WWE NXT 12/12/12 features NXT Champion Seth Rollins defending the strap against challenger Jinder Mahal. Last week’s show had zero women’s matches, so maybe we’ll get one this week? Maybe we’ll also get GM Dusty Rhodes’ big announcement as well? Let’s find out!
WWE NXT 12/12/12 Recap
WWE. Then. Now. Forever. We open with a dramatic video package on tonight’s NXT Championship match. Standard NXT opening credits and we’re taped from Full Sail.
Tom Phillips welcomes us to the show, tells us he’s joined by William Regal, and puts over the NXT Championship main event.
Paige’s music hits and she’s out to a pop. Sasha Banks’ music hits and she’s out to, essentially, no reaction. That scene in ‘Back to the Future’ when Marty McFly rocks out to the crowd of confused 1950s teens came to mind.
Match #1: Paige vs. Sasha Banks
What a breath of fresh air this was. We still have some “divas division” trappings, but Sasha is able to actually take a finisher and make it look great. No roll up victories here. Sasha doesn’t do anything of note on offense, but the important part is that she has now debuted. Paige squashes her here, as would be expected. After a kick to Banks, Paige hits the Paige Turner for the win.
Verdict: Thumbs Up – The fact that Sasha Banks has now debuted elevates this Paige squash victory into “Thumbs Up” territory.
Meanwhile, Tony Dawson is backstage with Roman Reigns. Today I learned that “flustered backstage announcer tries to get an interview with an aloof NXT Superstar” is a trope that dates all the way back to December 2012. Reigns is here, but claims his time is more valuable than Tony’s as Tony spends his time at the dollar store. Reigns shows off his watch so we know it’s “Roman Reigns time”. Roman gets a cell phone call and leaves to end the segment. Once again, thank God the Shield happened.
Last week? Regal rescued Tyson Kidd from a post-main event double team beat down at the hands of Kruger and Ohno.
This week? Ohno and Kruger are backstage cutting a promo. Ohno lists off Steamboat, Trent, and Kidd as people they’ve taken out. Kruger refers to them as “three trophies” and vows there will be more. Ohno adds that if Regal involves himself again, Ohno will see him in the ICU.
Later tonight? Seth Rollins vs. Jinder Mahal. Title match!
Back from break, Oliver Grey is already in the ring. Bray Wyatt’s theme softly hits and he’s out to ramble over a looped instrumental of the music. The gist here is that Grey will face Wyatt’s “2nd son”.
(Erick) Rowan is out in a green jumpsuit – dragging Bray’s rocking chair to the stage. Commentary has no idea who Rowan is and calls him the “unknown man”.
Match #2: Oliver Gray vs. (Erick) Rowan (aka – The Unknown Man) (w/ Bray Wyatt)
Rowan toys with Grey for a bit and then puts him away with a Sidewalk Slam. 3 count.
Verdict: Thumbs In The Middle – Not quite as impactful as Harper’s debut, but still a sound thrashing.
Post-match, Rowan wanders up to the stage and Wyatt introduces him as “Rowan”. Wait. So “Erick” was a later addition? So, when they renamed him to “Rowan” in 2017 for the Bludgeon Brothers it was a return to his original NXT name? Mind blown.
Meanwhile, we see Seth and Jinder warming up for the main event backstage.
After no break, “Common Man Boogie” hits and GM Dusty Rhodes is out. Commentary and Dusty himself refer to him as the General Manager but his chyron calls him “Commissioner”. Details, details. Dusty puts over the main event but then decides to cut a promo on Vickie Guerrero and her bounty on Big E Langston. Dusty says as long as he’s running the show, there are no bounties on anyone. This causes Camacho’s music to hit and he’s out. You see, Camacho needs that bounty money because Hunico is trapped in Mexico. If Dusty won’t honor the bounty, Camacho threatens to reopen the bounty on Dusty. This causes Big E’s music to hit and he’s out. Dusty now has an idea and makes a handicap match between Big E, Camacho, and a partner of Camacho’s choosing on next week’s show. Big E is down and Camacho bails to go find a partner. I guess this was Dusty’s “big announcement”? Here I thought it’d be the Tag Team Title reveal or the Women’s Title reveal.
Earlier today? Big Show is randomly at NXT, is holding the Big Gold Belt, and says he’s going to answer Bo Dallas’ open challenge on next week’s show. Show tells us he has knocked out Cena, Orton, AND Sheamus so Dallas has no chance.
Up next? Main event time!
Back from break, next week? Big Show vs. Bo Dallas.
Meanwhile, 3MB’s music hits and Mahal is out dressed in leather. Wow, just like that, huh? Jinder dances and does not deposit his head wrap in the plexiglass box. Who is this man? Jim Ross has joined Regal on commentary and we all just act like Jinder has been a leather wearing rockstar this entire time. Seth’s music hits and he’s out to his usual music and is in the standard “NXT Seth Rollins” trunks. At this rate, I expected him out in full Shield regalia with Reigns and a “yet to be seen on NXT” Dean Ambrose and have Ross and Regal be forced to no sell that as well.
Match #3: Seth Rollins (c) vs. Jinder Mahal (NXT Championship Match)
Well, this is the definitive “Seth Rollins vs. Jinder Mahal at NXT Match”. It’s really good for what it is and got nearly 20 minutes so they had time to let this develop into something. Seth goes in peril early on after Mahal shoves him from the top rope to the ramp. From there, Jinder just dismantles Seth. Each time Rollins hits a comeback spot (ie. the suicide dive and a nice top rope hurricanrana spot), Mahal is able to quickly counter or recover in time to take control of the match again. Seth manages to avoid the Camel Clutch by getting to the ropes and turns things around with a superkick. Rollins hits the stunned Mahal with the Skywalker (which reminds me of Kalisto’s Salida del Sol) and gets the three count.
Verdict: Thumbs Up – Again, this is the best of the matches that Jinder and Seth have had in their series and it actually kind of lived up to the hype they gave it. I wasn’t expecting it, but I left satisfied.
Post-match, Rollins celebrates with the title in the ring. You can see a woman in the front row freaking out screaming “Rollins” at Seth. When Seth goes to leave the woman again does this as gestures over towards the stage. Sure enough, Seth turns to see Corey Graves in the front row in the “Izzy position” by the entrance ramp, sarcastically clapping for Seth. Rollins holds the title up in front of Graves and we get a bit of foreshadowing, perhaps?
We go off the air on Rollins celebrating on the ramp.