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NXT Rank'd

Hello and welcome, to the newest wrestling news group: The Four Horsemen of NXT! This group consists of Wyatt Leves, Michael Christopher, Paul Rathert, and Dave Johnston. We will review certain or all NXT matches for that night, starting with the NXT episode of 2/25/15.

Hideo Itami vs. Bull Dempsey-by Dave Johnston
This match was a fantastic match of speed in Hideo and pure aggression in Bull. Bull starts out the match very quick driving Hideo into the corner and dominated for the first few minutes trying to knock off his opponent quickly. The announce team made it a point to remind us that Bull came up short at Take Over. What I like is that Bull completely
dominated Hideo for most of the match. I don't understand why they mentioned Bailey during this match. Hideo comes back and defeats Bull with a single leg drop kick. After the match, Tyler Breeze comes out of no where with a superkick, then tried to take a selfie with an accessorized selfie stick. Hideo comes back and beats down Tyler furthering their fued. Honestly, I wish this match would of had more time since the only two guys besides Sami Zayn that hold my attention are Hideo and Finn Balor. I am sure the reason this match is as short as it is was to give time to the main event. These two guys, Hideo and Bull are both very talented, but Bull is too much like Kevin Owens. I implore you, Triple H, please find a way to make Owens and Dempsey different for each other or make them a tag team.

3 out of 5 stars

The Lucha Dragons vs. Tye Dillinger and Jason Jordan- by Wyatt Leves
Just the idea of this match to begin with was good. It was basically agility versus strength. Sin Cara and Kalisto are both very agile wrestlers and show that with how they perform. Tye Dillinger and Jason Jordan both have the strength and muscles, making this a very intriguing match to watch. Overall, it was a fairly good match, although they could've changed a few things. The Lucha Dragons are a great tag team and work together excellently. I liked the match personally, just because Sin Cara is one of my favorite wrestlers. The ending to the match was pretty good, and will most likely start a rivalry between Tye and Jason. The cooperation between both teams were good, however I believe they could've done more as teams. I think that the match was excellent and showed how well the Lucha Dragons can work together, especially against two guys that have double the strength.

3 or 3.5 stars out of 5

Bailey vs. Becky Lynch- by Michael Christopher
The first thing that comes to mind with this match is the length, it wasn’t even that long of a match but it makes me wonder if people would enjoy the main roster’s divas division if they were given as much time as the NXT Divas but that’s another debate for another time. Overall I thought this was a pretty solid match that had me drawn in as much as the first 3 bouts on the show. Bayley continues to improve and I loved the spot where she drop-kicked through the bottom ropes, it showed she is really starting to add that excitement factor to her in ring work. How about Becky Lynch though? Becky was basically an afterthought just a month ago but now she is arguably becoming one of the top NXT divas as her in-ring ability continues to improve. If I were to criticize this match at all it would be to say that while it was a solid match, it was kind of missing some excitement but that’s okay seeing as it wasn’t a ppv match and it was pretty well worked for an NXT taping and Bayley tapping out did catch me off guard. While I like the fact that Becky is getting a bit of a push, I have to admit I think a loss here for Bayley does kind of hurt. I thought they were going to be positioning Bayley to be the next contender after Sasha and Charlotte but maybe the creative team has different plans.

3 out of 5 stars

Finn Balor vs. The Brian Kendrick
Kevin Owens joining the announce team had me constantly rewinding to make sure I didn’t miss anything between what was going on in the ring and in the booth.

In the ring we got to see HBK-trained Kendrick for the first time since his second WWE stint ended in 2009. He had a bit of ring rust to me, landing awkwardly on a flip over Balor into the ring from the apron and appearing to tweak his ankle. Later it looked like he didn’t cinch a Tiger Suplex tightly and Balor landed on his traps and the back of his head, chin to chest. It wasn’t pretty and I held my breath because you could tell it hurt, bad. Balor almost fell sideways out of the ensuing bridge and if you read his lips it looked like he said, “dammit,” before the false finish.

The way they are rehashing what transpired at Takeover: Rival to continuously portray Owens as a cold-blooded heel is working because I’m buying-in after initial resistance. When Kendrick landed awkwardly and Balor gave him a second to recuperate Owens commented that Balor should’ve capitalized and that it was a gift. It almost made me wonder whether it was a planned miscue. Riley stood his ground eloquently when he looked Owens in the eyes and said, “I’m a man…and…as a man…I wouldn’t have done that to my friend.” The stare Owens gave him after that could freeze the inside of a Tauntaun. Riley’s reaction of totally disrespectful and dismissive body language was so well-executed that it made Owens reaction easily believable. It brought the entire segment together and not one word was spoken during that exchange. Riley is going to get instant face-pop if this is a temporary storyline on the way to Owens/Balor.

I take a star for the miscues in the match, but give a little bit more back for the return of a solid cruiserweight (albeit in an as yet undisclosed role) and the chaos in the announce booth.

4.25 out of 5 stars

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