WWE NXT Report: April 20, 2010

Posted: April 21, 2010 in NXT, Show Report
Tags: ,

Courtesy of wwe.com

Last night’s NXT was nothing out of the ordinary. What we did get, however, is a monumental upset and the furthering of an intriguing storyline. Here are my thoughts on the show broken down by each segment.

Rock ‘Em Sock ‘Em Rookies Challenge

This week’s contest was a American Gladiators-like challenge where the goal was to knock the other man off of his pedestal. The first-round match-ups included Slater/Otunga, Sheffield/Barrett, Bryan/Tarver, and Gabriel/Young. Slater, Sheffield, Bryan, and Young advanced to the second round. Michael Tarver amazes me every week and in a bad way. I know this is scripted, but how does he NOT go home in three weeks when the next Pro’s Poll is revealed? The only man lower than him in the first poll, Young, is on a roll and is definitely not going home based on an interesting storyline brewing between Young and Luke Gallows (more on that later). Nothing else to really say.

Wade Barrett package

I liked the incorporation of the NXT Pros into the video package. It let us know what they really think about each Rookie. Wade Barrett is a stud and is going to make quite a splash on the main roster if and when he finally makes it.

David Otunga (with R-Truth) v. Justin Gabriel

Good to see R-Truth has recovered from being blown up on Monday. I liked how Otunga put his hand in front of Truth’s face to signal him to be quiet. If Otunga wants to progress as a heel (which the WWE intended him to be), he needed to further himself from Truth. When NXT premiered, Otunga was cheered because of his affiliation with Truth. I like the direction he’s moving in. A solid match that showcased Otunga’s strength and cockiness as well as Gabriel’s high-flying offense and speed. This match was alot about storytelling and did so well. Truth smiling when Gabriel hit the suicide dive to the outside and refusing to grab Otunga’s hands when he cried for help before losing in a sunset flip was very interesting. I wonder where it will go.

To skip the pomp and circumstance, Skip Sheffield wins the Rock ‘Em Sock ‘Em Rookie Challenge and earns himself a feature on WWE.com for the next day. Sheffield, after being runner-up in the first two competitions, finally wins one and needed to. Sheffield has lacked face time and this is his chance. I don’t Sheffield cracking the top four, but he will put up a fight, I’m sure.

Michael Tarver (with Carlito) v. Skip Sheffield v. Darren Young

Tarver cuts a promo before the match demanding competition. Carlito likes it and not surprisingly, since Tarver is headed down the same career path as Carlito. Sheffield is not a tweener, just extraordinarily confused on whether he wants a positive crowd reaction or not. Originally a one-on-one match, C.M. Punk interjects and adds Young to the mix in order for him to ride his momentum. I really like how Punk has warmed up to Young a bit to the dismay of Gallows and his line about the “stick-fighting thing.” Tarver and Sheffield team up as the winless Rookies try to take out the one on a hot streak. The match ends when Gallows interferes (in plain sight of the referee, I might add) and yells to Tarver to take advantage, but his plan backfires when Young hits his full-nelson facebuster slam for the victory. I think this Gallows/Young feud is starting to eclipse Bryan/Miz in terms of what intrigues me the most. It is too early to break up the SES, but dissention in the ranks makes for a good angle down the road. Young is now the winningest Rookie at 6-2.

Heath Slater package

Much like Barrett’s, a good package showing how the Pros feel about the respective Rookies. Interesting split between the heels and the faces on how they feel about Slater, while Barrett was universally praised. I liked Jericho’s bit, which was a good tease to the upcoming match.

Heath Slater v. Chris Jericho (with Wade Barrett)

In a five-minute match, Slater recorded the biggest upset in NXT’s short history when he defeated Chris Jericho with a roll-up after countering the Walls Of Jericho. It played well into Jericho’s overconfidence to have him lose. His hissy fit afterwards was priceless. Slater gets an important victory. Does he have a finisher? It seems that all of the matches he wins are via roll-up. He needs to change that soon.

Check out my Superstars recap on Friday right here at #1 Pretender!


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