Top 4 of NXT 1/30/13
Scott Stanford once again does the voice overs for this episode, which is magical because without him on commentary, anywhere, right now I need these moments. Regal is still great on commentary. I’m pretending Dawson doesn’t exist. Mason Ryan makes his return in the ring to a match with Sakamoto. So, Sakamoto is going to be the next to go, is he? That’s all I get out of his recent, “Let’s squash him against other guys,” push. It’s a shame, this could have been decent, and it wasn’t in fact awful, but it still wasn’t worthy of a spot on the list.
4. Sasha Banks Secret Admirer
Renee Young interviews Sasha Banks and Banks pulls out a love note and reads it aloud to the audience. Turns out the young woman has a secret admirer. That’s all you find out, and it’s nothing ground breaking, but it is plot. Plot is a good thing, and something NXT lacks a lot of the time lately. Sasha Banks is incredible in the ring but does need to work on her delivery a bit more. There’s still something there, but for now she does need to work on it.
Paige was in a match with “Rest Hold” Aksana. There was nothing special about the match, at all, because Aksana refuses to learn to wrestle. She’s fine as a character, she’s hot, but damn she can’t do anything in the ring. Luckily Paige makes the save with a submission that made me cringe. After the match Summer Rae runs out and attacks Paige, furthering storyline a bit more and ending what seemed to be Aksana’s brief storyline with Paige.
2. Bo Dallas & Michael McGillicutty vs. Epico & Primo
Hi, Epico, what did you do to your hair? Can you keep it that way? That’d be great. McGillicutty, Epico, and Primo all put on a great match. Dallas is just kind of there and when he does do tandem moves with McGillicutty it just looks sad. There is no force behind it. Still, a great tag match that ends exactly as you expect it to so Dallas and McGillicutty can move on in the tag tournament.
1. Alex Riley & Derrick Bateman vs. Kassius Ohno & Leo Kruger
Hey, Mason Ryan is back, let’s put him in a 2 minute squash match. Hey, Derrick Bateman is back, let’s put him in a nearly 11 minute tag team match! Yeah, guess which was the better decision? Well, it’s obvious, because it’s #1 on my list. Bateman hasn’t missed a step and Riley brings it better than he has before. Riley seems to be in limbo on what he’s doing character wise as he was serious in his last promo but seemed to want to be a little goofy in the ring. Still, good to see both in the ring again. Kruger is always a pleasure and his ring psychology against Bateman pulls through, especially with the help of Ohno. A few slow spots, but really for 11 minutes, this was a great show of athleticism, ring psychology, and a need to dominate