WWE NXT 10/03/12 is like evolution – it’s a mystery. Yes, we’re clearly still not at the point where we get a hint of what to expect on next week’s show. I’m assuming tonight we’re going to get a new challenger for Seth Rollins and perhaps Ryback will beat three guys instead of just two? Hopefully a women’s match? Let’s find out and get to the recap!
WWE NXT 10/03/12 Recap
WWE. Then. Now. Forever. We open with a dramatic video package detailing the Kassius Ohno and Richie Steamboat feud. “Earlier today” Briley interviews Ohno as he arrives at Full Sail. Ohno says he didn’t attack Richie, he merely taught him a lesson his father should have taught him. Enter Richie Steamboat, screen left. After a brief beat down, Steamboat tells Ohno that his father taught him enough.
Standard opening credits and we’re taped from Full Sail. Saxton welcomes us to the show and we learn he’s joined by William Regal by way of chyron.
Drew McIntyre’s music hits and he’s out. We learn this is his first appearance since the Gold Rush tournament due to a fractured wrist. Drew has been cleared to work with a cast – only he can’t use the cast as a weapon. Spoiler alert – he totally uses the cast as a weapon. Steamboat is out next.
Match #1: Drew McIntyre vs. Richie Steamboat
I didn’t hate this. Sure, it’s merely a vehicle to further the Ohno/Steamboat program, which weaves in and out of this episode. However, this is a decent little match. Of course, Drew isn’t quite the Drew we know and love in present day, but shades of that guy show up here. Steamboat gets worn down and eventually mounts a comeback. This, predictably, brings out Ohno for the distraction. Drew takes advantage of this and brains Steamboat with the cast behind the ref’s back. McIntyre follows this up with a Future Shock DDT and gets the 3 count.
Verdict: Thumbs Up – A decent enough re-introduction of McIntyre and I really liked how the Ohno / Steamboat saga completely takes over this episode. It really feels like this is the first true “blood feud” at NXT.
Post-match, Ohno laughs on the ramp and Drew gives his cast a kiss.
Later tonight? The Ascension take on the team of Tyson Kidd and Justin Gabriel.
Back from break, Big E’s music hits and he’s out. Already in the ring? Aiden English.
Match #2: Big E Langston vs. Aiden English
This takes just over a minute – 5 count included.
Verdict: Thumbs Up – Big E is the first guy they’ve really booked with the “monster squash” gimmick at NXT so I can’t be too hard on this. But, wow, Aiden English has had a bad couple of weeks.
Post-match, Big E gives English two more Big Endings and gets two more five counts. Yep, Big E got a 15 count on Aiden English. The crowd is super into this and Big E is over huge.
Later tonight? Kassius Ohno takes on Percy Watson.
Meanwhile, Richie Steamboat is in a Full Sail hallway trying to find Ohno. He happens upon Michael McGillicutty who just shrugs Steamboat off and keeps walking.
Next week? CM Punk drops by and apparently he will “demand respect”. This ought to be good.
Back from break, McGillicutty’s music hits and he heads to the ring. During his entrance we learn, by way of Saxton commentary, that McGillicutty gets a title shot against Seth next week. Wow, two previews of what to expect next week? What year is this?!?!
McGillicutty cuts a promo telling the crowd he’s the number one contender, it will be Rollins’ first and last title defense, and demands Rollins face him the ring tonight.
Seth’s music hits and he’s out. Seth accuses McGillicutty of talking too much and says that it’s clear that McGillicutty has no respect for him. McGillicutty fires back that he’s never had respect for Seth and never will. Seth says that he’s earned everything he’s earned in the business and didn’t have “footsteps to beat down a path” for him. Seth wants to do this now and takes off his t-shirt. McGillicutty bails to the ropes and says he’ll do it when he’s ready. McGillicutty leaves and Seth yells a bunch in the ring.
Later tonight? Ascension vs. Gabriel & Kidd.
“Earlier today”? Briley attempts to interview Kidd and Gabriel in the empty NXT arena when the Ascension’s full production entrance hits. We see them standing up towards the top of the building and abruptly cut to Percy Watson’s entrance.
Ohno’s music hits and he’s out. He gets part way through his entrance before he’s jumped from behind by Steamboat. Refs flood the ring and pull Richie to the back. Ohno staggers around selling the beating but tells the ref he’s okay and to start the match.
Match #3: Kassius Ohno vs. Percy Watson
It was all a ruse! Ohno is on fire to start and was just pretending that Steamboat damaged him with the sneak attack. Watson gets in a bunch of offense – mainly dropkicks and the Showtime Splash. But, none of that offense is enough to get him more than a two count. And, really, this show has been 50% Kassius Ohno so far and with Steamboat already pulled to the back, a win here is academic. Sure enough, after a knee counter out of the corner, Ohno hits a Rolling Elbow to the back of Watson’s head and gets the 3 count.
Verdict: Thumbs Up – Ohno pretending to sell the Steamboat attack and then getting a strong win is just what the doctor ordered. Well done.
Up next? The main event!
Breaks are for other shows, we transition straight to the Ascension’s entrance. Gabriel and Kidd are out next to Gabriel’s music. Jim Ross joins the commentary team for the main event because it’s 2012. Let’s do this!
Match #4: The Ascension vs. Justin Gabriel & Tyson Kidd
Not bad. I’m not into this as much as the Usos vs. Ascension, but Kidd & Gabriel work a totally different style and it works great for the “face in peril” stuff. Both Gabriel and Kidd go in peril during the match – though Gabriel’s is more of a “mini-peril”. Ascension do the heel team thing of isolating Kidd and wearing him down with stomps and body scissors holds. Kidd eventually ducks and dodges his way to a hot tag and Gabriel goes on fire. It seems like a sure-fire babyface win until Gabriel misses a 450 splash off the top rope and Kidd is neutralized by Conor on the outside. From there, the Ascension hit the Fall of Man on Gabriel and get the win. Of note, the Fall of Man is finally called the Fall of Man on this episode.
Verdict: Thumbs In The Middle – This would have worked better with a bit more of a story to it or ANY direction in the tag division. I figured we weren’t done with the Ascension vs. Usos stuff and now we’re potentially building a thing with Ascension and Kidd/Gabriel? Either way, kudos for NXT doing the “Ascension are weird and will ruin your interview” segment earlier to attempt to give this match a reason to be in the main event slot. Not bad for what it was.
We go off the air on The Ascension celebrating on the ramp and the reality that for two weeks in a row NXT has been a sausage fest.