WWE NXT Report CALDWELL'S WWE NXT RESULTS 1/25: Complete "virtual time" coverage of NXT Season 4, Week 8 - Bryan and DiBiase put on a clinic, Rookie Challenges
Jan 25, 2011 - 9:50:30 PM
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WWE NXT TV Results
January 18, 2011 - Season 4, Week 8
Taped in Cincinnati, Ohio
Aired on WWE's website
By James Caldwell, PWTorch assistant editor
The cast of Season Four of WWE NXT:
-- Rookie: Johnny Curtis. Pro: R-Truth.
-- Rookie: Byron Saxton Pro: Dolph Ziggler
-- Rookie: Brodus Clay. Pro: Ted DiBiase.
-- Rookie: Jacob Novak. Pro: Chris Masters
-- Rookie: Derrick Bateman. Pro: Daniel Bryan.
-- Rookie: Conor O'Brian. Pro: Alberto Del Rio.
A standard video package introduced the show before they went to the arena where Todd Grisham reminded viewers NXT is rat-free after Conor O'Brian was cut last week.
In-ring: Brodus Clay, "Too Saxxy" Byron Saxton, Derrick Bateman, and Johnny Curtis were already in the ring with Matt Striker. Two challenges tonight. One for immunity points and the other a four-way match, with the winner having the chance to swap Rookies if desired. But, first, there was a violation of the rules last week.
Last week: Derrick Bateman, on surveillance video, snuck up on Daniel Bryan in the locker room area and handed him a note. It was the matching answers to last week's Match Game challenge. Bateman told Bryan just to go along with it. Bryan was concerned about cheating, though. Bateman said there are no rules on NXT, so who cares? Striker said Bateman will be pe-nalized in this Rookie Challenge. Bryan stood up and said that's not fair. Striker made a Carson Palmer reference to get the largest crowd reaction in NXT Season 4 history. (Carson, the QB for the Bengals, has said he wants to be traded.)
This first contest will be Out-think the Fink. Out came Howard Finkel for a guest appearance to host the festivities. Fink has added a few pounds. Mathews noted his weight. "He's larger than life," Grisham declared. Fink shook hands with the Rookies and Striker. Fink with a Cincinnati name-drop, which drew a Mick Foley comment from someone recognizing the cheap pop.
Fink scored two-and-a-half answers, but he was only given two points. So, can the Rookies out-think the Fink? Johnny Curtis was the first Rookie. Striker asked the questions much faster than for Fink. Curtis missed two questions. Make it three. He only scored one question, which drew boos.
The second Rookie was Bateman. He dropped a Pete Rose reference, which drew a mixed reaction. Striker dipped into the '90s for a Chris Sabo reference, which didn't draw a reaction in front of the PG crowd. His goggle gimmick inspired my Little League career. Sadness. Bateman scored a Jeff Jarrett answer. He was only given two questions and a very short clock. Bryan told Striker he's too slow.
Byron Saxton was next. One of the Pros kept talking over Striker as Saxton scored one point. He couldn't get the name of Randy Orton and Edge's tag team before the buzzer sounded. Everyone has one point.
Brodus Clay was the last Rookie. Striker went to our 2000 Rumble Flashback on Hunter and Foley's match type, which Clay did not get. Clay scored a final question before the buzzer. No one was able to out-think The Fink, though, so no one scored an immunity point. Mathews called that a train wreck.
Still to come tonight: Fatal Four-Way match with the remaining Rookies.
1 -- U.S. champion DANIEL BRYAN (w/Derrick Bateman) vs. TED DIBIASE (w/Maryse and Brodus Clay)
Before the match, they re-visited the angle on last night's Raw when the Bellas stumbled on Daniel Bryan making out with Gail Kim, setting off a cat fight. Back in the arena, Mathews noted Maryse is the only winner in the group since she scored the pin in a six-person tag last night. Grisham noted Bryan has held the U.S. Title for five months. Maryse turned her attention away from DiBiase in the ring and started talking to the announcers. She wrote down her number for Mathews and tossed down the piece of paper. DiBiase seemed to take a glance over at Maryse, which gave Bryan an opening to take control of the match. Mathews said he thinks a lot of Divas are into Bryan because he's a winner and carries the U.S. Title gold. More chain wrestling from DiBiase and Bryan as they traded control. Bryan teased the LeBell Lock, but DiBiase rolled to the outside for a breather. DiBiase continued to shake his elbow and stall for time on the outside as they cut to break.
DiBiase and Bryan were standing in a corner jockeying for position. Bryan then ripped off a series of kick strikes as Maryse shook her head ringside. DiBiase came back with fist strikes to the forehead, though, and dropped a knee to the forehead. The crowd clapped it up for Bryan as Ziggler made a comment to the crowd about Bryan being a vegan. DiBiase then executed a dropkick as they cut to a shot of the Pros on the stage watching the action. Ziggler suddenly started arguing with R-Truth about the merits of Daniel Bryan.
Back in the ring, DiBiase dumped Bryan over the top rope to the floor. DiBiase followed on the outside ramming Bryan back-first into the guardrail. DiBiase then aggressively dropped Bryan face-first across the announce table and re-entered the ring. He demanded the ref apply a ten count, but Bryan made it back in the ring in plenty of time. Bryan then fired off a round of uppercuts before DiBiase reversed a whip and Bryan ate the corner turnbuckle. Ziggler made another heelish comment on Bryan being a vegan, followed by an In N Out reference. Mathews said he's not a fan of the vegan lifestyle, then Grisham said it seems to be working for him as U.S. champion. Truth then led the crowd in a loud "Daniel...Bryan" responsive chant. In the ring, Bryan made a comeback flipping over DiBiase, ducking a clothesline, and nailing a big clothesline. Bryan then approached DiBiase from behind and proceeded to smash him in the sternum with a kick strike. Bryan went up top looking to end the match, and he connected with a double foot stomp. Bryan with a cover and Grisham prematurely called the end, as DiBiase kicked out for a believable nearfall.
At 10:00, Bryan landed a kick strike. And another. Maryse couldn't watch. DiBiase then ducked another kick and nearly surprised Maryse and Bryan with a pin, but Bryan kicked out. They traded pin attempts, then DiBiase tried Dream Street, but Bryan escaped. DiBiase then hit a sit-out slam and scored another close nearfall. Maryse seemed more interested at this point. "Daniel Bryan" chant from the crowd. Bryan kicked DiBiase in the face, then caught DiBiase with a submission into the LeBell Lock. DiBiase made it to the ropes, though, to escape the finisher. Bryan proceeded to kick DiBaise in the stomach before slingshot kicking DiBiase inside the ropes. That was highly innovative. Bryan then tried a suicide dive, but DiBiase creamed him with an elbow to the face. Clay was pumped for that counter.
Back in the ring, DiBiase stalked DiBiase, the crowd screamed in horror, and DiBiase dropped Bryan with Dream Street. Maryse had the greatest reaction like, "Wow, that happened, right?" Maryse checked with Mathews to verify as Clay and DiBiase celebrated. Grisham called it a five-star performance by DiBiase and Bryan tonight. Mathews noted DiBiase just pinned the U.S. champion and he may have turned things around.
WINNER: DiBiase at 12:24. Great "TV" match. Those final five minutes were excellent and told a story on DiBiase trying to prove himself again. Boy, that could be a show-stealer if placed on PPV in front of a larger audience and given 15 minutes to tell the same story with the same match formula. (***1/2)
Video: Back from break, Grisham fed to the "Rumble by the Numbers" video. ... Back to the announcers and Mathews sold genuine excitement over the Rumble match on Sunday. Grisham listed Cena, Big Show, and Kane as potential favorites. Or, Ted DiBiase as a dark horse.
Backstage: Maryse was glowing over DiBiase's win. "Wow. You actually did won a match," she said. Yes, just like that. DiBiase told Clay to win the four-way match and make sure he remains his Pro. Clay sold being good with DiBiase this week and said he'll do what his boss says. Maryse chuckled and started speaking French, prompting another "I don't speak French," reply by an exasperated and worn-out DiBiase.
In-ring: Tony Chimel announced the four-way match up next where the winner can swap Pros. Grisham noted how unexciting Chimel sounded. Curtis was out first, Saxton was second, Big Brodus, from Pasadena, was out third. Derrick Bateman, from Cleveland, was out last. Sound the bell for the elimination-style match.
2 -- BRODUS CLAY vs. DERRICK BATEMAN vs. JOHNNY CURTIS vs. BYRON SAXTON
After the opening bell, the other three Rookies ganged up on Derrick Bateman to take out their anger on him cheating last week. Bateman was gone at 0:52 after taking a beating. They cut to break with a standard three-way match (two men in and one man out) ongoing.
[Break - a new "Don't Try This At Home" video aired on the "real risks" WWE wrestlers take. Appropriately, Rey Mysterio was heard throughout with how beat up his body is.]
The Pros added commentary in the background as their respective Rookies scored nearfalls. Curtis suddenly came off the top with a double legdrop on prone Brodus and Saxton simultaneously. That was unique. Curtis with a cover on Saxton to eliminate him at 4:30. So, it's Clay vs. Curtis. Ziggler told Saxton to do some squats in the back until he returns. Clay did an Umaga-style butt smash in the corner before dragging Curtis to the middle of the ring to apply an Umaga-like trapezius hold. On the stage, Masters did his "announcer voice" referencing the trapezius being targeted. Mathews and Grisham did not appreciate him trying to do their job. Clay continued to slow down the pace working over Curtis as the crowd sat quietly.
Curtis made a comeback at 6:50 with multiple head butts to the mid-section. Mathews said he's picking Rey Mysterio to win the Rumble. Curtis tried a move from the second rope, but Clay caught him around the throat and scored a weak-looking slam while maintaining a hold of Curtis's throat. Clay drove the thumb into Curtis's throat as he scored a three count for the win.
WINNER: Clay at 7:18. Basic NXT Rookie match. Clay needs to work on that finisher. (*)
Post-match: Striker asked Clay if he's switching Pros tonight. Clay said DiBiase has the money, power, and will probably destroy everyone in the Rumble. But, the one thing his Pro isn't is Ted DiBiase. Clay told DiBiase he can't control his girl and he's the "brokest rich dude I've ever met." Clay said his new Pro is Alberto Del Rio. Clay said he has something to share from the heart. Clay then put his thumb in DiBiase's throat and dropped him to the mat with his finisher, which was better on the second try. He then approached Maryse and kind of sniff her. Maryse sold never being so disgusted in her life. Clay and Del Rio then shook hands on the stage as the show concluded. And Del Rio is back in the game on NXT.
FINAL THOUGHTS: Better than last week's awful show. Bryan vs. DiBiase was great and Maryse continues to get over her personality in this format. You knew they were going to find a way to get Del Rio back in a featured role, so the switch was inevitable. It will be interesting to see what, if any, role DiBiase and Maryse continue to have on NXT going forward... Of note: no announcement on the next elimination and still no announcement or how long this season will last.
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