NXT – August 1, 2012: Dig That Progression Man!

Date: August 1, 2012
Location: Full Sail University, Winter Park, Florida
Commentators: William Regal, Byron Saxton, Jim Ross

Back to Florida again and tonight is a big step forward in NXT as we’re going to have a major announcement. I won’t spoil it for you as you’re going to read about it soon. Why I’d be worried about spoiling something a minute away is beyond me, but there isn’t much else to talk about for this show and I need to fill in space. Let’s get to it.

Dusty Rhodes opens the show and he’s called the interim GM of NXT. I thought he was permanent. Dusty talks about what it means to be a champion and how NXT needs someone to be atop this place. There’s going to be a Gold Rush Tournament to crown the first tournament and the round of eight begins soon. The eight men are (in no particular order mentioned):

Richie Steamboat

Bo Dallas

Leo Kruger

Seth Rollins

Mike McGillicutty

Drew McIntyre

Jinder Mahal

Justin Gabriel

No Tyson Kidd. That’s interesting. Oh and the first round begins RIGHT NOW.

Gold Rush Tournament First Round: Richie Steamboat vs. Leo Kruger

Richie tries some very fast rollups for two each. Kruger chops him in the chest and the chase is on outside. Back in and Leo tries a sleeper but Richie escapes before it goes on. The camera is using some non-traditional angles here for some reason. Kruger gets knocked to the floor and tries to frustrate Richie. That makes sense as his dad always had a temper to him. Back in and Richie hits a chop in the corner and Kruger may have a bad knee.

Scratch that as it was a fake and Kruger nails him. Now that’s how you go about being evil. A snap suplex gets no cover as Leo would rather pose. An elbow drop gets one and it’s off to a cravate. Steamboat tries to fight back but walks into a big spinebuster for another two. The sleeper is countered again so Kruger settles for right hands to the head. Kruger charges into a boot and it’s back to the chops.

A backdrop puts Kruger down and a missile dropkick gets two. Steamboat misses a clothesline and there’s the sleeper from Kruger. Steamboat finally makes the rope but he’s in trouble. Kruger sends him into the ropes but Steamboat comes back with the Sling Blade for the pin to advance at 7:51.

Rating: C. Not bad here but it was just a match. These two had a better match a few weeks ago but they had something to fight for here, which at least makes things more interesting. Steamboat doesn’t have that much going for him at the moment other than his name, but that can be easily fixed.

Here are the official brackets for the tournament:








Big E. Langston vs. Adam Mercer

I wonder if I can get a glass of juice to go with the squash we’re about to have. Langston fires knees to the ribs and hits a set of backbreakers. Mercer gets in a bit of offense but Langston runs him over. There go the straps and Langston loads him up in a powerslam position. Instead of slamming him forward, Langston falls onto his back and slams Mercer into the mat for the pin at 2:00. Apparently it’s called the Final Cut. The name is ok but I’m not wild on the move.

Audrey Marie vs. Raquel Diaz

Well Marie looks good in leather pants and a leather bikini top. She’s got that going for her. Diaz has a mic on the way to the ring and talks about how great she looks and how well she can work a ramp. Marie grabs a headlock to start but Raquel hot shots her for two. Diaz hooks a chinlock but it doesn’t last long. Instead she chokes away and rams Marie’s face into the mat a few times. Raquel loads up a backslide but Marie counters our of the corner. The counter is caught in the Gory Bomb though, giving Diaz the pin at 2:33. I’m not a fan of Diaz’s character, but I’m a big fan of the fact that she has a character.

Raquel puts an L on the forehead of Marie with lipstick. The L is for loser I guess.

Paige is glaring at Raquel in the back. She says we’ll see about Raquel and her tour.

Hunico/Camacho vs. Mike Dalton/Jason Jordan

Hunico and Jordan get us going as Regal tells us Camacho and Hunico’s backstory for the dozenth time. Jordan takes Hunico to the mat and controls with a front facelock before it’s off to Dalton. After a Camacho distraction, a dropkick gets two for Hunico. Off to Camacho who stomps away on Dalton in the corner. A butterfly suplex gets one and Camacho pounds away some more. Back to Hunico who hits a double team powerbomb with Camacho for two. Hunico launches Dalton at Camacho but Dalton catches him in a hurricanrana out of nowhere for the upset pin at 3:41.

Rating: D+. This was a surprise but it caught me off guard which is nice to see. It’s always fun to see something unexpected and having guys who seem like jobbers get a win is one of those things. Jordan is supposed to be a big prospect and this is the first match he’s won in, even though he didn’t get the pin. Nice little surprise here.

Gold Rush Tournament First Round: Drew McIntyre vs. Seth Rollins

McIntyre beat Rollins last week so there’s a backstory here. Feeling out process to start and Rollins knocks Drew into the ropes. Drew takes over with a right hand but Seth knocks him to the floor. He loads up a dive so Drew rolls under the ring. That’s one way to avoid it. Drew rams Seth’s arm into the steps and we head back inside. McIntyre works over the arm and hits a DDT on it for two.

We take a break and come back with Drew ducking his head and getting kicked in the face. Rollins can’t follow up though and Drew takes over again, stomping away in the corner. This is the opposite of last week’s show where it was all Rollins for most of the match. The bad arm is rammed into the apron and we head back inside. McIntyre tries to throw him up into the air but Rollins DDTs him out of the air for two. Rollins tries to speed things up and hits an enziguri to stagger Drew.

Seth knocks him to the floor and hits a suicide dive to send McIntyre up the ramp. Back inside and Drew takes Rollins’ head off with a clothesline for two. Rollins tries to go up but dives into a tilt-a-whirl backbreaker for two. Drew loads up a belly to back superplex but Rollins knocks him off. They do the same finishing sequence from last week with the missed splash, but this time Seth avoids the running boot and hits the Blackout for the pin at 9:44 shown of 13:14.

Rating: B-. I liked the psychology at the end there a lot as it was a direct call back to the previous week’s match. Rollins is a guy that is hit or miss to me but giving him a longer match like this helped him a good bit as he had to work to get a win here instead of just being insane and winning a quick match. Good main event.

Overall Rating: B. It’s so nice to see this show moving forward so quickly. In less than two months they’ve already made more progress than Season 5 made in over a year. The matches were good, they had a purpose, and they’re fighting towards something. That’s more than all of Season 5 could say in their entire run. Good stuff here and possibly their best show yet.

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