Craig Wilson and Brian Damage
It’s that time again as we look back at This Week in Wrestling. In this edition, Craig previews NXT:Takeover Toronto while Brian shares some of the most interesting pictures and videos he’s stumbled upon this week.
NXT:TakeOver Toronto Preview
Headlining the show is the rematch pitting current NXT Champion Shinsuke Nakamura against Samoa Joe, the man he dethroned to climb to the top of the mountain. Elsewhere we see Asuka defend her woman’s title against the returning Mickie James, Authors of Pain facing TM61 in the finals of the Dusty Rhodes Tag Team Classic, DIY challenging The Revival for the tag gold and Tye Dillinger facing Bobby Roode.
Expect a few more matches to be added to a two-hour show that will be simply, but effectively, booked and feature matches that have been built to in a sensible fashion and some top class action.
In a weekend that will also feature one of the WWE’s ‘Big Four’, I cannot help expect the match of the weekend to be either Johnny Gargano and Tommaso Ciampo (DIY) face reigning tag champs The Revival in a two out of three falls match or Samoa Joe attempting to regain the title from Nakamura.
DIY have quite quickly become one of my favourite acts, not only on NXT, but the WWE in general. With an underdog-esque look and endearing charisma, the pair have quickly become a staple, and popular part, of the NXT brand. This match has insane levels of potential with two teams guaranteed to be afforded a considerable amount of time, surprising considering the length of the show, to tell a story.
Sticking with tag team matches, we’ve also got the finals of the Dusty Rhodes Tag Team Classic. After a 16-team tournament, we’re down to two pairs: TM61 and Authors of Pain. Also, in a throwback to the classic NWA days, Paul Ellering will be suspended above the ring, in order not to interfere, in a shark cage. These are two further NXT teams that excite me. The old school clobbering shtick of Authors of Pain coupled with the fast-paced in-ring work of the Aussie TM61. How this one goes, it’s almost as if neither can afford to lose. As soon as Authors of Pain lose, their mystique is over. Gone is their aura, as well as the undefeated streak. As for TM61, the WWE have a team they have put on a hot streak and that is getting over with the fans.
Sticking with the Dusty Rhodes tag team classic, the next match started from a proposed pairing during the tournament when Tye Dillinger teamed with Bobby Roode to face SAnitY, which saw Roode leave his partner behind for a beatdown. The ‘Perfect Ten’ against the ‘Glorious One’ is the match-up that’s head the least focus in the build to this show but still has plenty of potential. Cannot see, however, Roode losing this one.
The second of three title matches pits women’s champion Asuka against the returning Mickie James. The former WWE main roster talent has spent the last few years in the wrestling wilderness (TNA) but will return to WWE screens later on tonight. With Asuka having disposed of the bulk of female athletes on the NXT roster, many of whom were relative novices, the challenge provided by James will be unlike anything she has come up against so far. Whilst she is a welcome addition to the roster, I cannot see her winning the title but will provide a new foil for the champion in the short and medium term.
Finally, the main event will see reigning NXT Champion Shinsuke Nakumaa defend the gold against Samoa Joe. Unlike my colleagues on this blog, I’m no fan of Joe and really didn’t rate the pair’s last match. I felt Joe was plodding and the bout suffered as a result. We will find out later today whether or not it’s the same time around but part of me expects there to be a lot more to this one than there was with the last and I’m actually hopeful of it being a solid, at least, clash.
I believe NXT:TakeOver Toronto will eclipse Survivor Series on Sunday. My anticipation is that the in-ring action will be better and when you couple that with better storylines, you never really feel let down by NXT…
Shinsuke retains, DIY win, Asuka retains, Bobby Roode triumphs and Authors of Pain take home the Dusty Rhodes tag team classic trophy.
A look at the outside of WWE Hall of Famer Jerry ‘the King’ Lawler’s new restaurant in Memphis, Tennessee.
Just in time for the holidays…Holiday Booty O’s cereal!
Move over Charo, no seriously…get the hell out of there! Bruiser Brody is the next guest star on the ‘Love Boat.’
This past week, Dwayne ‘the Rock’ Johnson was named Sexiest man alive by People magazine. This was the runner-up… 😉
James Ellsworth as “Chinsuke Nakamura”
Speaking of James Ellsworth…he and Bray Wyatt pulled off one badass looking ‘Sister Abigail’ last week on Smackdown.
With Goldberg and Brock Lesnar scheduled to face off this Sunday at the Survivor Series, I think we all can agree that Goldberg’s theme music helps get him over.
Did you know that Goldberg wasn’t the first wrestler to use the theme in WCW? The first was actually Pat Tanaka and here is the video to prove it…
Last Week on the Blog
In last week’s Sunday Sermon we looked at whether this year’s Survivor Series was a return to the good old days; on Monday we had part 89 of ‘Wrestling with Sin‘; Summer Rae was on the receiving end of our ‘Book or Cook‘ treatment on Tuesday; we had a ‘Matches from History‘ on Wednesday looking at the ten man vs ten man match from Survivor Series 1988; Thursday saw us list our Top Five favourite Survivor Series moments and matches; and we rounded off the week looking at Raw and Nitro from 20 years ago this week.
Next Week on the Blog
All previous ‘This Week in Wrestling’ pieces can be read here.