Moore’s WWE Breaking Ground Episode 7 Review: Proving Ground

By John Moore

WWE Breaking Ground
Available for streaming on the WWE Network

The opening video picked up from last week where Carmella was left lying after an accidental stiff kick to her cranium from Eva Marie. Albert said this was Carmella’s first in-match injury and we will now find out how long it takes for her to come back from this injury. God help us, this is a ZZ episode as they showed him wrestling gators. Triple H was also spotlighted in this episode. Cue the opening music…

Carmella was writhing in pain as Colin Cassidy and Robbie Brookside had a concerned look on their faces. The crowd gave her a great reaction to help her from a down moment. She went to the back with an ice pack and was met by Albert. She told him how this was a different type of injury. Albert told Carmella not to be afraid to tell the ref if she can’t continue and that she has a long career after this, so it’d be best to stay safe and smart. Albert said this was a hard moment since it’s how you put food on the table…

Enzo, Cass, Bayley, and Carmella were chillin over grilled food as they tried to shake off the Carmella sad news. Enzo cuts promos in real life too. He did a promo on the children’s bean fart thing. He also did a promo on Colin Cassidy’s piss and wang. Enzo talked about Cass being so tall that the pee wakes Enzo up in the hotel due to the length it has to travel. Shatner let us know that Carmella avoided a concussion but it’d be best to not exacerbate the injury and to have a check-up in the next couple of days.

Albert approached the Performance Center at 6:30 in the morning as Shatner introduced the coaches putting in extra work. They showed Albert (Matt Bloom) and Sara Amato doing intense workouts themselves to keep in top athletic performance. Albert winced in pain a bit due to him pinching his nipple ring during bicep curls. After the coaches worked out, the talent arrived. Albert talked about evaluating the coaches and the talent. He was shown giving rookie Tucker Knight facial grooming tips…

Shatner said ZZ has caught Albert’s attention. ZZ harped about feeling his knee pop. He told Albert he now weights 270 and was proud that he added Broccoli to his Beef. Albert (sarcastically) commended ZZ for discovering vegetables…

John’s Thoughts: Better segment than usual for ZZ, but it’s still a bit tiring and redundant with WWE telling us that “ZZ is lazy”. We get it!

Lovepreet Singh was shown honing in on his in-ring technique in the performance center. Lovepreet loved Robbie Brookside’s knowledge on wrestling as they showed the two going over an over the top rope spot. Lovepreet used some of his Kabaddi technique in the move as Shatner said that one of the toughest things to do is to unlearn old moves of the past. The move he added was a low blow to his opponent. Robbie told Lovepreet to not to react like a fighter to moves. Lovepreet said he wanted to prove that he can do something.

Shatner moved the discussion to Tino Sabatelli. Tino brought up being in the gym every single day working his butt off. They then showed Nooph stretching and William Regal walking in the Center. They showed her and Regal going over “Aliyah” (Nooph Al-Areebi). Nooph wore a middle-eastern headdress as Regal gave her a few tips on putting her character together. She was also in full ring gear as she wanted to show Regal her full entrance. Regal told the camera that the first thing people see is you walk out the curtain, and if you don’t look like you belong, people lose entrance. Regal gave Nooph the technical details as to how cameras shoot entrances.

Regal chuckled a bit at Nooph’s chimes in the intro of her music. Nooph came out very enthuiastic and hopped around a bit. She also rushed to the ring. Regal joked about Nooph’s theme sounding like the intro to a 80s slasher B-flick. Regal told Nooph to imagine a crowd was there and to try to improve…

Shatner moved the show over to talking about how the Women in NXT handle makeup. Bayley and Carmella attended the new WWE “Makeup Class”. Bayley pointed out how cool it was to have this now as it would have helped earlier in her NXT run to improve how she comes off on the camera. The makeup teacher lady talked about how the wear and tear in a match shows up on your face first and the face is the money. Bayley said makeup usually isn’t their thing due to their focus being in the ring, but it helps to have a teacher to help them hold their own without a professional makeup lady around 24/7. Cheesy majestic music played as the women all put on their makeup in stereo. Bayley talked about being a tomboy and not girly. She said that didn’t bug her. Bayley was commended by the makeup teacher on her technique…

William Shatner transitioned the focus to “internal matches” which were NXT shows performed solely for and within the NXT Roster to help out rookies and offer up a place for peer-evaluation and criticism. Lovepreet was getting a chance to compete in a tag match. Lovepreet said this was his longest match here and how this was a fun moment to learn. Apollo Crews looked entertained during Lovepreet’s match and Shatner said this performance has showed that Lovepreet can be coachable and he’s progressing correctly.

The show then moved to Nooph showing off her new character fresh off the William Regal tips. Regal looked on with focus. Nooph made her entrance in rushed fashion. Mojo Rawley finally showed apathy for the first time. Apollo Crews, Nia Jax, and William Regal all gave a simultaneous “what the hell am I looking at?” type of look. Regal said he was completely underwhelmed and said that Nooph failed. She was interviewed in the ring as she was booed by the roster for sucking so bad. The boos continued, and regal was disappointed. Regal said she needs time and has to commit to that time on her part. Nooph went backstage and acknowledge that it was a bad showing.

Tino Sabbatelli was spotlighted in the “main event” of this internal show. Tino showed some athleticism while facing a heavier set guy than him. Tino said it was great to get back in the ring. Tino won the match. Shatner said that as an NFL vet, he usually gives advice to rookies, but in NXT he’s the one receiving the advice as a rookie. Tino was shown getting heel tips from Tye Dillinger, who told him that Tino’s best asset as a heel is having such a ripped body and that’s all he needs to draw heat; to not go too overboard…

Carmella and Colin Cassidy were shown chillin’ at their pad carving pumpkins. William Shatner said this was a fun little distraction to distract away from the stressful health evaluation coming up for Carmella to determine her future coming off this head injury. Carmella showed her frustration of being on the shelf as they were gutting the pumpkin. Carmella said it was cool seeing all the new faces at the PC show. Carmella joked about the pumpkin being hollow like her head…

Bayley was shown hanging out with her boyfriend Aaron Solow as they were cooking turkey bacon. Bayley was reminiscing on her match with Sasha Banks at Brooklyn. Shatner recapped NXT’s biggest event at the Barclays center where Bayley beat Sasha Banks for the Women’s title. Shatner said it was considered one of the greatest women’s matches of all time. Bayley talked about the Steve Austin Show recapping her match and how Austin called Sasha and Bayley stars. Bayley said Sasha and her were two of the biggest fans in the world. Aaron and Bayley were shown enjoying watching the Banks vs. Bayley match from Brooklyn…

Shatner said the match ended with a “curtain call” from the four horsewomen, the four women credited with starting the “Divas Revolution”. The four women all held up the horsemen sign as Corey Graves also credited them with starting the Divas Revolution. Shatner said while Bayley was celebrating on NXT, the other three (Charlotte, Banks, and Becky Lynch) all celebrated their callups to the main roster…

John’s Thoughts: I wonder if that’s the case now with how bad they’ve been booked. We keep hearing Finn Balor essentially begging not to be called up; and it’s strange seeing Eva Freakin’ Marie being booked in a better fashion than any woman on the main roster.

ZZ had a camera in his car as we got to see his story. He was talking about leaving Orlando to move alligators. ZZ said he didn’t want to let go of his alligator past once he started to wrestle people and he signed up to volunteer at a place called “Croc Encounters” at Tampa, FL. ZZ wore his WWE shirt at he met the trainers at the Croc place. They introduced him to a turtle. He moved on to the over ten foot alligator next to move him to a bigger swamp space. Shatner said ZZ has a lot to learn in the ring, but was at home in the swamp…

Carmella was shown getting tested by NXT medical trainer Tara Halaby who was running drills to see if Carmella has gotten over the effects of her injury. Carmella talked about feeling great as Tara led the drills to test Carmella’s motor abilities. Bayley walked alongside the ring to cheer on her BayMella buddy. Tara told Carmella that everything was fine and she was going to approve this to Carmella’s doctors. Tara told Carmella to make sure to tell her and the doctors if anything strange happens health-wise. Triple H’s entrance music was playing loudly in the background for some reason.

Shatner said Carmella’s clearance allows her to compete on the next live event. They then showed the NXT Roster training. You had Bayley doing deadlifts, Asuka doing plyometric weighted squats, Tye Dillinger working on his core and arm strength, and much more…

Bayley met with Sara Amato in the dreaded board room where she was being performance evaluated by the assistant head coach. Sara credited Bayley with being well rounded and having a fan base that “is rivaled by no other superstar”. Bayley loved how widespread her fanbase was from kids to grown men. Sara also said Bayley’s strength was being diplomatic backstage and her next goal should be to take people under her wing to mentor. The show showed Bayley going over dropkicks with some of the newer women on the roster…

Shatner moved the show over to Lovepreet’s apartment where he was hanging out with Robbie Brookside and Gzim Selmani. Shatner brought up how he had a brotherly connection with coach Robbie and were going to bond over a “Traditional Indian Dinner” which consisted of curried meat, rice, and Budweiser. Lovepreet brought up his mother that passed away and his father being so far away at his homeland. Lovepreet said Robbie was more than a coach to him, he was like a brother. Lovepreet said Robbie was the first person who came to his new home to visit and liked Indian food. Robbie and Lovepreet bonded over adjusting spice levels of the dish…

Bayley and Carmella took Tough Enough winner Sara Lee under their wing per the advice of Sara Amato from earlier. Bayley mentioned how she was used to cross state trips having to go between NorCal and SoCal before WWE to wrestle. Bayley told Sara not to listen to EVERYONE or else it’ll be confusing, and just stick to Carmella and her. Bayley connected this to how Paige and Charlotte took mentorship over her during her early days and how it was her most helpful thing in WWE. Carmella told Sara not to be afraid to ask questions while she was eating her Chipotle burrito bowl.

Lovepreet was in another car with Gzim Selmani and Sunny Dhinsa in what looked like the South Asian NXT Rookie car. They talked about how cooking curry in small apartments may cause you to smell like curry afterwards in reference to Lovepreet’s curry meal with Robbie. Lovepreet said he was excited for his first PC matches. Sunny talked about how important these matches were for development. They cut to the Bayley car again. Sara talked about how fast the days seemed. Carmella told Sara to make it fun so the day doesn’t drag…

Shatner talked about Lovepreet impressing the coaches so much, that he earned himself a spot in a 20 man battle royal at a live event. Lovepreet was eliminated early on but he really gained from being in front of a live crowd. Shatner noted how this is the first of many matches to come for lovepreet if he stays the course and it’s a good start.

Carmella was getting ready for her first match back since the injury and was excited to be back. Albert was paying close attention on the monitors as Carmella made her entrance. Carmella said she felt like she didn’t miss a beat and felt fabulous. She worked a 6-woman-tag match and said she felt like she was never out, but was overall so excited to get back to business and do her thing. Carmella, Asuka, and Athena won their match…

Shatner noted how the success of the last successful live show was about as they showed Triple H’s private jet entering the airport. Shatner said something must be up due to Hunter having to be here. Triple H was shown in the car cam with Canyon Ceman. Shatner said Bayley and Sasha Banks have each been contacted to meet with Triple H. He said that the road to WWE has many twists and turns. Bayley said she still gets nervous around Triple H and due to so many good things happen she expects the worse sometimes.

Triple H took them to the stands to talk about their future. Shatner said that this discussion was about to “change the course of WWE forever!”. On the “next time…” clip Razor Ramon Scott Hall was in the Performance Center to coach the rookies a bit. He told them if they act like the man, they will be the man. They also showed that next week was going to focus on Sami Zayn’s rehab from his match against Cena. Tino Sabbatelli was going to face Apollo Crews in his biggest match yet. They also showed Triple H’s groundbreaking conversation where he said Sasha and Bayley were “going to create history together”. (I’m assuming this has something to do with a match named after a Tony Stark mecha-suit).

John’s Thoughts: Tonight’s iteration of Breaking Ground was really heavy in content and I believe the stories came off very well. Bonus points this week for not overdoing the oil pastel video filter. The editing of the show was also very well done and they seem to be getting better each week with the editing of the show. I was actually afraid at the beginning of the show when they teased a ZZ heavy episode, but even the ZZ segments were better than usual.

The Carmella story was not as heart-wrenching as others, but it was still told very well and her enthusiasm towards coming back came off very well in this episode. The Nooph story was a fun one and it was cool seeing someone start off at the beginning only to struggle, so hopefully they learn from their mistakes and can overcome. The camera shots of Nia Jax, Apollo Crews, and William Regal were classic in those segments. I did wish we get more of the personal quirks this week because the Baron Corbin paranormal thing was entertaining last week.


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