Top 4 of NXT 6/20/12

There was so much lacking in new NXT. They were too concerned with trying to show you who you are supposed to be rooting for they forgot the reason NXT became popular again with the people who watched it was for the storytelling. Instead, I’m going to focus on what I enjoyed about NXT.

4. Bray Wyatt Promo

I was one of those people who actively disliked Husky Harris. I might have been in the minority, but his character didn’t have much going for him and while his wrestling skills were improving I wasn’t over my dislike. As Bray Wyatt he slowly began to win me over and this promo was the best one he’s done yet. His words went well with the soft southern sounds that fill the background along with shots that remind you of dark things happening in the swamps. I hope he keeps this, and works it into the character when he’s in the ring.

3. Ascension vs. Mike Dalton and CJ Parker

Really this one is about Ascension. The promo, the wrestling skills, they have it, but I had to give their opponents, Mike Dalton and CJ Parker, the nod because they are incredible athletes. But they were not who the new NXT wanted to showcase so they were brought out to lose to Ascension, Kenneth Cameron and Conor O’Brian. I still get chills when Ascension are mentioned, in the ring, have a promo, exist, and it was a particular fun highlight for me. I just wish they had been given a longer match, it would have shown their own skills while showing off the skills of Dalton and Parker.

2. Derrick Bateman and Johnny Curtis

YES! Some storytelling! The “hate” between Bateman and Curtis continues as they chat about their match next week on NXT. This after Curtis had just come out of the bathroom. Bateman asks him if he’s going to wash his hands and Curtis replies by wiping his hands on his shirt and saying, “They’re clean.” Bateman calls him a dirt bag and Regal in commentary says, “If I was Derrick Bateman I would rip his bloody throat out.” Looking forward to the match.

1. Michael McGillicutty vs. Tyson Kidd

Granted, I’ve seen these two put on better matches before, but they are still great in the ring and had the only match of the night that wasn’t a showcase for someone they want to promote. The first half of the show was filler, the second half of the show was almost story-telling without the same usual care. If you can’t give us the stories we wanted, at least continue to give us the matches we were used to. This isn’t Raw or Smackdown, and it’s not for a reason. No more squashes, give us two men (like McGillicutty and Kidd), two women, four men, whatever, that are out there to wrestle and show off their heart (pun intended).

Yes, I got a little more ranty than I meant to. I’m just hoping they are still working their way into a groove. We will see!

 

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Top 4 of NXT 6/13/12

The last episode of NXT Season 5, also known as NXT: Redemption. It’s a bit heart-breaking as we ended up watching this show take on a life of its own and become an excellent showcase of talent as opposed to wrestling bad matches and using challenges for redemption points. However, on the horizon is a show that combines our favorites from NXT with our favorites in FCW. That’s why…

4. The NXT Trailer

I am a huge fan of FCW so upon seeing some of my favorites in this trailer for the new NXT made me squeal. A bit. Sort of. Maybe. Okay, a lot of squealing like a school girl, leave me alone. The point is I will soon have a show that not only combines Mike Dalton, Rick Victor, Ascension, Garrett Dylan, Summer Rae, okay, I’m stopping, you get the point. There is some incredible talent in FCW that go mostly unnoticed and I love the chance and opportunity this will give them to wow you.

3. Johnny Curtis and Michael McGillicutty vs. The Usos

Curtis and McGillicutty make a good tag team because they seem to have working together down to an art, however their styles are so similar that you could have had just one in the ring the whole time and it would have seemed to be the same match. Curtis and McGillicutty, as Scott would say, are the “ground and pound,” type. The Usos strive on being quicker. Still excellent to see these men in this capacity for the last time. They all grew on me during this season.

2. Kaitlyn vs. Natalya

These two divas are in my top four of divas, along with Maxine and Layla. Kaitlyn and Natalya have this spark in the ring, especially with each other. They are both beautiful and talented and never take themselves too seriously while at the same time taking what they are doing in the ring to heart. I was so tickled by this match I nearly made it number one, but nothing can beat…

1. Tyler Reks and Curt Hawkins vs. Derrick Bateman and Percy Watson

I mean, come on. Two of my favorite men in the company were in this match. Granted, on opposing teams, but I didn’t really lose either way. Hawkins is no slouch himself! Reks and Bateman go at each other and for awhile Bateman looks like he could win against the man, but ultimately Bateman and Watson do lose to the Kings of Change. An excellent match to start up the end and to give us a chance to say goodbye to the men who have made us laugh, cringe, and cheer.

And thanks to @SunnyDewhite for this wonderful NXT Tribute. As it goes out we say goodbye…

Top 4 of NXT 5/30/12

We are reaching the end of the NXT that is being taped during Smackdown. What will happen to that extra hour? Will it be shorter shows now? How will we see Full Sail’s NXT? And what about FCW? A few of those guys seem to think it is just being completely abolished. As usual, watching NXT leaves more questions than it gives any sort of answers and Vince continues to flip us off. Which is why I have a certain number 4.

4. Maxine on Commentary

Maxine’s being on commentary during the Kaitlyn vs. Tamina match was a big flip off of our own, of the writer’s own, of the NXT superstars own right back at Vince. Kill the storylines, fine, but we’ll make sure there is some sort of interaction between these superstars other than being randomly thrown in the ring together, or at least seemingly random in the 6 Man match. Maxine’s weakest point is her commentary, probably because she’s much better being sensual or angry than she is speaking with a clear head, but she still holds her own and chats up Regal while Mathews sits there and botches line after line. It’s as close as we are getting to storylines until Full Sail and I thank whoever thought this bit of brilliance up for at least trying to give us something.

3. Kaitlyn vs. Tamina

Regal comments on how strong both of these women are and that they can deadlift over 300 lbs. Either way, these two women have come a long way and Kaitlyn’s submissions are looking impressive. The match is nothing new for either, though, and it drops it a bit.

2. 6 Man Tag Match

Justin Gabriel makes his return on NXT after his injury by teaming up with Percy Watson and Derrick Bateman against everyone’s favorite NXT heels Michael McGillicutty, JTG, and Johnny Curtis. Curtis asked they not call him creepy, then came down to the ring looking… well, creepy. For as long as the match was it started off slow and didn’t really pick up until those last couple of minutes. In those last couple of minutes it was fast paced and frenzied, but in a way that makes you laugh and enjoy the ride. Bateman jumps out and body surfs, or planks, on two of the guys and Gabriel takes the win without using a 450 Splash, which totally earned him points with me. I think wrestlers should have multiple finishers, and Gabriel still had great movement on this new one. But, poor JTG was pinned (and bleeding) and it made me a little sad.

 

 

 

 

 

1. Tyler Reks and Curt Hawkins vs. The Usos

Someone might be mad at me later, but this match had the most cohesive movements and consistency. The Usos, who are good for being related to Rikishi and being brothers, looked up to par in this match-up and I can’t help but think it’s because of Reks and Hawkins. Have Reks and Hawkins had a bad match since their return to NXT in September? While everyone comments about their wearing “Hart” colors (because hey, there’s no way color schemes have ever been repeated in the WWE ever, it’s not like everyone doesn’t wear black and red…) they are missing the match. When Reks and Hawkins step out my attention is immediately drawn to them and I can’t help but cheer, in my living room, when I’m by myself with the cats and scaring them. A lot of back and forth in this match and it was the least predicable of the matches since Reks and Hawkins won! Yeah, in case you can’t tell, this was my favorite match of the night, and might have been my favorite match of the week so far.

Top 4 of NXT 5/23/12

Once again NXT has forgone plot of any kind and become NXTStars instead of what we had grown to love, which was a show about stories and the wrestling ability. Chris swore up and down because Drew finally gets to be used in the store and it’s when it’s gone away from storylines, leaving WWE with the continued stigma of never allowing us to have conclusion. Le sigh. However there were some decent matches on this episode! And some not-so-decent ones.

4. Heath Slater vs. Percy Watson

Look, I’ll be honest. I almost left this off in favor of just putting William Regal’s commentary at number four, and I know the fandom is wondering why the Hell I didn’t. Sadly, I’m going to say the reason people don’t want me to: Heath Slater. Despite an obnoxious personality he’s a good wrestler and he made Watson look good. When Watson originally showed up way back when to one of the original seasons of NXT I liked him… for an episode. Then his Eddie Murphy impression got on my nerves so badly I couldn’t handle him anymore. Then he returned sans glasses and I was a bit renewed in liking him. Then his wrestling decided not to develop any further. He’s not great, Slater is better, and that’s why Regal’s commentary nearly took the spot.

3. Maxine vs. Alicia Fox

Alicia Fox has very little depth perception, a common problem with the divas, but Maxine does not. She comes out and has the facial expressions, the moves, and tells a story of anger and loathing as she goes after Alicia. With no storylines in NXT any longer until the new format it means they need to do it in the ring and on commentary. Regal and Maxine take it away on this one and Maxine wins again with a sleeper. I do adore she plays around with her submissions as well. Especially since there was no way Fox was holding Maxine up the way other divas have been able to.

2. Johnny Curtis and Drew McIntyre

Again with Khali and Ezekiel Jackson! This time it’s Curtis and McIntyre tortured by whoever’s idea, though I refuse to blame the NXT writer I fell in love with (creatively!) back in September when Reks and Hawkins first came back as a tag team. However, Curtis and McIntyre have a lot of fun with this match, despite the fact that they are going to lose horribly. It’s just a shame they waited so long to move Drew over, now that the storylines are gone. If anyone could have given him some screen time it would have been NXT, and if anything could have drive NXT’s viewership up, it would have been Drew McIntyre.

1. Derrick Bateman vs. Jinder Mahal

USA! USA! USA! Oh yes, finally, a USA chant for a man who is actually from the US! It’s been awhile! And I’m glad it was for the man who emulates Chicks and America, Derrick Bateman. Derrick looks less than thrilled to be in this match, and who would be happy to know they are going out to lose to the camel clutch. I don’t know if you guys and gals have been paying attention, but I’m not a fan of this movie. Mostly because it’s the only one he uses. For the record, I hate Orton winning all of the time with the RKO as well, and I love Orton, so it’s not hate on Mahal, it’s the move. The first time I watched it I enjoyed Derrick, because he’s Derrick. He motivates the crowd in this match, his facial expressions tell the story while Regal compliments him on the side. When Mahal throws Derrick, and he slides, pops back up, and knees Mahal, it’s amazing. Once again the talent of Derrick comes alive. Watching it the second time I can’t help but hope that perhaps there is a higher meaning to this. Mahal is widely hated every time. Was this the help Derrick needed to get a little more over with the live crowds? Maybe I’m reading too much into it, but I’m hoping.

I guess William Regal is the sort of co-star for number 1 since he added life to every match. Without the storylines Regal is heavily relied upon for those thoughts and stories. It’s just a shame Mathews doesn’t play along.

My Smackdown Live Experience for May 1, 2012.

SPOILERS!!!

Hey, what a surprise, NXT was my favorite part of the night.

We started off standing in line to get into the Huntington Center and in front of us someone referred to Lord Tensai as, “that Chinese guy.” I had to hold my breath and count to 10 or else I was going to jump on him and pummel him into oblivion. Behind us a woman called Chris Jericho gay, which meant it was Chris’s turn to hold his breath and count to 10.

We were a bit more leisurely walking around Huntington Center as they let people in an hour before hand and the lines moved relatively quickly. Of course, when we have time, there were no Ziggler shirts available to buy. We did buy a program for $10. No Derrick in it and it still had Jack Korpela in it. I love Jack, but perhaps this program needs some updating?

The dark match: Ezekiel Jackson against… Dean Ambrose again! This one really was more of the Dean Ambrose Show. Ambrose talked ahead of time, was booed like crazy, and then won the match. Kids whined. This was a worse crowd than the night before. Let me tell you about the people in front of me before I go on to the show.

A mom and dad brought their two sons and their two friends along to enjoy Smackdown. We were on the second floor (which were actually great seats since it was a small arena). The balcony has just a metal barrier that is easily climbable and the metal “ledge” was about the width of six inches. It’s not a lot to keep someone from climbing right over, and those kids were leaning all over it and around. The mom and dad once each told the kids not to lean on it, but they didn’t listen. Dad got on his phone and never got off of it through the whole show and Mom just didn’t give a crap. So I was yelling at the kids most of the time and whenever someone got up there wasn’t a security guy in sight. Yeah, I was doing anything I could to ignore the Hell out of those kids.

The first thing taped at Smackdown is NXT, likely so they can get the yellow ropes out of the way. Imagine my excitement when Tyler Reks and Curt Hawkins walked in and took their seats at ringside. I immediately got on my phone and sent Reks a direct message on twitter, because I had to tell someone he was there, and I’m not about spoilers on my timeline. I said, “I see you!” in my excitement.

Regal acknowledged them first thing before NXT really was rolling by staring them down with that smug look he does so well. Unfortunately you only see the tail end of it on NXT. Actually, NXT minimized Reks and Hawkins being in the audience, which was a shame. Reks and Hawkins were very interactive with the fans, talking to those around them, holding up their signs, and even getting a “Regal Sucks” chant started. Let me explain why that in itself was amazing. Toledo was all about faces. Every time a face walked out the screams were deliriously loud, and the crowd screamed just as loudly when Regal came out before NXT started. So when Reks and Hawkins had the crowd shouting, “Regal Sucks!” it was quite the feat.

At one point Reks and Hawkins held up their tickets for Matt Striker to see when he went over and interacted with them.

Reks was on his phone at one lull during what would be a commercial break and Chris pointed out, “Reks is texting someone.” Wasn’t I excited when my phone buzzed a moment after Reks put his phone down.

Now, all of this with Reks and Hawkins that was going on, besides the end where Regal throws them out of the arena, never made it to air. That’s a shame, because Reks and Hawkins might have been the most exciting part of the show, and I love most of the men on NXT. NXT was not a boring show, but the fact that Reks and Hawkins were in the audience actually gave the audience a sort of buzz, a contact high of greatness because this should have been shown throughout the entire show. Clips of them should have made it on. Their show of support for their fellow athletes as they applauded the wins. They were nothing but entertaining and NXT only showed one part, and that was them being thrown out? Who was thinking what there? They had an excellent storyline, an excellent shot, and excellent athletes and decided it would be in the background. When I mentioned Reks and Hawkins were there as we watched NXT the next night I was asked no less than 5 times where they were. No one saw them until the ending segment unless they knew to look.

I would like to point out that JTG also had a loud pop. Crazy loud. The kids loved him, and I was screaming with the kids. I’ve always liked JTG and he’s a great wrestler. I believe this is the first time we had the chance to see JTG wrestle at any of the shows. He had been at a few of the other Smackdown tapings, but we didn’t get to see him wrestle.

Not the first time we were able to see Kidd wrestle, though, and that’s as exciting as it is every other time.

But where the Hell was Derrick on NXT?

After NXT was over I already knew the rest of the show was going to go down hill. I mean, what was going to top Reks and Hawkins for me? And Kidd? Unless Derrick made it to Smackdown?? That might top it!

Superstars as a taping of Khali and Jinder Mahal where the crowd proved they lacked in intelligence. As the match was going on not once, but twice a “USA” chant was started. I was beginning to get embarrassed to be a part of this crowd! Khali was another those little kids were screaming for non stop.

Time for Smackdown! And since I’ve been asked a few times, no, Lilian did not have any shoe malfunctions and never tripped. Loved her zebra print dress.

The first match of Smackdown ended in a disqualification. The second match of Smackdown, which was Brodus Clay against Jack Swagger, also ended in a disqualification in almost the same way. Later during the show Swagger and Ziggler came out demanding a rematch and this time the ending was Swagger walking out on Clay and refusing to continue the match, which will likely be the ending that makes it to television instead of having two disqualifications in a row.

I don’t get why Clay has children in the ring with him to dance. They don’t look happy, they look freaked out. Or like they have no idea what they are doing in the ring.

To my mixed excitement, suddenly Derrick Bateman came out. YA- shit, this means it’s going to be bad, doesn’t it? At first I thought they were going to feed him to Damien Sandow, which I might have been more pissed about than what it ended up being. After a speech from Sandow it ended up being Ryback. I like Ryback, but Derrick deserved better than a squash match. Now I know why he was barely on NXT, and sacrificing a good match on NXT, or plot, or whatever they likely would have done with him, instead he was thrown to Ryback. Again, I like Ryback, I don’t like his matches and I don’t like they fed Derrick to him. My mood just kept tumbling.

The main event: pretty much another rematch from the beginning of the show. They fit in a re-record, ran a bit over, and still it was probably the shortest taping I would say of Smackdown I’ve seen.

The after dark match was Randy Orton against Kane. This was entertaining in that these two men seem to have a bit more fun with doing things when the camera is off of them. Sure, they were still in character, but they looked less stiff against one another.

Top 4 of WWE NXT 4/25/12.

 

As I sat down to write this blog, Chris started chanting, “NXT! NXT!” in a hushed sort of whisper. Why? Because it is his favorite show ever week. This combines the wrestling that should be found on Superstars with storylines that usually have me jumping up and down a bit. This week in storylines we get the explanation of why Maxine and Curtis get to switch sides their handcuffs are on, we get to see Natalya accuse Kaitlyn of being a bit of a flirt, and JTG makes his triumphant return. (Screw you guys, I love JTG)

There was so much good in the plot I assumed this time it did not need a place on the Top 4. This time, it’s all about the wrestlers, and commentary?

4. Michael McGillicutty on Commentary

William Regal was out this week, as was Josh Mathews, and instead of going with my preferred team here (which would be anything that involved Scott Stanford) NXT went with something a little clever. Matt Striker paired up during each match with someone different. The very last match of the night Striker had Michael McGillicutty and about halfway through I forgot I was listening to a wrestler on commentary. Out of all of the guests (others were Hornswoggle, Maxine, and Johnny Curtis) McGillicutty had the smoothest ability and proved he knew what he was talking about. Well, I’ll be.

3. Tamina and Kaitlyn vs. Maxine and Natalya

Are they going to make Natalya a heel again? Earlier in the show Natalya and Kaitlyn had a bit of a tiff, with Natalya accusing Kaitlyn about her “just friends” antics with the men of NXT, this time one of those men being Tyson Kidd. Cute segment, and again lovely to see Natalya doing something. NXT proves it’s love of tag matches and divas and throws these four women in the ring. Natalya and Maxine clearly don’t like one another, and even argue during the match, which leads to Tamina winning it for her team. The downside to this match is when Striker says Tamina is trying to get out of the shadow of Jimmy Snuka, and then they show clips of how much she’s like Jimmy and her moves emulate his. Um, that’s embracing it, not trying to step out of the shadow. If you want to step out of the shadow you do something a little different or you are, basically, a shadow.

2. Derrick Bateman vs. JTG

Right off the bat, Bateman starts with a dropkick. Solace rejoices! And he’s up against JTG, who says the show was falling apart without him. While that might not be true, I did miss seeing JTG. He has fun with his stereo-typing character and has great selling skills. When Bateman wins this match JTG moves in a way that almost seems impossible, and we had to rewind five or six (or ten) times. This was the first match of the night, and I was easily convinced this had to be number one. I mean, Bateman! JTG! Excellent match to open with and it was given a proper amount of time. So how did it not make number one?

1. Tyson Kidd vs. Johnny Curtis

When does Kidd not have the number one match of NXT? He’s amazing, and this week he’s against Johnny Curtis. Kidd brings out the best in anyone he’s wrestling, and Curtis was already almost there. Curtis keeps that “weird” persona while in the ring, sort of licking Kidd’s hand at one point, but it does not undermine his ability. Kidd wins it though, with the new submission that he wants twitter to name for him.

On a side note, it is worth watching to find out why it was Tyson Kidd against Johnny Curtis for this show.

Top 4 Things About Derrick Bateman

Derrick Bateman. Unless you have been living under a rock, or do not follow me on twitter or read my blogs, you will know that he’s currently my favorite wrestler. Is he perfect at the craft yet? No. But can he be the guy one day? Of course. He has the potential, and here is where that potential lies.

4. Overall Personality

Well, considering I’m in Ohio now, watching the man support the teams that, for the most part, don’t have a prayer, is entirely entertaining to me. Watching him respond to fans, no matter how short, shows he knows how to connect. He wears funny tees and is not against wearing the ones fans give him. His charisma floods over through twitter and in every smile, smirk, and squint of his eyes. He’s one of those men you think you would want a drink with, even if you don’t drink.

3. Mantastic Hair

I seem to have an obsession with hair. Scott’s gray hair, Kidd saying goodbye to the flip, Reks and his dreads, and now making it on a Top 4 list once again is a man’s hair. But look at his hair! Who else can pull off wild curls the way Bateman does? Kudos to the coiffed style.

2. Comedic Timing

Bateman shone as someone who knew about comedy the first moment I saw him. Now, with more to work with, he kind of runs away with NXT every week. Whether he’s saying, “Roll it Jumbotron,” or arguing with Curtis about things are getting weird and lost fiancées, the man always seems to know when and how to deliver a good line.

1. War Cries and Dropkicks

The man can wrestle, but I must admit my favorite part of his wrestling is the dropkicks and the war cries. When he’s doing certain moves he screams out, almost overcome by the excitement of winning against his opponent. The war cry often is a sign he’s going to do a dropkick. It’s become a game of counting how many dropkicks he does while in the ring, and not in a bad way. The man does not simply do one variation so it is always entertaining to see how he’s going to do his at least two of a match.

It all makes a great mix and is four of the elements that make up my love for Derrick Bateman. Have any other thoughts? Don’t like my list? Think I missed something big? Let me know!

Top 4 of WWE’s NXT 4/11/12

These two make me think twice about wearing this shirt as no one could make it look as good as these two!

In a few conversations with Hellions, the man who hosts my blogs on his site and knows more in general about wrestling than me, I’ve realized a few things. One, in getting to know a writer for NXT and learning he’s a former soap opera writer, it makes sense why the storylines are where they are. Two, Hellions pointed out to me NXT seems to be the show more aimed towards women. Sitting back, looking over NXT, I’ve realized it’s probably a huge part of the reason I enjoy it while some fans still don’t like it. I like drama. And comedy. And facial expressions. I also like good wrestling. This show brings me the things I would love to see in a show. Which is why today’s Top 4 had to be broken down the way it is.

4. Tamina, Darren, Titus
4.3 – Titus: He gave Tamina the coconut tree Darren wanted to give her! And has been increasingly funny. And I haven’t wanted to stab him in about three weeks.

- 4.2 – Tamina: Loves the coconut tree and commends Titus, to Darren, how thoughtful he is.

- 4.1 – Darren: Heartbroken, near face turn, and I can’t help rooting for him in this upcoming love triangle.

3. Maxine, Tyler Reks, Curt Hawkins, Derrick Bateman, and Kaitlyn
3.3 – Derrick Bateman and Kaitlyn: Hello Chicks and America shirts, hello best facial expressions of the show

- 3.2 – Tyler Reks and Curt Hawkins: It’s interesting to see Tyler Reks playing the part of someone a little confused while Hawkins plays the part of the man who knows what’s going on, until he forgets his cane somewhere very important.

- 3.1 – Maxine: She flirts her way through with Regal, figures out how transparent the Reks/Hawkins kidnapping is, and generally knows how to act and bluff her way through anything. The woman has more chemistry with anyone who walks on screen then anyone I’ve seen.

2. Percy Watson vs. Johnny Curtis

I’m inclined to put matches before storylines on the list because first and foremost… this is a wrestling show! Unfortunately this show only had two matches and they were still longer and better put together matches than anything we saw on Raw or Smackdown this week. Curtis and Watson prove to be a tool for Maxine to distract Regal and take him away for a little while, but in the meantime these two tear up the squared circle and put on a non-stop show.

1. Tyson Kidd vs. Michael McGillicutty

The two are 1-1 in their matches and William Regal informs us that this is the last match. This will determine who the winner is. Despite believe I knew who would win going in this was still a tense match up. McGillicutty reminds me why I originally enjoyed him and brings personality and style to the ring against a man who could arguably be the best technical wrestler in the WWE. (arguably, I could see a few other names thrown into the debate.) Kidd has continually brought PPV quality matches to television, or the internet, in the past months and despite being on the show everyone keeps talking about wanting off of he never skimps in the ring. MCGillicutty gives it back just as equally, culminating into what could be more than match of the week.

Top 4 of WWE NXT 4/4/12

I really wanted to break this into more sections, but I cheat enough during my Top 4, so here’s 4. Ish.

4. All the promos

Darren: “I’ve made reservations at McDonalds!”
Derrick: “It’s getting weird.” Johnny: “It’s my line!” Derrick: “That was my fiancée.”
Johnny: “We are not going to get outdone by a couple of homeless looking guys.”
Maxine: “They obviously don’t know how weird we can make it.”

And oh yeah, Reks and Hawkins were the kidnappers. If you want hilarity, this show has it. Yup, that’s all I’m saying because I think the characters speak for themselves.

3. Natalya vs. Kaitlyn

I expected this match to be good. Natalya is a seasoned wrestler and probably the best one in the diva’s division. She is up against Kaitlyn, who is still green but has improved immensely since her debut. In this match you could not have guessed that Kaitlyn was still a bit wobbly. She and Natalya both move gracefully and I highly enjoyed this match. NXT is the WWE show (that’s not FCW) that knows how to actually showcase their women.

2. Tyler Reks vs. Percy Watson

Okay, so the man I favor in this match lost. That does not stop Reks and Watson from putting on a great match and Reks doing that whole selling thing I talked about in a blog dedicated to him. Okay, so during one part he totally no sold Watson’s move and popped right back up, but I think that is a testament to the move doing no impact. Despite that this match was the second best of the night.

 

1. Derrick Bateman vs. Michael McGillicutty

Okay, so the man I favor in this match lost. Déjà vu. Still, Bateman and his drop kicks rule this match and McGillicutty, as I’ve said, has come a long way. These two wrestle around each other, against each other, and destroy each other with energy that is lost on the bigger shows. These two are almost tireless which contributes to the how of McGillicutty winning, but it in no way made Bateman look bad, even if Regal was a commentator of little faith during this match.

Top 4 of WWE NXT 3/28/12

I was going to cancel the Top 4 this week because there were only two matches and one segment, damn the Road to Wrestlemania. But then I kept looking at it wondering if I could write a straight review of the show, and the answer simply was, ‘no’. I am just not good at continually writing about things I don’t like, it’s kill me even to mention that the second match of the night was Titus O’Neil versus Jey Uso. While I love the Usos they work better as a team and my irritation with O’Neil just will not go away.

So I fixed it.

4. William Regal

He wins on commentary in this episode. Regal is always a pleasure to listen to but there was something about this episode where he sounded a bit more enthusiastic, especially when talking up Derrick Bateman. You know that’s always a winner for me. Still, this man is an expert at hating the talent while talking them up while not concentrating on the match at all and still making it sound great if he so chooses. During this week’s matches he talks up Derrick and Hunico making you believe these men are worthy of more attention than either get. There is a good reason William Regal is my second favorite commentator currently with the WWE and he proves it in this episode.

3. Darren Young

My guess is they are about to turn Darren Young face again. Why else would they have him crushing on Tamina, buying her a coconut tree because she had told Derrick she wanted one, and say that he would lie, cheat, and steal in the ring but never to a woman. Honestly, I liked Darren better as a face. Darren has that easy-going attitude and smile that works better in face situations or attitude. He also made my second favorite commentator of the night when he went and joined Regal, Mathews, and Jimmy Uso to help call the Titus O’Neil vs. Jey Uso match.

2. Maxine and Johnny

Who’d have thought that these two would turn into such entertaining characters? Maxine was my least favorite diva on NXT Season 3 and while I liked Curtis I had not watched enough of his season of NXT to really have cared that much. He was funny in his Smackdown promos but there was no real character to him and Maxine had just reiterated that she would always end up, “On top.” Now the two of them have found a flow and work well off of one another as they search for Striker, letting us know that Striker on Superstars is just a stunt double. Johnny works creepy like no one, and I mean no one, really has before while Maxine is always read for a cat fight with men three times her size. The pint-sized diva and the towering weirdo work their stuff against the other Superstars of NXT and do it well.

1. Derrick Bateman vs. Hunico

YAY! Derrick WRESTLED! His last match was a mixed tag match and, let’s be honest, gave him very little wrestling time to strut his stuff. Derrick was up against Hunico who, no matter what you think of his character, is an amazing wrestler. Together these two work miracles and bring what should have been the main event to the forefront of the show. Derrick does what has become pretty much famous to him now: dropkicks, while Hunico moves swiftly and smoothly around him. Even though Derrick loses the match I was so happy to see him wrestle, and against someone I have a good amount of respect for, that I’m fine with it. If you were only going to watch NXT for one thing this week, watch this match. (but really, watch it all) Oh, and did I mention Derrick gives Kaitlyn a ride to the ring? On his back. Somehow this was just too cute.