Friday, May 22, 2015

Full Sail TV Taping 5-21-15

Written by Wayne Mason
Photos by Maryann Mason

Tonight the rowdy and raucous NXT fans piled into Full Sail University for another action packed set of television tapings. The following recap contains spoilers for the next four episodes of NXT.

The dark match of the evening saw Dash Wilder with the daunting task of taking on Braun Stowman. Wilder attempts to take the fight right to the 6’8” 375lb Stowman, who is immovable. Stowman tosses Wilder around with ease and beats him to the mat with big clubbing blows. He continues torturing Wilder with a claw to the shoulder. Wilder attempts to mount a comeback anyway he can, first by pulling himself up by the big mans beard and eventually even biting him. Wilder’s rally would be short lived though as Stowman puts him down with a big boot, and follows by hoisting him on his shoulder for a big slam onto the mat followed by a pin. It was a lopsided contest which is to take nothing away from the underrated and underutilized Dash Wilder, however wrestling Braun Stowman is akin to grappling with a mountain.

Episode 1

The music of Sami Zayn hits and the crowd erupts, but instead of Zayn it is Kevin Owens who strolls out and down the ramp. In the ring he tells us that he could stand there and issue an NXT title open challenge, but he is not that insecure and has nothing to prove to anyone. The crowd breaks into a “John Cena Sucks” chant, but Owens shuts it down by telling them that Zayn sucks too but they don’t chant that at him. Owens continues by telling us that he is a good man and he did us a good deed by insuring we’d never have to hear Sami Zayn’s music again. He also says that at Takeover he let Samoa Joe have his moment. He assures us he could have easily dropped Samoa Joe. General Manager William Regal makes his way to the ring. Owens tells him that at Takeover he headbutted Regal only after he laid his hands on him. Regal tells him that that is the only reason Owens is still here. The two exchange more words before the two are interrupted by Solomon Crowe who immediately confronts Owens. Crowe tells Owens he is scared and is a piece of crap. William Regal sets up a main event between the two. Owens tells Regal to add Solomon Crowe to the list of wrestlers that has had stretchered out of the building.

Next is Bayley taking on Emma, accompanied to the ring by Dana Brooke. After an initial flurry of offense a very aggressive Emma takes over pummeling Bayley and following with a few snap mares by the ponytail. She stops to trash talk and Bayley fires back first with signature elbows in the corner and eventually a nice suplex. However, moments later Emma would come back and lock Bayley into an Emma lock for a submission victory. After the match Dana comes in and they begin to beat down Bayley. Charlotte runs down to make the save, but with Bayley out it is still two on one. They overpower Charlotte and Dana finishes her with a Samoan Driver.

Tag team action is next as Mike Rawlis and Elias Sampson compete against Blake and Murphy, accompanied to the ring by Alexa Bliss. Despite a size and strength advantage Blake and Murphy manage to easily take control over the rookie Rawlis. The usually explosive champs took to a slow pace as if simply toying with him until he eventually found an opening to make a hot tag to Elias Sampson. The pace quickens drastically as Sampson comes in with a series of chops and kicks until Murphy halts his momentum with a heel kick. He follows with a running vertical suplex and Blake finishes him off with a frogsplash for the win. After they put an explanation mark on their victory as Alexa Bliss executes a Sparkle Splash onto a still down Sampson. This match was about making the champs look strong, but I’m still happy to see Elias Sampson on television in any capacity. Sampson is one to look out for, as anyone who attends house shows will attest to.

Next out is Ty Dillinger who comes out with huge support from the crowd who are familiar with his house show “Perfect 10” gimmick. Unfortunately, that has not made its way to television yet and worse for him, his opponent is Finn Balor. Dillinger starts off with some strong chops but Balor comes back with a flurry of offense. Ty pummels Balor in the corner and puts locks him into a chickenwing. Eventually Balor breaks free and comes back with a series of chops and kicks. He follows with a slingblade and a dropkick into the corner. Balor finishes off Dillinger with a Coup De Grace for the victory. This was a good match and both men came out looking strong. Hopefully this is the beginning of a push for Ty Dillinger.

The main event is next as Solomon Crowe takes on Kevin Owens. As he often does, Owens immediately leaves the ring to dictate his own pace. Crowe follows him to the outside, but Owens gets the jump and the two begin brawling on the outside. Back on the inside Crowe begins mounting offense until Owens knocks him of the turnbuckle. Owens tosses Crowe to the outside and Crowe narrowly makes the count back in. Owens beats him down and throws him to the outside yet again. Crowe finally comes back with an explosive array of kicks and knee strikes, he follows with a running high knee into the corner. Owens fights back and flattens Crowe with a senton and a pop-up powerbomb for the win. After the match Owens attacks Crowe and yells to “Get the stretcher” as he prepares to powerbomb Crowe onto the apron. Samoa Joe comes out to make the save. Owens makes a hasty retreat as an angry Samoa Joe stands in the ring ready for a fight.

Episode 2

A scruffy looking and aggressive Adam Rose takes on Tyler Breeze in the opening match. From the opening bell a back and forth battle begins with both men getting a fair amount of offense. However, it’s a less playful and more focused Rose who shined. In the final moments of the match he delivers his trademark spinebuster and follows it with a Boston Crab which Breeze manages to escape. Moments later, Rose summons his best Cactus Jack by delivering an elbow off the apron onto Breeze on the outside. He tosses Breeze back into the ring and Tyler hits Rose with a Beauty Shot out of nowhere for the pin.

Next, announcer Greg Hamilton introduces Eva Marie. He asks her what brings her down here to NXT. She replies that NXT has the best women’s wrestling and she wants to be with the best. This was actually pretty painful to watch because of the audience, and I actually felt a little ashamed to be in a crowd that was eating her alive. Eva Marie has a lot of detractors and I have been one in the past, but I only wish for anyone to succeed and right now I just want to see her prove a lot of people wrong.

In our next match Carmella takes on Alexa Bliss. Immediately a fired up Carmella attacks and beats down Alexa. Soon Bliss comes back and the two battle back and forth. Later Bliss goes for a glitz flip but Carmella moves and mounts an attack. She charges the corner but Bliss moves and rolls her up for a pin with a handful of trunks. This was a short but fun match. These two ladies are evenly matched and have a good chemistry together. I think if this feud goes on long enough they could produce some very entertaining matches.

Next, The Vaudevillians take on the strange pairing of Jason Jordan and Marcus Louis. English and Gotch start off strong against the deranged Louis with some signature spots. Jordan gets tagged in and the complexion of the match changes. Jordan is amazingly strong and seems to manhandle his opponents with ease. He beats down English and follows with a chinlock before tagging Louis. Eventually, English finds an opening and makes the tag to a very fired up Gotch who uppercuts Louis to the back of the head and English follows with a running swinging neckbreaker for the win. This was a fun match and no doubt many will be happy to finally see The Vaudevillians back on their television.

Up next is Rhyno taking on Finn Balor. Early on Rhyno out-powers Balor with heavy clubbing blows. Balor attempts to comeback but Rhyno shuts him down. Balor mounts momentum and a back and forth battle ensues. Rhyno absolutely manhandles Balor with a powerslam and a spinebuster that practically puts Finn through the mat. Finn comes back with a pele kick and a slingblade. He dropkicks Rhyno into the turnbuckle and climbs up for a Coup De Grace but Rhyno rolls out of the way. Rhyno goes for a gore but Balor dodges it and rolls up Rhyno for the in. Balor celebrates as a visible irritated Rhyno makes his way to the back. Balor makes his way up the ramp and poses on the stage only for Rhyno to give him the most hellacious gore I’ve ever seen.

Episode 3

The episode begins with Mike Rawlis and Elias Sampson taking on the team of Zack Ryder and the returning Mojo Rawley. Mojo starts the match with some dancing and trash talking before he finally tags in his partner. Ryder comes in with a lot of momentum culminating in a Broski Boot. Eventually, Sampson takes over and slows down the pace of the match until Ryder makes a hot tag to Rawley. Mojo clears the ring and lays out anyone in his path with splashes and tackles. He tag Ryder and hoists Sampson onto his shoulders. Ryder comes off the top rope with a Rough Ryder for the win. Afterwards the two celebrate into the crowd. The fans seemed receptive to the returning Mojo Rawley, hopefully he can expand upon his character and his move-set before the crowds start turning on him. Zack Ryder was very over with the crowd and one can only wonder how a prolonged stay in NXT could affect his career.

Women’s action is next as Emma takes on Bluepants, who is very over with the NXT crowd. Bluepants begins with some Emma style dancing and Emma attacks, beating her down and tossing her around by her hair. Emma turns Bluepants around with a big clotheline and goes for an elbow but Bluepants moves and mounts a comeback with a series of kicks. Emma dodges the last kick and beats down Bluepants before locking in the Emma Lock for a submission victory. Afterwards, still in the ring Bluepants is given an impromptu Birthday party. It’s amazing how over Leva “Bluepants” Bates is with the NXT crowd, signing her full-time certainly seems to be a no brainer.

Next is a short but fun match between Tyler Breeze and Bull Dempsey. Early on Dempsey easily overpowers and takes charge of Prince Pretty. Eventually he runs him down and climbs the ropes for a flying headbutt, but Breeze rolls out of the ring. Bull follows and Breeze runs away. Bull gives chase as the two run circles around the ring. Dempsey stops to catch his breath while Breeze can’t contain his smile. The two repeat this again until Dempsey is completely winded at which time Breeze tosses him back into the ring and follows with a Beauty Shot for the victory. It’s no doubt that this was an entertaining match, but hopefully Bull Dempsey can catch a break soon.

Next up, Becky Lynch battles Jessie McKay. Coming off the heels of a sensational performance at Takeover, Lynch has practically the entire building behind her and she starts strong with beautiful arm drags and a text book dropkick. McKay equalizes the situation with a big boot and begins to work the arm of Lynch. Eventually Lynch fights back with a suplex and three signature leg drops. Moments later McKay is in an armbar with no choice but to tap. It seems Becky Lynch is riding a very strong wave of momentum after the live special, and deservedly so.

Out next is Angelo Dawkins to take on the alpha of NXT, Baron Corbin. Dawkin put forth a good effort but in the end he ended up like everyone else, in an End Of Days. I’m a fan of Baron Corbin, but that is because I have seen him put on great matches at house shows. They are not doing him any favors with matches like these. Personally, I’d like to see Corbin in an underdog role against someone like Braun Stowman.

Kevin Owens sits down at the announce table to watch Scott Dawson take on Samoa Joe. Dawson starts off strong before Joe runs him down and continues with a flurry of punches. Moments later he nails Dawson with an enzuigiri and a side slam. He finishes off Dawson with a muscle buster. Afterwards Joe calls out Owens angrily. Owens tells Joes he is sort of a rookie in NXT and gives him veteran advice. He tells him you can’t just walk into NXT and get a title match. Clearly the irony was not lost on the laughing crowd. William Regal comes out and agrees that Joe has not earned a title shot but he has earned a fight, and that fight will happen next week.

Episode 4

This episode opens up with an inter-gender six person tag with Enzo, Cass, and Carmella vs Blake, Murphy, and Alexa Bliss. It’s not long after the bell that chaos ensues with all six competitors in the ring, until Cass, Enzo, and Carmella send their opponents out to the floor. The referee gets the match back in control and Blake and Murphy work over the underdog Enzo Amore. Finally he makes a hot tag to Carmella who makes quick work of Bliss who quickly manages to make a tag to Blake. Big Cass comes in and cleans house sending Murphy to the floor and putting down Blake with a swinging side slam. He tosses Amore onto Blake in an assisted splash for the win. A fun match, but clearly this feud is just getting started.

We continue with more tag team action as The Vaudevillians take on the team of Jason Jordan and Mikaze. Gotch and English start off strong until Mikaze makes a blind tag to Jordan. Jordan comes in and manhandles Gotch with ease. Later after much punishment things turn around when Gotch dodges a running kick from Mikaze allowing Jordan to get clobbered instead. The Vaudevillians were set to finish it when Mikaze sort of crumbled and the ref quickly ended the bout awarding it to The Vaudevillians. It is unclear what happened, there were no spots that went visibly wrong. Some fans in attendance said he seemed to just pass out. However, I won’t speculate as to what happened. The important part is that managed to leave the ring without the stretcher and on his own two feet. Later that evening, he was seen leaving Full Sail and seemed okay.

We continue with women’s action as Charlotte takes on KC Cassidy. Charlotte starts off strong but Cassidy thwarts her momentum and slows her with a side headlock and later a headscissors, anything to keep Charlotte down. It’s not long though before Charlotte fights her way out and becomes unstoppable hitting Cassidy with a neckbreaker and following with a spear. Charlotte then locks in the figure-4 leg lock for a submission victory. This was a good match with Charlotte looking strong as always, but also allowing newcomer KC Cassidy to come out looking good as well.

It is time for the main event with Samoa Joe taking on Kevin Owens. The bell rings and Owens evades the ring, but Joe quickly follows and the two face off nose to nose on the outside. Back in the ring and Joe immediately takes over with a flurry of punches in the corner, but the champ fires back with some strikes of his own. It becomes clear quickly that this one is going to be a brawl. The fight eventually spills to the floor and Owens attempts to escape but Joe follows and the two brawl up and down the ramp and eventually back into the ring. The champ finally manages to get an upper hand and squashes Joes with a cannonball in the corner and follows with a senton before settling into a side headlock. Samoa Joe gets free and back to his feet and lays out Owens with a kick. Joe follows with a senton of his own. Later, he gets Owens up on the turnbuckle attempting to set him up with a muscle buster, but Owens counters with a thunderous side slam. The action spills to the outside again, except this time the referee loses total control and calls the match. The two continue to brawl until more referees come out to separate them. They finally do and Joe goes to the back. Kevin Owens rolls back into the ring taunting Joe and telling him “C’mon Bitch!” Joe comes running back out and the fighting continues in and around the ring. Soon it takes all the referees and much of the talent out of the back to eventually break them up. It was a hell of a collision and an emphatic way to end a great set of tapings. I can’t wait until these two meet again.


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