Monday, May 5, 2014

Best Coast Bias: Queens Without A Crown

Reminder: if you don't love Bayley, you're wrong
Photo Credit:
In keeping with long-held Full Sail tradition, when the Women's Championship is vacant eight women compete for the honor of being the top of that food chain.  And even on a show where there was a no-DQ blowoff match with the NXT Championship on the line it should come as little surprise to the knowledgeable fan that yet again, as they've tended to do post-ArRIVAL, that the ladies stole the show.

The latest installment of Bayley v. Sasha was the best off of the lead-in promos alone, where the latter threatened to hit the former so hard it'd knock her side pony straight and the former wanted to be Champion more than she wanted 10 hugs from Cena, Big E deciding three ain't enough man he'd need five high-fives, or both from Paige.  Once the opening round skirmish commenced, Sasha immediately went to work on Bayley in the corner only to fall victim to a series of rollups, including the criminally underused La Magistral.  Bayley brought more lucha with a springboard armdrag; she being Bayley she followed it up with a series of huge into the corner.  But Sasha would weather the storm and survive the belly-to-Belly to fire off her (apparently) signature straightjacket neckbreaker and counter another b2B to snap off a Backstabber and finally get a long-deserved victory with a modified Crossface.  She'll be taking on NattieKat in the semis, as the Canadian made Layla do the Bojangles in the night's other lesser first rounder.  Upcoming for the bottom half of the bracket is Emma/Charlotte and Alexa Bliss in her debut against Alicia Fox.  It must be assumed that's happening because if you can't be in at least a serviceable match with Aksana's running buddy whether it's your TV debut or not then you can join the list of releases that just occurred last week.

Said releases made the going for Adam Rose over Danny Burch and Mojo Rawley over Oliver Grey loser leaves town matches by the two sweetest words in the English language.  Obviously, Rose is about to debut on RAW irregardless of if Camacho still has beef with him and Rawley's getting the rocket push so neither of them were in any horrible danger.  Still, though, it goes to underline the precariousness of not being able to swim in the deep waters of the most talented roster ever assembled.  Burch seemed to start showing good stuff as Ugly Jerk Brawler, and Grey seems tragically destined to be the Jannetty to his ex-partner's HBK.  It can only be assumed he was cheering in his heart of hearts as Aiden English jumped the former footballer even if his advantage didn't last long.

About the only real problem Adrian Neville had was who was sent at him for a second opponent.  Bo Dallas had established himself as an even unwitting scumbag, so there was something on the line and the possibility that the Englishman was in danger.  Against Brodus Clay, who couldn't even beat him in a non-title match?  Who hadn't won for months?  In this case the fireworks factory was the Man That Gravity Forgot finally putting the land monster behind him by slamming into him with a Red Arrow, and with the match being no-DQ the belt was driven into both men's chest to boot.  It was more interesting trying to figure out if the crowd was chanting "Please don't eat him" at Clay than anything he was doing, and it was possible since they would go on to chant Koopa Troopa at him as well. With that put aside, who's next up for the Champion?

Maybe Tyson Kidd?  He made his unspoken claim to the crown by besting Bo Dallas in the show opener clean in the middle of the ring with the Blockbuster.  It does say something about his singles career to date that the crowd was chanting Total Divas at him early and when he won both viewer and announcers were initially stunned, followed almost immediately by "Wait a minute, why were we initially stunned?" But seeing as how his wife got hooked up to the Rejuvenation Machine last fall with her excursions down Florida way it's obviously hoped the trip will do the same for TK, and a match with him v. Neville would be a fun bit of aerial goodie v. goodie...well, goodness.  Despite the fact that the former NXT Champion's new Tron looks like an inspiration porn version of the epic Hollywood Rock video and his music sounds like an Arcade Fire instrumental jokingly covered by the band themselves, he couldn't get enough steam behind him to beat Kidd.  He got in nearly ten of his signatures and after using the ring as a weapon against his opponent wore him down with a couple of cravates but Oliver Sudden Kidd had taken him out despite his exhortations he'd gotten his shoulder up.   Hopefully this isn't the last we see of Bo as an NXT regular, since the relationship between him and the fanbase is a crucial part of what started to make NXT special to begin with and something that can't be replicated the moment he punches his ticket back to Monday and Friday nights if at all.

It's completely appropriate Triple H started off the show and noted "it's like NXT is taking over the world".  RAW, full of NXT alums has become Full Sailafied and is all the better for it.  With a bevy of future callups all either eyeing holding a title or literally possessing them, the future keeps winding into the present more and more by the week.  When Takeover happens at the end of the month as another two-hour NXT Special, it'll be interesting to see who're the Champions, who their main competitors are, and who's already on RAW living the dream.