the ring, Young knocks him once again to the outside.
We come back as Young whips David into the corner. Otunga bounces out and goes for a quick cover. Young kicks out. Darren goes for another neck hold, and then slams Otunga’s head into the turnbuckle. Young goes for a neckbreaker, but Otunga sends him hard to the outside of the ring. Both men get back in the ring. Luke Gallos and R-Truth begin to argue on the outside of the ring. The referees attention is distracted. As Otunga goes to bounce off the ropes, CM Punk coyly grabs his leg. Darren Young capitalizes and secures the victory.
Winner via CM Punk’s Sneakiness: Darren Young
After the match, R-Truth comes into the ring, but Otunga pushes him away.
Video package airs highlighting the pre-WWE career, and personal life, of Daniel Bryan
Video package airs recapping Daniel Bryan v. Chris Jericho from last week on NXT
In the back we see Daniel Bryan with a WWE trainer examining his side. The bruising is a result of last week’s suicide dive crash into the announcing table. The Miz enters and says that last week proved Daniel Bryan is nothing but trash. Miz says that injury or not, he made a match for Daniel Bryan to take on Chris Jericho’s rookie, Wade Barret, tonight. Miz slaps him in the injured side as we head to commercial.
In the back, Matt Striker is interviewing David Otunga about his match. Otunga complains about the fact that Punk interfered. Matt says that he is going to have to learn to deal with those kinds of things in the WWE. R-Truth enters the room and begins to yell at his rookie. The two begin fighting and have to be broken up by security and referees.
Chris Jericho is on the ramp with his rookie. He puts him over, and then a video package airs highlighting Wade.
Wade Barret w/ PRO Chris Jericho v. Daniel Bryan (Miz does not accompany him)
The match starts with Wade kicking Daniel in the injured side. He continues with shoulder thrusts to the ribs. Wade goes for the cover, but Bryan kicks out. A shot in the back shows The Miz & Carlito watching the match. Wade sets Bryan up against the ropes and goes for a splash, but Daniel side steps and Wade crashes to the outside. Bryan leaps off the apron with a huge knee to the outside on Barret! Wade gets back inside the ring, and Daniel heads to the apron once again. He goes for a springboard, but due to his injured side he can?t support himself and crashes to the mat. Wade lifts him high into the air and hits his finisher.
Winner: Wade Barret
After the match, Jericho enters the ring and begins to attack Bryan. He repeatedly kicks him in the side and then puts him in the Walls of Jericho.
Video package airs highlighting the Shawn Michaels/Undertaker feud
In the back, Christian is training in the gym as Heath comes up to talk to him. Christian warns Slater to not become over confident. Christian says that the cheers were his peeps, Heath still needs to earn that kind of response. Christian says that he likes him, not very much, but he likes him.
We cut to another room where Matt Striker is with Justin Gabriel and Matt Hardy. Justin puts over Hardy as his mentor. Hardy says that Gabriel reminds him of himself at a younger age.
William Regal & Skip Sheffield v. Matt Hardy & Justin Gabriel
Justin and Skip kick off the matchup. Justin is backed into the corner. Skip backs up and gets hit with a beautiful dropkick. Justin tags in Hardy. Gabriel does a flip as Hardy does an elbow drop on Skip. Hardy tags Gabriel back into the match as he whips Skip into the corner. Justin runs from one corner to the other, leaps off Hardy’s back, and connects with a huge splash!
We come back as it is William Regal in the ring with Justin Gabriel. Regal hits a beautiful Butterfly Suplex. Regal then locks on an arm bar. The crowd is trying to get behind Gabriel for support. Regal throws Justin to the mat, and actually allows him to tag in Matt Hardy. Regal takes it right to Matt, and knocks him to the outside. Both Gabriel & Matt are on the floor ringside. The referee begins the count.
Hardy slides back into the ring, and Regal wastes no time. He locks him up and then tags in Skip Sheffield. Matt is flat on his back, and Skip hits him with a splash. Skip then grabs the top rope and begins unloading with his boot to Matt’s midsection. Skip tags in Regal. The Brit grabs Hardy and hits a couple of punches. Hardy goes for a backslide, but Regal counters and tags in Sheffield. Regal holds Hardy in the corner which allows Skip to get in some cheap shots.
Skip takes Matt to the middle of the ring and locks on a headlock. Hardy begins to get to his feet and then drops to the mat to counter the hold. Skip tags in Regal. William yells at Skip for ?messing around? and letting Hardy get in those couple of shots. Regal backs Hardy into the corner as he continues to yell at his rookie. Hardy finds the fortitude to roll to his corner and tags in Justin Gabriel. Hardy hits the Twist of Fate on William Regal! Justin Gabriel heads to the top turnbuckle and hits an AMAZING 450 Splash. Wow, that looked incredible.
Winners via AMAZING 450 Splash: Justin Gabriel & Matt Hardy
The show started off with a strong rematch from last week. Many complained about Darren Young being squashed by Otunga, but this week he exacted his revenge. The difference maker was CM Punk. Last week, Punk wanted nothing to do with his rookie, or the show. This week, he instructed Luke Gallos to cause a distraction and then grabbed Otunga’s leg. This allowed Darren Young to capitalize and pick up the win.
I?m not too sure how I feel about Otunga starting to feud with R-Truth. It seems forced at the moment. I don?t believe that they have the foundation to really be pissed at each other. I?ll give creative credit for at least trying to keep it interesting and have different dynamics between pros and rookies.
Daniel Bryan v. Wade Barret was pretty much what I would have expected it to be. It was fairly short as they were milking Bryan’s injury. I really liked the fact that Bryan essentially ?botched? a move. Yet, it was all a part of telling the story in the ring, and planned. Jericho attacking Bryan only further legitimizes Daniel as a threat. On a side note, what the heck is the name of Wade Barret’s finisher?
I have no idea what Skip Sheffield said in his promo. None.
So let’s talk Justin Gabriel for a second here. I really, really like him so far. He has a great look and was both flashy and effective in the ring tonight. His South African accent is unique in the WWE and helps him stick out. As for the Adam Lambert comparison? Aside from his hair to an extent, and what they are billing as him being ?flamboyant?, I really don?t see it. Look, I can make that assessment better than almost anyone because I?m a huge Adam Lambert mark. (Crap, did I just admit that in a wrestling column? I really need to think before I share certain things).
The match was pretty good for what it was. Let’s get right to what is on my mind ? 450 Splash. Justin Gabriel pulled off a SICK 450 in the ring tonight. I?ve just never seen it delivered with his fashion of execution. Generally, the 450 is done in a very shallow manner. The opponent is located fairly close to the turnbuckle. Gabriel actually gave it some distance which turned the move into a dive. Essentially, it is similar to the springboard 450 Splash which AJ Styles and Jack Evans perform, except from the turnbuckle. It looked really, really cool. I just feel bad for poor Paul London. The guy was not allowed to perform either the Shooting Star Press or the 450 Splash, despite the fact that they were his finishing moves. He felt so strongly about that he actually brought his complaint to McMahon and ended losing the belt as a result. I guess they aren?t banned any longer?.
Overall, pretty good show. Definitely far less kinks than last week’s show. It ran very smooth and really put over some of the rookies.
Quote of the Night
?I like you, not very much, but I like you? ? Christian to Heath Slater
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