Thursday, August 7, 2014

Top Ten Thursday: Top Ten NXT Performers

I've made it pretty clear that I'm a HUGE fan of NXT. With it being NXT Thursday tonight and the upcoming NXT WWE Network Special around the corner, I figured this week's top ten could focus on the top ten acts in NXT. This includes both Superstars and Divas, so the list is pretty diverse. 

10. Corey Graves

Let me first point out that Corey would probably be higher if it wasn't for his concussion issues. He's gone on record, which in today's terms means he's gone on Twitter, and mentioned that he's unsure if he'll be able to compete again. I would love to see him back in the ring. Not only is he a very good worker but he also has developed a cool character and is different than most of what you see in a current WWE ring. Different is usually best for business. I miss his tag team with Jake Carter, but his singles run was just picking up steam as he was feuding with Sami Zayn before his latest injury.

9. Becky Lynch

I'll admit that Becky hasn't done much on NXT just yet. They debuted her with a ridiculous Irish dancing gimmick and thank goodness that was scrapped. She appeared on NXT recently to face Charlotte, who she outclassed and had a new gimmick. I've seen this girl go during the early days of SHIMMER and I love her. With the rumors of Charlotte getting called up, it should allow for more talented Divas to get shine on NXT and Becky is near the top of that list. Not only is she beautiful, but she's extremely talented and just wait until she gets her chance to shine. Definitely one to watch down in Full Sail.

8. Kalisto

A guy who hasn't been able to get much shine on NXT just yet, but has impressed so far, is Kalisto. His tag team with Sin Cara is alright, but is weighed down by Sin Cara. No surprise. His singles bout with Tyler Breeze a few weeks back was really good and he has potential to be Rey Mysterio like. He's already much more entertaining than Sin Cara, who was supposed to take Rey's spot, but his ability to high fly and take risks instantly makes him someone to cheer. Even if you don't know him coming into a match, by the end of it, you're cheering for him. I hear he might get called up soon, but wherever he goes, he should impress.

7. Enzo Amore

So, I haven't seen that much from Enzo Amore when it comes to in ring work but this man has the gift of gab. Anytime he grabs a microphone, he captivates the crowd at Full Sail University. He is hilarious and always comes up with quirky rhymes and has potential to be one of the better trash talkers in a long time. His return to NXT a while back had the building on their feet and his team with Colin Cassady will be a welcome addition to the tag team division on NXT, which does need help. I look forward to more from this team, but mainly more from Enzo Amore and his silver tongue. AND YOU CAN'T TEACH THAT.

6. Bayley

Bayley didn't choose the hug life, the hug life chose her. Seriously, if you're not intoxicated by how adorable Bayley is, then I don't understand it at all. Not only is Bayley's happy go lucky, excited to be here character one of the most fun in NXT, but the girl can flat out go. She's one of the better NXT girls when it comes to in-ring work and she is consistently getting some of the best pops in Full Sail. Her entrance with the wacky waving inflatable arm flailing tube men is unique and really cool and she's not bad to look at either. I hope she sticks around in NXT for a while and I'd really enjoy a Women's Title run for her down the line. 

5. The Vaudevillains

Remember how I spoke of the floundering tag team division on NXT? Well, these guys are at the top of the list of teams that I want to see dethrone the Ascension. Remember how I said Bayley has a cool and unique entrance? Well, the Vaudevillains have the best entrance on NXT. The music, the camera work and just everything about it is fantastic. I thoroughly enjoyed the Aiden English character when he began to sing his way to the ring, but he wasn't having much success. Bring in Simon Gotch and you have a great extension of English's character and a new, interesting and fun tag team.

4. Adrian Neville

Since NXT ArRival, Adrian Neville has been the NXT Champion. He beat Bo Dallas in a very good ladder match and I've seen Neville's pre-WWE work as Pac. "The Man That Gravity Forgot" is one of the better workers on NXT and easily the top high flier. His ability to perform things like the Red Arrow is amazing and leaves a viewer's jaw dropped more often than not. I don't know if he'll be as successful on the main roster due to his look and promo skills, but I would enjoy it. He's a good guy to have as Champion for now, but I sense that his reign is coming to an end soon. Regardless, he's something I look forward to.

3. Tyler Breeze

Prince Pretty. The King of Cuteville. Even the man's Twitter handle is @MmmGorgeous. Mike Dalton was given the Tyler Breeze character and he has completely run with it. He seems to live and breath the character and makes it work way more than it probably should. I've questioned his ability to be great in the ring but then at NXT TakeOver, he and Sami Zayn put on an awesome number one contender's match and he showed me just what he can do. With in-ring ability, a great character and the little things like his fantastic music video and singing his own theme song, Tyler Breeze can go very far.

2. Sasha Banks

The Boss. Ever since I first got into NXT, one Diva has caught my eye more than any other and it's Sasha Banks. Whether teaming with Summer Rae, Charlotte or both as part of the BFFs, she's been the one to stand out, even if she wasn't being pushed as the "star" of the team. She's consistently in the best divas matches on NXT, besides the Network Specials, and her submission finisher is probably the best Diva finisher in the entire WWE. She's gorgeous, talented and is a surefire future NXT Women's Champion. The fact that she hasn't been featured on any of the WWE Network Specials is a travesty.

1. Sami Zayn

It couldn't be anyone else. Since his days as El Generico on the indies, I've loved Sami Zayn. When he got signed, I was worried how the El Generico character would work with a WWE audience. Instead, he ditched the mask and has been outstanding. From his must see classics with Cesaro, to his bout with Tyler Breeze, to basically every single match that he has, Sami Zayn is television that you can't miss. The slow build to his eventual NXT Title win has been great and the crowd is 100% behind him. He's a guy who can make anything work and put on great matches with anybody on the roster. Sami Zayn should be a major player for years to come.