NXT FEBRUARY 7TH 2018
We were back in Center Stage for this set of tapings.
Fish and O’Reilly versus Sanity for the Tag Titles was supposed to open the show, but Sanity jumped Undisputed Era during their entrance and a big pull-apart brawl erupted between the two groups instead, with Undisputed Era managing to escape to the stage. Regal then came out and changed the match to a six man tornado tag in the main event.
Heavy Machinery vs. Riddick Moss and Tino Sabbatelli
Rematch from their fun match last month. This wasn’t as much of a pleasant surprise as that match was, but it was still fine. There was a bit more story this time, with Sabbatelli and Moss showing some signs of tension, which came completely out of nowhere and unprompted, after Tino tagged Moss too hard. Not sure what that was all about. Tino tried to steal the win again with a rollup and feet on the ropes, ala their last match, but Drake caught him this time. That lead to Heavy Machinery evening the score with the Compactor to Tino.
Moss walked out on Tino after the match. I don’t know how I feel about them splitting these two up, or at least teasing a split. Seems like these two were just starting to round into a useful team. Spending however long it’s been building some chemistry, just to have them break up because one guy tagged the other too hard on a random NXT, seems like an odd move. Might just be a tease, but if it is, it’s probably a tease for an extended split. Maybe they have singles plans for one, or both, but you’re just creating more teething problems by doing that now in my opinion.
Gargano came out for a promo and got a long ‘Johnny Wrestling’ chant. Gargano said he was confident of winning at Takeover, but unfortunately that didn’t happen and that sucked. He said the reaction he got coming out though made it obvious, what he earned meant more than a championship and that was the people’s respect. He moved onto Ciampa and said he was coming for him, face to face and man to man, only for Almas to interrupt. Zelina told Gargano he earned nothing and Almas should be having a parade, instead of having to listen to Johnny complain that he lost. She pointed out Ciampa had nothing to do with Gargano losing and Almas had beaten him over and over. Gargano brought up Candice attacking Zelina at Takeover and Zelina started pushing Gargano about, which brought out Candice, who shoved Zelina out of the ring. Gargano cleared off Almas too and an angry Zelina asked what it would take to get rid of them. Gargano asked for another title match and Zelina accepted, with the caveat that if Johnny lost, he left NXT for good. Gargano agreed, with Candice looking unsure. That certainly wasn’t the way I was expecting them to go with this.
Shayna was interviewed. She said it took her a month to become the most feared woman in NXT history and claimed there wouldn’t be a rematch, because Ember was scared, she knew she got lucky last time and she wasn’t a real champion.
Interview with Bate about losing to Strong. Unless my ears deceived me, this might have been former ROH commentator Jimmy Bower conducting the interview. Wonder where that guy’s been all these years? Bate gave Strong credit, but said not to count him out yet, as he’d be watching. He was asked about winning NXT match of the year, with Bate saying he was looking forward to having more matches of the year this year, with whoever NXT had to offer.
Bianca Belair vs. Jessix(?) Hill
There should really be a rule that jobbers should have normal names. With obvious spellings. Hill demanded a handshake before the match and didn’t recover from there, as Belair won in quick fashion with an Alley-oop.
Hype video for Kairi Sane, briefly covering her participation in the Royal Rumble.
They showed a tweet from Ember Moon, challenging Shayna to a rematch next week. They’re really rushing through and into a lot of stuff on this show, for some reason.
Tornado Six Man Tag Team Match
Undisputed Era vs. Sanity
The first part of this match was some vintage Bullet Club crowd brawling, except without the going into the crowd part and it was exactly as interesting. Then when they came back from break, they brought the weapons and everybody woke up. Everybody but Dain and Fish ended up brawling to the back for a bit, which the 00s Hardcore Title division mark inside of me was immediately into. Crowd brawling? Not keen. The same thing but in a narrow corridor? I’m in. What can I say? Once everyone was back, Dain ended up hurling Fish off the stage into the other four. The third part of the match turned into an actual wrestling match, with everyone trading moves. Dain put himself through a table missing a cannonball to Cole, allowing Undisputed Era to triple team Wolfe. Young tried to make a save with a kendo stick, but it didn’t last long. Dain then reappeared though and he managed to fight off all three single-handedly, leaving himself with Fish to hit the Ulster Plantation for the win. You’d assume Sanity finally get their title shot now.
RECOMMENDED VIEWING: If you stick with the main event, it gets better as it goes. Aside from the Gargano segment, the rest of the show is pretty skippable.
NXT WEEK: Pete Dunne versus Roderick Strong for the UK Championship, Shayna versus Ember for the Women’s Title and Aleister Black on the show.