by James Toal
New year. New Me. New NXT. I don’t care if that was cheesy, it’s that time once again. Time to see what happened this week on NXT. It’s the first episode of the new year so what should we have in store? Hopefully some decent surprises, maybe even a return of a superstar that made quite an impact over the past few months. Who’s to say? Well, let’s dive right in and see what the WWE Networks selling point is up to this week, that’s if they haven’t given up on broadcasting to the USA channel.
Shayna Baszler vs Dakota Kai
Baszler was fed her first victim, sadly it was fellow Mae Young Classic competitor, Dakota Kai. Kai scrambled to get ahead in the match, but Baszler kept bullying her and constantly tying her up in submission hold after submission hold. Unfortunately, it all got too much for Kai and after devasting stomp from Baszler, the match came to a stop. Even with the match thrown out, Baszler continued the assault until Ember Moon came down to break things up.
You want a legitimate threat? Then look at how Baszler has been booked. She’s got the momentum now and just comes across as the most deadly woman on the roster. Building her up to face Ember has no issue with me whatsoever.
Winner: Shayna Baszler
– The AOP shouted their promo through puckered lips, saying that they’d love to take on Sanity or anything that stands in their way.
– William Regal reminded Baszler that underhanded tactics will not earn her a shot at the championship. I’m realising that we need more Regal on the programme, he always comes across as earnest and managing to pull of the managerial position well.
– Zelina Vega spoke to the press, stating that Johnny Gargano got lucky to get the opportunity to face Almas for the championship. Andrade is ready and more focused than he’s ever been.
– Johnny was about to speak about his match at the next PPV. Until the long-awaited return of The Velveteen Dream showed his face asking for Gargano to thank him for being this lucky. The Dream referred to himself in the third person, stating that he deserved the shot at the title, not Gargano.
– Street Profits requested a tag team championship match from William Regal, turns out they’ll be facing the AOP to determine the number one contenders. A unique way to film a backstage segment which I welcome wholeheartedly, it’s presented more natural and overall feels more organic rather than just a standard static camera.
Kassius Ohno vs Raul Mendoza
The match didn’t waste time getting stuck in. Mendoza showed off some entertaining athleticism and bringing down the large Ohno a few times. But, Ohno fought hard and managed to match Mendoza’s speed. Sadly for Mendoza, he wasn’t fast enough to beat Ohno. Ohno managed to slow him down thanks to a big boot and finally ending with a High Tension Elbow.
Winner: Kassius Ohno
Lars Sullivan vs Lio Rush
Oh, my god, Lio Rush hasn’t been released. Oh, my god, they’re putting him up against Lars Sullivan. Oh God, this is his punishment, isn’t it? To be fair this wasn’t a public shaming as you would imagine. Lio cleverly avoided most of Lars attacks thanks to his speed, even slightly gaining the upper hand at times. But, because Lars is built like 17 outhouses all combined to create the biggest outhouse ever constructed, he took out Lio with the Freak Accident.
Lars addressed the crowd, calling out Killian Dane and wanting to destroy the force he hadn’t come across before. Topping this all off with a Super Freak Accident to Lio from the second rope.
Winner: Lars Sullivan
The Calm Before The Storm…
Sanity was attacked by The Undisputed Era, leaving us to wonder if they’ll be able to compete later on to regain their lost championships. Adam Cole and his buds came down to the ring to gloat about their misdeeds, kicking the chaos out of them. Nikki Cross tried to attack but was unable to get free of the referees holding her back.
William Regal made an appearance once again, calling Undisputed Era’s actions ridiculous. But, Rodrick Strong and Aleister Black came down to take out the troublesome group. To make this even more shocking, this was for the NXT Tag Team Titles
Main Event – NXT TAG TEAM CHAMPIONSHIPS: The Undisputed Era vs Rodrick Strong & Aleister Black
Talk about a shock to the system, both Strong and Black worked well as a team, even managing to coordinate their attacks to deal effective damage. But, thanks to the sneaky offence by O’Reilly and Fish, they managed to gain momentum and start to dominate. Once Strong gained the hot tag, it was insane. He was fired up and began taking on Era like they were nothing.
Adam Cole tried to interfere, but this time Black was ready. Sadly, Strong was not so lucky and managed to retain their championship. This didn’t stop Black wanting to kick the crap out of O’Reilly and fish. Unfortunately, the numbers game was too much and the Undisputed Era continued to assault Black. They even went as far as to use a chair to make sure that Black didn’t get back up. 2018 so far is definitely looking like the year of The Undisputed Era.
William Regal made one final announcement. At NXT TakeOver in Philadelphia, Adam Cole will take on Aleister Black in an Extreme Rules match. I can sum up my excitement with three words; Hell Yes BayBay!
Winner: The Undisputed Era