The SmarK Rant for NXT–01.30.19

The SmarK Rant for NXT – 01.30.19

With Tommy off at a funeral, I figured I’d give this show a look again, especially since the matches taped in Phoenix looked intriguing. Let’s get at it!

Taped from Phoenix, AZ

Your hosts are Mauro & Nigel & Percy

And we’ve got a whole new intro using footage from the Takeover show, which is pretty cool, although the song is the usual angry white guy crap.

Kairi Sane & Io Shirai v. Jessamyn Duke & Marina Shafir

Could the Sky Pirates be the most adorable thing ever? The evidence is piling up rapidly. Io backflips all around Shafir to throw her off, and Sane throws chops on Duke before they trade shots from the guard. Even Sane punching her in the head on the ground is cute! Sane with a rollup for two and into a facelock, as Duke just looks out of place in the ring at this stage. Double dropkick from the Pirates and Duke bails to escape, then SWEEPS THE LEG on Shirai to take over.

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Duke goes to work on Io with a submission hold on the mat to cut off the ring, but Shirai battles over and Duke turns it into a butterfly suplex for two. Back to the butterfly hold and Shafir comes in with a dragon sleeper, but Shirai walks the turnbuckles to escape and it’s HOT TAG Sane. She goes after the leg and spears Shafir out of the corner as Shirai gets rid of Duke. Sane with a double-team elbow on Shafir and the flying elbow finishes at 6:40. I cannot wait for them to find someone at the same level because the matches are going to be AMAZING. And then the best friends have the bestest BFF celebration. What a tremendous team. **1/2 Duke & Shafir still don’t look ready for TV. Duke in particular was all nerves out there, it looked like.

Meanwhile, at Takeover, Johnny Gargano wins the North American title in my first NXT full monty of the year. And then Johnny cuts his victory promo backstage, and winning feels GREAT.

Meanwhile, Bianca Belair is still undefeated, because it’s a mindset and not a win-loss record. Um, actually I’m pretty sure it’s more about the win-loss record.

Meanwhile, The War Raiders win the tag titles and the war is on.

Meanwhile, Matt Riddle continues padding this show out.

Meanwhile, another round of video from Takeover, this time highlighting the NXT title match and then the six-man brawl that sets up Halftime Heat this Sunday.

This weekend: Worlds Collide! I’ll probably check that one out, too.

The Street Profits v. Wesley Blake & Steve Cutler

Huh, so I guess Blake is still employed. So anyway, after the first match, we had TWENTY FIVE MINUTES of recaps, commercials and short promos to get to this. It’s like watching an episode of WCW Main Event in 1991 and waiting through an hour of squashes to get to a Mr. Hughes v. Tracy Smothers main event, although the Profits seem to have a lot of charisma and a really hot entrance. The Profits dump Blake right away and then slam Cutler onto Blake, but Ford gets double-teamed in the heel corner. Crowd chants “We forgot you” at the heels in a funny bit. I mean, really, if the whole deal with the gimmick is that no one can remember they’re around, that doesn’t really make them seem like stars. Blake works on Ford’s back and goes to a chinlock. Buckle bomb into a Cutler slingshot backbreaker gets two. That was pretty nice. Ford dumps Cutler and Blake misses a splash, which sets up the hot tag for Dawkins to wake up the crowd. Dawkins dropkicks Cutler into Blake in the corner and bulldogs Blake, and Ford hits a crazy dive on Cutler outside. Back in, the Profits double-team Blake with a Doomsday Device blockbuster, and that gets two. Dawkins tosses Cutler again, but Ford gets wiped out by the other Son whose name I forget, and Blake hits Dawkins with a suicide dive to set up their finish, a double stomp onto an inverted DDT on Dawkins, at 7:18. The Forgotten Sons is a loser gimmick, but the match had some hot moments. **1/4

So yeah, overall this show was the very definition of filler, but my gosh do they have something amazing in the Sky Pirates. Hot take, I know. Otherwise, this show is a complete pass this week and offered literally no new information.