NXT opens with a video package reviewing Seth Rollins’s title defense last week, with lots of emphasis on “respect” and C.M. Punk giving Rollins plenty of it last week. It’s The Usos and Richie Steamboat against The Ascension and Kassius Ohno in the main event.
Alex Riley makes a return to action, with a wrapping on his left arm. He’s facing Jinder Mahal; this is clearly taped before he joined “3MB” by his garb. As the crowd starts up a pre-match “USA!” chant, William Regal refreshingly calls them out as xenophobes.
ALEX RILEY vs. JINDER MAHAL
There is an extended feeling-out process as Riley and Mahal trade holds. Riley with a second-rope should tackle but a knee to the gut from Mahal puts him on the attack. Riley finally makes a comeback, and he manages a running schoolboy for the win.
WINNER: Alex Riley in 3:50. I’ve seen much better from both, this felt like a way for Riley to shake off the ring rust after an absence from TV.
Post-match, Mahal assaults Riley, and puts him in the Camel Clutch and the referee is forced to pry Mahal off.
TRENT BARRETA vs. JAKE CARTER
There is an extended feeling-out process and the smaller Barreta uses his speed and enthusiasm to counter Carter’s size advantage. Carter ducks a running cross-body and Barreta eats the ropes. Barreta suddenly fires up to finally get some traction, but a Ryback-like clothesline plants Barreta. Barreta elbows outs of a suplerplex attempt and follows with the corkscrew moonsault for a nearfall.
Carter dodges the Gobstopper Knee and follows with a big overhead belly to belly suplex for a close nearfall. Carter gets frustrated. They run the ropes and Barreta hits him with the Gobstopper Knee for the win.
WINNER: Trent Barreta in 6:30. Carter seemed competent on offense, but Barreta didn’t get enough opportunities to show off the offense that has made him a favorite among NXT and Superstars viewers.
Video package on Big E. Langston.
Damien Sandow comes out, and the crowd starts to cheer him a bit. He asks the crowd what George Washington would think of them. “Don’t boo me, I’m simply asking questions.” A ton of people chant “you suck” and he thanks them for their “irrelevant opinions” and says that he will prove himself physically by dismembering his opponent. Shots of vocal males doing the “hail the king” routine.
BRANDON TRAVEN vs. DAMIEN SANDOW
Slow start, until Sandow runs to the corner to avoid a big right. Sandow with a flurry of offense. Traven whiffs a dropkick letting Sandow batter him. The large Traven pulls off a sunset flip. A missed knee drop lets Sandow set up the Elbow of Disdain followed by the neckbreaker. You’re welcome.
WINNER: Damien Sandow in 6:10. Fine showpiece of Sandow’s skills.
THE USOS & RICHIE STEAMBOAT vs. THE ASCENSION & KASSIUS OHNO – Tag Team match
Pre-match, the action breaks down and they throw to commercial while it sorts out.
Back from break, Jimmy Uso and Ken Cameron are locked up. Jimmy brings Cameron into the corner for the usual Uso match formula. There’s some stalling, and it’s Conor O’Brien and Jimmy Uso.
Jimmy is being dominated by Cameron out of the break. Jimmy finally slips through a roll-up, and Steamboat gets the hot tag. Steamboat goes nuts on Ohno, and a superkick prompts The Ascension to make the save. The action breaks down. Steamboat wants to run the ropes for a suicide dive to the outside, but Ohno pops up on the apron and lands a Shining Elbow to drop Steamboat. That’s good for the win.
WINNERS: The Ascension & Kassius Ohno. Well-executed, but highly-predictable until the last five seconds. I liked the finished a lot.
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