By Graham "GSM" Matthews
The Vaudevillians Won a No. 1 Contender's Tag Team Battle Royal for the NXT Tag Team Championship
Battle Royals can either be really fun or really boring, and this match fell more into the latter. There wasn't anything necessarily wrong with it, but most of the teams involved aren't well established enough for fans to care about them. The finish was predictable with Hideo Itami distracting The Ascension to grant The Vaudevillians the victory. How many weeks has Ascension gotten the better of Itami? It's made him out to look like a loser and has done him more harm than good, even though I know the payoff is coming fairly soon. It better be worth it for Itami's sake.
Carmella def. Emma
Carmella has been entertaining in her backstage segments with Enzo Amore and Colin Cassady, but her matches have left a lot to be desired. Emma is good enough in the ring to be able to carry someone like Carmella, but not even she could bring her to a passable bout. Emma's lack of motivation doesn't help matters, either. It's not her fault WWE has completely wasted her on the main roster. Camerlla is probably better off competing alongside Amore and Cassady for the foreseeable future until she improves.
Bull Dempsey def. Justin Gabriel
It's been a while since we last saw Dempsey on NXT to the point where I completely forgot all about him. Gabriel has been cast as a heel at times over the last several months, so I'm not sure the fans particularly cared for him in this match. It was essentially a glorified squash for Dempsey and not much more than that.
Marcus Louis def. Sylvester Lefort
I haven't cared either one of these guys from the first day they paired up and I therefore couldn't have cared less about them facing off here. The crowd didn't have any incentive to cheer for one guy over the other because... well, both of their characters are terrible. If nothing else, it was kept short and sweet. Here's hoping this was the blow-off of their short-lived rivalry.
Sami Zayn def. Titus O'Neil
I've seen a lot a praise for O'Neil over the years and although I do think he has potential to be better, I just can't see him as being as good as some people think he is. He's extremely charismatic and all, but his wrestling skills are decent at best. His last three matches on NXT have been nothing special and cement the fact he doesn't deserve the push he's currently getting on this program. This match was slightly better than the last encounter between Zayn and O'Neil, but it mostly consisted of O'Neil dominating Zayn only for Zayn to hit his finisher and win. Please let this mean that O'Neil's days in NXT are over. Nothing against the guy, but he isn't delivering from an in-ring standpoint and it's dragging down the main events of the show.
This was another one of those middle-of-the-road episodes of NXT that didn't feature anything worth watching. There was just a whole lot of filler as the road to the next live special continues. None of the matches were bad, but they weren't given enough time to feel memorable and it was simply more of the same. Hopefully the show heats up again with the next live special a little over one month away.