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NXT - April 17, 2013

Date: April 17, 2013
Location: Full Sail University, Winter Park, Florida
Commentators: Tony Dawson, William Regal

Reviewed by Tommy Hall

We're kind of at a new starting point in NXT with the end of the Regal vs. Ohno feud last week. Granted that's just in theory because a clean win rarely ends anything in WWE anymore. We also need a new challenger for Langston and the NXT Title. As for tonight though, we have Corey Graves vs. Seth Rollins in a rare singles match for a member of the Shield. Let's get to it.

We open with a recap of the segment last week which gave us Graves vs. Rollins.

Theme song.

Justin Gabriel vs. Leo Kruger

Their last match was really good so hopefully this one is too. Kruger hits a hard chop in the corner to start and runs Gabriel over with a few shoulder blocks. Off to an armbar by Gabriel which transitions into a top wristlock. Back up and Kruger puts him down with a spinebuster for two, giving us the required Arn Anderson reference. Kruger pounds on the chest for two more and cranks on Gabriel's neck a bit. Justin comes back with a monkey flip and some solid kicks to the arm.

A BIG spin kick puts Leo down but Kruger breaks up a springboard attempt. Leo gets two off a clothesline but Gabriel grabs a Fujiwara Armbar of all things. Kruger gets to the rope and Justin is very frustrated. The 450 is broken up and Kruger pounds on the crotched Gabriel. A superplex is broken up but Justin's sunset bomb is countered, followed by a double stomp from Leo. The seated armbar (called the GC3 now) makes Gabriel tap out at 7:12.

Rating: B. Just like last time these two had solid chemistry here. This was a solid back and forth match with two guys who know each other very well. I'm still not clear why they're fighting other than Kruger being nuts, but the South African connection could easily be expanded upon if need be. Good match here.

Brodus Clay says don't try this.

Next week it's Clash of the Champions with the Divas, US (held by Cesaro here), NXT and Intercontinental Title being defended.

We get a video on what the NXT people did at Wrestlemania. The shot of Shield walking through the stadium to their match is pretty awesome. Langston being in a title match is a big moment for NXT as well.

Paige doesn't buy Summer Rae's excuse of having to turn off her curling iron. She wants a one on one match but doesn't think Summer has the backbone to do it. Rae jumps Paige and accepts the challenge.

Baylee vs. Emma

Emma actually does her skin the cat entrance without falling and the fans seem impressed. Baylee hits a quick dropkick and pulls Emma back in from running away. Emma dances into a cover (literally) and gets two so Baylee puts on a neck crank. Back up and Emma dodges a charge into the buckle and hooks a Tarantula of all things. Emma hooks an Indian Deathlock with a bridge and a chinlock (Benoit used to use that move) for the submission at 3:10.

Rating: C-. Not a good match but the more I see of Emma the more I like her. She has a strange likeability to her and her looks don't hurt anything. The dancing thing started off as stupid but it's getting over in front of a college crowd like this one and there's nothing wrong with that. Again, odds are her looks and the outfits she wears likely don't hurt her popularity.

Yoshi Tatsu vs. Bray Wyatt

Yoshi jumps over Wyatt in the corner but Bray hits a hard running cross body for one. A splash in the corner sets up the dancing bit before the Downward Spiral ends Yoshi at 1:18.

Bray hits his finisher again post match, which is apparently called Sister Abigail. Wyatt says this was a message because he needs us to understand that no one is greater than he is. He's the eater of worlds and he believes it's time for the beast to open our eyes.

Corey Graves vs. Seth Rollins

This is a lumberjack match and Ambrose/Reigns apparently have taken the night off. Rollins immediately pounds him down to start and stomps him into the corner but Graves comes back with some rights of his own. Rollins bails to the apron but has to come back in to avoid the lumberjacks. Back in and Corey goes after Seth's leg with a kick to the inner thigh and a knee crusher.

Seth gets in a shot to the throat and follows up with a corner splash. Another splash hits and Graves falls to the floor. We take a break and come back with Rollins hitting a jumping kick for two and hooking a body vice. Off to a reverse chinlock instead but the cheering of the lumberjacks fires Graves up enough to escape. Rollins misses something off the top and gets hit by a running knee to the chest.

A hard clothesline puts Rollins down and Corey wrenches the knee. Rollins is pulled off the top with a dragon screw legwhip and a gordbuster keeps him down again, but here are Reigns and Ambrose to ringside. Ambrose clotheslines Graves down as Reigns destroys the lumberjacks. The standing sliced bread by Rollins is good for the pin at 7:12 shown of 10:42.

Rating: C. Not great here but the Shield looked awesome at the end. As Regal said, there are twelve bodies down at ringside and two men caused it. The ending was the right idea as it keeps both guys looking strong and leaves you wondering if Graves can put Rollins down or not. In other words, it makes you want to come back for more.

Overall Rating: B. Let's see. We had four matches with two of them being good to quite good, stuff set up for next week, Shield looking great to end the show, and a cool video on Wrestlemania. For an hour, that's about as good as you're going to get. This was also a good example of what I love about NXT: there's no pressure watching this show. When you watch Raw or Smackdown, there's this sense that everything is life or death and it gets tiring after awhile. With NXT, they present their stuff and that's all there is to it. It's much easier to sit through and it works very well.

Leo Kruger b. Justin Gabriel – GC3
Emma b. Baylee – Bridging Indian Deathlock
Bray Wyatt b. Yoshi Tatsu – Sister Abigail
Seth Rollins b. Corey Graves – Standing Sliced Bread

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  1. It's ok, you can say it, Emma is hot.

  2. Emma definitely has gotten over with the crowd. She just has a weird kind of klutzy underdog charm built for her so far in NXT that everyone seems to like. Her dance is a fun gimmick and she has a personality. Something that so many diva's lack.

    It was a really great tapings although they taped 5 shows and the crowd starts to get burned out near the end.


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