Sunday, March 21, 2010

WWE NXT Thoughts - March 16, 2010

Yeah, I'm a little late here, like I mentioned on this week's Opening Bell Extra, things have been crazy busy for me lately and I haven't been able to keep up with wrestling as much as I'd like.  Going to catch up today though, so be on the lookout for a Smackdown review later on as well.

Starting things off with CM Punk?  That's a fine way to begin any show.  Punk and his rookie Darren Young were in tag action against Matt Hardy & Justin Gabriel.  Before the match began, NXT host, Matt Striker, announced that in two weeks, the NXT Pros will do the first round of voting to see which Rookies will advance.  I suppose this means some Rookies will be booted off the show after all?  Looks like WWE finally settled on a format to the show.  Also, they've added the Rookies' "records" to their entrances, so it looks like wins and losses will be taken into consideration for the "voting."  

Okay, so as for the match, this was a solid, long match that had the LA crowd into it the entire time.  Everyone looked good in here, and I become a bigger fan of Justin Gabriel every time I see him.  I know we're only a few weeks in, but I think Justin Gabriel, Wade Barrett, David Otunga and Daniel Bryan are going to wind up as our final four, if WWE does indeed go with the elimination route.  Punk and Hardy were a lot of fun against each other, I still think WWE missed a huge opportunity to put these two in a feud after Punk sent Jeff Hardy packing.  Punk stole one and the Straight Edge Society mauled Hardy, Gabriel AND Darren Young after the match.  Yeah, Darren Young will have his head shaved by the end of NXT.

Our next match was an eyebrow-raiser, Daniel Bryan vs. The Great Khali?  Okay, I get it, The Miz wants to throw Bryan to the wolves, but what the hell does The Great Khali have to do with NXT?  Bryan looked impressive trying to chop down Khali, but ultimately came up short after a Punjabi Plunge.  And while The Miz wasn't out there for his rookie, his tag team partner, The Big Show, was to finish off Bryan with a chokeslam.  I see what they're doing here, but I hope it goes somewhere soon.

Michael Tarver vs. Heath Slater was up next, and I have no idea how they expect the crowd to react to Tarver when he's coming to the ring to Carlito's painfully stale theme music.  Impressive corkscrew dive to the outside from Heath Slater, but that's about all there was to this match.  Slater picked up the victory, Tarver got revenge with a post-match beatdown, and yeah... that was it.

Main Event time!  Wade Barrett w/Chris Jericho vs. Skip Sheffield w/William Regal.  This one was tough to get into since the crowd had no idea who to cheer for, both guys are heels and their Pros are two of the most hated villains in the company.  Jericho was great at ringside (as always), the match itself was fine, but there really wasn't anything to get excited about. 

The ratings for NXT took another big hit this week, which is a damn shame, but you can't say WWE didn't earn it by putting on a fairly boring show.  The opening tag match was fun, but after that, you could've turned the show off and you wouldn't have missed a thing.  If WWE wants this unique concept to stick around, they've gotta do more than this.


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