Linus Report: WWE NXT, 03/06/2015

Hey, it’s WWE NXT! It’s that show where Kevin Owens came from! Yeah, that Kevin Owens!

The show started with video footage of Kevin Owens beating John Cena at the Elimination Chamber PPV, and then the announcers trailed a major announcement from William Regal concerning the NXT title later in the show.

Hey, it’s Tyler Breeze! He came out wearing a furry red cape, though sadly he did not have his supermodels with him. He was fighting Adam Rose, who was also wearing red fur. Rose had no Rosebuds and looked like he was going through the motions of his entrance.

So Rose and Breeze had a match and Rose was very aggressive. The crowd started chanting “we want Kruger!”, a call-back to Rose’s previous NXT gimmick. The match was mostly Rose, including a sweet elbow off the apron, but Breeze got the win with a Beauty Shot out of nowhere.

Backstage, Devin Taylor spoke to Solomon Crowe. He says Owens beat him up last week but it was worth it to get to say what he wanted to say to him. He said that if Samoa Joe wanted Owens, that was fine with him. Odd interview.

They showed a video package on Dana Brooke, competing in a fitness competition in Brazil. So not interested, okay HHH?

“Greg” brought out Eva Marie for an interview on the top of the ramp. The crowd did not like Eva Marie but I guess since she’s going to be a babyface she couldn’t shoot them down. Instead she hyped NXT and the women’s division. The crowd booed and gave her the thumbs down throughout. The ironic thing is that, at least from the training footage with Brian Kendrick, she’s worked hard at getting better.

Backstage, William Regal announced that, on July 4th in Tokyo, Finn Bálor would wrestle Kevin Owens for the NXT championship, live on the WWE Network.

Hey, it’s Carmella! She came out with Enzo & Big Cass, but they used her entrance and so it wasn’t cool. The fans have stopped getting on her back, though. She’s fighting the evil pixie, Alexa Bliss, who came out with the BAMF, Wesley Blake & Buddy Murphy. Heel Alexa is the best Alexa.

So they had a match, and it was an Okay Match, considering they’re both very green. Enzo & Big Cass and the crowd tried to rally Carmella but Bliss won with a roll-up and a grab of the rope. The match wasn’t great but the whole segment worked well.

Backstage, Devin Taylor interviewed Rhyno about the main event tonight, where he’s fighting Finn Bálor. He said he enjoyed his match with Baron Corbin but it was time to re-focus on his goal – the NXT championship – and Finn Bálor was in his way.

They showed video footage of Sami Zayn preparing for, having, and recovering from an operation on his shoulder. Even in this, Zayn was amazingly charismatic. If he ever has to retire, maybe the WWE Network can show him just doing stuff?

Hey, it’s The Vaudevillains! They came out to a huge pop, and they appear to be babyfaces again. I can live with that. They’re fighting Jason Jordan and the man he described as a perfect partner on last week’s show… Marcus Louis??? Louis has been gone since they aborted the “stalking Tyler Breeze” angle but he’s still a crazy bald man.

Louis started out with Simon Gotch and did some good, crazy man offense. Jason Jordan came in and looked awesome, throwing and squeezing like a smaller, less Bulgarian Rusev. Louis tagged back in and continued the attack on Aidan English, but English managed to make the hot tag to Gotch, who bulled Louis and took Jordan off the apron. He dropped the strap and The Vaudevillains hit their double-team finisher for the win.

After the match, Jordan ragged on Louis, so maybe we’ll get a “partner of the week” deal?

They showed a video package on Sasha Banks, with flashbacks to her debut and footage of just about everyone tapping out to the Bank(s) Statement.

Backstage, Finn Bálor cut a talky about his history with Japan and says Owens will meet the Demon in Tokyo.

Hey, it’s our main event! It’s Finn Bálor versus Rhyno!

They lock-up early doors and Rhyno overpowered Bálor, who came back with a dropkick to take the beast off his feet. Rhyno hit back with a shoulder tackle and started wearing Bálor down in the corner. Bálor escaped and hit an enzuigiri to knock Rhyno out to the floor, and then Bálor hit a flip plancha to take him down.

After a break, Rhyno was on top, and started mocking Bálor to the crowd. Bálor charged him but got caught and press-slammed to the mat. Bálor sought refuge in the corner and Rhyno charged him. Bálor got his boots up and then went on offense, earning a nearfall. Bálor set up the reverse DDT but Rhyno switched it to a spinebuster for a nearfall of his own.

Bálor surprised Rhyno with a Pele kick and a slingblade, and then hit the running dropkick to send Rhyno into the turnbuckles. He climbed up top for the Coup de Grace, but Rhyno moved and, when Bálor landed, charged in for the Gore. Bálor dodged, Rhyno hit the turnbuckles, and then Bálor rolled him up for the win.

After the match, Bálor celebrated up on the apron, and Rhyno Gored him out of nowhere and left him lying. And that’s your show!

This was an Okay Show. It felt a little like treading water, because there was little to no Owens or Banks, but you get the odd episode where it’s just about moving everything forward. A lot of promotions wish they had a show as good as even these episodes of NXT.

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