ThunderStruck: NXT Redemption Analysis 04/25/12

Striker opens the show in the ring. He says he is on commentary due to Josh Mathews being injured on Raw. He says Reks and Hawkins have been fired due to their treatment of WWE personnel. He also congratulates Darren Young and Titus O’Neil for being drafted to Smackdown. Striker says William Regal is gone tonight because he is out scouting new talent for the show. He introduces the guest match coordinator for the night, Hornswoggle.

^Striker congratulating Young and O’Neil shows just what NXT is all about: talent development. Young and O’Neil have an in ring chemistry and an outside of the ring charistma that has earned them a spot as a tag team on the main programming. Hornswoggle’s in charge; I doubt this will change anything in regards to the match making for the show.

Hornswoggle announces Percy Watson and Tyson Kidd vs Johnny Curtis and Michael McGillicutty for tonight. He then calls out Derrick Bateman. Bateman walks towards the ring and talks about being happy for O’Neil and Young being drafted to Smackdown, despite the fact that he defeated them both and never got drafted himself. JTG jumps Bateman from behind and says he has something he wants to get off his chest. JTG says this show is wack, and that the show was only good when he was on it every week. He calls Hornswoggle a break dancing elf and tells him he wants a match. Hornswoggle books a match between JTG and Derrick Bateman.

^JTG? Is this his last chance at showing his talent before he gets future endeavored? Again, I like the class of Bateman for putting over O’Neil and Young even if it was out of sarcasm.

Bateman and JTG go one on one. Hornswoggle joins Striker on commentary for this match. Bateman wins this one in just over five minutes with a DDT finisher.

^Despite this being a solid match, I’m not really all that impressed with JTG in the ring. He doesn’t really stand out in any way. Maybe tag team wrestling was where JTG made a difference inside the ring. Bateman looks like he still needs some work, but you can see that the guy is willing to work his tail off to put on a decent match.

Backstage segment with Maxine, Johnny Curtis, and Scott Armstrong. Armstrong cuffs the pair when they come into the building. Hornswoggle approaches them and books Maxine in a tag match against Kaitlyn and Tamina. He doesn’t say who her partner is.

^I like the explanation of showing that these two only get cuffed together when at an arena. This is actually a good example of WWE explaining how a seemingly impossible “handcuffed all the time” situation can occur.

Backstage segment with Tyson Kidd and Percy Watson. They talk about the match tonight and Kaitlyn walks up to them. She compliments Tyson on his recent matches and asks him the name of the new submission finisher that he’s been using. Natalya comes up behind Kaitlyn and calls her a snake for talking to Tyson. Natalya says she will see her in the ring later. She asks the guys why every girl on the show is crazy. Tyson and Percy laugh about diva drama.

^This is again where I want to compliment whoever is writing the script for NXT. These are fun storylines that have meaning behind them, and they aren’t just week to week. They build for the future. You can already see the potential Natalya/Tyson couple brewing for the future.

Another backstage segment with Maxine, Curtis, Brad Armstrong, and Natalya. Natalya criticizes Maxine but says she wants to take Kaitlyn down a few notches tonight. Maxine says she’s in. Curtis and Maxine are allowed to be uncuffed for the match but have to stay together.

^I have a hard time figuring out if we’re supposed to be viewing Natalya as a heel or a face. I’m assuming it’s a heel role, but it seems odd with her affiliation to Tyson.

Next we have the tag team match with Maxine and Natalya taking on Kaitlyn and Tamina. Curtis does commentary with Striker for the match. Tamina pins Maxine in just under four and a half minutes after the superfly splash. Striker makes Maxine join him for commentary for the next match.

^I really like watching Tamina in the ring. She’s just a breath of fresh air when it comes to the divas division in WWE. I was actually really disappointed that she got such a strong push during her rivalry with Beth Phoenix, only to be defeated during her one title shot. I doubt she’ll get time on the main shows anytime soon with the rumors of Kharma making a comeback. Natalya, Kaitlyn, and Maxine are also really solid in ring talents that should be allowed to showcase their stuff more often.

Backstage segment where Tyson Kidd finds Percy Watson hollering on the ground while favoring his knee. Watson says he was attacked by McGillicutty and Tyson tells him to go see the trainer; he heads to the ring.

^An attack angle that changes the main event? Didn’t this just happen on Smackdown with Khali and Big Show? I’m actually a fan of this tactic, because it makes the viewers feel like anything can happen at any time to change the show.

McGillicutty joins Curtis in the ring. Tyson Kidd comes out with Hornswoggle. Hornswoggle makes the match one on one between Curtis and Kidd. McGillicutty joins Striker and Maxine on commentary. Tyson wins the ten minute match with his new stretch submission hold that he’s been using as of late. Kidd stares down McGillicutty to end the show.

^Johnny Curtis proved in this match why he deserves to be on the roster. If you can hang with Tyson Kidd for ten minutes and put on a good show, chances are you’re a solid performer(or you can be carried extremely well). I mean, this wasn’t anything fantastic, but it was a well worked match all around. I like the heat that gets added to this Tyson/McGillicutty feud. Those two could go one on one dozens of times and I wouldn’t get tired of it.

This was another really good show put together by whoever is writing the NXT script. I look forward to this show more than any other(with maybe the exception of FCW) during the week. I’ll have an ROH column up this week(Getting excited for Border Wars!) and my two non review columns in the next few days. Until next time, you’ve been ThunderStruck! – add me!