NXT Recap 7/15/15: Women Rule the World
The NXT women's division has long been the shining becon of women's wrestling, at least in WWE, and it seems that this isn't something that's going to change anytime soon. The women of NXT have had one hell of a week thanks to Sasha Banks, Charlotte, and Becky Lynch making their main roster debut on Raw and making a real statement for change in the WWE Diva's division. However, this has little, if anything, to do with this weeks latest episode of NXT. Tonight we are given a real treat in the form of an NXT Women's Championship match between Sasha Banks and Charlotte. While normally, I'd expect this to end with some kind of Dusty finish due to interference, but once we see that this match is being billed as a main event that changes everything. While this isn't the first time that NXT has been headlined by a women's match, but Triple H has shown that he has a tremendous amount of respect for women's wrestling with how he has treated the NXT women's division, so I feel that match will be a real treat.
Jordan & Gable vs Samson & Cutler
We kick off this week's show with the culmination of the Chad Gable and Jason Jordan storyline. If you've been following NXT, or professional wrestling in general, for any amount of time, you should know exactly what is going to happen in this match. The match begins are Jordan refuses to allow Gable to start as the legal man. Gable eventually makes his way into the ring and gives us some incredibly impressive mat work. The two give a great performance and seal the deal with a great looking finishing move. Jordan and Gable really gelled together well in their first tag match and I can't wait to see more of them in the future. Here's hoping that the two have a fantastic run in NXT's tag division before moving on to great singles careers.
Winners: Gable & Jordan via Bridging Suplex Pin
Samoa Joe vs. Axel Tischer
Poor Axel Tischer, he was brought into NXT in late April of this year and was hyped by WWE as a rare recruit from Germany. Just three months later, here he is making his television debut as a jobber being fed to Samoa Joe. I understand that each of the new recruits has to earn their keep, but here WWE has a rare recruit from Germany and they offer him up to someone who really doesn't need it. Anyway, I digress, there isn't much of a match to speak of as Joe makes quick work of Tischer. Another standard Samoa Joe match, with the exception that it actually ends with a submission after the Muscle Buster. Overall this was a standard filler segment, typical of guys like Joe or Baron Corbin.
Winner – Samoa Joe via Rear Naked Choke
Give Corbin a Chance
I hope you have your DVRs ready for this one, because the WWE is going to shove Baron Corbin down your throat in an effort to get you to love this guy! This might leave your wondering exactly what WWE's methods are here, is it that Corbin has yet to be pinned in NXT? No? Well, he has a lot of cool tattoos and acts like a badass, is that it? No? Oh wait, they want you to like him because he has acomplishments in “real sports”. While this isn't expressly stated, he does say that he has “real accomplishments”, and shows off his championship rings. This segment didn't really do too much for me, honestly, at least not what I imagine WWE intended.
A Wild Eva Marie Appears
As if seeing Baron Corbin wasn't bad enough, we get a segment with Eva Marie right after we return from the commercial break. She makes her way out, much to the disdain of the crowd, and she proceeds to threaten us with the prospect of seeing her in a match next week. While I should probably cut her some slack, after all she has been training for an in-ring return. Eva Marie, to me, represents everything that is wrong with WWE's Diva's Division. She is a model that was brought into for her sex appeal and nothing else. She is an awful wrestler and she has no business being an in-ring competitor. If they want to repackage her as a valet then that's fine, but she needs to be kept out of the ring at all costs.
Blake & Murphy w/ Alexa Bliss vs. Fulton & Dawkins
I believe the trend of champions wrestling in non-title matches is something that needs to go away in WWE. If you are a champion, you should be putting your strap(s) on the line each time you enter that ring and you should show that you deserve those titles each time you do. There honest wasn't too much of interest that happened in this match, Blake and Murphy played it pretty safe and used some pretty standard heel tactics to maintain an advantage. Watching this match did make me feel a little bad for Fulton and Dawkins though, there are two guys that we've seen around NXT for quite awhile, and despite a number of televised matches (and possibly just as many gimmicks) they continue to struggle to get a foothold in the company. I know not everyone can make it to the big time, but it's still unfortunate to see these two passed up by so many wrestlers that have come after them.
Sami Zayn Update
Sami makes his way into the arena with a great reaction from the crowd. As Zayn steps into the ring, we see him get very emotional before he begins to speak. In fact, a few times through out this segment we see him have to fight back tears, thanks to the reaction he received from the crowd. Zayn tells us that he will likely be out for the rest of the year. It really is a shame that Sami will end up being out for so long. He's a great talent and his presence will be sorely missed on the NXT roster, especially now that we appear to be losing guys like Kevin Owens to the main roster. I would love to see Sami return early next year and get the NXT title back, but with the ever changing nature of NXT, it's really impossible to say what NXT will look like six months from now.
Not content to let us get to the main event, we see another quick segment featuring footage from the WWE panel at Comic Con. During the footage we see William Regal make a match for next month's Takeover event, NXT Takeover: Brooklyn. The match will see the NXT champion Finn Balor will have his first title defense against Kevin Owens. I'm not a fan of this style of booking, and this is no expection. There is no reason that Balor should go six weeks before his first NXT title defense, it just seems like bad writing to have that long of a gap.
Charlotte vs. Sasha Banks for the NXT Women's Championship
I simply don't know where to start when it comes to this match. I can imagine it will be an incredibly rare occurance that I am able to discuss match of the year candidates in back to back reviews. This match is without a doubt one of the greatest women's wrestling matches I have seen in WWE in years. It's interesting to think that, as a reviewer, it is my job to assess matches each week and convey to the readers my thoughts on each of these matches. However, this is the rare occasion where I am not sure that I can put into words just how great this match was. This is a match that I urge you to watch, hell if you already watched NXT, watch it again. These women truly are revolutionizing women's wrestling and they deserve every accolade that they have received to this point in their career. I may be repeating myself, but this is one of the greatest matches that has been seen on WWE programing in the 2015 calendar year, but don't take me word for it, do yourself a favor and go watch it for yourself.
It was fantastic to see the Sami Zayn make his return to the ring tonight, and I simply can't say enough about the women's title match. However, aside from these two bright spots and the tag team debut of Jordan and Gable, this show was pretty average. Eva Marie's segment did nothing for me, same for the Comic Con recap, and the Samoa Joe and Blake & Murphy squash matches are something I could have done without. A slight dip in the middle of the show was not enough to bring this show down too much, especially after that main event. NXT is on a roll and we can only hope that this rebound continues in the coming weeks.
Final Rating: 4 Bank Statements out of 5