WWE NXT Report JAMES'S WWE NXT REPORT 3/20: Ohno break-out moment with Regal, big issues reach boiling-point, Overall Reax
Mar 28, 2013 - 12:04:18 PM
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WWE NXT Results
March 20, 2013
Taped at Full Sail University
Report by Justin James, PWTorch contributor
[Q1] Pre-credit video talks about Adrian Neville's quest to avenge the attack on Oliver Grey with a match against Luke Harper. Justin Gabriel starts the show off, and Tony Dawson and William Regal are calling the matches tonight.
1 - JUSTIN GABRIEL vs. LEO KRUGER
Lots of early back-and-forth tussling, and the ref has to reprimand them both to stay in-line. Kruger gains a definitive advantage heading into break.
[ Commercial Break ]
Kruger is keeping Gabriel grounded out of the break. They bounce heads to reset the action and battle back to their feet. Spinebuster gets a nearfall for Kruger. Gabriel on offense. Belly-to-back into a sit-out faceplant almost gets Gabriel the win. Gabriel puts Kruger down, but he rolls away before Gabriel can hit the 450 splash. Gabriel needs a rope break to escape an armbar. Kruger is able to re-apply his armbar submission for the tap-out win.
WINNER: Leo Kruger in 9:45. This match really dragged. It accomplished the goal of giving Kruger a clean win over an established player, but the pacing was almost as bad as Tony Dawson's commentary. Almost.
[Q2] Renee Young has Audrey Marie for a backstage interview. Young wants to know why we haven't heard from Marie since Banks cost her a six-Divas tag match. Marie says that it is always calmest before the storm. She says that even though Banks knows she is coming she still can't do anything about it.
[ Commercial Break ]
William Regal is in the ring with a mic. He says that he has asked Dusty Rhodes for some time to explain himself. He apologizes for letting everyone down and being unprofessional last week. He asks Kassius Ohno to come to the ring so he can apologize to Ohno. After a moment, Ohno comes out to the ring. Regal apologizes again and says that he hopes Ohno doesn't end up like him, old and filled with bad memories of things he has done wrong over the years. He offers a handshake. Ohno considers it, but decides to speak instead.
Ohno says he idolized Regal for a long time. He says that he and C.M. Punk once crossed the country to spend a weekend with Regal to learn from him. He wanted to be a villain like Regal, and toured Europe and Japan just to be like Regal. He says that Regal was the one who got him in the WWE. Regal says that Ohno deserves great things. Ohno gets hot and says that he doesn't need advice from Regal who is on the decline. "I don't need your advice, I don't want your career!" Ohno points out that after a 30-year career, Regal has gone nowhere and used to be a bad guy and is now mellowed out. He calls Regal a joke, drawing boos. Ohno says Regal has no legacy. Regal is trying to not lose his temper. Ohno says that after 30 years, the only thing people will remember about Regal was the time he got on his knees and put his lips on Vince McMahon's... Regal clocks him. Ohno looks more emotionally hurt than physically hurt, and leaves the ring. Regal is incredibly disappointed with himself.
[ JJ Reax: Very intense, well-done work all-around. This could be selling a PPV right now after its slow, multi-month build. Great use of real-life, especially in front of the Full Sail audience, which knows a lot of the history and background here. ]
[ Commercial Break ]
In the ring is a new Diva, Bayley. She's facing a game-looking Paige. Dawson wants to know why Regal is quiet, and Regal says that he's never apologized to anyone in his life and it was very hard.
2 - PAIGE vs. BAYLEY
Paige with quick control. Paige telegraphs a back body drop letting Bayley send her head into the mat by grabbing the hair. Bayley follows with an armbar and looks like she wants to rip it off. Paige comes out of a cover with a kick. Snapmare into the corner, then she stomps a mudhole into Bayley. Paige with a single-leg Liontamer for the win.
WINNER: Paige in 2:30. A quick win to show the crowd that Paige is healed up and ready to fight Summer Rae. Paige reminds me of Shawn Michaels, in that she sells moves long-term, which makes her opponents look strong, gets the crowd behind her, and makes her comeback feel more heroic.
[Q3] Post-match, Paige's sixth sense tips her off to Summer Rae looking for a sneak attack. Summer Rae slinks away before they make contact.
[ Commercial Break ]
3 - ADRIAN NEVILLE vs. LUKE HARPER (w/The Wyatt Family)
Neville with rapid offense out of the bell, but Harper knocks Neville silly. Neville with a dropkick to the knee and kicks to the head of the kneeling Harper. Harper immediately comes back, scary looking suplex. Somehow the gigantic Harper is moving as fast as Neville. Very high-intensity.
[ Commercial Break ]
Harper is on the attack, with more speed than we usually see from him. He dumps Neville to the mat and kind of pushes him around with his head. Neville fights out of the corner but it is short lived as Harper viciously reasserts himself. Harper can't put Neville away but he keeps cutting off Neville's comebacks. Harper tries five covers in a row. He looks to Wyatt for inspiration. Neville fights his way back into the ring, and starts to gain some steam. Harper eats a huge missile dropkick for two.
Neville with a flip dive to take out Rowan at ringside, a low bridge to send Harper to the outside, then a springboard moonsault from the apron to knock Harper down. Hot, hot sequence. Neville is too hurt to follow up a big DDT. He goes up top, but Wyatt distracts the ref and Rowan interferes. Harper snapmares Neville off the turnbuckle. Discus elbow for the win.
WINNER: Luke Harper in 8:00. Outstanding match. Harper looked amazing keeping up with Neville's speed all while maintaining his crazed persona.
Post-match, The Family sets up for a beatdown, but Oliver Grey comes from the back to make the save. He's easily overpowered. Bo Dallas runs in and evens the odds. Total pandemonium. Grey, Neville, and Dallas clear the ring.
[ JJ Reax: If Oliver Grey were in the arena, shouldn't he have been in Neville's corner precisely to prevent the interference and a post-match beating? Is he really that naive? ]
Final Reax: NXT seemed a bit light on wrestling tonight, and unfortunately the taping schedule makes it hard to concentrate on every story in every episode. That said, there was still build-up on both Divas feuds, which should be noted for the main roster. Also, the main event match was very well done and logically set up the six-man tag match, which I am actually looking forward to. Again, simple, effective booking to combine multiple storylines in an organic fashion, that helps put everyone over.
Tonight, Kassius Ohno crossed the line from "I'm playing the role of a character in a professional wrestling show" to "I am playing the role of a real person" much like C.M. Punk did when he went from "leader of the New Nexus" to "I'm going to burn this company to the ground" with the "shoot promo." The Regal-Ohno exchange was marvelous. This is the kind of treatment we saw with Punk-Cena leading to MITB or Triple H-Undertaker last year with Shawn Michaels's involvement. While neither Regal nor Ohno are at that level of visibility, it shows the same kind of careful consideration, long-term thinking, and delicate involvement of real-life in an appropriate and storyline-consistent manner. This wasn't "leveraging a recent death to get some heat" non-sense. This was the real deal. If you haven't seen the preceding episodes, it loses a bit of its heat. But, that's the way a slow build should work, and it is clear that this pot is barely simmering yet, let alone boiling.
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