Blog Archives

WWE NXT TakeOver: Toronto Reaction

Photo courtesy of Wikipedia.

Photo courtesy of Wikipedia.

By Nicholas Jason Lopez

 

NXT found its way “North Of The Border,” but didn’t lose any luster.

Like we’ve come to expect from the TakeOver specials, we had a solid card with some spectacles ready to deliver, which also included Mickie James’ return and a couple of hot rematches for the NXT Tag Team Championship and NXT Championship.

By night’s end, we wouldn’t call it a “Perfect 10,” but it was close.

Read the rest of this entry

Notes In Observance – WWE NXT 11/9/16: Mighty Penmanship

WWE NXTBy Nicholas Jason Lopez

 

“Notes In Observance” features random thoughts and analysis on recent television shows. Quick results can be found at the bottom of the post.

 

 

 

 

 

(Aired 11/9/16)

Mighty Penmanship 

– The Dusty Rhodes Tag Team Classic Tournament Semifinal match between #DIY and The Authors Of Pain already had a different feel since it came from the Palladium Arena in California. The live event environments certainly help the matches feel more special. That said, this was easily AOP’s best effort to date thanks to the energetic fight brought by #DIY. It wasn’t all the faces though, as there was a cool spot where AOP caught Johnny Gargano on a suicide dive attempt and then bombarded him at Tommaso Ciampa when he tried to do the same. We also saw Paul Ellering get physically involved again as he bashed Gargano’s head into the apron. Another highlight was where Gargano countered a powerslam into a DDT, which led to the hot tag to Ciampa. Easily the best moment was Ciampa’s German Suplex on Razar, a feat in of itself. Razar battled back with a double fallaway slam for a near-fall. The faces had one of their own as they countered the double powerbomb into huracanranas. The finish was key and made sense, since we saw #DIY have the match won only to deal with Ellering on the apron and also set up NXT Tag Team Champions The Revival’s interference to cost them the match directly. AOP kept their undefeated strike alive and advance to the finals.

Read the rest of this entry

Notes In Observance – WWE NXT 11/2/16: Bruised And Scarred

WWE NXTBy Nicholas Jason Lopez

 

“Notes In Observance” features random thoughts and analysis on recent television shows. Quick results can be found at the bottom of the post.

 

 

 

 

 

(Aired 11/2/16)

Bruised And Scarred 

– To our delight (on the surface), this episode completely revolved around the Quarterfinal Round of the Second Annual Dusty Rhodes Tag Team Classic Tournament. For a nice touch, three of these four matches came from a live San Jose event for a unique experience. The Dusty Rhodes Tag Team Classic Tournament Quarterfinal match between Austin Aries/Roderick Strong and TM61 took a sucky situation with Aries’ broken eye bone injury (as he revealed in a promo where he took off sunglasses to reveal it while in street clothes and managed to get heat on himself as he unconvincingly tried to get over how bad he wanted to compete) and with NXT General Manager William Regal’s help, turned it into a Strong-Shane Thorne match to determine which team would advance. There was a good dynamic between the two, as Strong used speed and strength to dominate early on. Sick spot where he dropped Thorne in the corner from the top rope, a la WWE Raw Women’s Champion Charlotte and Sasha Banks at SummerSlam. Back and forth stuff, as Thorne hit a double foot stomp in the corner like Alberto Del Rio, which spawned “Si!” chants. Strong laid into Thorne with a swift array of maneuvers, but it only led to a near-fall. Strong also kicked out of the Falcon Arrow. The finish was well-done, as we saw Aries’ attempt to distract the Referee fail to get Strong the win, as Strong got rolled up in a quick pin shortly after to eliminate him/Aries from the tourney. This decision made sense, since we got to see Strong do his thing in the ring (will always be the best thing to do with him, still haven’t even gotten a promo yet) and TM61 has more to gain out of the Dusty Classic than Aries/Strong at this point.

Read the rest of this entry

Notes In Observance – WWE NXT 10/26/16: On The Up And Up

WWE NXTBy Nicholas Jason Lopez

 

“Notes In Observance” features random thoughts and analysis on recent television shows. Quick results can be found at the bottom of the post.

 

 

 

 

 

 

(Aired 10/26/16)

On The Up And Up 

– The Dusty Rhodes Tag Team Classic Tournament First Round match between #DIY (Johnny Gargano/Tommaso Ciampa) and Tian Bing/Hoho Lin was a smart way to have #DIY advance while at the same time serve Bing’s in-ring NXT debut. He was the guy who was the first signed superstar from China, so he had a chance to impress and was in the ring with the right guys for it. Lun still is on the lower half of the Cruiserweight Classic talent spectrum, but he wasn’t a prime focus thankfully. Him and Bing worked well enough together to give #DIY a tease at an upset, but when commentary revealed that the winners here would take on NXT Tag Team Champions The Revival in the second round, they might as well have given away the result right there. With #DIY-Revival as past foes, they’d be dumb not to set up another excuse for an encounter and if they beat The Revival there, it could even set up the Tag Title match at NXT TakeOver: Toronto. Maybe we’re thinking too ahead, but they got the first part of the puzzle right, as we saw #DIY win their running knee strike/superkick combo on Lun, which also protected Bing, whom they can build down the road.

Read the rest of this entry

Notes In Observance – WWE NXT 10/5/16: When Samoa Joe Attacks

WWE NXTBy Nicholas Jason Lopez

 

“Notes In Observance” features random thoughts and analysis on recent television shows. Quick results can be found at the bottom of the post.

 

 

 

 

 

(Aired 10/5/16)

When Samoa Joe Attacks

– With the Dusty Rhodes Tag Team Classic Tournament now upon us, it was time to let the stories come to us. Thank goodness, with a lot of notable names absent from NXT’s roster, this was an easy way to carry us weekly with natural storytelling. Surely, that’s how the late Dusty would’ve wanted it. We had the announcement in the opening video that there’d be two First Round matches. Let the games begin.

Read the rest of this entry

Notes In Observance – WWE NXT 9/28/16: The Glorious 10 Is Born

WWE NXTBy Nicholas Jason Lopez

 

“Notes In Observance” features random thoughts and analysis on recent television shows. Quick results can be found at the bottom of the post.

 

 

 

 

 

(Aired 9/28/16)

The Glorious 10 Is Born 

– It’s an incredible thing that the Dusty Rhodes Classic Tag Team Tournament was already back in its second edition. We began with a promo from NXT General Manager William Regal in an empty arena as he broke down the news that 16 teams would face off in single elimination rounds and it’d all start next week. Such a great way to enhance the TV episodes and is a smart move all around.

Read the rest of this entry

Notes In Observance – WWE NXT 9/14/16: Glorious Actions

WWE NXTBy Nicholas Jason Lopez

 

“Notes In Observance” features random thoughts and analysis on recent television shows. Quick results can be found at the bottom of the post.

 

 

 

 

 

(Aired 9/14/16)

Glorious Actions 

– At their first-ever encounter at NXT TakeOver: Brooklyn II, Shinsuke Nakamura beat Samoa Joe to become the new NXT Champion. There had to be some intriguing way to set up a reason to want to see the guaranteed rematch. Boy, did it happen here. A lot of credit for the opening in-ring segment with Joe and Nakamura. Joe did his best to make like he had turned a new leaf and learnt from his mistakes as Champion while he dealt with hecklers and claimed their words were deserved. He called out Nakamura and told him he had respect for him, that he was a worthy Champion. It had ended with the news that as soon as Joe was medically cleared to compete, he wanted his rematch. He called for a handshake before he went to the back as Nakamura posed in the ring. The shocker came the moment Joe ambushed Nakamura on the ramp and let loose his true intentions all along – to sucker the Champ into a sick attack. Now, it wasn’t quite to the level that Mark Henry did in 2013 with his fake retirement speech, but the key was that Joe said and did enough for us to let our guard down, even if we slightly felt an attack coming. They alluded to an attitude change ever since the show after TakeOver and that made the attack all the more buyable. Joe culminated his attack with a Bookend onto the steel steps before medical trainers took over and put the Champ on a stretcher. A cool mini-swerve that came off even better as it was played up like a legitimate injury, as we saw the Referee throw up the “X” and even Corey Graves came down from the commentary booth to check on Nakamura as did NXT General Manager William Regal.

Read the rest of this entry

Notes In Observance – WWE NXT 8/24/16: Stick To The Plan

WWE NXTBy Nicholas Jason Lopez

 

“Notes In Observance” features random thoughts and analysis on recent television shows. Quick results can be found at the bottom of the post.

 

 

 

 

 

(Aired 8/24/16)

Stick To The Plan 

– To nobody’s surprise, NXT TakeOver: Brooklyn II stole SummerSlam weekend in all its goodness. In line with highlight videos of past TakeOver events, we saw the cool slow-motion effects as everything newsworthy from the event was covered, from No Way Jose’s conga line, Hideo Itami’s Go To Sleep on Austin Aries, Ember Moon’s finisher to Bobby Roode’s “Glorious” entrance and the fantastic NXT Tag Team Championship match where Johnny Gargano/Tommaso Ciampa fell short against Champions The Revival to Bayley’s failure to regain gold and Shinsuke Nakamura’s fulfilled mission to win it. We came out of this with the idea that a “new chapter was written” and how right they were.

Read the rest of this entry

Notes In Observance – WWE NXT 8/10/16: Psychological Warfare

WWE NXTBy Nicholas Jason Lopez

 

“Notes In Observance” features random thoughts and analysis on recent television shows. Quick results can be found at the bottom of the post. 

 

 

 

 

 

(Aired 8/10/16)

Psychological Warfare 

– We liked how the show opened out of the usual realm, as Bobby Roode walked out of General Manager William Regal’s office with a smile on his face now that he knew of “something great.” He left it at that and walked away. Yummy, some light drama and anticipation.

Read the rest of this entry

Notes In Observance – WWE NXT 7/20/16: Fight Night

WWE NXTBy Nicholas Jason Lopez

 

“Notes In Observance” features random thoughts and analysis on recent television shows. Quick results can be found at the bottom of the post.

 

 

 

 

 

(Aired 7/20/16)

Fight Night

– This episode was hyped in the opening video as “Fight Night” and rightfully so, because there were three noteworthy matches – NXT Champion Samoa Joe-Rhyno, American Alpha-Authors Of Pain and Bayley-Nia Jax. Should be an easy, fun episode.

Read the rest of this entry