Cheap Pops - Wrestling News & Views - October 13, 2015

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Cheap Pops - October 13, 2015

by Chris Delloiacono, Mike Maillaro and Jeff Ritter

This week!

-NXT Takeover Respect Results

-James Storm Joins NXT

- NXT Roster cuts

Mike: We're running late this week.   A combination of birthday, holiday, and just a real slow news week.  BUT, we're still Cheap Poppin'

NXT Takeover Respect Results

- Dusty Rhodes Tag Team Classic Semi-Final Match: Finn Balor and Samoa Joe def. The Mechanics with Muscle Buster/Coup De Grace combo.  Finn sustains a leg injury (kayfabe) during the match.

- Dusty Rhodes Tag Team Classic Semi-Final Match: Rhyno and Baron Corbin def. Chad Gable and Jason Jordan when Corbin hits the End of Days.

- Asuka def. Dana Brooke with the Asuka Lock (crossface chicken wing/body scissors combo).

- Apollo Crews def. Tyler Breeze with a spiral powerbomb

- Dusty Rhodes Tag Team Classic Finals: Samoa Joe and Finn Balor def. Rhyno and Baron Corbin. Dusty's family was there to celebrate afterwards, and Cody Rhodes gave a terrific speech.

- 30-Minute Iron Man Match for the NXT Women's Title: Bayley def. Sasha Banks 3 falls to 2.

1st fall - Sasha wins via roll-up after a thumb to the eye. Sasha is up 1-0

2nd fall - Bayley wins after a Bayley to Belly suplex.  Tied at 1-1

3rd fall - Sasha wins via countout after brutalizing Bayley outside the ring. Sasha is up 2-1

4th Fall - Bayley manages to get a roll-up out of nowhere to tie it at 2-2.

5th Fall - Bayley reverses the Bank Statement into a submission of her own and gets the final fall just as the clock expires.  Bayley wins 3-2.

Mike: The Network crashed for me just as the main event was about to start, so I had to wait for the next morning to see the rest of the show.  Honestly, it was the only match I was really looking forward before the show started, but as usual, NXT managed to put on a terrific event.  It seemed like everyone really stepped up their game last night.

While the match of the night was definitely the main event, that didn’t take away from the rest of the show.  All three Dusty Rhodes Classic matches were worked brilliantly.  Everyone was given a real chance to shine and run with it.  I will say I was a little disappointed that Jordan and Gable didn’t make it to the finals, but Corbin and Rhyno really stepped up their game.  I am glad that the two biggest stars in NXT won it, Finn and Samoa Joe.  But I still think at some point in the very near future, these two will stop being friendly and start feuding for Finn’s NXT title.  I also thought Finn did a great job selling the leg injury.  It definitely helped put the ending in doubt up until the very last second.  Terrific job by everyone involved in these matches.

Jeff: This was a really strong showing for NXT, top to bottom. The Dusty Classic ended somewhat predictably--I wouldn’t have minded it if they’d have paired The Mechanics and The World’s Greatest Tag Team 2.0, but it almost had to be your champion and your biggest draw coming out on top. I thought Corbin really came out of his shell over this tournament and wrestled easily his best match to date in the finals. And hey, Rhyno still has it! It was great to see the Rhodes Family in the ring together, and Cody could be a face anytime he wants to. I’m a big fan of Stardust though, so I hope he keeps his brother’s bizarre legacy alive for a long time. Plus it gives The Ascension something to do.

Chris: The tournament came together quite nicely even though the finish was kind of booking 101.  At least each of the matches had some nice false spots that made me wonder if they were going to go out on a limb.  I agree with Jeff about Corbin.  He needs to work more tag team matches to get some experience.  He has so much in the look department, but he still needs to develop the goods in the ring.

Mike: I thought the crowd’s reactions to Gable was just awesome.  Chanting his name to Kurt Angle’s theme song, and then “Save the Gables!”  WTF?   And that dead lift german suplex he did to Baron Corbin should not be physically possible when your opponent is about a foot taller than you.

Chris: I love Gable and Jordan as a squad.  They've meshed so beautifully.  The German suplex on Corbin was simply mind blowing, and  the reverse when Corbin put him into the End of Days was pretty spectacular too. Not too many guys can sell getting crushed like that and pull off insane high impact moves. Gable reminds me of Shawn Michaels in that respect.

Mike: Asuka made her WWE debut last night.  Damn.  She comes across as a total badass.  But she also had a lot of personality and character, mocking Dana Brooke moves and poses.  That creepy smile Asuka keeps flashing is just awesome.  I definitely want to see her matching up with some of the terrific women in NXT.  Dana Brooke was just not on her level.

Jeff: Dana Brooke is not even on Blue Pants level! She is, however, better than Eva Marie. Then again, everybody is better than Eva Maria. But that’s not important--what is important is that Asuka is in NXT and every--and I mean everybody--better take notice. Seriously, she could win any title. She’s that damn good. If it wasn’t for Sasha Banks, she’d be my biggest crush in wrestling. From the entrance--that split mask effect on the backdrop was tremendous--to the simple yet somewhat crazy for its simplicity face paint to the ring attire that looks like it was weaved with one of those rubber band bracelet looms my young niece is an expert at, and of course a fully developed all-purpose repertoire, Asuka is poised to explode in the American wrestling consciousness.

Chris: Asuka was damn impressive, and she pulled a good match out of Dana.  That shows just how great she is!  The NXT women look like they will continue to steal shows and hopefully keep main eventing.

Mike: Apollo Crews and Tyler Breeze had a great match too.  I am kind of bummed out that Tyler lost another big match...he seems to lose all his big matches...but I still enjoyed the match a lot.  Some great counters, including the way Tyler kept blocking Crews from hitting his finisher.  Crews changes things up, and that power bomb was a perfect way to end this match.  Hopefully, Tyler will eventually get pushed to the top, but for now, he puts on some brilliant matches.

Jeff: I still look at Tyler and see somebody who’s going to headline Wrestlemania someday. Apollo Crews has incredible ability and I love that he can pull out other finishers on the fly--I’m not wild about a standing moonsault as a finisher anyway. I hate to say it, but I don’t think he has a chance in the world at being the World’s Champion someday. Not because he’s black, but because he’s small. Vince seldom pushes small guys without a good reason. What? Eddie and Rey were small? Yes, but they were also Latino, an important demographic for the WWE. If Vince decides to push a black man into the World Title scene, it’ll either be a last hurrah for Mark Henry, a big push for Titus O’Neal, or a modest push for Big E. I think of Kofi was going to have a run he’d have had it already. Anyway, that’s speculation about the future--the now is that Apollo and Prince Pretty work together pretty darn well, and like Finn Balor, earlier, I love that Apollo mostly sold the injured back through the match.

Chris: I really like Breeze but he's been stuck on the rat wheel of midcard nothingness in NXT for so long.  He deserves a break to the main roster, but he's so small.  Same thing with Crews.  I just don't see them going all that far as long as Vince is in charge.  We can hope, though.

Mike: As for the main event, Sasha and Bayley are going to go down in history as one of the best feuds of all time.  I am kinds of bummed that Sasha is on the main roster.  The quality of these matches and the storytelling is something I haven’t seen in a real long time.  I can’t help but think of Orton Vs. Christian...and I think a big part of that is that I want...ONE MORE MATCH.  Both of these women are terrific and I hope they have nothing but success in the future.

Chris: Wonderful main event, worked beautifully, with an awesome finish.  Haven't quite seen an Iron Man match end this way before. I don't know if the feud itself was spectacular.  It was just the classic bickering back and forth.  Nothing from the feud really stand out in my mind, but the two big matches they had were brilliant.  Those matches I will always remember.  Seriously, they main evented the show and blew the roof off the building.  So, if that's what you mean, I guess you're right. Sold!

Jeff: I’m just going to go ahead and admit it--I wept after this match. Brilliantly wrestled, damage sold, story told, crowd was mega hot, there’s nothing more they could have done! Sasha Banks is the greatest thing to happen to women’s wrestling since Trish Stratus, maybe even Madusa Miceli/Alundra Blaze. When she made the peace gesture mid-match, I thought, “Ha, if Bayley falls for this…HELL YEAH!! HEEL IT LIKE A BOSS!” But then Bayley whips out Belly To Belly Suplexes like the female version of Tazz, and they look like they legit hurt! The one on the floor was brutal! The one off the turnbuckle was vicious! And still she probably would have had to tap out in the end if Sasha could lock in the Bank Statement properly. By working over her hand with the ring steps, Bayley gave herself an opening, that armlock submission she used to pick up the last fall as time expired was right up there with the Rings of Saturn. The whole locker room coming out to express their support was beautiful, and when Sasha lost it I did too.

These NXT ladies really give it their all, and the Horsewomen who’ve been called up to the Main Roster have already reinvigorated the WWE Diva’s division. I’d be surprised, quite honestly, if our little dirt sheet every popped up on a screen in WWE Headquarters in Stamford, but if it does, please consider giving the ladies their own big event! NXT Takeover: Ladies Night has a nice ring to it. Bring the Bella twins, Paige, Nattie Neidhart, the whole gang. Give Blue Pants a title shot! Create a ladies tag title, preferably with center plates that don’t look like product placement ads for Trojan Condoms! Strike while the division is red hot! Co-Main Events could be Bayley vs Charlotte, NXT Women’s Title vs WWE Diva’s Title, and Asuka vs John Cena for the U.S. Title! Why should Chyna be the only woman to hold a man’s championship? .   

James Storm comes to NXT


ORLANDO, Fla. — One night after the critically acclaimed TakeOver: Respect special on WWE Network, NXT has again made waves.

James Storm, an 18-year veteran and former heavyweight champion, made his unannounced debut at tonight’s NXT TV tapings. He competed in a match that will air on NXT on Wednesday, Oct. 21, only on WWE Network.


Mike: I don’t know James Storm all that well.  But, WWE seems to continue their trend of trying to vacuum up any wrestler who might even have some name recognition.  I think it’s interesting that just like Samoa Joe, they have him wrestling under the name he was known for in TNA.   Typically every wrestler that debuts in WWE, no matter how well known, changes their name.  Kevin Steen became Kevin Owens.  PAC became Adrian Neville.  Uhaa Nation became Apollo Crews. Kente became Hideo Itami. Prince Devitt became Finn Balor.  And most recently Kana became Asuka.  I am kind of curious how James Storm and Samoa Joe managed to avoid this trend.

Chris: TNA is something I can only stomach for small stretches of time, but "The Cowboy" James Storm was one of the guys I loved to watch whenever I did.  Whether it was solo, in Beer Money with Bobby Roode, or even teaming with Gunner, he was always must watch on TNA.  In my opinion, NXT has grabbed 2/3 of the best TNA has had with Storm and Samoa Joe.  Now, I hope they get AJ Styles!  Here's hoping they give Storm some cool stuff to do!

NXT Roster cuts

Mike: Devin Taylor and Cal Bishop were released this week.  Both has been signed back in 2012, and according to Lords of Pain, the feeling within NXT was that both had been in developmental for far too long without making any real progress. I haven’t see Cal Bishop at all.  And Devin Taylor is basically only known for being mocked by Dana Brooke in her promos, with the head petting.  

When I was reading this story, it occurred to me that I should point out how much progress I’ve seen from a lot of wrestlers in NXT.  Baron Corbin is a perfect example.  Sure, he’s still a little green, but every time we see him wrestle a real match, he has shown a lot of growth.  Even Dana Brooke who I don’t like all that much has shown huge improvement.

And then you have wrestlers like Bayley and Sasha Banks.  When I first saw them on NXT a few years ago, they were good, but I would never have predicted how great they would both become.  They are not some of the top wrestlers in the company, male or female.  

You could make the argument that everyone coming up in the same system could create a very homogenized product.  And many guys have failed to make the jump from NXT to the main roster.  But, I would still say the positives outweigh the negatives.