NXT – August 15, 2012: Never Issue An Open Challenge. A W-O-R-M Might Answer.

NXT
Date: August 15, 2012
Location: Full Sail University, Winter Park, Florida
Commentators: Jim Ross, William Regal, Byron Saxton

Back to Florida for another show. We’re into the semi-finals of the tournament now with the finals likely coming next week. Other than that we’ll probably have a few random matches which have been hit or miss lately. This show has consistently been the best show on TV/online in the last few months and hopefully it continues to do that today. Let’s get to it.

Richie Steamboat says this is a big night for him but he’s ready. Mahal comes up and says something in whatever language he speaks in, then of course translates it to English as is the custom for anyone who speaks multiple languages.

Gold Rush Tournament Semi-Finals: Jinder Mahal vs. Richie Steamboat

Mahal pounds him into the corner to start and hits a back elbow to the face. Steamboat comes back with a fast dropkick for two and it’s an armdrag into an armbar ala his Papa. Mahal gets up and hits a neckbreaker followed by a running knee to the head for two. Off to a chinlock as JR is philosophizing about the future. Steamboat fires off some clotheslines but an enziguri misses. Mahal can’t hook the Camel Clutch so Steamboat gets some rollups for two. Mahal loads up a superplex but gets shoved down. Steamboat misses I think a dropkick off the top and gets caught in the Camel Clutch for the tap at 4:43.

Rating: D+. This was a shorter match than I was expecting. These two both left surprising impressions on me. Steamboat is a very boring guy. He’s just the son of Ricky Steamboat and that’s it. Mahal on the other hand is an interesting case. When he’s on the main roster, I don’t care about him at all. He’s just an Indian guy who is apparently from an upper class. He gets beaten every time he’s in the ring and I have no reason to care. Here on NXT he’s able to get some wins and now when people beat him I’ll care more. See how easy it is WWE? You don’t have to have you heels lose half the time.

Leo Kruger says something in another language and takes out his tooth. He says something has been bothering him and brewing inside of him. He sounds like a psycho here.

Here’s Heath Slater with a microphone. He wants everyone to take a minute and look at him. Slater talks about facing the legends on Raw lately but that’s going to change now. The fans want Frosties. He makes an open challenge to anyone in the back which is rarely a good idea.

Heath Slater vs. Scotty 2 Hotty

Now there’s a name I didn’t think I’d be typing. Scotty looks slimmer than he used to but he’s in good shape. Slater grabs the arm to start but gets run over by a shoulder. Scotty pauses for a second before Slater charges into an armdrag. We stop again to raise the roof but Slater knocks him down to keep us in this century with the playing to the crowd. Off to a chinlock which is pretty quickly released. A neckbreaker gets two for Slater and he tries to throw Scotty to the floor but Scotty hangs on. The bulldog sets up the Worm for the pin at 3:53.

Rating: D+. The match was nothing of note but that wasn’t the point. Scotty is a fun character that people remember fondly so it’s hard to complain much about him coming in here to beat a jobber like Slater. There’s nothing wrong with throwing out something like this once in awhile and the match was fine.

Usos vs. Ascension

Cameron and Jey start things off and for some reason Cameron tries to headbutt him. Jey punches him down and it’s off to Jimmy who pounds away in the corner. Cameron crotches him which Regal calls “rupturing his custard.” I’ll never understand British people. Off to Conor who stomps on Jimmy in the corner. The intensity Ascension has is good stuff.

O’Brian works on the arm for a bit before bringing Cameron back in. Off to a chinlock which is quickly broken. Out of nowhere Ascension hits the Downcast for two. I would have thought that was the ending. Off to Jey who speeds things up and cleans house, hitting the running Umaga attack in the corner for two. Jey goes up but Conor crotches him…..and that’s a DQ at 4:35? Really?

Rating: C-. This was fine but the ending was a bit puzzling. Since when has crotching someone been called for a DQ? It’s a lame ending but maybe it’ll be advanced in the future. With the talk of revamping the main roster’s tag division, I’m hoping both of these teams get more time on the main shows as they’re both talented.

Jimmy gets beaten down post match with Total Elimination.

Richie doesn’t want to talk.

Hunico and Camacho say they were sick when they lost to Dalton and Jordan. Oh and Camacho lost his burro.

Raquel Diaz says the other Divas don’t get her and don’t get that she’s making over NXT for their own good.

Gold Rush Tournament Semi-Finals: Michael McGillicutty vs. Seth Rollins

The winner faces Mahal for the title presumably next week. McGillicutty goes after the arm to start but it doesn’t get him anywhere. They chase each other to the floor with Rollins sliding into the ring and kicking McGillicutty to the floor, followed by a suicide dive. Back in and McGillicutty takes out Rollins’ knee and pounds away in the corner. The fans all chant SHAH when McGillicutty hits him, ala Hack Meyers in ECW.

We take a break and come back with Rollins hitting a dropkick for two. A splash misses McGillicutty in the corner so he hits a Saito Suplex for two on Rollins. McGillicutty hits a snap belly to back suplex for two. The McGillicutter is countered but he clubs Rollins down with a single shot. McGillicutty loads up a superplex but Rollins counters with an attempted sunset bomb out of the corner, only to get punched in the face. Rollins gets up and hits a buckle bomb followed by the Blackout (called the Stomp here for some reason) for the pin at 7:46 shown of 10:16.

Rating: C+. Rollins still isn’t very entertaining to watch but the fans seem to like him which is important. McGillicutty seems to get smoother and smoother every week he’s out there and hopefully he gets more time on the main roster in the future. At least here he can get some ring time and a chance to prove his talents to the higher ups.

It’s Rollins vs. Mahal for the title. The other finalist comes out to stare down Rollins but Dusty comes out to break up a fight. Mahal jumps Rollins but gets knocked to the floor to end the show.

Overall Rating: C. This was the weakest show they’ve had so far and it was still fine. Based on what we’ve seen here, I’m not sure who is going to win the title and I like having that feeling. Rollins and Mahal have both been built up very well and it’s hard to say which of them will win next week. As for the rest of the show, it wasn’t bad but it felt like a throwaway show this week, which isn’t a terrible thing. Not much to see here overall but it was perfectly acceptable stuff.

Results

Jinder Mahal b. Richie Steamboat – Camel Clutch

Scotty 2 Hotty b. Heath Slater – Worm

Usos b. Ascension via DQ when O’Brian crotched Jey on the top rope

Seth Rollins b. Michael McGillicutty – Blackout

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