NXT – January 16, 2014

January 15, 2014
Full Sail University, Winter Park, Florida
Byron Saxton, Tom Phillips, Tensai
Reviewed by Tommy Hall
the first show of the new taping cycle so we’re in for some fresh
stories. If nothing else we’ll get to find out who is Bo’s next
challenger, possibly at the live NXT special on the WWE Network. The
only match for this week is Kofi challenging Alexander Rusev to a
rematch after losing two weeks ago. Let’s get to it.

HHH to open things up. As most of us know, there’s a new concept
called the WWE Network launching on February 24. Also, on February
27, NXT is going to go live for the first time ever. I believe it’s
just a one time deal though.
Neville vs. Tyler Breeze
from the lumberjack match a month ago when Breeze cost Neville the
title. Tyler grabs a headlock to start but Neville runs him over
with a shoulder block to send Tyler to the floor. Neville teases a
dive but backflips into the middle of the ring and waits on Breeze.
Back in and Neville sends him face first into the buckle, drawing a
NOT IN THE FACE chant. Instead Adrian kicks him in the chest,
followed up by some loud chops. Neville heads to the apron but gets
caught by a springboard dropkick as we take a break.
with Tyler holding Neville in a chinlock as Adrian fights up. Tyler
takes him down again but stops for a quick photo op. Neville uses
the breather to snap off a tilt-a-whirl backbreaker to get himself a
breather. A spinning kick to the ribs sets up a running dropkick to
the head for two as Breeze is in trouble. Neville loads up a
springboard dropkick but Breeze dropkicks him out of the air for two
of his own. Good stuff so far.
Pretty is all ticked off now and pounds away on Adrian’s face but
misses the Beauty Shot. A high kick looks to set up a middle rope
Phoenix Splash but Breeze rolls away at the last second. The Beauty
Shot is countered into a sitout powerbomb for two as the fans aren’t
as into this as they should be. Breeze breaks up the Red Arrow by
grabbing Adrian’s foot and crotching him down, but Neville blocks a
hurricanrana attempt, setting up the Red Arrow for the win at 9:20
shown of 12:50.
B-. I was digging this match as
Breeze gets to show that he can go in the ring instead of just on the
mic. Neville is a far more complete wrestler than his finisher would
suggest. He’ll be on the main roster someday in a Sin Cara level
role and Breeze could be great as a comedy heel. Good signs for the
future here.
Parker vs. Jason Jordan
usually a jobber, gets a full entrance. A quick German suplex gets
two on Parker and Jordan keeps the grip to hold Parker on the mat.
Parker sends him throat first into the ropes and hits the Third Eye
(palm strike) for the pin at 1:07. It’s a very telling sign when you
can get the NXT fans to not care about you at all.
Dallas vs. Mojo Rawley
The much bigger Rawley tosses Dallas back into the corner and tells
Dallas that he isn’t hyped. It works so well that he does it again
but Bo offers a nice smile. A shoulder block sends Bo to the floor
and the smile is gone. Back in and Bo immediately bails to the
floor. Dallas has no idea what to do so he just pounds away on Mojo
in the corner. Rawley runs him over again with a shoulder and
splashes Dallas in the corner over and over. Dallas rolls to the
floor again but Mojo pulls him back inside, only to miss a splash and
let Bo roll him up with a handful of trunks for the pin at 3:49.
C-. Rawley looked like a train
here until the very end. I’d have had Bo take the countout as Rawley
could easily be a top challenger for the title in the near future.
They’re also used him far better here instead of having him get
destroyed for the entire match before pulling off a fluke win. Also
is you have to lose, at least lose to the champion.
Kingston vs. Alexander Rusev
out process to start and Kofi can’t take him over with a headlock.
Some kicks to the ribs have a better effect but Rusev just blasts him
in the head to take over. Kofi scores with an elbow to the jaw but
gets shoved out of the corner to give Rusev control again. Alexander
sends him into the corner and works on the ribs before putting on a
nerve hold.
up and more shots to the ribs have Kofi in trouble but he sidesteps a
charging Bulgarian and sends him to the floor. Kofi misses a
baseball slide but scores with a clothesline off the steps as we take
a break. We come back with Kofi having a chinlock broken up but
managing to avoid a charge. Kofi pounds away in the corner but Rusev
counters into a powerbomb for two. The fans chant FEED ME MORE at
Rusev before changing over to GOLDBERG.
drops some elbows and headbutts before going back to the nerve hold.
Now the fans start doing the wave as Kofi fights back with chops and
a dropkick, only to have his cross body caught in midair. Rusev,
still holding Kofi, drives knees into the ribs before trying a Samoan
drop but Kofi rolls him up for two. Kingston avoids a charge in the
corner and kicks Rusev in the face, but his top rope cross body is
caught again, setting up the Samoan drop for two.
dodges another charge, though this time Rusev puts on the brakes
because he actually learns during his matches. The SOS gets two and
some hard kicks to the face have Rusev in more trouble. Rusev comes
back with a clothesline but Kofi hits his jumping clothesline to take
him down again. The Boom Drop connects and after a distraction from
Lana, Trouble in Paradise is enough to pin Rusev at 12:09 shown of
C+. While it’s not as boring as
the fans made it out to be, this was still an uninteresting match for
the most part. Rusev losing is questionable as well as the matches
here don’t mean anything to the main roster so putting Alexander over
wouldn’t hurt anyone at all. Not bad but nothing inspiring at all.
B-. Two good matches, a
major announcement and nothing bad make for a good episode. The
future is incredibly bright for WWE as the class of talent they have
down in NXT is very strong. Rusev, Rawley and Neville will all be on
the main roster at some point this year and they’ll all do well,
assuming the creative team doesn’t screw them up.
Neville b. Tyler Breeze – Red Arrow
Parker b. Jason Jordan – Third Eye
Dallas b. Mojo Rawley – Rollup with a handful of trunks
Kingston b. Alexander Rusev – Trouble in Paradise

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