NXT TV REPORT
APRIL 11, 2018
NEW ORLEANS, LA.
TAPED SATURDAY BEFORE NXT TAKEOVER
AIRED ON WWE NETWORK
REPORT BY JUSTIN JAMES, PWTORCH CONTRIBUTOR
[Q1] A lengthy pre-credits video package summing up the events of Takeover: New Orleans is shown.
As expected, tonight’s episode is the pre-Takeover matches. Kairi Sane starts it off, a good choice to get the crowd excited for the night. She is facing Lacey Evans, who is dressed up as a military pinup girl.
(1) KAIRI SANE vs. LACEY EVANS
Evans forces Sane into the corner on the lockup, then invites Sane back in. Evans uses her strength to put Sane in a waistlock. There is some quick back and forth. Sane teases a turnaround crossbody but doesn’t try it to mess with Evans’ head. Sane speeds the match up, cover for two. They continue to trade offense. Some of Sane’s hair is on the mat. Evans tries a Cobra Clutch, and Ranallo makes a Sergeant Slaughter reference. Evans mouths off at the ref because he warns her in the corner. Evans is getting a lot of hard-hitting offense in. She paintbrushes Sane after Sane kicks out of a cover. [c]
Evans with offense out of the break, and gets a two count off a big Bronco Buster. Sane lans chops to start a rally, gets caught by Evans and takes a shoulder breaker for two. Evans with the Big Show’s “Frying Pan Chop”, Sane blocks a second. Interceptor spear resets the match, but Sane sells damage to her head. Evans gets caught and dragged to the mat, then hit wih an axe kick. Sane teases the sliding knee and hits it. Huge elbow off the top rope is good for a nearfall. Evans kicks away from a single leg crab. Evans picks Sane up, she escapes and hits a spinning back fist, then delivers the Insane Elbow for the win.
WINNER: Kairi Sane in 8:50. Evans was surprisingly competitive tonight, and acquitted herself well. She still needs work, but she has all of the pieces in place waiting for her to put them together: a unique look and character and some decent in-ring skills.
[Q2] Recap of the triple threat tag team match from Takeover.
Backstage with Kathy Kelley interviewing Undisputed Era, including Roderick Strong. She asks Adam Cole about Strong’s actions. Strong covers the mic and whispers to Cole. They kind of nod to each other and leave without saying anything.
Clips of The Authors of Pain debuting on Raw, but then walking out without Paul Ellering. Backstage interview with Akam and Rezar, they are asked about Ellering. Akam says it isn’t about Ellering, but how they destroyed Rhyno and Heath Slater. Ellering shows up and calls them out because he was the brains. Rezar says Ellering’s chapter ended in NXT, and makes it clear that Ellering is not coming to the main roster with them.
[ J.J.’s Reax: that was a really good way to handle keeping Ellering out of The Authors of Pain since it wasn’t like that he wanted to do the touring with them. ]
Recap of the intense match between Johnny Gargano and Tommaso Ciampa.
[Q3] Quick page on Shayne Baszler capturing the NXT Women’s Championship from Ember Moon.
Backstage with Shayna Baszler. She says it isn’t a bandwagon, it’s a warwagon, and she knows who her friends are. They ask Baszler abou Ronda Rousey. Baszler says it’s just another weekend for her and Rousey. She promises change and says that NXT will not be about who gets the most compliments about their hair, but who can wrestle.
[ J.J.’s reax: This feels almost like a face turn for Baszler, indicating she will be a fighting champion. ]
Clips of Ember Moon’s Raw debut. She is asked about not getting a chance to face Baszler again, and she says she feels bad for the other women stuck with Baszler as champion.
Highlights from the NXT Championship match between Aleister Black and Andrade “Cien” Almas. Seeing the Black Mass hit to Almas while he was holding Zelina Vega was actually pretty impressive.
Clips of No Way Jose debuting on Raw. Did he borrow the Rosebuds? And Billie Kay and Peyton Royce made their expected Smackdown debut as IICons.
Lars Sullivan is booked to face Killian Dain next week.
(2) HEAVY MACHINERY (TUCKER KNIGHT & OTIS DOZOVIC) vs. RIDDICK MOSS & TINO SABBATELLI
Sabbatelli and Knight start the match. They pace a bit then lock up then break. Knight shoves Sabbatelli to the mat, but Sabbatelli pops up with an uppercut. Dozovic and Moss enter the ring, they face off, then brawl. Heavy Machinery gets the upper hand. They do the Bushwhackers routine, then a belly bump after Sabbatelli moves. Sabbetalli ambushes Knight as Dozovic goes back to the corner. [c]
[Q4] Riddick Moss catches a crossbody from Knight and hits a fallaway slam for two. Extremely impressive show of strength from Moss. Sabbatelli tags in. Knight is isolated. Crossbody from Sabbatelli, cover by Moss for two. Dozovic finally gets the tag and runs over Moss and Sabbatelli. Repeated corner-to-corner splashes all around, then a back body drop. More splashes and Sabbatelli finally collapses. Caterpillar, splash, cover, but Moss breaks it up. The match ends in a no contest when the War Raiders (formerly War Machine, named as Rowe and Hanson by the announcers) interfere and destroy both teams.
WINNER: No Contest in 8:10. That was a fun match until the non-finish.
FINAL THOUGHTS: Good recap of Takeover and two lengthy matches for wrestlers who needed some exposure. I look forwards to seeing where the storylines go after this week.
NOW CHECK OUT LAST WEEK’S REPORT: 4/4 NXT TV Report: Final hype for NXT Takeover including Authors of Pain vs. Strong & Dunne, Killian vs. Lars, Kairi Sane vs. Bourne