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Wrestling Today's Date:

Falls Count Anywhere


I'm so confused.
My name is Chris and I let my editor write this opening sentence...

The NXT angle continues and they seem to understand a thing or two that they often get wrong. They didn’t feel like they had to make the WWE guys better than the outsiders. They didn’t stick them with lame comedy skits. In fact, they’ve kept them serious and have learned that they get best results not having regular commentary with their attacks.

This is a really good angle that they can ride to a certain point. The Monday attack was really well-done, with the NXT guys working over the legends, but there is another problem that WWE has to face.

Apparently, the WWE went out looking for guys from England, Ireland, Scotland and so on to sign a while back. I seem to remember hearing that Fit Finley and a couple of other office folk did a visit. That led to a few hirings: Sheamus, Drew McIntyre and Wade Barrett, the leader of NXT and one of the two best workers they’ve had. The NXT angle is going full-steam and then something happens – Visa issues.

Apparently, nobody applied for the appropriate Visa renewals for Barrett and McIntyre. Sheamus seems to be in a different boat, though it’s not 100% that they just haven’t contacted him. The problem is that Barrett and McIntyre have been sent back to their home countries and are awaiting processing for their new visas, which most seem to think won’t happen until at least September!

That’s a huge blow to Barrett, as the head of NXT, an angle that can not hold on until after he’s returned, and to a lesser degree to McIntyre, who is turning into a good worker and is starting to get over.

The Wrestling Observer Newsletter reported that there were issues, and there was some question as to how Sheamus managed to make it when he was signed about the same time. They could actually have had different terms on their visas, which happens quite often, or it could be that Sheamus just got lucky and they caught the matter with him in time.

This actually doesn’t hurt the NXT angle as a whole, and could turn into something very good for everyone. Monday night, Raw had a solid angle, possibly the most logical of all the ones they’ve laid-out so far. It was declared that any NXT guy who put his hands on a WWE Superstar would be fired, and if any WWE Superstar attacked an NXT dude, they’d be suspended. It’s a simple bit, really, and pretty smart.

So far so good!
They had Lawler come out and bring Ricky Steamboat to talk about his DVD. They also had Mike Rotunda, Michael PS Hayes, Dean Malenko and Arn Anderson into the ring. They had the guys give short promos, with Hayes saying that he and Steamboat didn’t interact much (I can only think of once that they had a match and that was in the early 1980s), Mike Rotunda said they had never wrestled (which shocked me as they were both in similar areas at the same time in the 1983-1990 time frame, though they did team on a Saturday Night’s Main Event in 1985) and Dean Malenko said that most of Steamboat’s matches were from before he was born, which was a great rib. Arn Anderson had some great matches with Ricky in WCW in the late 1980s and early 1990s and of course in Mid-Atlantic before that, and put Ricky over as a great worker. This was a nice segment and it showed how much respect everyone has for Steamboat.

NXT then came down the ramp and the commentary stopped. That’s such a nice touch for all the NXT bits. They had the guys surround the ring, and the Legends who were in there held them off.

When a guy would try to get in, the Legends would stomp them. Heath Slater was acting as the general for this one, which made him seem more bad ass. I really think that he could end up as the star of the group and that having him play the Barrett role works really well, and if Barrett comes back, he has a natural feud with Slater set up.

The guys then managed to pull Arn Anderson, Dean Malenko and Rotunda out of the ring and beat on them, allowing them to get up onto the ring and then beat up the rest, reserving the John Cena finisher treatment for Steamboat. They had him take hard clotheslines, a couple of slams and then had Justin Gabriel give him the 450, which was great because Gabriel took him time, looking like he didn’t want to do it.

Gabriel could be the first to turn on the NXT guys, team with Cena and 3 other WWE guys and face NXT at SummerSlam and that would be awesome, getting Gabriel over big time.

Imagine the one night pop if after they’ve beat down Cena or someone, and when Gabriel goes up, he dives onto Slater or whoever is leading the group that night. That would make him into the biggest babyface… for a while, at least.

The guys were great and the entire presentation looked great. This was my favorite of the attacks. It made complete sense, it made them look like true bastards, and perhaps best of all, it used guys who really understand psychology and how to sell an angle.

Steamboat and Anderson in specific were fantastic. Steamboat, after taking a brief initial beating, was surrounded by the NXT guys with Skip Sheffield bouncing up and down saying ‘Strike, Old Man! Strike, Old Man!’ and then Ricky hit him before they all fell on him. That was a great moment. This one looked so good, was so perfectly timed and presented and had off-the-charts heat on the NXT guys. They didn’t have to tear-up the set, or choke a guy with his tie, but they beat down six old-timers and made it look awesome. This is how they need to handle the NXT guys.

The NXT guys, now being called Nexus at times, are probably going to stay over until they have to give away that one job to either Cena or Sheamus or someone. Then, they’re on their own, having to drive as far as they can with whatever talent they’ve got.

And that’s gonna be hard for some of them.

That’s all for this week!

Chris Garcia

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