NXT Recap: (4/5/17) – “El Vagabundo” Debuts

Did you miss NXT this week? Well, I’m here to make it all better. It’s the weekly NXT Recap, right here at Last Word on Pro Wrestling. Did you miss out on LWOPW’s NXT Takeover: Orlando predictions? Check them out and catch up here.

So, what happened at Takeover? Additionally, what is the state of the yellow brand now that the next set of call-ups has taken place? Even further, who exactly is El Vagabundo? Let’s find out, shall we?

NXT Recap: (4/5/17) – “El Vagabundo” Debuts

Photo: WWE

Match: Peyton Royce vs. Aliyah

As we open our show tonight, we see the weekly women’s division bout. Of course, Nigel McGuinness took ample time to make something of a creep of himself commenting on the women. Nevertheless, this one got underway. Peyton Royce looked like a cowardly heel and worked herself over, as per usual. She and Billie Kay just work so well together as a heel duo, it’s actually quite impressive.

Royce took her time to gloat during this one, as it was basically over when it began. No one was expecting her opponent to win. Lo and behold, no one was wrong on that one. And while Aliyah got some offense in at points, the outcome was, again, very clear. After a fisherman (fisherwoman?) suplex, Peyton Royce took home the win.

Winner: Peyton Royce

Analysis: This…didn’t really feel like an opening segment. Honestly, it felt like it should’ve been in the middle of the show. However, it worked really well, aside from where it placed on the card. Royce looked cowardly but powerful, Aliyah looked strong-ish. Each woman got their stuff in, and the right woman won. Outside from the placing, I have no personal complaints about this opener.

Photo: WWE

Match: Heavy Machinery vs. The Bollywood Boyz

After their dominance last week, Heavy Machinery already look incredibly strong. This week, they took on the Bollywood Boyz. And just like last week, they absolutely dominated the entire bout. No, seriously. The Boyz got almost no offense in whatsoever. A few punches and kicks were all they could really muster during this one. Following a series of bear hugs between Heavy Machinery and a brutal finishing move, this one was already over.

Winners: Heavy Machinery

Analysis: Okay, Heavy Machinery, we see you. You’re strong, ready to fight, and bulldozing (pun intended) through the tag division. Simply put, you are the next NXT Tag Team Champions. That’s quite obvious. However, what else can you show us? Do you have any other facets to your characters? Then again, maybe you don’t need a character if you can just beat up everyone.

“Exclusive Footage”: NXT Championship Match

No formal analysis on this one, it’s too short of a segment. However, this bit of “unseen footage” was really cool. The footage included talking head style interviews with Nakamura and Roode. Additionally, there was new backstage video of both competitor’s entrance. The match was, as fans know, incredible, with Bobby Roode coming out on top. Now, Shinsuke Nakamura is a member of SmackDown Live, while Roode remains on the yellow brand. Presumably, Roode is staying down in NXT to “hold down the fort.” As WWE continues to bring up new stars, somebody has to stay on the yellow brand to be an anchor. Right now, it’s Roode. And fans should be grateful for that. In addition to the match, NXT showed a touching tribute to Nakamura, which was incredibly well-done.

Photo: WWE

Match: Oney Lorcan vs. ???

Before this match, an announcement came out that said Drew McIntyre will be among us next week. I am so excited. Anyways, it turns out that the series of question marks became a man named El Vagabundo. And by that, I mean that it was very clearly Elias Samson. If the scraggly beard didn’t sell it, the guitar over his shoulder certainly did. After losing his Loser Leaves Town match against Kassius Ohno, Samson is now carrying the gimmick of taking on a new gimmick every week. A sad fate, that is. After making his entrance, “El Vagabundo” played a song for the fans, telling everyone to shut their mouths.

Oh, wait. It looked like Lorcan had started to catch on. But before he could unmask E; Vagabundo, he suffered a kick to the gut. Rather abruptly, this one got underway. When we came back from commercial break, El Vagabundo still had the upper hand. Of course, all the commentators were none the wiser to The Drifter’s horrible disguise. This is like Damien Mizdow, but a little less funny. Yeah, it was a humorous idea at first, but it wore thin pretty quickly. Nevertheless, both Samson (who eventually became unmasked) and Lorcan are terrific wrestlers, and after a great bout, Lorcan came out on top.

Winner: Oney Lorcan

Analysis: This match started out pretty funny just because of the gimmick with Samson…I mean El Vagabundo. The gimmick change kinda wore thin, but it was alright while it lasted. After the bout, Samson was forcibly taken out by security. Again, kinda funny. And it begs the question: What will be Samson’s gimmick next week? Additionally, Drew McIntyre is back. Just let that sink in, people.

A Hundred Words or Less

For those who said, “Too long; didn’t read”, I offer you this. Tonight’s NXT in one hundred words or less. Tonight, we saw an opening women’s bout between Peyton Royce and Aliyah, that didn’t feel like it belonged there. Then, Heavy Machinery obliterated the Bollywood Boyz, and built themselves up even further. After that, we were treated to an unseen backstage look at last Saturday’s NXT Championship match. Finally, the debut of El Vagabundo blew everyone away. Until it turned out that he was really just Elias Samson in a badly-fitting mask. Overall, tonight’s NXT nabs itself a rather solid 7.75/10.

Main Photo: WWE.com