The SmarK Rant for WWE NXT – 4/24/14

Taped from Orlando, FL

Your hosts are Rich Brennan, Jason Alberts and Alex Riley.  I literally could not tell that it wasn’t Tom Phillips until they showed the announcers on camera.

JBL stops Paige in the hallway, and strips her of the NXT title due to her commitments as Divas champion.  And so we get a tournament for the title, because TOURNAMENTS ARE AWESOME.

Alexander Rusev v. Travis Tyler

That is an amazing name for a babyface.  Or a Stan Lee superhero secret identity.  The crowd immediately chants “Let’s go TT” while Rusev destroys the poor geek with the usual.

Meanwhile, Adam Rose is partying backstage, and accuses Camacho of being a PARTY POOPER.  And even worse, he’s boring.   Them’s fighting words.

Charlotte & Sasha Banks v. Emma & Paige

Oddly, they cut Paige’s entrance out completely and go to commercial.  Weird.  Was she still wearing the NXT title, I wonder?  Emma gets a monkey flip on Charlotte for two, and the faces hit her with a double suplex for two.  Charlotte goes after the leg, but Paige fires away with elbows in the corner for two.  Charlotte keeps badmouthing the faces and then runs away to let Sasha deal with it.  And she does, as Emma gets caught in the mean girl corner, and then Charlotte controls Emma with an impressive figure-four headscissors.  Emma fights out and it’s hot tag Paige, but Charlotte gives her a wicked dropkick to the knee to break up the patented Modified Scorpion Crosslock.  Charlotte finishes Paige with the neckbreaker at 6:00.  They probably should put that belt on Charlotte.  **

Tyson Kidd v. Mason Ryan

Poor Tyson is the one guy who’s getting nothing out of the Total Divas deal.  Mason overpowers him, but Kidd comes back with an enzuigiri  and drops a leg on the apron for two.  Ryan catches him in a press slam for two, however.  Kidd runs away and sneaks back in with the Blockbuster to finish at 3:24.  Kidd didn’t have much to work with here.  *1/2  He cuts a fired up promo about nothing in particular afterwards.  Hopefully that means they’ve got some kind of plans for him.

Angelo Dawkins v. Tyler Breeze

Dawkins appears be a black nerd character.  Well, it’s something.  Breeze kicks him down and works a headlock on the mat, then picks him up and finishes with the Beauty Shot at 2:00.  *

Corey Graves & The Ascension v. The Usos & Sami Zayn

Corey Graves quickly tags out to Konor to avoid Sami, so Sami fights off both Ascension members and brings Viktor into the face corner.  The Usos control him, but Konor catches Jey and beats on him as we take a break.  Back with Jey getting beat on, as it immediately becomes apparent that the Ascension have nothing if they’re going longer than a 2 minute squash.  Finally it’s hot tag Zayn and it picks up immensely as he hits a flying bodypress on Graves for two and a Blue Thunder Bomb for two. The faces hit stereo dives on the Ascension and Jey finishes Graves with the flying splash at 15:36.  Perfectly Acceptable Wrestling.  **3/4

Mostly a forgettable show, although the commentary was so actively bad this week that it kind of brought everything else down with it.  But with a new live special to build towards, things should start picking up again.