By Graham "GSM" Matthews
Triple H Addressed the NXT Universe
It is always cool to see Triple H make appearances on NXT every so often, as it goes to show that he truly does believe that the stars of the show are the future. The Full Sail University crowd took a liking to him, and I don't mind that despite the fact he is supposed to be a heel. He delivered his promo as a top company official and not as a heel, which was the way it should have been. His promo was kept short and sweet and kicked off the show on a high note. I am extremely excited that NXT will be shown on the WWE Network upon its debut in February and that it will be broadcast live that first week. It will give the show and its talent a great amount of exposure.
Adrian Neville def. Tyler Breeze
As entertaining of an act that Breeze is, I think many people often forget the fact that he is very good in the ring. He is more than capable of holding his own in the ring and proved that in this match against Neville. Correct me if I am wrong, but this might have been Breeze's longest match to date. That being said, it was also his best. They worked a high-paced, entertaining contest that the live crowd was very into. I don't mind Neville picking up the victory, but I hope it doesn't mean that his feud with Breeze is over already. Breeze can easily regain heat next week (or on another edition) by attacking Neville backstage or something to keep the rivalry alive.
CJ Parker def. Jason Jordan
In all honestly, it has been so long since we have seen Parker that I forgot he was even a part of the roster. The live crowd didn't boo him as heavily this time around as much as they did during his feud with Breeze, but seemed to not be interested at all by him in this match. He is a fine worker, but his character annoys me, personally. It was a basic squash match even though Jordan was attempted to built up as a threat after receiving an entrance for the first time in recent memory.
NXT Champion Bo Dallas def. Mojo Rawley (Non-title)
It is blatantly obvious that Rawley is still very green in the ring, but he had a nice showing against Dallas. Dallas generated good heel heat by constantly exiting the ring, so it wasn't even much of a match at all. The commentators didn't reference that this was Rawley's first singles loss to date, but I didn't expect them to. Officials are high on him, so it made sense that Dallas scored the victory via dirty tactics.
Kofi Kingston def. Alexander Rusev
Their first matchup against each other was only mere minutes long, so I was glad this match was given much more time. I am not sure if that is necessarily a good thing, though, as the live crowd got bored by Rusev's offense down the stretch and even started doing "the wave" to entertain themselves. Nonetheless, it was a refreshing change of pace to see this match contested in the main event and to give Rusev the spotlight for once. It was logical booking to give Kingston his win back after losing previously, but it will only help Rusev in the end if he ultimately emerges victorious.
The show started off hot with the exciting announcement from Triple H and great opening matchup from Adrian Neville and Tyler Breeze, cooled off a bit with the two squash matches, and closed out with a solid main event. It wasn't the best episode in the last month, but it was enjoyable enough to keep my interest throughout the hour. It was a good show as a whole and I would definitely suggest going out of your way to watch the Neville vs. Breeze bout.