Date: January 9, 2013
Location: Full Sail University, Winter Park, Florida
Commentators: William Rega, Tom Phillips
The main story tonight is Seth Rollins of the Shield defending the title against Big E. Langston, the unstoppable monster that seemed to scare the Shield away last week. That’s the kind of basic yet logical storytelling you don’t get on the main shows anymore. It should be interesting to see where they go with this, especially with Langston playing a heel on Raw now. Let’s get to it.
The opening video recaps the title match. It’s No DQ tonight apparently.
Yoshi Tatsu/Percy Watson vs. Wyatt Family
We get to hear Bray cut one of his awesome promos, talking about how he’ll bite the head off a snake just to taste its poisons. He tells his family to make him proud and the visual of the three of them together is pretty awesome looking. The Family is Erick Rowan and Luke Harper in case you’ve forgotten. Wyatt sits down in his rocking chair on the stage and we’re ready go to.
Yoshi and Harper start but Luke beats him down very quickly and brings in Rowan. Off to Watson who fires off some clotheslines and a dropkick to knock Erick to a knee. That’s about the extent of his luck though as Erick chokes away and Harper cheats a bit as well. Back to Harper who pounds away on Watson’s back and tags in Rowan for a neck crank.
Percy finally fights out and tags out to Tatsu for the comeback. Yoshi fires off kicks and chops to Harper and a Shining Wizard for two. Harper drills Watson again but gets kicked in the head by Tatsu. Yoshi misses a top rope spinwheel kick and a discus lariat gets the pin for Harper at 4:12.
Rating: C-. Just an extended squash here but the Wyatt Family plays these characters so well that it’s hard to not enjoy these matches. Watson and Tatsu seemed to have some potential back in the day but now they’re the jobbiest jobbers that ever lived. Ok maybe that’s a bit extreme but they’re lucky to even get spots like these.
Emma vs. Paige
Emma is Australian and dances a lot. Paige gets a HUGE pop, easily the loudest I’ve heard for a Diva in years. A Paige chant starts things up and Emma gets thrown down by the hair. Emma comes back with a low dropkick for a delayed two as Regal sings Paige’s praises. The dropkick might have hurt Paige’s knee and thankfully Emma works it over a bit. Back to the dancing as Regal continues to be confused by it. Off to a half crab which makes sense as Emma is a Lance Storm student. Paige kicks away and hits the Paige Turner out of nowhere for the pin at 2:42. Her popularity continues to impress me.
Epico/Primo vs. Michael McGillicutty/Bo Dallas
Set it up last week, pay it off this week. Michael saved Bo last week from a double beatdown in case you’re new around here. McGillicutty and Primo start things off and it’s a quick standoff. The fans want Rosa who is absent tonight. Michael easily takes it to the mat and cranks on a headlock. Primo fights out and tags in Epico who immediately gets put in a headlock of his own. Back to Primo and he gets headlocked down as well. Primo fights up and is almost immediately puts in a third headlock. Well you can’t say they’re inconsistent.
Regal says that Bo and Michael could become “one of the greatest tag teams of all time.” I know I ask for less realism in wrestling but that’s a stretch even for me. We take a break and come back with Dallas holding Epico in a chinlock. Dallas pounds away in the corner but Epico finally escapes and gets Bo in trouble in the corner. Primo hits a running crotch attack to Dallas in a 619 position for two before it’s off to Epico for a chinlock.
Dallas fights out but gets rammed right back into the heel corner for more of the beating he’s taking. The cousins hit a Russian legsweep/spinning leg sweep (Saturn’s half of Total Elimination) for no cover before it’s back to Epico for more stomping. Primo accidentally dropkicks his cousin and there’s the hot tag to McGillicutty. A lariat and Saito Suplex put Primo down as everything breaks down. In the confusion, Primo hits a Backstabber on McGillicutty for the pin at 9:48 shown of 13:18.
Rating: C-. Again not a great match but it certainly wasn’t that bad. McGillicutty continues to be a guy that should be getting bigger spots than he’s in at the moment, but as long as his name is Michael McGillicutty, that’s simply not going to happen. I don’t get the need to have him pinned here, especially given how much Regal puts him over on commentary.
NXT Title: Seth Rollins vs. Big E. Langston
No DQ and Rollins is defending. Rollins doesn’t have music yet. After the big match intros we’re ready to go. Langston grabs a kick and shoves Rollins down to start, freaking Seth out. The champion grabs a front facelock and gets shoved into the corner for some shoulder blocks. Langston misses a charge into the corner and hits the post, but immediately comes back with a gorilla press to send Rollins to the floor.
Langston goes after him but here are Reigns and Ambrose for the triple beatdown. Big E. gets sent into the steps as we take a break. Back with both guys in the ring again with Rollins firing off kicks to the ribs. Rollins hooks a triangle choke but Langston fights up and hits an electric chair drop to escape. The crowd is ENTIRELY behind Langston here as he fires off clotheslines. A double clothesline takes down Ambrose and Reigns but they run in again to break up the Big Ending.
Some guys from the locker room come out to try to stop the non-champions of the Shield but are quickly dispatched. Eventually about 15 guys come out and FINALLY clear them out, leaving it one on one. Rollins hits the standing Sliced Bread for two and the kickout scares him to death. He loads it up again, but Langston catches him on his shoulder and the Big Ending gives Langston the title at 6:38 shown of 10:08.
Rating: C+. The match itself wasn’t much, but the run-ins were handled perfectly, making this feel like a huge moment and a nearly Attitude Era style main event. I also really like the idea of not having Langston beat up the Shield on his own as it keeps things a bit more realistic given how strong Shield has been pushed. Not a great match, but really good booking of a title change.
The locker room comes to the ring to celebrate with Langston.
Overall Rating: B-. This is one of those shows where the earlier stuff wasn’t that great, but at the end of the day it doesn’t really matter. This was all about Langston winning the title and they pulled that part off quite well. I’m pretty sure this was the last episode in this batch of tapings, so starting next week we should be able to see where things are headed. Good show this week, as usual.
Wyatt Family b. Yoshi Tatsu/Percy Watson – Discus Lariat to Tatsu
Paige b. Emma – Paige Turner
Primo/Epico b. Michael McGillicutty/Bo Dallas – Backstabber to McGillicutty
Big E. Langston b. Seth Rollins – Big Ending
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