By Graham "GSM" Matthews
Alexander Rusev def. Sylvester Lefort
I wasn't expecting much of a match going into the show, but I was surprised to see it go no longer than 10 seconds. It was probably for the better, though, as Lefort isn't an active competitor anyway and the quick win established Rusev as a monster. I was also glad that this "feud" between Rusev and Lefort is now out of the way, allowing Rusev to move onto bigger and better things with his new woman manager. While I don't see him as NXT Championship material, I definitely think Rusev has potential to be a star in NXT.
Leo Kruger def. El Local
I am not sure exactly what to make of Kruger at the moment. He seemingly turned babyface the last time we saw him in his match against Antonio Cesaro over a month, but he appeared to be back to being a heel on this show. Not only did he compete against a fan favorite in El Local, but his character didn't change much from the last he was on television despite the commentators referencing to how intense he had become. Kruger is better off as a heel anyway, but this was a strange reintroduction for him. I thought we would see Cesaro make an appearance to resume their short-lived feud, but it wasn't meant to be.
NXT Tag Team Champions The Ascension def. Travis Tyler and Troy McClain (Non-title)
Well, it looks like it is back to the basics for The Ascension. If you have seen one of their squash matches, you have seen them all. I like The Ascension and all, but their act grows tiresome when they don't have any compelling opponents. That was the case on this show, as the live crowd didn't give them much of a reaction. The tag team division in NXT is in a sad state right now, but I hope new teams form to challenge The Ascension for the straps sooner rather than later.
Mojo Rawley def. Tye Dillinger
It is good to see Shawn Spears (Dillinger) back in WWE after a near five year absence. He showed potential during his initial run with the company as Gavin Spears and I hope he gets utilized correctly this time around. He wasn't just another local competitor for Rawley to face, either, as the commentators discussed Dillinger quite a bit during the match. Rawley continues to impress in the ring and I enjoy his enthusiasm, but he needs to find a new finisher and fast. The seated senton maneuver that he uses now is too reminiscent of Naomi and her in-ring style.
Luke Harper def. Kassius Ohno
Is it Ring of Honor Appreciation Week or something? I mean, in addition to facing both CM Punk and Daniel Bryan on Raw and SmackDown, respectively, this week, Harper took on another fellow ex-ROH star in Ohno. In any event, this was a much better match than their previous encounter, which lasted only mere minutes. Ohno showed good babyface fire and Harper was his usual dominant self. It was a logical win for Harper, but why give him the win when he already has a spot on the main roster? Even still, the commentators put Ohno over nicely by saying he looked strong in defeat.
Most of the matches on this show were glorified squashes and didn't last long at all. They were effective in putting over talent that need wins, but it surely didn't make for the most exciting episode of NXT in recent memory. If anything, the main event was worth watching and ended the show on a nice note. The advertised 2-out-of-3 Falls match between Corey Graves and Adrian Neville should be great, so that alone should give viewers enough incentive to tune in next week.
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