NXT – August 21, 2013

NXT
Date:
August 21, 2013
Location:
Full Sail University, Winter Park, Florida
Commentators:
Tom Phillips, Alex Riley
Reviewed by Tommy Hall
Tonight
is a show I’ve been looking forward to for a long time. The main
event tonight is a 2/3 falls match between Antonio Cesaro and Sami
Zayn to settle their score. This match has gotten rave reviews since
it aired and I’ve been wondering if it lives up to its reputation.
Other than that we might find out who is Dallas’ next challenger for
the title. Let’s get to it.

We
open with a recap of Zayn vs. Cesaro. They’re making this feel like
a huge match.
Divas
Title: Bayley vs. AJ Lee
Bayley
wants a hug to start but AJ slams her head first into the mat
instead. AJ sends her into the corner and puts on a cravate to
control Bayley. A hard elbow to the jaw gets two for the champ and
AJ does the crazy eyes. Bayley comes back with a big hug to ram AJ
into the corner a few times for two each. A knee drop gets two on AJ
and the fans are split here. Bayley drops a top rope elbow for two
more but she’s concerned about how how much she’s hurt AJ. The
champion takes advantage with a shot to the ribs and a Shining Wizard
to retain the belt at 4:25.
Rating:
D+. This didn’t work too well
for me. It felt like both girls were just doing their schtick
instead of having a good match. We don’t know too much about Bayley
other than she gets really star struck so it’s hard to care about
her. Actually Bayley reminded me of Joseph Park here: someone who
was just so excited to be here and didn’t care about winning.
Tyler
Breeze is in the back with some good looking blonde and asks if she’d
like a picture. She gets in the picture with him and he glares at
her before having her take a solo picture. That same guy (CJ Parker I
believe) photo bombs Breeze again but Breeze sees the picture this
time and freaks out.
Ron
Hicks/Michael Zacki vs. Ascension
O’Brian
starts with Zacki and hits a string of headlock takeovers. Victor
comes in for shots to the ribs and European uppercuts in the corner.
The double hiptoss into the double powerbomb crushes Zacki and a
modified High/Low (with a jumping back elbow instead of a spinwheel
kick) gives Victor the pin at 1:38. Total squash.
Baron
Corbin vs. CJ Parker
Parker’s
Titantron is a tye dye ying yang and he’s from a commune. He takes
Corbin into the corner and kind of dances out, only to be taken down
by a hard shoulder block. Parker comes back with a running
clothesline and two knees to the chest followed by a falling DDT
(think Christian’s reverse DDT but from the front) for the pin on
Corbin at 1:42.
Post
match Parker says he’s found what he’s looking for. You might call
him a hippie but he’s just living. He calls the photo bombing “video
loving”, bringing out Tyler Breeze. Breeze yells at Parker but CJ
says it’s just having a good time. Parker rubs Breeze’s face to send
him running. I’m not really feeling Parker.
Alexander
Rusev vs. Dolph Ziggler
Rusev
is a very big man from Bulgaria who breaks a piece of wood with
Ziggler’s name on it over his knee. Ziggler is WAY over with the
crowd. Both guys are slow to start with Rusev trying basic power
stuff and Ziggler easily countering everything thrown at him so he
can strut a bit. Alexander throws him into the corner and Ziggler
gets serious. He staggers Rusev with a dropkick but his cross body
is caught in mid air. Alexander rams knees into Ziggler’s back and
drops him on the floor for a breather.
Back
in and a running shoulder to the ribs gets two on Dolph. Rusev puts
on a quick body vice but misses a second running charge into the
corner. Dolph hits a good looking dropkick for two but walks into a
running knee to the ribs for the same result. Back up and Ziggler
hits a quick Fameasser for two but Rusev comes back with a nice
spinwheel kick (for a guy weighing over 300lbs) for another near
fall. He misses a top rope splash though, allowing Ziggler to hit
the Zig Zag for the pin at 6:14.
Rating:
C+. I liked this more than I
thought I would. Rusev has potential to him as he’s got a good look
and moved very well for a guy his size. Ziggler did his job
perfectly out there by making Rusev look far better than he would
have otherwise. This was a very nice surprise as you would have
expected a squash but got a solid match instead.
Next
week we’ll get a special look at the NXT stars at Summerslam Axxess.
Sami
Zayn vs. Antonio Cesaro
They
have a lot of time to work with here and it’s 2/3 falls. Zayn
debuted a few months ago and beat Cesaro in Sami’s second match of
the night. Cesaro won the rematch so tonight’s the rubber match.
Zayn dives over the top to take out Cesaro during his entrance before
the bell. Back inside and Sami hits a spinwheel kick for the first
fall six seconds after the bell. Cesaro is clotheslined to the floor
and sent into the steps as we’re not even a minute into the match.
They
slug it out on the floor before Zayn gets two off another spinwheel
kick. Zayn pounds away in the corner but can’t get a sunset flip.
Cesaro can’t hit a double stomp so Sami goes to the middle rope and
jumps from there to the top for a high cross body for two. Cesaro
throws him into the air to drop Sami face first on the buckle for two
before pounding away at Sami’s head. We hit the standing chinlock
for a bit before Cesaro blocks a kick to the ribs and pulls Sami up
into a powerbomb for two.
Back
to the chinlock but Zayn jawbreaks his way out. A hard clothesline
and the running stomp to the chest gets two for Cesaro. Back up and
Zayn fires off forearms to the chest but gets caught in a backdrop,
allowing Cesaro to rain down right hands. Another double stomp sets
up the gutwrench suplex but Sami counters into a sunset flip for two.
A running hurricanrana gets the same but Cesaro comes back with a
bridging capture suplex for two.
Back
from a break with with Cesaro putting on the standing chinlock for
the third time. Zayn gets two off a rollup and hits a quick dropkick
to put Antonio down. He charges right back into the chinlock though
and Cesaro spins him around before taking it to the mat. Zayn
actually taps out at about 9:00 shown, making it one fall apiece.
Sami
rolls to the apron but Antonio pulls him back in with a superplex
from the apron. That’s SCARY strength but it’s only good for two.
Zayn grabs a quick rollup for two but gets caught in the chinlock
again. That’s rolled up for two followed by Cesaro charging into a
boot in the corner. The fans think this is awesome and I can’t say I
disagree. Sami gets a VERY close two off a sunset flip after
crawling up Cesaro’s body.
Cesaro
bails to the floor so Sami heads outside as well before getting a
running charge and diving between the ropes into a tornado DDT on the
floor. Cesaro dives back in at nine and Sami gets two. Zayn tries
to climb the corner for another tornado DDT but Cesaro catches him in
midair, lifts him into a gorilla press and drops him down into Swiss
Death. Antonio immediately picks up Sami and puts him down with the
Neutralizer for the pin and the third fall at 15:38 shown of 18:38.
Rating:
A-. Yeah it’s great. The third
fall picked WAY up after a solid second fall. I’m not sure I get the
idea of having Zayn win the first fall in a few seconds but it was
definitely a face way to start the match. Either way, both guys
looked great here and the match worked incredibly well with Cesaro
looking like a beast at the end. Why he’s in a jobber tag team and
not being pushed as a top heel in WWE is beyond me. Check this match
out if you have the chance.
Overall
Rating:
A-. Great show here
with a solid match in Ziggler vs. Rusev and a great main event. The
other matches were good enough and we got some solid storyline
advancement here. It continues to amaze me how much better NXT works
than Raw or Smackdown. Imagine that: wrestlers running a wrestling
show makes it better than a show run by low rent Hollywood writers.
Results
AJ
Lee b. Bayley – Shining Wizard
Ascension
b. Ron Hicks/Michael Zacki – High/Low to Zacki
CJ
Parker b. Baron Corbin – Falling DDT
Dolph
Ziggler b. Alexander Rusev – Zig Zag
Antonio
Cesaro b. Sami Zayn – Neutralizer
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