SPOTLIGHTED PODCAST ALERT (YOUR ARTICLE BEGINS A FEW INCHES DOWN)...
FEBRUARY 8, 2017
TAPED AT FULL SAIL UNIVERSITY
AIRED ON WWE NETWORK
[Q1] With Samoa Joe making his debut on Raw, it will be interesting to see if he says goodbye to NXT. NXT is coming from FSU, with Nigel McGuinness replacing Corey Graves in the booth.
Sanity starts the show by heading out to the ring in their full gear. McGuinness seems to be playing a much less heelish role than Graves did. He is being polite to Tom Philips for example. The Bollywood Boyz are out next.
1. THE BOLLYWOOD BOYZ (GURV & HARV SIHRA) vs. SANITY (KILLIAN DAIN & ALEXANDER WOLFE w/Eric Young, Nikky Cross)
Watson talks up the Bollywood Boyz as the bell rings. Harv starts against Dain who just shoves him to the mat. Dain easily works out of a waistlock. Harv gets thrown into the corner so he tags Gurv. Gurv brings offense to Dain and regrets it. Tag to Harv and the Bollywood Boys try to double team Dain. Double clothesline wipe out Gurv and Harv. Wasteland followed by a running senton, then Dain powerbombs Harv onto Gurv, running elbow drop to both. Dain lands an electric chair into a Michiko Driver for the win. McGuinness calls it the “Ulster Plantation.”
WINNERS: Sanity in 2:31. Excellent match to make Dain look nigh invincible. But it begs the question: why would a monster like that need to team up with Eric Young or Alexander Wolfe who can’t win a match without outside interference?
Post-match, Nikki Cross demands Asuka. Young takes the mic and tells Dillinger that he humbled Dillinger at Takeover, and Dillinger belongs with them.
Liv Morgan is out next to face Billie Kay. Morgan is slowly getting over with the crowd and improving her in-ring skills, but she is struggling to get credibility due to a lack of wins. Then again, both Billie Kay and Peyton Royce are in that same boat too.
2. LIV MORGAN vs. BILLIE KAY (w/Peyton Royce)
McGuinness seems to be a Morgan fan as the match starts. Kay backs Morgan into the corner but Morgan ducks a punch and sinches in a side headlock and won’t let go.
[Q2] Morgan does her routine where she rolls Kay around the ring drawing a series of one counts. Eat Defeat gets Kay a one count of her own. Schoolgirl out of the corner nets two for Morgan but Kay retaliates with a clothesline for two. Kay flips Morgan inside out and covers for two. Head scissors takedown sends Kay crawling across the ropes. Royce holds onto Kay to keep her up. Kay accidentally bumps Royce off the apron and Morgan rolls her up for the win.
WINNER: Liv Morgan in 3:40. Morgan finally has a win. Where do Kay and Royce go from here?
Tye Dillinger is backstage. The interviewer asks about Young’s promo. He says he isn’t humbled by Sanity or scared of them. Young and Wolfe ambush Dillinger, he fights them off until Dain comes into play. They beat him out of the backstage and to the ring. Dillinger fights valiantly, until Dain clobbers him with a cross body block. Roderick Strong and No Way Jose suddenly make the save. The faces clear the ring. We know where this is heading.
William Regal in his office announces that Tyler Bate will defend the UK Championship against Trent Seven. Kay and Royce bust into his office and demand a match with Morgan. Regal books them against Morgan and a partner of her choosing. They laugh and say “she doesn’t have any friends!” Never mind that last time she summoned Ember Moon.
Report on Shinsuke Nakamura’s knee: There is no tear and no surgery needed, but he is doing rehab.
[ J.J.’s Reax: It definitely looked like a potential knee injury at Takeover, glad that Nakamura is fine. ]
Tucker Knight and Otis Dozovic have been repacked at a team called “Heavy Machinery”, facing The Revival.
3. HEAVY MACHINERY (TUCKER KNIGHT & OTIS DOZOVIC) vs. THE REVIVAL (SCOTT DAWSON & DASH WILDER)
Wilder takes on Knight, with The Revival in the face corner. Wilder tried shoulder blocks over and over and bounces off of Knight. Bear hug lets Knight drag Wilder to the corner. He tosses Wilder into Dozovic who catche shim with another bearhug. Wilder gnaws on Dozovic’s face or puts a thumb in the eye to break free and tag Dawson. Big blows from Dawson drop Dozovic. Dawson slams Wilder onto Dozovic for a two count. They pile on Dozovic in the corner. Cover from Dawson to get two. Dozovic suplexes Dawson to draw a double tag. Running splah to Wilder then Dawson gets cleared. Blind tag to Dawson, but a Thesz Press flattens Dawson like a pancake and gets a nearfall. Wilder takes out Dozovic, draws Knight’s attention, and Dawson whips out a DDT for the win.
WINNERS: The Revival in 3:43. I just really enjoy watching The Revival in action. Heavy Machinery did fine, and Knight showed some real fun personality here. This is a pairing that can be useful in the future.
[Q3] Post-match, Wilder starts to cut a promos. He says that the smart folks seem to have forgotten about The Revival, but the won tag team of the year. Dueling “you deserve it” and “you guys suck” chants. Dawson says that #DIY shouldn’t be the champions, and the proof is that The Authors of Pain creamed them at San Antonio. Dawson talks themselves up. Dawson vows to take the Tag Team Championships back at Takeover: Orlando. Top guys: out.
The Authors of Pain come from the back to make their displeasure known. The Revival seem to regreat their tough talk and pound sand. The Revival say it’s just business and nothing personal as they depart. As AOP poses on the ramp, The Revival pop out from the back, ambush them, then run away. Paul Ellering holds Amak and Rezar back from pursuing.
Dillinger, Strong, and Jose are booked to sace Sanity in the main event tonight. Surprised they did not wait until next week for that.
Video package on Tyler Bate. So much charisma in Bate.
Bobby Roode comes out to present himself as the NXT Champion. Roode is super cocky. He says he isn’t the kind of guy to say “I told you so” then starts laughing and admits that he is. “I told you so!” He sounds like is rise to the top was much longer than it actually was. He talks up Nakamura’s long career in Japan and who he beat in NXT to emphasize that Roode is the only one to survive (never mind Samoa Joe’s numerous victories). Roode reminds us that Nakamura couldn’t beat him after a Kinshasa. Roode says that NXT finally has someone who looks and walks and talks like a champion, even doing a little Ric Flair footwork drawing some woos. And now all of the marketing materials wil not be “we are NXT” because this is Roode’s NXT. Roode’s NXT will be “glorious.” Smoke shoots down from the ceiling to emphasize Roode’s point.
[ J.J.’s Reax: With Nakamura on the shelf for an unknown amount of time, the lack of depth on the face side of the roster has officially come to roost. ]
[Q4] Short video package on Trent Seven.
The six-man tag match is up, with very little time left in the episode. This may will hopefully give us a clue on who will be the #1 face character filling in for Nakamura. Strong has the best record and in-ring skills, but Dillinger has the ability to get a crowd behind him, and history with Bobby Roode. A brawl breaks out before Sanity gets to the ring. Sanity ends up frustrated outside the ring. The ref tries to put things to order and a break hypes Bates facing Seven next week.
4. TYE DILLINGER & NO WAY JOSE & RODERICK STRONG vs. SANITY (ERIC YOUNG & KILLIAN DAIN & ALEXANDER WOLFE w/Nikki Cross)
The match is in-progress after the break, with Dillinger clearing the ring. Sanity regroups outside the ring as the ref starts a ten count. Dillinger yanks Wolfe into the ring and tags Jose in. They yank each other’s hair. Arm drags and a flapjack give two for Jose. Big right lets Wilfe turn it around and tag in Young. Big back drop yileds a two count for Jose, who then tags Strong. Strong suddenly gets forced into Sanity’s corner and Wolfe tags in. Wolfe gets chumped by Strong, dropkick for two and a tag to Dillinger. Ten perfect punches in the corner are interupted by Young. Tag to Dain who brutalizes Dillinger with stomps in the corner. Tag to Wolfe who is able to get a two count. Suplex breaks Dillinger free. Tag to Strong who clears Sanity off the apron then unloads on Wilfe. Strong looks great against Wolfe. Blind tag to Young as Strong hits a backbreaker. Dropkick knocks Young down, running knee in the corner, big slam, cover and Wolfe breaks it up. Jose takes out Wolfe, then Dain trips Strong on the outside. Tye Breeaker to Young, Cross jumps on Dillnger and sends him out of the ring. Cross body from dain to Strong, Young sneaks in for the tainted win.
WINNERS: Sanity in 6:19. Strong looked good in the match until he took the loss. We still don’t have a clear #1 contender to Roode or any kind of resolution to the Sanity – Dillinger feud.
FINAL THOUGHTS: Decent enough episode to start resetting stories after Nakamura’s injury. Nothing special here, but a perfectly fine hour of time.