Moore’s WWE Breaking Ground Episode 9 Review: Countdown

By John Moore

WWE Breaking Ground
Available for streaming on the WWE Network

In this week’s intro video, Mojo Rawley was hyped and happy to see Nia Jax debut in her debut attire. Rhyno talked to Nia on her debut. Sami Sayn’s quest to make a comeback would be featured. Dana Brooke recovering from Asuka’s hip attack would also be featured during this episode…

William Shatner opened the show talking about Bayley achieving her dreams of stardom. He introduced Bayley asking Natalya Neidhart for some words of advice backstage at a WWE event. Nattie credited Bayley for leading the next batch of NXT girls. She told Bayley to lead by example. Bayley said it was strange to have Becky, Charlotte, and Sasha gone from NXT full time and she felt like the leader. Nattie talked to Bayley and Nattie said she really would like to have a 15 minute match with her.

Bayley went to an interview room to be interviewed on her upcoming Takeover Ironwoman match. Shatner explained what exactly a “takeover” was and how its purpose is to serve as a catalyst to a NXT Star’s WWE Career. He then introduced the Sasha vs. Bayley feud and said that this was the first time that the women would main event a WWE live special. An interviewer that sounded extremely like either Brooklyn Brawler or Paul Heyman asked Bayley on her thoughts on being in the main event. She couldn’t contain her emotion and said that one day she and Sasha will main event WrestleMania…
Tino’s demotion to beginner’s class was featured next and Shatner said this would serve as inspiration. Matt Bloom and Adam Pearce had a film session with Tino Sabbatelli. Tino compared this to watching film while playing football. The coaches pointed out Tino’s weaknesses while watching his match. Bloom went back to the dropkick that Tino botched where he tripped Apollo Crews midair in an errant way. Tino was taking notes. Bloom told Tino to look more organic and it was better to make these mistakes here than on Raw in front of Vince McMahon…

Dana Brooke’s injury from Asuka’s hip attack in practice was featured next. Shatner pointed out how this injury came out at the worst time with Dana having a Takeover match scheduled. Tara Hallaby, the medical trainer, was working on Dana’s range of motion to test out her shoulder. Dana started to shed some tears when talking about the possibly of not wrestling…

Nia Jax was hanging out with her mom and the show called her “Nia’s Mom” in the name card. Nia had her smartphone playing her entrance music. Her friend “tom” also gave her tips on an entrance. Nia said she wasn’t sure what she was going to do and brought up Bayley and Sasha Banks as examples of great entrances. Nia was happy that her mother was coming out to watch her debut. Shatner said that after training for a long time, Nia Jax has one chance to make a first impression. Nia’s mom told her to feel the music and let it flow.

Nia Jax talked about how a few months into her training; she was leaving an event with her aunt and was involved in a huge car accident from an incoming drunk driver. Nia said she escaped with a broken collarbone, but her aunt had serious internal bleeding, broken hand, and broken ribs. Nia said it was comforting to have her mother’s support for her wrestling. Nia said her mother helped her out with her confidence…

Tyler Breeze found a stray dog in the next segment. Tyler said no one was around and he was worried about the dog. Tyler was advised not to call animal services because in Florida, once you report a stray dog, if no one claims the dog it would get euthanized. Tyler pointed out how the Performance Center crew really took a liking to the dog. Tyler then called his girlfriend and they ended up adopting the dog. Tyler walked out of his girlfriend’s car smiling and saying “Hell yeah!”…

John’s Thoughts: Some people may like the wrestling and sports journeys of shows like this, but I tend to gravitate to more of the slice of life things like the ghost hunting, shoe shopping, or dog stories. It’s cool to have segments like this in the show to put a genuine smile on the viewer’s face…

Shatner talked about Nia Jax debuting in a few hours and how Rhyno and Baron Corbin were no help to her. Jax told Corbin about her new pop-like entrance music and Corbin gave a slight sigh of disgust. Jax told them that you’d never expect her to come out to that music. Rhyno said “will I want to dance to it?” with a blank stare. He then told Nia “Are you nervious??? I would be if I was you!” with the same blank stare. Rhyno then laughed at her. Baron Corbin talked about sweating a river on his debut. Rhyno told Nia a story about how he came out during the commercial break in his debut because he thought the intermission music was his theme music. Corbin said if Nia screws up, she’d be gone…

Shatner then talked about Mattel coming to the PC to bodyscan the NXT stars for potential action figures. Shatner said this was a glance into the future to for Bayley. Bayley was handed over her first action figure. She was told that it has accessories and high five hand placement. The Mattel guy also showed her the Sasha Banks figure…

Mojo Rawley met with Nia Jax backstage and gave her their secret handshake while she walked in with her debut attire. Back at the PC, Tino was doing basic training inside the ring to work his way back to having live matches. Tino brought up again how he came from the NFL and was motivated…

John’s Thoughts: I’m starting to think that Tino is on this show to play an imitation version of an NFL Hard Knocks character. Maybe it’s Tino’s dream to be on Hard Knocks, I don’t know?

Nia Jax’s debut was approaching and she was still nervious even while getting dressed up in concealer. Her entrance played and she made her debut in front of the live crowd. Nia’s Mom was in the crowd and was happy to see her daughter debut. She couldn’t believe that the crowd was excited to see her. Nia then had her match while her mother was recording it on her phone. Nia’s mom had tears behind her glasses. Nia had a few tears of her own in the interview room and talked about how she could clearly see her mom in the corner of her eye and how she avoided eye contact to avoid crying. Tom and Nia’s Mom met Nia backstage to support her after another event…

Shatner said Takeover was looming, but not for Sami Sayn. Sami was doing basic conditioning in front of trainers. Sami did a front flip bump and said things were okay. He told Tye Dillinger that he still gets a bit dizzy. Sami said he was going in the ring and going to conquer it. Sami said sometimes it takes a year after the surgery to get back to normal even if they say it’s a few months to recover. Dillinger slowed things down to help Sami progress at a steady pace. Sami told the trainer that he’s not sure if he is coming back to NXT or going to the main roster where he debuted getting the injury. Sami said if he went back to NXT he’d feel stagnant…

Tyler Breeze was getting ready for Takeover while also playing with his new dog at home. Apollo Crews had the clippers and was grooming his facial hair for the Takeover show. Shatner said Dana Brooke was cleared and will be ironically facing Asuka. Dana Brooke said this was serious business by facing the best woman’s wrestler on the roster and how she had some strong kicks coming her way. Jason Jordan chatted with Dana and talked about having a similar journey to finally getting meaningful TV time. Brooke talked about always hoping for at least a dark match and now she and Jordan were on Takeover. Jordan talked about Gable and Jordan getting specialized tracksuits that weren’t here yet. Dana started to show emotion and started to talk about the injury again. She said she hopes it doesn’t get worse…

It was showtime and Shatner said Jordan just got some bad news. Chad Gable just got a text and said the tracksuits weren’t coming in until after takeover. Jordan yelled a bleeped out expletive. Jordan and Gable were a bit bummed out at not getting their tracksuits and said this wasn’t going to affect how they performed in the ring…

Bayley said she couldn’t get good sleep in over week thinking about his important match and how everyone reminded her of that almost every second. She then talked about how tough it was to prepare for a 60 minute match. The NXT roster was shown preparing for the Takeover show, and this closed the Breaking Ground Episode…

Next week’s show was dubbed as the Season Finale of Breaking Ground. Jordan talked about this being a big deal. Dana Brooke took another hip attack during the live show. Bayley and Sasha Banks were featured as well. Triple H called Tyler Breeze to the front of the stage during a post-show meeting for a special announcement…

John’s Thoughts: WWE Breaking Ground seems to be getting the hang of telling a story with a plot and theme within the confines of a reality TV setting. The theme of this episode was nerves and anxiety as all of the subjects showed some form of anxiety one way or another (except Tyler Breeze and his dog, which was just a cute and awesome story). We got to follow Nia Jax’s journey to her debut. We got to see Bayley’s building nervousness due to her huge match coming. We got to see Dana Brooke wondering if she can compete again. Tino’s story as the only one that’s starting to get a bit redundant because he just says the same cliché’ pro athlete lines, but the story on his demotion was told well, mostly by Matt Bloom rather than by Tino.

Next week looks to be the first season finale and hopefully it turns out to be a good one. The show as a whole has been a success and it succeeding in making some NXT stars look better by giving viewers a look at their real personalities. Baron Corbin or Nia Jax are examples of this, and Rhyno even got a chance to shine in a setting where he’s not yelling “Gore!” a hundred times.


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