This week's WWE NXT started with the usual NXT intro video before Matt Striker and Maryse welcomed the remaining Rookies into the ring. Maryse recapped the standings: Titus with 27, Darren Young with 7, and Bateman with a big zero. Maryse said this week's challenge is a Dummy Demonstration Contest, complete with Michael Cole's face taped onto a tackling dummy.
Bateman was up first and cut a promo on Titus O'Neil. Bateman then took apart the tackling dummy, including a back-drop driver that he called out to the crowd. Bateman was booed during this before Bateman offered a final jab toward Titus.
Darren Young was up next. He called this the dumbest idea he's ever been a part of. Young said he doesn't need to show his talent against a dummy when he's been in the ring with the likes of John Cena. Young said he doesn't need Redemption Points or a Pro to win NXT. Young then bailed to the floor when Titus took a move toward him.
Titus was up last and told Bateman to do to him what he just tried on the dummy. Bateman backed off, then Titus directed comments toward Young. Titus finished it off chucking the dummy over the top rope at Young's feet.
Maryse then polled the crowd on who should win the challenge. Of course, Titus won. More Redemption Points for Titus. Cue up the NXT theme music as Todd Grisham and William Regal recapped the seemingly intentionally awful segment.
Up next: Jimmy the Gimmick, JTG, faces Kozlov.
In-ring: Kozlov, sporting MMA fighting gloves, came out for the opening match of the show. JTG was out next with mic in-hand. JTG said Kozlov wakes up every morning and asks himself, "Self, why am I not as hood as JTG?" JTG wrapped up his promo, drawing a simple shake of the head by Kozlov. The match is up next.
1 -- JTG vs. KOZLOV
Kozlov tried an early attack, but JTG knocked him to the outside and took control. Since JTG has turned heel during this season, Regal has changed his tune on JTG; Regal is now claiming JTG has talent after previously saying JTG is a no-talent, waste-of-space. Kozlov eventually made a comeback and delivered a headbutt into the Iron Curtain for the pin and the win. Grisham managed to show zero excitement for the finish. After a replay of the finish, Kozlov was shown celebrating in the ring.
WINNER: Kozlov at 5:26.
Backstage: Hornswoggle stopped Maryse in the hallway to discuss the heart-shaped box of candy he received last week. Maryse said she had nothing to do with this. Swoggle tried to grab Maryse's leg, but she threw the candy inside the box on top of Swoggle before knocking him down to the ground. A PA was so concerned about Swoggle's health that he simply handed him a package. Inside was an animated figure.
Backstage: Yoshi Tatsu was shown walking down the hallway before entering his locker room. Inside, he discovered his shrine and Yoshi figure were completely destroyed. Yoshi screamed as they cut to break.
[Break. Raw preview plug - McMahon's vision created WWE, but now McMahon is out and Triple H is in. Plus, Miz vs. Rey in the finals of the WWE Title tournament. Who will be the first WWE champion of the post-McMahon Era?]
2 -- TITUS O'NEIL (w/Hornswoggle) vs. DARREN YOUNG
Titus completely dominated the first three minutes, so Young bailed to the floor and tried to head to the back to call it a night, but Titus dragged him back into the ring. Titus proceeded to chuck Young clear over the top turnbuckle to the other side of the ringside area in front of the announcers. Titus landed multiple blows to the chest as the referee administered a ten count. Both men were back in at eight, then Titus clubbed Young to the ring apron with a forearm smash. On the apron, Young caught Titus with a neckbreaker that seemed take the life out of both men. Bateman then randomly walked out on-stage in possession of Cole's picture from the opening segment. They abruptly cut to break at 6:00.
Back from break, Bateman was pacing ringside trying to get a closer look at the action. In the ring, Young knocked down Titus with a clothesline for a two count. Bateman eventually made his way to the announce table to engage Regal in a one-sided conversation. Meanwhile, Regal talked about his protégé, Daniel Bryan, winning Smackdown's MITB match at the PPV. Regal said the difference between them is he has no morals, whereas he's sure Bryan will do the honorable thing announcing his intentions in-advance.
At 10:00, Titus started a comeback with a gutwrench suplex. Regal referenced Gordon Solie here, and Titus made a full comeback before Hornswoggle randomly got involved with the ref. In the background, Bateman tripped O'Neil from behind, but it actually helped O'Neil as Young was already mid-air for a dropkick, causing him to crash to the mat. Bateman glared into the ring, then moments later, Titus dropped Young with the sky-high bomb for the pin and the win.
WINNER: O'Neil at 11:15. Not that any of this matters, but this made Young and Bateman look pretty silly and ineffective. Titus continues to be positioned as the winner of this season, whenever it ends.
Raw Replay: They cut to a straight replay of the final segment of Raw starting with McMahon calling out John Cena to go ahead and take his firing, only to be saved by Triple H, who fired McMahon. They cut out Cena's "poopy jokes" at the very beginning of the segment, plus some other comments to edit for time. They kept Cena's line about walking onto someone other's television, "brother." After the tears flowed at the end of the segment, NXT cut out to end the show. Still no word on when the next elimination will take place.
We welcome your 0-10 score and comments on this show for an "NXT TV Reax" feature in the Torch Feedback section of PWTorch.com. To contribute your thoughts on NXT, email to email@example.com using our Feedback form.
THE TORCH REACHES MORE COMBAT ENTERTAINMENT FANS THAN ANY OTHER SOURCE
PWTorch editor Wade Keller has covered pro wrestling full time since 1987 starting with the Pro Wrestling Torch print newsletter. PWTorch.com launched in 1999 and the PWTorch Apps launched in 2008.
He has conducted "Torch Talk" insider interviews with Hulk Hogan, The Rock, Steve Austin, Kevin Nash, Scott Hall, Eric Bischoff, Jesse Ventura, Lou Thesz, Jerry Lawler, Mick Foley, Jim Ross, Paul Heyman, Bruno Sammartino, Goldberg, more.
He has interviewed big-name players in person incluiding Vince McMahon (at WWE Headquarters), Dana White (in Las Vegas), Eric Bischoff (at the first Nitro at Mall of America), Brock Lesnar (after his first UFC win).
He hosted the weekly Pro Wrestling Focus radio show on KFAN in the early 1990s and hosted the Ultimate Insiders DVD series distributed in retail stories internationally in the mid-2000s including interviews filmed in Los Angeles with Vince Russo & Ed Ferrara and Matt & Jeff Hardy. He currently hosts the most listened to pro wrestling audio show in the world, (the PWTorch Livecast, top ranked in iTunes)
REACHING 1 MILLION+ UNIQUE USERS PER MONTH
500 MILLION CLICKS & LISTENS PER YEAR
MILLIONS OF PWTORCH NEWSLETTERS SOLD
PWTorch offers a VIP membership for $10 a month (or less with an annual sub). It includes nearly 25 years worth of archives from our coverage of pro wrestling dating back to PWTorch Newsletters from the late-'80s filled with insider secrets from every era that are available to VIPers in digital PDF format and Keller's radio show from the early 1990s.
Also, new exclusive top-shelf content every day including a new VIP-exclusive weekly 16 page digital magazine-style (PC and iPad compatible) PDF newsletter packed with exclusive articles and news.
The following features come with a VIP membership which tens of thousands of fans worldwide have enjoyed for many years...
-New Digital PWTorch Newsletter every week
-3 New Digital PDF Back Issues from 5, 10, 20 years ago
-Over 60 new VIP Audio Shows each week
-Ad-free access to all PWTorch.com free articles
-VIP Forum access with daily interaction with PWTorch staff and well-informed fellow wrestling fans
-Tons of archived audio and text articles
-Decades of Torch Talk insider interviews in transcript and audio formats with big name stars. **SIGN UP FOR VIP ACCESS HERE**