Notes In Observance – WWE NXT 11/16/16: A Shot At Vengeance
“Notes In Observance” features random thoughts and analysis on recent television shows. Quick results can be found at the bottom of the post.
A Shot At Vengeance
– The Liv Morgan-Peyton Royce match was the latest installment in the chronicles of the NXT undercard, which you can gladly call its Women’s Division. Forever a “work in progress,” there has been an attempt to build things with the “Aussie Mean Girls” pair of Billie Kay/Royce, coupled with Liv Morgan – a blonde tomboy Jersey Girl – and Ember Moon – a Mortal Kombat-esque athlete who racks up wins. While Moon has been built on her own, we’ve seen Morgan entangled in a feud lately with the AMG. Where we last left off, we saw Morgan cost Kay a match, as Aliyah upset her. The aggressive start made sense given the feud’s context. Royce delivered a nice tarantula-like submission in the ropes, even though we were entirely distracted with her ring attire that screamed “The Riddler.” The memories stopped there until the finish, when we saw Kay physically assault Morgan before she could make Royce submit. The crowd chanted for Aliyah, who came out and it looked like the heels would enjoy another beatdown. This set the stage for Moon to come down and make the ultimate difference, as she single-handedly took down the AMG before her and Morgan hit stereo dropkicks. We like the idea of Moon to physically get her hands dirty with the rest of the division, but we had enjoyed her solo push and wished they kept her separate from this storyline.
– “The Return” finally happened and even we were curious of who it could be. That stopped once it indicated “The Drifter” Elias Samson, who summoned the Full Sail University faithful to sufferance under his vague vocal chords and uninspired guitar strums. Needless to say, he was heckled on his way to the ring against Nathan Cruz. The match itself could’ve cured insomnia for some considering this tired squash formula. It was mentioned that this was his first match since an ankle injury sidelined him over the summer, but even that didn’t change matters. Samson has no momentum and will only invoke “go-away heat” unless things change stat. The Neckbreaker ended things thankfully, but not soon enough. At the least, it was fun to hear Commentator Corey Graves rip on Samson, who’ll probably go on to become Seth Rollins’ disheveled storyline homeless cousin.
– The backstage promo from Morgan/Aliyah/Moon carried off what we saw earlier, as the ladies explained why they banded together. We guess Moon had the most to gain from it, as she held her own well. Morgan made a bad Popeye joke and implied Royce was “The Riddler.” Points for that second one, but her mic skills still need work. Anyways, it became apparent that the draw here was for a Trios match, as Morgan challenged the AMG to find a third and then find them.
– In a night of strong video packages for the go-home show for NXT TakeOver: Toronto, the magic first began with the hype video for the NXT Tag Team Championship match between Champions The Revival and #DIY to take place in a Best Two-Out-Of-Three Falls match. The highlight of it was the back-and-forth mic work, as we saw #DIY talk about NXT TakeOver: Brooklyn II where they tore the house down, but got their dreams ripped up in front of a rabid New York crowd. They emphasized this match as their “last chance,” which felt real, mirrored by the Champs, who put themselves over as “machines.” This might even top their Brooklyn effort and if that happens, 2016 might have another Match Of The Year candidate.
– Another effective video package came for the Tye Dillinger-Bobby Roode match, where we had some rare exposition for Dillinger, who spoke about his Ohio Valley Wrestling and ECW stints as Gavin Spears. His early career was marred by losses, as he was fired only three matches into the “New Superstar Initiative.” We honestly forgot he was the “Crown Jewel” guy. That told us how far Dillinger has come. He called this match the second opportunity and wouldn’t let his fans down. On the other side, we saw Roode with opposing comments with soundbites from previous promos. The real stuff here was for Dillinger, which made us look forward to things.
– The Andrade “Cien” Almas-Cedric Alexander main event had the clever backstory of Almas’ heel turn attack on Alexander after the pair failed to advance in the First Round of the Dusty Rhodes Tag Team Classic Tournament. Early on, Almas’ new persona stood out, as he naturally spewed charisma with his entrance. Why didn’t they do this months ago? Alexander hit some stiff chops that even made us stop short of breath. More great Almas stuff, as he teased a big spot in the corner only to walk up to Alexander and slap him dead in the face. Ouch. Their chemistry tightened up as the bout progressed and they never lost a beat. We also loved that Graves repeatedly put over Almas as “supremely handsome and incredibly talented.” Nice instance of ring awareness where Almas rolled to the ropes after he was hit with the Lumbar Check. This led to the finish, where Almas knocked the middle rope into Alexander’s groin to stop him in his tracks to hit his Hammerlock DDT finisher. A smart win for Almas, who needs the wins to build up his credibility. Alexander lost nothing here either. We like his presence on NXT as he feels more useful there than on WWE’s ill-fated Raw Cruiserweight Division.
- Liv Morgan def. Peyton Royce (w/Billie Kay) via DQ
- Elias Samson def. Nathan Cruz via pinfall
- Andrade “Cien” Almas def. Cedric Alexander via pinfall
Posted on January 20, 2017, in NXT, WWE and tagged Aliyah, Andrade "Cien" Almas, Billie Kay, Bobby Roode, Cedric Alexander, Corey Graves, DIY, Elias Samson, Ember Moon, Liv Morgan, Nathan Cruz, NXT, Peyton Royce, TakeOver: Toronto, The Return, The Revival, Tom Phillips, Tye Dillinger. Bookmark the permalink. Leave a comment.