This episode of NXT, unfortunately, was entirely a recap of NXT Takeover Dallas, with the exception of the dark match between Apollo Crews and Elias Samson that we didn’t get to see on the PPV.
Out of all the FallOut moments from Takeover Dallas, two stood out to me – Finn Balor’s view on his match with Samoa Joe and Shinsuke Nakarmura’s interview.
There was something strangely alluring in the way Finn acted throughout his interview. He remained deeply out of breath throughout the entire time and by doing so he created the image of the warrior that barely crawled out of a bloodbath of a battle. There was no confidence, no happiness, there was exhaustion and only the proud fighting spirit of the champion was pushing him to fight on, despite the fact the he could feel the life draining through every pore of his body with every move he makes. Balor said that he didn’t win, he simply survived and with every detail in his delivery, he made us believe it was true. Brilliant work!
The other one I wanted to talk about was Shinsuke Nakamura. He had a translator with him, which confirmed by fears that his level of English is worse than Hideo Itami’s. Shinsuke tried to deliver one line in English and I had to rewind to understand it. It concerns me because the WWE is an entertainment business. What the main roster is looking for is someone who can tell a story and get a crowd reaction from a promo. Shinsuke is god-like in the ring. I don’t remember hearing the fans chant FIGHT FOREVER ever before. This is a testament to the quality of the Nakamura vs. Zayn match. Yet, Shinsuke might never become a WWE World Heavyweight Champion if he can’t cut a good promo. Pure wrestling didn’t save Neville on the main roster.
Apollo Crews def. Elias Samson
Samson got some real heat before the fight started. The guy sings well but the crowd hadn’t paid to listen to a concert. He heard them, acknowledged them and then told them he was going to finish his song anyway. It wasn’t difficult for Samson to get the crowd rallying and that’s a good sign for his character.
In the match itself, however, the Drifter got completely lost in Crews’s shadow. Apollo stole the show. Samson was trying to pull out some elaborate offense with a lot of precision and concentration. Crews, on the other hand, seemed to simply wait patiently for Elias to do his thing and then just counter it in a split second with one smooth movement.
Apollo really made it look too easy. He didn’t even lose breath over this entire match. It was like watching a mid-level MMO player, trying to take down a major boss on his own and getting annihilated with ease. Good for Apollo but I don’t know where this leaves Samson.
What were your impressions from NXT? Share your thoughts in the comment section, on FB or Twitter!