It’s the final NXT of 2018 and Heavy Machinery looks to go out with some gold! Will Tucker Knight & Otis Dozovic take the titles from The Undisputed Era?
- NXT Women’s Championship #1 Contender’s Fatal 4 Way: Bianca Belair VS Lacey Evans VS Mia Yim VS Io Shirai; Belair wins and will challenge Shayna Baszler for the title at TakeOver: Phoenix.
- Jaxson Ryker w/ The Forgotten Sons VS Mitch Taverna; Ryker wins.
- NXT Tag Team Championships: The Undisputed Era VS Heavy Machinery; The Undisputed Era wins and retains the NXT Tag Team Championship.
PLAY BY PLAY
NXT Women’s Championship #1 Contender’s Fatal 4 Way: Bianca Belair VS Lacey Evans VS Mia Yim VS Io Shirai!
The Queen of Spades wants a real challenge, and is through with the Pirate Princess. Therefore, William Regal put it together that four of the best and freshest superstars gets their chance! Will it be the Un-De-Fea-Ted, the Lady of NXT, the Head Baddie in Charge, or the Genius of the Sky that heads to Phoenix to face #ShaynaTwoTime?
The bell rings and fans are pretty well divided. Lacey says she’ll be polite and step aside for the other three to fight. Mia and Bianca trash talk from past beef, but Io rolls Bianca up! TWO, and now Mia and Io chop back and forth on Bianca. They double whip and double clothesline Bianca, and Bianca bails out. Mia builds speed to DIVE onto Bianca! Fans fire up with Mia, but Lacey attacks Io! Lacey whips but Io uses it to DIVE onto Bianca! Io takes a rough landing of her own but Mia helps her up. They work together to go after Lacey now. They double dropkick Lacey to a corner, then Io whips Mia in for a big boot! Io runs in for a back elbow, and Mia comes back for a cannonball! Fans fire up with Io as she finishes off with double knees!
Io drags Lacey up and waistlocks. Mia aims but Lacey ducks, the roundhouse goes into Io! Lacey clubs away on Mia but is put on the apron. Lacey lands on her feet to sweep the legs and slingshot an elbow drop! Cover, TWO! Lacey keeps her cool while she looms over Mia, but Io returns. Lacey drop toeholds Io onto Mia! And then she hits the swinging bronco buster! Cover on Io, TWO! Lacey keeps her composure but she’s growing frustrated. Lacey drags Io up and puts her in the corner to grind her boot into Io’s stomach. The ref backs Lacey off but Lacey comes back to snapmare Io to a cover. TWO, but Lacey whips Io corner to corner. Bianca runs in to blast Io, then scoops her. Lacey runs in but Bianca swings Io at her. Io slips out and dumps Bianca out of the ring.
Lacey grabs Io and bumps her off buckles. Io shoves Lacey away but gets tripped up. Lacey covers, but Mia breaks it. Lacey throws Mia out but Io rolls Lacey up! TWO, and Lacey sweeps the legs to a cover, TWO! Fans applaud for this fast and furious action, and rally up for Io. Lacey rains down rights and then covers. But Bianca breaks it! Bianca drags Io up into the torture rack but Lacey ends up saving Io. Lacey and Bianca argue over whose prey and whose ring this is, but they end up working together to run Mia over! Bianca drags Mia up and she suplexes her with Bianca. Io saves Mia and then Io leaps. Bianca and Lacey catch her but Mia dropkicks them all down! It’s a double cover for Io, TWO and they toss Io out.
Mia rains rights on Bianca but Lacey kicks her down. Lacey covers Mia but Bianca drags her off. Bianca covers Mia but Lacey drags her off. They argue again and start shoving. Mia takes advantage to saido suplex and bridge on Bianca, but Lacey breaks it! Lacey kicks Mia down, but Io springboards in for a missile dropkick! Bianca SPEARS Io! All four women are down but Full Sail is fired up! Bianca gets up and covers Mia, TWO! She covers Lacey, TWO! Bianca’s frustrations boil up but she goes after Io. She puts Io in a full nelson, then double chicken wing, but Io rolls through to double stomp! Io drop toeholds Bianca to the ropes, Tiger Feint Kick!
Io hurries up top, and leaps for a big missile dropkick! Cover, but Lacey breaks it. Lacey throws Io out but Mia chops away on Lacey. Mia kicks and kicks but gets the Woman’s Right!! Cover, but Io narrowly breaks it! Io hits a shotei, then a scoop slam. She steps on Lacey, then hops up for the ASAI MOONSAULT! Cover, but Bianca whips away with her ponytail! Bianca lifts Io and tosses her out on Mia! Bianca lifts Lacey in the torture rack, K.O.D! Cover, Bianca wins!!
Winner: Bianca Belair, by pinfall; new #1 Contender
The EST is still Un-De-Fea-Ted, and is headed to TakeOver: Phoenix! Will Bianca be the ace that trumps the Queen of Spades?
Jaxson Ryker w/ The Forgotten Sons VS Mitch Taverna!
The Gunner of this three man unit hasn’t had many matches but he’s won every time. Will Ryker continue to #DoUntoOthers against even a physically impressive opponent as the “Real Man of Steel”?
The bell rings and the two big men tie up. Ryker powers Taverna to a corner and fires off big hands! He backs off at 4 but goes right back for a scoop. Taverna slips out and chops, but it does nothing to Ryker! Ryker shoves and slams Taverna with a spinebuster! Steve Cutler and Wesley Blake coach Ryker on as he shoves and knees Taverna. Ryker grabs Taverna by the head and grinds his face into the mat. He lets up at 4 but clubs Taverna back down. Blake and Cutler mock and taunt Taverna while Ryker thrashes him around. Ryker scoops and snake eyes Taverna before clubbing him with double ax handles! But Ryker isn’t done with him yet. Cutler and Blake tell him to end it, and he brings Taverna up for a rebound powerbomb! Cover, Ryker wins!
Winner: Jaxson Ryker, by pinfall
The Forgotten Sons all stay undefeated, not to mention staying focused. Will they close in on some championship gold in the New Year?
Velveteen Dream looks back on 2018.
The Experience was no different from 2017 to 2018. It was that the NXT Universe finally opened their eyes. Dream has impressed the fans as well as living legends. Don’t believe him? Just look at the tweets of Hulk Hogan, Shawn Michaels, and even Kurt Angle or John Cena. If you thought this year was something, just wait for 2019. #DreamOn.
Tommaso Ciampa speaks.
“I am a man of my word.” When he makes a promise, he delivers. Yet sometimes, Ciampa feels like a broken record. He feels like he’s a man alone in a room talking to a wall. But last week when he helped Johnny Gargano against Aleister Black, that was vindication. It proved someone has been listening this entire time. “Johnny Gargano listens. Johnny Gargano followed my lead, and look at what it led to.” Gargano pinned the former champion, Aleister Black, so where does that put Gargano? Gargano can’t have a shot at the title, that match is taken.
But shouldn’t Gargano get an opportunity at some other title? Like Ricochet’s North American Championship. Gargano is listening. This is what DIY always talked about. Two kids with no contracts, touring the world and “the day DIY took over NXT.” This TakeOver will be their takeover! Ciampa as NXT Champion, Gargano as North American Champion. “Two kids taking over the world. Johnny, the possibilities are endless.” Will Gargano truly follow Ciampa’s lead?
NXT Tag Team Championships: The Undisputed Era VS Heavy Machinery!
Kyle O’Reilly has already had three partners with these titles since coming to NXT. He would win them with Bobby Fish, defend them with Adam Cole, and regain them with Roderick Strong. But in all that time the titles have been Undisputed, Tucker Knight & Otis Dozovic have grown stronger. Tucky & Dozer have a six month winning streak and look to finally feast on gold before going to the main roster. Will Heavy Machinery have its fill? Or will they be sent to the main roster still hungry for their first taste?
The introductions are made, the titles are raised, and we begin with Strong against Tucker. Fans duel “Undisputed!” “Steaks and Weights!” as the two circle. Kyle distracts Tucker but he still fights Strong off. Tucker fights Kyle off then tackles Strong. Strong gets loose but gets thrown down with a waistlock. Tucker rolls Strong, TWO. He gets Strong again, TWO. Strong gets a headlock but Tucker powers out. Kyle tags in before Tucker runs Strong over. Kyle runs in but Tucker runs him over, too. Tucker hip tosses Strong but Kyle kicks Tucker in the legs. Kyle kicks Tucker to the Undisputed corner and tags in Strong. The Undisputed Era double whip Tucker but Tucker comes back with double clotheslines! Tag to Dozer!
Strong dropkicks Dozer’s leg but Dozer stays up. Strong throws hands but Dozer blocks the whip to reverse. Dozer sees Strong go up and over so he clobbers him from behind. Kyle runs in but he gets clobbered! Dozer grabs Strong and throws him across the way! Dozer scoops and slams Strong down, then drags him back up. He shoves Strong to the Heavy Machinery corner and tags in Tucker. Dozer whips Tucker in for a corner splash, then Tucker whips Strong at Dozer for the tackle. Tucker covers, TWO! Tucker drags Strong up in an armlock. Strong endures the wrenching and reaches for Kyle. Tucker keeps Strong away from Kyle a couple times but the third time’s the charm.
Kyle runs in but Tucker throws Strong aside to catch him. Kyle fights back but Dozer picks up Strong, and Heavy Machinery sandwich the Undisputed Era before double belly2bellies! Then Heavy Machinery ram bellies to squish Strong! Tucker whips Kyle but Kyle holds ropes. Kyle bails out and retreats but Tucker gives pursuit. Strong gets run over, and then Tucker puts Kyle in the ring. Tucker clobbers Kyle and kicks Strong, but Kyle kicks back. Kyle grabs a leg but the referee counts. Kyle lets go at 4, but Strong gets Tucker with a backbreaker to the floor! Strong perhaps meant to only drop him on the apron, but both of them crash and burn all the way down. The referee checks on both of them, but they’re somehow okay to continue.
Kyle goes after Tucker with kicks and Strong crawls his way back to the corner. Fans rally up for Tucker as Kyle throws hands. Tucker hits back with body shots but Kyle rocks him with a knee. Kyle puts Tucker in the ring but Tucker fights back more. Kyle rocks him with another knee, then tags Strong. The Undisputed Era mug Tucker with kicks and chops in the corner. Strong keeps Tucker down and clubs away. Strong laces Tucker’s leg in the ropes to pull on it. The ref counts and Strong lets up at 4, to then mock Dozer. Strong turns around into a shove from Tucker, but he comes back with haymakers. Tag to Kyle but Tucker fights back. Tucker sends Strong flying but Kyle dragon screws the leg in the ropes! Cover, TWO!
Kyle keeps on Tucker with a standing ankle lock. Tucker rolls and fights back with his free leg. Kyle shifts to ground ‘n’ pound with palm strikes, and then goes for an armbar! Fans rally and Tucker gets a ropebreak. Kyle lets him go and tags Strong. The Undisputed Era unload kicks and elbows, then an Olympic Slam from Strong! Cover, TWO! Strong keeps on Tucker’s leg with a modified deathlock. Tucker endures and fans rally up again. Tucker drags himself and Strong backwards, but then Kyle helps Strong drag Tucker back! Fans boo but Tucker clubs away on Strong. Tucker frees himself but Strong goes after Dozer. Strong turns around into a BIG clothesline! Both men crawl, hot tags to Kyle and Dozer!
Dozer rallies on the Undisputed Era with endless clotheslines! Kyle runs into a trapped-leg suplex! Dozer sandwiches Kyle and Strong in the machine! Fans fire up with Dozer as he pumps it up. Caterpillar elbow! Kyle runs and boots Dozer, but then runs into Dozer’s arms. Tag to Tucker and Strong saves Kyle. Tucker clobbers Strong then clubs Kyle. Dozer catapults Kyle at Tucker for a belly2belly! Aka the Hoss Toss! Cover, but Strong breaks it! Tucker shoves Strong out and goes up top! Tucker doesn’t normally moonsault, and he flops! Kyle tags Strong, and Strong runs in but misses. Tag to Dozer but Strong fires elbows off. Dozer runs Strong over, but gets a boot and enziguri on the rebound. Dozer clobbers Strong with a clothesline! Cover, TWO!! Strong lives but Dozer doesn’t lose heart.
Dozer drags Strong around and decides to climb now! Tucker rarely goes up, Dozer almost never goes up. Kyle runs over but gets a right hand. Strong kicks Dozer down! Strong climbs up to join Dozer, but Dozer resists. They struggle and Kyle comes in to tip the scales, SUPERPLEX BOMB! Cover, TWO!! Dozer lives but Strong tags Kyle. Kyle boots Tucker down and Tucker hits steps on the way. Dozer fights off Undisputed Era but still gets a big knee. Ax ‘n’ SMASH! Cover, TWO!! Kyle is furious but he tags Strong back in. Strong blasts Tucker with a dropkick, and then STRONG ELIMINATION!! Cover, Undisputed Era wins!
Winners: The Undisputed Era, Strong pinning; still NXT Tag Team Champions
Strong and O’Reilly win by the skin of their teeth! They manage to keep Heavy Machinery at bay, and continue their reign into 2019. Bobby Fish and Adam Cole join them in celebrating on the stage, because 2018 ends Undisputed. Will their promise of being completely draped in gold come true after all?
What a great episode to close out 2018! First off, I didn’t expect the Women’s Championship #1 Contenders match happening first. It started with the Faces working together and it almost became a tag team match rather than a Fatal 4 in just how the action went. Of course the Heels didn’t get along, and that made for some great stuff. The only sloppy part was no one being quite close enough to break Lacey’s pin on Mia. Technically Lacey would’ve won there if not for the ref slowing down just enough for Io. Another great part of it was that I expected Io Shirai to win, but instead it’s Bianca Belair. Perhaps Bianca can make the shift to at least Tweener against Shayna as far as characters. But their match will be great, and maybe Bianca will get it to everyone’s surprise.
Jaxson Ryker squashes his opponent, because it was filler. The Forgotten Sons haven’t gotten an actual story yet, maybe 2019 brings them going up against a fan favorite Face tag team so there are actual developments for Ryker, Cutler and Blake. With Heavy Machinery heading up to main and War Raiders banged up from WarGames, the only Face team right now is Lorcan & Burch. Perhaps a team like Mendoza & Carillo will get some character and they can be a new exciting Face midcard team. And speaking of Heavy Machinery, the fact they were advertised as the newest NXT Call-Ups killed any chance of surprise in tonight’s tag title match. They had their best match so far with Strong & O’Reilly, but it was too much to think they’d bring those tag titles with them to Raw or SmackDown. I just hope Vince doesn’t drag them down the Enzo & Cass route now…
My Score: 8.5/10
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