We’re live as always from Full Sail University and kicking Episode 221 with The Ascension taking on Buddy Murphy and Elias Sampson both making their NXT debuts.
Murphy is an Australian-based worker who has been in NXT since mid-2013 and Elias Sampson, who I know nothing about and couldn’t find anything.
The Ascension vs. Buddy Murphy/Elias Sampson: Sorry I blinked so I missed most of this match. Viktor pinned Murphy after a Fall of Man. Impossible to rate this, total squash. N/A
Ascension promo saying they’ve laid waste to the NXT UNIVERSE. They demanded someone new for them to destroy and El Local and Kalisto make their way out.
Local says if they want to accept their challenge they better get used to hearing as he passes the mic to Kalisto: “LUCHA LUCHA LUCHA.” I’m glad Samuray Del Sol is pretty much unchanged from his independent persona and the chant is already getting over as will his mask if and when he makes it to the main roster.
New NXT interviewer Veronica is backstage with Sami Zayn who says he’s obsessed with winning the number one contendership.
Semifinal NXT Women’s Championship Tournament – Alexa Bliss vs. Charlotte: The Bliss thing is way too damn weird, she’s a princess or something which is fun and kooky but she blows pixie dust during her entrance. Fast beginning here as both girls show their tremendous athletic ability. Charlotte takes control with a high-knee; she goes for consecutive pinfalls but only gets two. Charlotte locks Bliss into an abdominal stretch and adds insult to injury by shoving Bliss’ head up and down while she has her locked in. Bliss attempts to get control but again is locked in an abdominal stretch by Charlotte.
Bliss goes for a crossbody but is caught in a backbreaker by Charlotte. The story here is Bliss constantly trying to gain some measure of offense but is continuing to be cutoff and controlled by Charlotte. Bow Down to the Queen (essentially a somersault neckbreaker) and Charlotte moves onto the finals. This was a solid beatdown by Charlotte, Bliss looked good as the babyface in peril. **1/2
Mojo Rawley vs. Aiden English: God dammit, do I really have to watch Mojo again? Mojo comes out and screams at some kids. Aiden does his usual singing entrance and we’re underway. Thankfully, Aiden gets most of the offense early, the only problem is Mojo is pretty bad at taking offense. Aiden hits a DDT that looks like children playing on a schoolyard. English has Mojo in a headlock but Mojo turns the tables with a bodyslam, consecutive clotheslines and he’s HYPED! Two Stringer splashes, the Hyper Drive and it is over. This wasn’t the worth Mojo match I’ve ever seen, so there’s that. **
Angelo Dawkins vs. Colin Cassady: This is going to go well for Angelo, who was extra “dance”-y today. Cassady stats with some clubbing blows to the back on Dawkins, Big Cass pushes Dawkins to the corner and hits some huge slaps to the chest. Dawkisn finally gets on the offense with a back elbow followed by a nice dropkick but Cass stays on his feet and hits a huge knee to Angelo, that was quick. Big boot, East River Crossing and it’s over. There wasn’t much here. *3/4
JBL pre-tape with Bo Dallas. Bo has letters from all his BO-LEIVERS saying he should be put in the title match tonight. JBL says he didn’t earn his shot, but says if he beats his next opponent, he’ll get his title shot. JBL says if Bo loses, he leaves NXT for good. JBL says he’s facing Big E who Bo is undefeated against.
#1 Contender for NXT Championship – Tyson Kidd vs. Tyler Breeze vs. Sami Zayn: Long standoff to begin as nobody wants to make the first move. Tyson kicks it off literally with a kick to Breeze and Zayn, double dropkick, Kidd goes for a quick count on Breeze but only gets one. Kidd works Zayn in the corner but Breeze sneaks up, tosses him to the outside and apparently he died because we now have a long battle between Breeze and Zayn. After about two minutes, Kidd recovers, Zayn hits a huge dropkick on Kidd. Zayn goes for a Yakuza kick but Breeze hits the Beauty Shot in the middle of the ring but only gets a one as Kidd breaks it up.
Good action here, Zayn fires up with a huge plancha to Breeze on the outside and a cross-body to Kidd but he only gets a two count. I like that they are integrating all three in this match, my pet peeve in triple threats are the overselling to force one-on-one situations and you aren’t getting that here, save for the opening sequence.
Kidd hits a German Suplex while Zayn has Breeze in an Exploder and all three men are down. This is impossible to describe properly so just find a GIF or video. Zayn goes for a dropkick but Kidd grabs the legs and throw him into a Sharpshooter. Kidd has him in the middle of the ring but Breeze breaks it up with a superkick.
Zayn hits Breeze with another Exploder this time in the corner but can only get a two. Great match thus far. Zayn goes for the Tornado DDT but Breeze crotches him on the ropes taking him out. Kidd to the top rope, Breeze with a back elbow, Zayn with a big kick to knock Breeze out, Zayn falls off the top rope to the outside, Kidd hits an elbow drop on Breeze and gets the three. Wow, finish seemed somewhat out of nowhere but it was a good story. Zayn came up just short again and Kidd was the beneficiary of Zayn’s offense. This is one of the best NXT matches I’ve seen in months, seek it out. ***3/4
The undercard was, as usual, a bunch of squashes with a solid Charlotte/Bliss match that is worth your time. The main event was spectacular and a must-watch which made this episode one to definitely seek out if you have a chance.