NXT Recap: Episode 285

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July 3, 2015 by gorillapressonline


The WWE‘s hottest commodity, NXT, is upon us again and hurtling towards the land of the rising sun in what could be a match of the year contender, Finn Balor is set to challenge NXT champion Kevin Owens in Tokyo where his NJPW career soared.

The show opens with a beautiful VT chronicling their feud thus far. Deftly edited and kinetic, this final push serves as an exciting precursor to the main event.

Tonight’s show will also close with an enticing Main Event match-up of its own, as Samoa Joe and Finn Balor team up to take on the man beast Rhyno and Kevin Owens but before all that, more excitement lies ahead.

The Vaudevillans Vs Scott Dawson & Dash Wilder
the vaudevillainsTwo very different tag teams, which gel really well together, with the strike-based offence of Wilder and Dawson playing perfectly off the grappling and predominantly mat-based wrestling of The Vaudevillans.

The Vaudevillans always pull out all the stops in their matches; from Axe handle smashes to Atomic drops, their classic strongman-style tactics keep this duo exciting and, more importantly, fun.

Scott Dawson is the aggressor here, manhandling Simon Gotch who sells the offence perfectly. Gotch and English are totally ready for the main roster and their gimmick, if handled correctly, could transcribe really well there to.

The Vaudevillans wrap things up early with a whirling Dervish

Becky Lynch is up next in a pre-recorded segment regarding an sprained hip flexor injury that she sustained in the ring and, despite trying to work through it, she has been advised to rest up, but she vows to return and challenge Sasha Banks for the NXT Divas championship as soon as possible.

Baron Corbin Vs Tucker Knight
baron corbin tucker knightNXT‘s Lone Wolf Baron Corbin heads to the ring with brash confidence. He carries himself well, as always, to the ring to face the much larger Tucker Knight, which could be interesting given Corbin’s own considerable size.

Baron Corbin quickly takes it to Knight lashing out at him with a flurry of strikes before swiftly stopping the contest with the End of Days.

It’s over before it’s even begun with Corbin making ridiculously quick work of Knight

NXT are throwing these jobbers at Corbin and, although he defeated the now laughing stock Bull Dempsey, he needs to overcome some greater competitors to be legitimised with the Full Sail crowd.

The final part of the excellent Finn Balor documentary is aired next and, as with the other segments, he is charismatic and humble, talking of his meteoric rise in Japan to his arrival at Full Sail. He says he is beyond excited to be returning to Japan, and you can tell the sentiment is real.

The wonderful evolution of this future legend is marvellous to witness. In segments with Sami Zayn, he discusses fan art and his encouragement to fans to design artwork and face paint for him. As anyone who follows him on social media can attest, how much he actually shares and communicates with his fan base is mind-blowing.

He speaks about the Irish mythology behind his name and, for anyone unfamiliar with its origins, this is a brilliant insight into his thought process. Footage from the WWE performance centre showcases his genuine ability to adapt and thrive in this environment.

Simply speaking, this couldn’t have happened to a nicer guy. NXT and WWE have done a tremendous job on this documentary, which would easily stand on its own as a DVD release, so check it out if you haven’t caught it over the past three weeks.

Emma Vs Carmella
emma carmellaEmma has taken her heel persona up a notch over the past while, and she has settled comfortably into a groove with it. Paired with Dana Brooke, she is also helping a new talent (who needs all the help she can get, in fairness) while Carmella is improving leaps and bounds.

These two deliver a solid match, which doesn’t surprise anyone as this Divas division is home to some of the best female wrestlers in the business today.

Emma holds the match with some excellent mat-based work but Carmella also gets a chance to shine, particularly with a nice headlock transition and a top rope hurricanrana.

In a brutal display of strength, Emma wraps her legs around Carmella and thrashes at her back with a succession of fists, using her momentum to force Carmella to a close two count, as she exerts energy with the kick-out.

Emma steals the victory with her Emma-lock submission, arching a leglock into an impressive bridge

The aforementioned laughing stock Bull Dempsey is taking out his frustrations on a vending machine that has trapped his chocolate. Luckily, NXT GM William Regal is on hand to warn the gluttonous Dempsey to buck his ideas up before wiping candy from his face.

This angle must be pretty degrading for Dempsey, and he could definitely be used better if given half a chance.

Tyler Breeze Vs Tye Dillinger
tyler breeze tye dillingerBoth these wrestlers have a bright future in the WWE; Dillinger is underrated and could certainly benefit from a little push in NXT while Prince Pretty is set for the main roster and, once his face turn is complete, he wouldn’t even need to change things up too much.

Another short match which is sadly the case as we push towards a PPV special with the focus solidly on the Main Event for this show, but that being said this is still a solid bout.

Tye Dillinger is working very well as a heel, mocking and stomping a downed Breeze and the crowd is very vocal against him. Although Dillinger impresses and has the majority share of the offence, Breeze is just to good for him deftly turning things around hitting a beauty shot and taking yet another win at Full Sail.

Tyler Breeze takes the win in a short, yet entertaining bout

Finn Balor & Samoa Joe Vs Kevin Owens & Rhyno
finn balor kevin owens rhynoA salivating Main Event tag match to close the show; Balor is first to appear and the crowd are raucous for the Irish sensation, Joe follows and even for the Samoan submission machine it would be hard to top that reaction. Until Kevin Owens enters the fray, of course.

Full Sail are eating Owens up despite him being the most vicious and callous heel we have seen in a long time. Owens shrugs off the applause that greets him, dead set on the destruction of his opponents.

Ryhno gets a sombre reaction and feels a little out of place amongst these three competitors. Owens drapes the NXT title in front of Balor like a carrot on a stick, baiting him for what’s to come.

Samoa Joe and Rhyno kick things off and Joe wastes no time throwing the man beast to the ropes and colliding with an enziguiri. His speed and agility are outstanding for a guy his size and anyone familiar with his career will know that he likes to defy stereotypes.

When Balor is tagged in he keeps the pace suited to his team, unleashing a huge drop-kick on Rhyno. When Owens gets a tag, however, is when this bout really ups the ante. He’s his usual relentless self, chopping and hitting stiff looking chops before sending Balor flying to the outside in a seemingly dominating display.

When Balor returns to the ring, Owens methodically picks him apart. The focus is definitely on these two as they prepare to face off in Japan on Saturday, and rightly so.

Kevin Owens reminds the crowd that he will be facing John Cena by once again doing the U Can’t C Me gesture before connecting with his own five knuckle shuffle and attempting an AA, which Balor manages to counter with a double foot stomp.

Both men tag their respective partners; Joe steam-rolls Rhyno with some beautiful clotheslines and a running senton, Owens tags and rushes Joe only to be caught with his one-handed slam before he tags in Balor once again.

Joe takes Owens to the opposite ring-post for his MuscleBuster but Rhyno knocks Balor from the top, Joe reacts quickly, levelling Rhyno before running into a pop up powerbomb.

Finn Balor evades another AA from Owens before Owens Judo throws his way out of a Sling Blade to land a Super Kick, only for that to be retorted with a Pele kick from Balor in a fluid and entertaining sequence which took only a matter of seconds to unravel but looked absolutely astonishing.

As the two men struggle to their feet, the man beast tries to floor Balor with the gore. He sees this coming and Rhyno crumples Kevin Owens to the ground.

Finn Balor wastes no time in going to the top rope and sweeping up a victory with a double dropkick, hurling Rhnyo into Owens in the corner and following it up with a Coup De Grace to foreshadow events to come in Japan and getting a clean pinfall over Owens in the process.

Balor seals the deal for his team, possibly foreshadowing what’s to come in Japan

An excellent, high stakes tag match to end the show with all the focus on the two men about to face off in Japan, and the culmination of an enthralling title chase before the final defence from Owens on the 4th July.

Regardless of what happens on Saturday, it’s been a hell of a journey to get here and it’s going to be a hell of a battle to end it all.

Catch NXT every Wednesday on the WWE Network

Catch Balor Vs. Owens for the NXT title LIVE from Japan at 5:30 a.m. ET /2:30 a.m. PT on the WWE Network

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