Episode: NXT #202
Recorded: 09 June 2016
Aired: 29 June 2016
Duration: 7:35 minutes (plus one commercial break)
The match started off with Johnny Gargano against Mojo Rawley with the latter showing off his hype gimmick, so the first touch between both competitors almost needed one minute. Mojo Rawley then showed off his strength when he threw Johnny Gargano to the mat. Some American football moves later, Johnny Gargano was run over again. A quick tag to Zack Ryder brought a bit more wrestling to the match when Zack Ryder made Johnny Gargano into the suffering victim now. Johnny Gargano was able to avoid an attack in the ring corner but was then hit by a lariat that forced him to the floor. But then Johnny Gargano was able to connect with a dropkick that brought him the opportunity for a tag.
With past paced team action, Johnny Gargano and Tommaso Ciampa took out Zack Ryder temporarily with a roller kick and a neck breaker respectively before Tommaso Ciampa was on his own again. And Zack Ryder regained control very quickly, so he made a tag for some tag team action at the expense of Tommaso Ciampa this time. He was able to overcome their advantage at first when he shoved Mojo Rawley out of the ring. But Tommaso Ciampa had to leave the ring as well and Zack Ryder made him stay there with a kick to his face. Johnny Gargano followed with a suicide dive to Zack Ryder. But Mojo Rawley took out Johnny Gargano with a lariat shortly after. And we went to the break.
After the break we jumped back into the match with Mojo Rawley wearing down Johnny Gargano inside the squared circle. But Johnny Gargano was able to stand back up and hit Mojo Rawley with a scissor kick to the face for a tag to Tommaso Ciampa. Mojo Rawley also tagged in his partner Zack Ryder who was now paced down by a “hyped” Tommaso Ciampa. But a missile dropkick from Zack Ryder ended the furious run by Tommaso Ciampa. And Mojo Rawley was tagged back in for his very own hyped run at the expense of Tommaso Ciampa.
A cover on Tommaso Ciampa by Mojo Rawley was broken up by Johnny Gargano but the latter was then just thrown out of the ring by Mojo Rawley. Him and Zack Ryder went for the Hype Ryder with Tommaso Ciampa sitting on top of Mojo Rawley and Zack Ryder prepared to take Tommaso Ciampa out from the top rope. But Tommaso Ciampa was able to make it down to the mat with a little help from Johnny Gargano who dragged Mojo Rawley out of the ring. And Johnny Gargano continued to take out Mojo Rawley with a superkick to his face while Tommaso Ciampa dealt with Zack Ryder inside the ring with a lariat.
When Johnny Gargano was back at ringside, Tommaso Ciampa set Zack Ryder up on the top rope in their ring corner and tagged Johnny Gargano in for another team work. But Mojo Rawley came back in to save his partner from double punishment to punish both of their opponents, Johnny Gargano and Tommaso Ciampa, instead with a double powerbomb from the second rope. Zack Ryder followed with an elbow drop on Johnny Gargano but the following cover wasn’t enough to win the match.
Meanwhile, Tommaso Ciampa was able to take out Mojo Rawley for good outside the ring when he shoved him against the steel steps. A little back and forth fight between Zack Ryder and Johnny Gargano finally earned Zack Ryder the set up for the Broski Kick but his run was interrupted by Tommaso Ciampa from outside the ring. This wasn’t illegal because Tommaso Ciampa all the time was the legal man. Now, both of them prepared for their specific kick to the face of Zack Ryder from opposite ring corners and they connected for Tommaso Ciampa getting the winning cover.
Winner: Tommaso Ciampa & Johnny Gargano
I’m as surprised as you are that The Hype Bros are included in my little collection of Best Matches of NXT in 2016. I certainly ain’t hyped every time I see those guys. But they are still considered as babyfaces – to my serious dismay – because when Corey Graves bashes someone, you know they are the ones you have to cheer. It certainly doesn’t work for me in this specific cause. But it works for the little boys, and The Hype Bros obviously are a tag team that only works for the male five-year-olds. It’s nothing to be taken seriously by the mainly grown-up audience of NXT. Therefore all the We ain’t hyped chants throughout every match that includes this ridiculous tag team.
What I don’t like about The Hype Bros certainly is the overly hyped character of Mojo Rawley. I can’t stand people around me who are like this in my own personal life, and I can’t stand watching them on TV or in movies. I’m a thinker, I’m for the little details, I like to spot tiny things in great stories. And Mojo Rawley just yells and screams – there isn’t any story to him. He’s just, well, hyped.
What I also don’t understand is this combination of being hyped and the American football gimmick. Having such a guy in a real team of American football must be a pain in the arse for every coach. It’s just annoying and not helpful at all. And if Mojo Rawley is stuck to this gimmick for his entire NXT / WWE career, he won’t make it far. Also, highlighting that you are an ex-NFL player never throws a positive light on you with grown-up wrestling fans.
On the other side, you’ve got Zack Ryder whom the so-called smart marks seem to love collectively. I can’t see any appealing facet to this guy though. Never have; never will be. Still I tried to understand why so many people seem to want him on the top and the main event in WWE. Is it just his status as an underdog who’s shaded by WWE officials and the hierarchy? Is he unfairly shaded like Cesaro? Does he have something special to him that makes it worth demanding better treatment for him? So, I asked myself those questions for numerous times; I watched his matches. But the only thing I could think of when Zack Ryder won the United States Championship at WrestleMania this year was: so what? He’ll lose it in no time. He just got it to silence his fans. And so it happened.
And still this match is included in this little collection of mine because of Tommaso Ciampa and Johnny Gargano obviously. They really brought the best out of Mojo Rawley and Zack Ryder. I also like this all around storyline that surrounds four tag teams now, the current and two times NXT Tag Team champions, The Revival, American Alpha, The Authors of Pain and Ciampa & Gargano. The latter are pushed recently because they are basically the link between NXT / WWE and the CWC, the Cruiserweight Classic, airing on 13 July 2016. So, Ciampa and Gargano are pushed for promotional reasons. I still hope, we can at least get a Triple Threat match between The Revival, American Alpha and Ciampa & Gargano, something just a little bigger than just one tag team against one other. And if TM61 are included in any way, I can happily die (at least for one day).