Hey, kids! It’s the Botching One with another look into “The Illustrious Future”. As we said on “Royalty in the Round”, NXT TakeOver completely stole the weekend in terms of ring work. I was sure it’d be a little closer but it really was “no contest”. I went into all of that in the Afterglow. This is really the first episode of the show since then as last week was basically a recap show.
I must also apologize for the lateness of this blog. In truth, I’m covering this while I watch and this has simply been my first shot at watching it. I will do better from here on out. Okay, on with the show…
In-ring segment – Undisputed Era (Adam Cole [Bay Bay], Kyle O’Reilly, Bobby Fish, Roderick Strong)
For those just tuning in, Roderick Strong officially turned at “TakeOver”. The jury is out on whether or not this was a good thing. If his promo here is any indication…well…we still don’t know. It wasn’t terrible or anything; it was just…there. He gave us the stereotypical promo. We really didn’t learn any motivation for turning on Dunne. His only response was that it was likely only a matter of time until Pete turned on him and that all he cared about was his UK Championship. Why would he not want to carry both? That made zero sense.
Everyone else did really well. Adam Cole (Bay Bay), in particular, is so drenched in charisma that when he’s talking, everyone else kinda disappears. All of them make better heels so far. I’m willing to give Roderick a chance in this role but so far, so expected and pro forma.
Adam Cole (Bay Bay) vs. Oney Lorcan
In truth, Oney is one that has completely bored me since his debut in NXT. They’ve done nothing with him and he just isn’t that interesting to me. Cole is well-taped up due to the ladder match and Lorcan went right for those ribs. Cole sold it like a rock star throughout too. Of course, this had to have a completely screwy finish and it did. Roderick was responsible for the move that took Oney out so Adam Cole (Bay Bay) could pin him – thus giving him more heel time. Danny Burch (another one that has meant little) came out for the save but Adam Cole (Bay Bay) put an end to that.
They’re telling a great story with her and she’s pulling it off brilliantly. She’s doing what Kevin Owens was doing when he started. He cares for no one and only wants to conquer. It fits her well and I’m looking forward to where it’s going next.
Cinéma de Bianca
I like where she’s headed, though I absolutely don’t like the braid-as-whip nonsense. I know it’s a gimmick she’s hanging herself on but she’ll need more than that to advance. Thankfully, she has it so this could be good. I’m interested to see what else she’s got.
Heavy Machinery (Otis Dozovic & Tucker Knight) vs. Tino Sabbatelli & Riddick Moss
Here’s a tale of two tag teams. On one hand, we’ve got Heavy Machinery – a team who are a lot of fun. They’re big guys with serious entertainment value – especially Otis…okay, only Otis but he has enough personality to make them both fun. They showed it here during this match. Both of them standing on Moss & Sabbatelli was an absolutely riot. Then there’s Tino & Riddick. They tried to inject some personality into them and it just didn’t work. Neither of them has much charisma and their ring work is decent but not much more than that. I’m supposed to hate them but I don’t. I feel nothing. Tino was getting the “Tino sucks” chant but he had no clue what to do with it. Heck, he barely responded to it.
What I didn’t expect was for Tino to turn on Riddick which, of course, lost them the match. Something needed to shake them up and I guess there not done trying with them. We’re now going to get a Moss/Sabbatelli feud I guess? Forgive me if I’m not overly excited by the prospect.
In-ring segment – Heavy Machinery
The promo was somewhat short but Otis’ personality came out big time here and it was so fun. Tucker just can’t get up there with him but Otis’ personality is so big, he doesn’t need to. Just ride the wave, Tucker, and you’ll make out like a bandit.
Backstage segment – Dakota Kai & Shayna Baszler
Dakota was supposed to be shaken and she was trying but it really caught fire when Shayna got out there. She OWNED the segment completely and saved it. She came in like a bully and it was great. Shayna is a consummate bully and she just completely nailed here. Man, that was fun!
Johnny Gargano vs. Aleister Black…err…
Well, that didn’t go well. Before it could even start, Ciampa was there to ruin the whole thing. We ended up with the brawl this kind of thing always turns into. Tomasso finally ended it with the old Randy Orton punt and then he took Johnny through a ride through some tables beneath. He even managed to kick out one of the tron panels! The shot of Ciampa menacingly standing on top of the production van as the ambulance drove away was just perfect.
Candice played the worried lover well too. She showed just enough concern without going completely off the rails.
It appears that this feud is still not over. I just don’t know where else they take it. They already had the best match I’ve ever seen by anyone anywhere. What else can they possibly give?
Aleister Black vs. Eric Young
This kinda came out of nowhere but I’m cool with it. Aleister plays head games in there better than anyone and they were on display here big time. I love the cross-legged taunting sit-down he does. His whole style is just so unorthodox and he’s always fun to watch. Eric, of course, is no slouch, and he more than brought it here. His death valley bomb was really nice. Of course, SAniTY as a whole is on its way to “Smackdown Live” so he couldn’t really win. Very nice match all the way around. Aleister then took out Wolfe & Dane as they tried to come in. He comes out looking like a total beast.
Nice episode of “NXT” for sure and I’m glad I finally got to watch it. This is always where the real storylines and ring work are. This is the show for us and I always look forward to it. See you later this week for another look into “The Illustrious Future” of NXT!