April 8, 2015
San Jose McEnery Convention Center
San Jose, California
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We see the brackets for the Qualifying Tournament to see who would get a spot in the Andre the Giant Memorial Battle Royal. We take a look at the events during Wrestlemania week with the NXT stars. Kevin Owens meets with Sami Zayn and we see the members of the NXT roster going around the San Francisco Bay area. We see footage from the Finn Balor and Baron Corbin match, which was won by Balor with a crucifix cover. Bull Dempsey battled with Tyler Breeze and Breeze hit the Beauty Shot to advance. On the other half of the bracket, Hideo Itami faced Jason Jordan but Itami was too much for Jordan. The final quarterfinal match saw Adrian Neville face Kalisto and Neville got the win with the Red Arrow.
Josh’s Grade for this Segment/Storyline: 80/100 B-
First Match: Hideo Itami vs. Adrian Neville
They lock up and both men try for kicks and Neville backs into the corner. Neville with a waist lock and Itami with a wrist lock. Neville with a reversal but Itami with a reversal of his own. They continue to go back and forth until Neville locks in an arm bar. Neville with a snap mare but Itami with a hammer lock and he applies a knee to the back. Itami rolls Neville over for a near fall. Neville has something to say to a fan at ringside and he decides he would rather deal with Itami so he tells the fan he is lucky. Neville with a side head lock take down. Neville with a shoulder tackle but Itami with a hip toss and a kick. Neville backs into the corner. They lock up again and Neville goes for the head and he applies a side head lock. Itami with a knee to the midsection followed by a running kick to the chest and a clothesline that sends Neville over the top rope to the floor. Itami waits for Neville to get up and to get back into the ring. Neville takes his time getting back into the ring.
They lock up and Neville backs Itami into the corner and he connects with a shoulder to the midsection followed by a snap mare and kick to the back for a near fall. Neville with a knee drop to the back of the head. Neville with a kick in the corner followed by a chop. Neville with a slam and he gets a near fall. Neville with a rear chin lock. Neville with a back elbow and he gets a near fall. Neville stomps on the neck of Itami. Neville sets for a suplex and he hits it and gets a near fall. Neville with a rear chin lock and he smothers Itami’s face in the mat. Itami avoids a slam and puts Neville in a waist lock. Neville with an elbow but Itami with a drop kick and clotheslines followed by a back heel trip. Itami with a double knee strike in the corner and he goes to the turnbuckles for a tornado DDT that drops Neville on the top rope and then Itami with a clothesline from the turnbuckles for a near fall.
Itami sets for a fisherman’s suplex but Neville blocks it and he gets a near fall with a rollup. Neville misses a round kick and Itami with a sleeper. Itami with a Dragon Sleeper on Neville. Neville gets to the ropes but Itami with a fisherman’s suplex and he gets a near fall. Itami waits for Neville to get up and he gets Neville on his shoulders but Neville escapes. Itami with a series of kicks and he sets for the hesitation drop kick but Neville pops up and hits a super kick but Neville can only get a two count. Neville pulls Itami into the corner for the Red Arrow but Itami moves and Neville rolls through. Itami with a running clothesline followed by the hesitation drop kick and the flying boot for the three count.
Winner: Hideo Itami
Josh’s Grade for this Match/Storyline: 95/100 A
Second Match: Finn Balor vs. Tyler Breeze
Breeze retreats into the ropes to keep Balor from setting the pace of the match. Breeze with an arm drag and he goes onto his perch on the turnbuckles again. They lock up and Breeze with a side head lock. Breeze with a shoulder tackle but Balor with a drop kick. Balor goes to the turnbuckles to mock Breeze. Breeze misses a splash and Balor with a near fall. Balor with a chop and Irish whip followed by a running chop. Breeze with knees to the midsection and then he Irish whips Balor into the corner. Breeze misses a splash and lands on the turnbuckles. Balor with kicks to Breeze but Breeze with a kick and clothesline. Breeze gets a near fall. Breeze with kicks in the corner and then he chokes Balor in the corner. Breeze argues with the referee and then he snap mares Balor and hits a leg drop and gets a near fall.
Breeze with a reverse chin lock on Balor. Breeze wants the referee to ask the referee if he wants to quit. Breeze with an elbow to the chest and he tries for a sunset flip but Balor rolls through and hits a drop kick. Balor with a running forearm or two. Balor runs into a boot from Breeze but Balor with an enzuigiri to Breeze on the turnbuckles and Balor gets a near fall. Breeze with a back heel kick and punch. Breeze with a running forearm into the corner and he hits a second one. Breeze goes into the corner a third time but Balor with Slingblade followed by a running drop kick that sends Breeze into the turnbuckles and Balor with the double stomp for the three count.
Winner: Finn Balor
Josh’s Grade for this Match/Storyline: 92/100 A-
We see video package on NXT Diva Dana Brooke who will make her debut next week.
NXT San Jose Segment:
Triple H shows us around the building. He says if you don’t think NXT is taking over, you have something to think about. We get comments from Triple H during the show while we see some of the wrestlers who were on the show. Scott Hall comments on the show. Triple H mentions that there were 5,100 people to see everyone and he congratulates them. Bayley talks about how this was her Wrestlemania and she got to have it in her home town. Kevin Owens wonders what is next. We get to see part of Kevin’s promo from the show. Stephanie talks about the crowd’s reaction to everything. We get comments from Shawn Michaels. John Cena mentions that they sold 5,000 tickets in two hours and it is a testament of what they can do. Sami says this was the fruits of their labor. Kevin says he doesn’t know what the future holds, but things are growing so fast. Stephanie says this is only the beginning.
Josh’s Grade for this Segment: 90/100 A-
Third Match: Hideo Itami vs. Finn Balor
Itami with a waist lock but Balor with a hammer lock. Itami with a reversal and they go back and forth until Itami gets a near fall. Balor with a side head lock and Itami with a head scissors. Itami with a side head lock and Balor with a head scissors and Itami escapes. They lock up and Itami with a wrist lock. Balor with a reversal and a hip lock take down into an arm bar. Balor works on the wrist before returning to the arm bar. Balor has a kick blocked and Itami with a leg sweep. Balor with a drop kick and he gets a near fall. Itami with an Irish whip and Balor floats over and Itami with a knee to the midsection and he connects with a kick to the chest and he gets a near fall. Itami with a snap mare and reverse chin lock. Itami turns it into a rear face lock and then he connects with a knee. Itami with a sunset flip but Balor rolls through and he hits a drop kick. Balor with a clothesline and forearm followed by a running chop into the corner.
Balor with an Irish whip but Itami with a boot and he goes for the tornado DDT to the apron but Balor holds on and puts Itami on the turnbuckles and hits an enzuigiri for a near fall. Itami with a flying clothesline and both men are down. Itami with a running knee into the corner and he sets for the tornado DDT onto the top rope. Itami with a flying clothesline for a near fall. Itami gets Balor on his shoulders but Balor escapes. Itami with kicks but Balor with a Pele kick and both men are down. Itami gets to his feet first. Balor with a forearm but Itami with a forearm of his own. They go back and forth but Balor with the advantage. Itami with chops and kicks and he sends Balor into the turnbuckles. Itami with the hesitation drop kick into the corner and then he sets for the flying boot but Balor with Slingblade. Itami with a running drop kick into the corner and Balor goes up top for the Double Stomp. Itami crotches Balor and he gets Finn on his shoulders but Finn escapes and he rolls up Itami but can only get a two count. Itami with the flying boot and he gets the three count.
Winner: Hideo Itami
Josh’s Grade for this Match/Storyline: 96/100 A
Hideo Itami’s WrestleMania Experience:
We see him stretching in the back while they talked about him on the Kickoff show broadcast. We see Itami going to the ring for the Battle Royal. First, we go back to July 2014 when Itami signed his WWE contract in Japan. He talked about the challenge of wrestling in the WWE. We hear from Hulk Hogan talking about the moment when KENTA came to the ring to be in front of the crowd. Hogan did not know how big a star KENTA was. We see the contract signing. We move ahead to Itami’s debut in NXT. Triple H talks about how Itami is an international superstar. He mentions that Itami moved to the US to train and leaving his family. Hogan talks about how Itami has learned in the United States. Daniel Bryan says that Itami is the hardest kicker in the world. We see highlights from his match against Finn Balor at AXXESS.
We see Itami coming through the Gorilla Position after his match with Balor. Hunter says that NXT is about the future. We see Hunter with Itami and Fujinami in the back. Itami says that he cannot believe he is going to Wrestlemania. It is not a dream, it is coming true. Itami introduces us to his children. He says that he fights for his fans as well as his family. Bryan says this is great for Itami and he says that he is a great representative of what NXT has become. We go to the NXT house show in San Jose. We see Itami make his entrance for his match against Tyler Breeze. We see highlights from the match, including the Go to Sleep to defeat Breeze. Big E talks about the reaction that Itami got and he knows that Itami will be a star. Hogan talks about Itami hitting the Go To Sleep. Itami says that he has taken his move back.
We move ahead to Sunday when Itami travels to Wrestlemania. He says he is excited and a little nervous. Dean Ambrose and Paige talk about Itami being a great representative of NXT. John Cena says that Wrestlemania is something to make the people in NXT want to achieve. We see Itami getting congratulated by Sami Zayn and Seth Rollins. Seth points out that it took him three years to get to Wrestlemania and Itami made it in six months. Itami says that he is ready while he looks at the ring from the stands. We see Itami making his way to the ring for the Andre the Giant Battle Royal. We see highlights of his performance, including the elimination of Bo Dallas. We see Itami getting in some shots on Big Show before Show eliminated Itami with a knock out punch. We see the ovation that Itami got as he went to the back. We see Itami being congratulated by many of the wrestlers. Seth says it says a lot about Itami for getting there so fast. Big Show tells Itami he looks forward to working with him again. Hunter says that Itami got to perform in front of 70,000 people. Itami says that he is still dreaming. Hunter says that he won.
Josh’s Grade for this Segment: 100/100 A+
Josh’s Grade for this week’s WWE NXT: 92/100 A-
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