Gutteridge's WWE NXT Hit List: Sheamus headlines against Aiden English, Bayley vs. Sasha Banks, and appearances by Adam Rose and Sami Zayn

Posted in: Staff Editorials, MUST-READ LISTING
Mar 21, 2014 - 12:12 PM

By Darren Gutteridge

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Sheamus vs. Aiden English. Although I am very tired of the "Irish folk tale" side of Sheamus (and most of his mic work in general), the crowd were very responsive to his singing, so I'll let it slide. Unlike his mic skills, Sheamus' in-ring work has always been good, and it showed here, in a match where he did a good amount of selling for English. It's important that the main roster guys don't just steamroll the NXT guys, as RVD did previously in his match with English, as they need the rub much more than the established guys do. If done effectively, even in a loss, the NXT performer looks stronger than when they went in, as is the case with English here.

Adam Rose vs. Camacho. I'll start by saying, while the match was basically a carbon copy of Rose's debut, I still enjoyed the overall presentation (aside from the new music, which I didn't like as much). That is why, despite the incoming worries, this gets a hit. My concern is this – I got a terrible sense of deja vu when Rose came out, as it felt like it has all the potential to be the Funkasaurus 2.0. I mean, a previously serious guy who overnight becomes a dancing machine with an entourage in tow? It certainly has all the hallmarks of Brodus Clay. I really enjoyed the character for the first few months, but he then fell by the way side because the gimmick was shallow. Unlike Clay however, I think Rose has more potential on the mic, as he seems more "self-aware" and locked in than Clay ever was. Lets hope this worry never comes to fruition, and we have finally found Santino's comedy equal.

Bayley vs. Sasha Banks. A minor Hit. It gets this distinction for the same reasons that last weeks Paige vs Banks match earned a "Hit" - character work shone through. When I played the Divas description game with Zim on the NXT podcast this week, he could quickly and accurately tell me about the characters on NXT, but struggled hopelessly with main roster ladies. Thats high praise for NXT, while at the same time a damning statement of Raw and Smackdown's female talent.

New graphics. Just as a little aside, I really like the changes made to both the opening video, and the pre-match graphics. They look unique to the show, and that's a great tool to use if they want NXT to stand out as completely different to Raw and Smackdown.

WWE NXT Misses

Overall Show. The Hit/Miss count may be similar, but once again NXT didn't forward anything storyline wise. The matches were better this week, but it still didn't feel like an important episode. Next week's "Vengeance" show will hopefully change that.

Corey Graves attacks Sami Zayn. A minor miss. The beatdown is logical, and Zayn sold it well, but as is usually the case, going for the obvious may have worked better here. Zayn is coming off of a leg injury, and Graves uses a leg submission hold for his finisher, so it would have made a lot more sense for Graves to run down with a chair, attack the leg, and apply the Lucky 13, instead of the less impactful shot to the ringpost.

This is also a miss for denying me Zayn vs. Tyler Breeze. How dare they tease Prince Pretty and not deliver!

Mojo Rawley vs. Bull Dempsey. Sloppy match, that actually made the jobber Bull Dempsey look more intriguing. Mojo is so green that he isn't trusted to do anything other than striking moves, and that means I am never hyped to see his matches. #Laughs hysterically at his own pun#.

Thanks for reading. Be sure to check out the Dot Net NXT podcast with Zack Zimmerman and myself, available exclusively for members of the site! If you have any thoughts on the article, add me on Twitter - @DazatheG

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