The NXT Tag Team Championships are on the line!
After making the save when the Forgotten Sons got out of hand, the One Two Combination of Lorcan & Burch said the Street Profits owed them. Dawkins & Ford are ready to repay them in tonight’s main event! Who walks away with the NXT Tag Team Championships?
- Damien Priest VS Blanco Loco; Priest wins.
- NXT Breakout Tournament: Boa VS Jordan Myles; Myles wins and advances to the next round.
- NXT Tag Team Championships: The Street Profits VS Oney Lorcan & Danny Burch; The Street Profits win and retain the NXT Tag Team Championships.
PLAY BY PLAY
NXT opens with…?
Wait a minute. Despite new, well, everything, that’s IO SHIRAI! New lights, new titantron, new music and new wardrobe to fit the new attitude of the #EvilGenius! Shirai goes to the ring and shouts back at all the fans who boo and jeer. This Dark Side of the Sky was unlocked when Candice LeRae just tried to help against the Horsewomen, to no avail. Shirai takes up the mic now amid the boos and jeers, and gets annoyed when they start chanting, “Io Sucks! Io Sucks!” After they run out of steam, Shirai tells them, “I don’t need any friends. I don’t need any of you.” Shirai then drops the mic, and takes her leave. A simple message, but it still doesn’t explain everything. Will the Evil Genius explain herself better through her actions?
NXT Media holds a press conference with Velveteen Dream.
The North American Champion addresses the reporters by saying he needs to get something off his chest. He hears the murmurs and will answer everyone he can. First question: “There’s been a lot of speculation going around as to who your next challenger will be,” does Dream have any thoughts? Dream does not approve of that question. Moving on. “Roderick Strong has repeatedly called you out on challenging you for your NXT North American Championship,” what is Dream’s response? Excellent question from #QueenCathy, and Dream would love to answer it, but please relax. Even though Strong got lucky, he is not ready nor deserving to Experience the Dream 1v1. Dream ends the press conference here, but will the question of his contenders be answered?
Damien Priest VS Blanco Loco!
The Archer of Infamy is ready to #LiveForever, and he aims to do that at the expense of New York’s “Crazy White.” After this match, will Blanco Loco pray he never runs across Damien Priest again?
The bell rings and Priest roundhouses Loco right away! Priest grins as Loco crawls to a corner. Priest runs in corner to corner, LEAPING back elbow! Then he drags Loco up to Falcon Arrow TOSS Loco across the ring! Loco crawls up as Priest grins. But Loco throws hands! That only angers Priest! Priest whips and LARIATS Loco down! Priest drags Loco up again, whips him and gives another lariat! But he’s not done, he aims at the floundering Loco, for the spinning roundhouse! Then, the spinning cutter, the Reckoning! Cover, Priest wins!
Winner: Damien Priest, by pinfall
The Archer hits his target, and barely broke a sweat. Will Priest aim for a title on his quest for immortality?
NXT again hears from Killian Dain.
“It’s only now that the truth is getting revealed. 10, 20, 30, 40 years later, our stories are being heard.” Dain has stories to tell. He has stories of his home being set ablaze with his family still in it. He has stories of gang violence, of armored cars, of soldiers in the streets. “We practically lived in martial law.”
Dain could tell you why he can only hear out of one ear because of the car bomb that blew up on his street. Dain could tell you he’s the only male survivor of his high school graduating class. But the difference between him and everyone else is that he hasn’t forgotten. Dain didn’t repress the stories, he carries them with him. He wears these stories as a badge of honor. “I tell you this because I want you to know who and what I am. I want you to know why I’m doing the things I do.” And he will breathe right in your face. Dain had nothing, and even that was taken from him. Now he will take everything! Who is first for the Beast of Belfast to feast upon?
NXT Breakout Tournament: Boa VS Jordan Myles!
The first round of this incredible inaugural tournament is already halfway over, but there’s still so much to see! Boa is ready to represent his country as he brings his world class jujitsu skills to the ring. His style is for him to know, and for his opponents to find out. Meanwhile, the 13-year veteran is ready to give blood, sweat and tears for this opportunity. Myles is ready to reach and touch victory. But will it be the Austin, Texas action hero or the martial arts champion from China that joins Cameron Grimes and Angel Garza in the second round?
The bell rings and fans rally behind Myles. Myles is happy to hear it, and he offers a handshake to Boa. Boa bows instead so Myles returns it. Myles and Boa circle and tie up, and go around the ring. Boa has Myles on the ropes but lets up, to swing a roundhouse! Myles gets under it, and is surprised at such aggression. He and Boa circle again, and Boa gets the headlock. Boa gets Myles down with a headlock takeover, but Myles works against it to get the headscissors. Boa pops out and gets another takeover! Fans rally as Myles works up to another headscissors. Boa pops out again but Myles blocks the takeover this time. Myles gets the armlock and pulls back.
Boa powers up to a standing switch but Myles holds on to double wristlock. Myles wrenches but Boa wrenches back. Boa uses his leverage but Myles uses the ropes to handspring and arm-drag Boa down! He arm-drags Boa more, then things speed up. Myles manages to hurdle the taller Boa and dodges the boot to handspring and dropkick! Fans fire up as Myles dribbles and shoots a three! But then Boa comes back! Myles gets Boa with a takedown and turns him to get the wristlock back. Myles wrenches the arm around to grind Boa down. Boa endures and works his way up. Myles wrangles him back down, grinning all the way. Boa still resists and works to his feet. Myles wrenches but Boa kicks the legs.
Boa whips then back drops, but Myles sunset flips. Boa rolls through to Penalty Kick, but Myles ducks it to roll Boa up! TWO, and Boa roundhouses Myles down! Fans cheer for that, and Boa looms over Myles. Boa toys with Myles now, then drags him up to give muay thai knees. He has Myles in a corner and hangs him up on the ropes, but Myles fights back with elbows. Boa kicks Myles in the back, then ax kicks him down! Myles is stinging as Boa covers, ONE! Boa drags Myles up and has an arm triangle to throw in more knees. Myles fights free but Boa is on him in the corner with even more knees! The ref backs Boa off, but Boa comes back with more kicks!
Boa runs in, but Myles blocks the kick! Myles grabs the leg but Boa blocks and steps through. Boa BOOTS Myles down, then runs side to side. Myles gets up but Boa gets him with a butterfly suplex! Cover, TWO! Myles still lives, but Boa shows no mercy. Boa has a rear bearhug to another arm triangle. Fans rally up as Myles endures. Myles works his way up and reaches for ropes. Boa drags Myles away and wrangles him back down. Myles refuses to stop there, and fights his way back up. Fans rally again, but Boa brings Myles down for an armbar! Myles makes it a cover, TWO! Boa buzzsaws Myles down!
Myles crawls to ropes and Boa waits for him to stand. Boa kicks Myles again, but still wants Myles to sit up. Myles eggs Boa back, and blocks the kick! Myles CHOPS the chest then CHOPS the leg! Boa is in the corner and now Myles fires off kicks on him! The ref backs Myles off and fans fire up, but Boa shoves Myles down. Myles speeds up to forearm Boa over and over! Myles ducks one kick to sweep the legs! Basement dropkick drops Boa! Boa flounders to a corner and Myles kips right up! Myles runs corner to corner, cyclone clothesline, the Destructo Disk! Boa is down and Myles climbs up top, fora three-point 450! The Midnight Star! Cover, Myles wins!
Winner: Jordan Myles, by pinfall; advances to the second round
Myles’ smile never stops! The real-life anime hero takes the next step towards his future, will his future be golden?
NXT Media catches up with Shayna Baszler.
The Queen of Spades is still NXT Women’s Champion after defeating Io Shirai both at TakeOver: XXV and in their steel cage match a few weeks ago. However, she’s heard what Head Baddie in Charge, Mia Yim, said last week. Shayna isn’t surprised people are talking about her, she has the biggest target. And Mia has a nice story, but it’s also the most common story in fight sports. “If I didn’t find this sport, I’d be in jail!” It’s going to take more than a story to impress Shayna. Plus, when you’re in the ring with her, you’ll always #TapNaporSnap. What will the HBIC have to do to get Shayna’s attention?
NXT hears from Keith Lee.
“So strange, to come to the realization that I’ve been here nearly a year.” The Limitless One showed up at TakeOver: Chicago II. He’s faced Freaks, Knockout Artists, and various athletic specimens NXT has to offer. But he’s never, ever been “the chosen one.” He has never been the guy people looked up and said, “We should put this company on his back.” But Lee has always been the one that ends up the guy. He came to NXT to prove he is limitless. He said everyone will #BaskInMyGlory. But things haven’t gone that way. Not to the effect he wanted. But Lee is ready to change it up in Year 2. Lee will reach the peak, Lee will reach the top, and Lee will become even more than limitless. Lee wants to be the one in NXT, he’ll have to become… Infinite!
NXT Media got an incredible announcement from William Regal.
The General Manager was just arriving as he told us what he has planned for next week. We’ve seen all sorts of superstars from all the WWE brands coming to face Kushida. It’s been NXT UK’s Kassius Ohno and 205 Live’s Drew Gulak. Next week, SmackDown’s Apollo Crews comes back to NXT to face the Time Splitter! Will the undefeated Super Junior be able to keep going against an NXT alumni?
And even bigger news!
Adam Cole finishes his BAYBAY Championship Celebration Tour and returns to Full Sail next week! And to celebrate that, he is having an NXT Championship match! Who will William Regal set up to face the Panama City Playboy? Will they catch Cole with his guard down?
NXT Tag Team Championships: The Street Profits VS Oney Lorcan & Danny Burch!
While Montez Ford and Angelo Dawkins are hanging out on Raw, and even while the British Brawler racks up bruises on 205 Live, they’re all still black and gold strong! Lorcan and Burch saved the Profits from the savage Forgotten Sons, and this is the champions’ way of returning the favor! Will it finally be 1-2-3 for the One Two Combination? Or will the #CurseofGreatness hold strong to the titles?
The introductions are made, the belts are raised, and the challengers offer handshakes. The champions take it, and fans cheer the good sportsmanship. Teams sort out and the Profits have their secret handshake before Ford starts with Lorcan at the bell!
Ford and Lorcan circle and tie up. Lorcan grabs the arm and wrenches to a wristlock. Ford rolls and handsprings through to reverse the wrench. Fans cheer but Lorcan fights his way up. Lorcan powers Ford to ropes but Dawkins tags in. Ford leaps over Lorcan and Dawkins hits Lorcan with a shoulder! Cover, ONE! Dawkins waistlocks and rolls Lorcan, having some fun with it. Dawkins floats to a facelock and both he and Ford are having fun taunting Lorcan. Lorcan fights his way up and wrenches to a wristlock. Tag to Burch and he takes the hand-off. Burch wrenches to a headlock and grinds Dawkins down. Dawkins pries at the hold, and gets his own headlock! Burch powers out but Dawkins hurdles over and again. Ford tags in and Dawkins whips Burch, the Profits double flapjack Burch!
Dawkins’ headbands come off as Lorcan runs in, but Lorcan gets a flapjack that splashes him down on Burch! The Profits shove Lorcan and Burch onto ropes, and then Dawkins lifts them both. Ford runs and leaps for a double leap frog special! The brawlers bail out as Ford tags to Dawkins. Lorcan and Burch regroup and cool off before Burch returns into the ring. Dawkins offers a handshake, and Burch takes it. To kick low! And throw EuroUppers! Burch goes to bump but Dawkins blocks to bump back. Burch boots Dawkins then hops up for a shotgun missile dropkick! And a kip-up! Fans are divided as Burch drags Dawkins over. Tag to Lorcan and the brawlers double Russian leg sweep! Cover, TWO! Lorcan keeps on Dawkins with a CHOP!
Tag to Burch but Dawkins fights back. However, two brawlers is too much, and they club Dawkins down into a double suplex! Burch covers, TWO! Burch keeps his eyes on Dawkins and drags him away from Ford. Fans rally as Burch fires off hands and stomps in the open corner. Burch backs off and drags Dawkins into a crossface! Dawkins endures as Burch cranks back. Dawkins rolls but Burch still holds on! Ford kicks the hold apart! That angers Burch, but fans are on Ford’s side. Burch takes it out on Dawkins with clubbing forearms. He rains down rights and Dawkins can only cover up. Burch backs off to hop up and leap. Dawkins dodges the missile dropkick! Both men are down and fans rally up. Burch and Dawkins crawl to their corners, hot tags to Ford and Lorcan!
Ford rallies on both brawlers with big lariats! Ford powers Lorcan up for a spinebuster, then dropkicks Burch down! He keeps going, back suplex for Lorcan! Kip-up and moonsault! Cover, TWO! Ford is frustrated but keeps on Lorcan. Tag to Dawkins and Ford whips Lorcan to a corner. He whips Dawkins in for the corkscrew splash. Ford adds his own, then Dawkins helps him for Sliced Bread! Cover, TWO!! Lorcan still lives and Dawkins is shocked! Dawkins drags Lorcan back over and tags Ford. The Profits mug Lorcan, then Ford says, “IT’S TIME!” Ford lifts Lorcan in the Electric Chair while Dawkins climbs. But Lorcan slips out and trips the Profits up! Tag to Burch as Dawkins goes down, shotgun dropkick on Ford! Then a corner clothesline and kick, feed to Lorcan’s Half ‘n’ Half! Burch adds a knee, then covers, TWO!!
Ford survives the onslaught and Burch is shocked. Full Sail fires up for Ford as Burch drags him up. Ford denies the tag but Burch throws him with a German Supelx! Dawkins tags in and clobbers Burch! But Lorcan blasts Dawkins with an uppercut! Ford shotgun dropkicks Lorcan, but Burch headbutts Ford! Dawkin SPEARS Burch, and all four men are down! The fans declare “This is Awesome!” as all four men stir. Dawkins and Burch bail out, leaving Lorcan crawling after Ford. Ford turns around and the two glare at each other. Lorcan CHOPS and CHOPS, then runs, into a mule kick! Ford front kicks then runs, but FLIES out onto Burch! Direct hit, but now Lorcan builds speed to DIVE into Dawkins’ haymaker! Dawkins SPINEBUSTERS Burch, and Ford adds his World Star Frog Splash! Cover from Dawkins, the Profits win!!
Winners: The Street Profits, Dawkins pinning; still NXT Tag Team Champions
Such intensity from both teams! But in the end, the Profits profit! But to “congratulate” them from the stage is the Undisputed Era’s reDRagon. Will Ford & Dawkins continue on with those titles all the way to Toronto? Or will O’Reilly & Fish take the next step towards the Undisputed Takeover of NXT?
A pretty hot episode for NXT this week. If there’s anything to prove how much better things are in NXT than the main roster right now, most specifically in terms of planning, it is Io Shirai’s Heel turn. The broadcast schedule makes this look like it’s been weeks, but in reality it was far less time, and yet they were ready with an entire new Heel entrance for her. Meanwhile, Sarah Logan returns to Raw after a few months yet still has to use the Riott Squad theme. That aside, Io Shirai has also come into this Heel persona so quickly, too. Though, I’m sure Stardom fans will let us know that this is how Shirai was and now she’s just getting to show us that. Either way, I’m really looking forward to where the #EvilGenius goes from here.
I love that Velveteen Dream had a press conference promo. We need more things like this, not even THE NXT Champion has had stuff like this before. Also the mere mention of Roderick Strong obviously points us towards a Dream VS Strong title match somewhere between now and TakeOver: Toronto, if not just in Toronto. Same goes for Shayna having Mia Yim mentioned in her interview promo. Both Dream VS Strong and Baszler VS Yim are going to be solid, but the builds still need some building before I can say if the challengers take the titles. The Killian Dain and Keith Lee promos were really good, and I really want to see where they’re going next. Dain’s was especially dark, referencing real events of Northern Ireland history.
The third Breakout Tournament match was really good, like the first two. Jordan Myles is still as big an anime fan as he was when he was ACH in ROH and NJPW, so it’s great to see him keep that here. It’s also great to see him win, Myles VS Garza next round will be great. Then the main event for the tag titles was great for being under 15 minutes. No offense to Lorcan and Burch, but I knew the Profits would retain. Lorcan is too busy in 205 Live to always be here in NXT so that was part of it. But I do like that the Profits are basically running the gambit of their TakeOver: XXV opponents, which is why reDRagon appeared to applaud. That match will be great, whether before or at TakeOver: Toronto. If anything, we need the Undisputed Era to all be in title matches at Toronto, so that they either win or lose all the belts.
My Score: 8.6/10
Mitchell’s WWE NXT Results & Report! (7/17/19)
Who is the first to challenge the champ?
The NXT Champion returns to Full Sail, BAYBAY!
After making some stops on his Championship Celebration Tour BAYBAY, Adam Cole finally returns home! And he’s even daring to put the NXT Championship on the line tonight! Who steps up to the challenge?
- Matt Riddle VS Arturo Ruas; Riddle wins.
- NXT Breakout Tournament: Bronson Reed VS Dexter Lumis; Reed wins and advances to the next round.
- Apollo Crews VS KUSHIDA; KUSHIDA wins.
- NXT Championship: Adam Cole VS ???; No Contest.
PLAY BY PLAY
Matt Riddle VS Arturo Ruas!
Bro… NXT brings some Evolve as the Original Bro takes on the Brazilian Tiger! Both men had great wins during the Evolve 10th Anniversary Special, but who will win what is surely going to be a fight?
The bell rings and Riddle fist bumps Ruas to show this is still respectful. They test each other with jabs and kicks, but they keep their space. Riddle goes for a leg but Ruas sprawls. Riddle gets the waistlock and slam, but Ruas switches on the mat. Ruas rolls Riddle and wants a sleeper but Riddle rolls out to switch with Ruas. Fans rally and cheer for the Bro as he scrapes Ruas off his leg. Riddle and Ruas approach and Ruas tries some hands. Riddle throws them back then powers Ruas to a corner. The ref counts but Ruas turns things around, only for Riddle to hop on! But Ruas powers out to a slam! Ruas goes for the arm but Riddle holds tight. Ruas CHOPS Riddle but Riddle rolls to go for Ruas’ arm! Riddle gives back the CHOP as he works on the grip.
Ruas rolls and slips out to then get a facelock. Riddle pops out and gets his hands up, and fans cheer again. Ruas tries his capoeria stance but Riddle fires through it. Riddle has a leg but Ruas trips him up! Riddle gets the ropebreak and Ruas lets go. The two get up again and the dukes are up. Riddle tries kicks but so does Ruas. Riddle just gets Ruas with his foot! Ruas shrugs it off and tackles Riddle! But Riddle has the leg guard and elbows. Ruas tries palm strikes but Riddle gets away. Riddle comes back with hands, but misses his kick to block Ruas’ and boot Ruas down! Ruas kicks from the mat then trips Riddle up! Ruas rains down hands but Riddle heel kicks back, FINAL FLASH KNEE! Riddle rains the rights, Ruas can’t defend himself! The ref calls it!
Winner: Matt Riddle, by stoppage
Ruas gets #Broverwhelmed by Riddle, but Riddle doesn’t get to celebrate long! Someone attacks from behind! They wear a hoodie so we can’t see who they are as they stomp Riddle out! But then the hood comes off, it’s KILLIAN DAIN! And he drops big sentons on Riddle! The Beast of Belfast throws Riddle out of the ring hard, then goes out to run him over! Dain rains down rights, then throws him by his hair! Riddle crawls to retreat but Dain keeps on him with stomps. Dain CLUBS Riddle then kicks him into the apron. Dain clobbers Riddle over and over, and drops a fourth senton! Fans boo the Belfast barbarian as he rains down more rights.
Dain hauls Riddle up to throw him to the stage. Riddle crawls but Dain kicks him while he’s down. Dain runs and drops a fifth senton, and they both crash through the floor!! Dain promised to take everything from everyone, is Riddle just the first victim?
The NXT Tag Team Champions, the Street Profits, have a special edition of #StreetTalk!
This very special edition is rather quiet as they talk about the fact that, while the titles say the Street Profits are the champs, there are others that think the belts are theirs. Dawkins and Fords know Kyle O’Reilly and Bobby Fish are the ones running around trying to own the place. They disrespect the Profits. Nah, fam. These titles are serious. If the Profits weren’t serious, how did they win the ladder match? How did they win period? But if reDRagon wants to see the smoke, come see them. The Profits will still be the champs, “and that… is undisputed.” Will the Profits burn O’Reilly & Fish when they finally go 2v2?
NXT shares fan footage from Saturday.
Marina Shafir had only just pulled into the parking lot, when Mia Yim attacked! The Head Baddie in Charge gave one of the MMA Horsewomen a taste of their own medicine as she beat Marina down, and then SLAMMED the door shut on her! Is this going to get Shayna Baszler’s attention?
NXT Breakout Tournament: Bronson Reed VS Dexter Lumis!
The opening round of this inaugural tournament wraps up with perhaps the most physically imposing men of the field. First is the menacing maniac hailing from an “undisclosed location,” whose thousand yard stare into your soul might be reason enough not to fight him. Second is the bar brawler from Australia’s Black Forest, who welcomes anyone to test his Australian Strong Style. Who joins Angel Garza, Jordan Myles and Cameron Grimes in the semifinals?
Lumis frames Reed like a picture but Reed looks to crush Lumis with his hand. They tie up and Reed headlocks Lumis. Lumis pulls hair then powers out. Reed runs Lumis over but Lumis is right up! That surprises Reed, but he swings a clothesline. Lumis ducks and runs but Reed follows to run Lumis over! Reed scoops Lumis but Lumis slips out, shoves and elbows Reed out of the ring. Lumis then runs to FLY! But Reed gets free, only for Lumis to land on his feet!? Reed dodges Lumis to crossbody Lumis down! Fans fire up for this as Reed drags Lumis up. Reed puts Lumis in the ring and stands him up, but Lumis throat chops. Lumis whips and trips Reed into ropes! Reed gasps for air but Lumis rains down rabid rights. The eerily stoic Lumis is now fired up as he stomps Reed around.
Lumis frames the picture and pulls on Reed’s ears. The ref reprimands Lumis so he shifts to a neck wrench. Fans rally up and Reed fights up, but Lumis throws him back down. Lumis drops ax handles and elbows, then puts the neck wrench back on. Fans rally again and Reed endures. Lumis licks Reed?! Perhaps he wants a taste of Reed’s pain. But Reed only gets mad and fights his way up. Reed throws forearms but Lumis knees low. Lumis runs but into Reed’s powerslam! Both men are down as Lumis clutches his ribs. Lumis is up but Reed follows to rally with forearms and elbows. Reed whips and back drops Lumis high and hard! Lumis leans on the ropes, Reed runs and bounces Lumis off the ropes, and runs him over with his full body! Cover, TWO!
Reed keeps going and drags Lumis up for a suplex. Lumis slips out to back suplex Reed! And then kips up to a leg drop! Cover, TWO! Lumis keeps his cool and goes to a corner while Reed is down. Lumis climbs up top, frames the picture, and leaps, to flop! Reed lifts Lumis for a back suplex SLAM! The straps come down and now Reed climbs!? Reed leaps, SUPER SPLASH! Cover, Reed wins!
Winner: Bronson Reed, by pinfall; advances to the second round
Australian Strong Style advances! Will he continue to make a big splash when he goes up against Cameron Grimes next?
Tyler Breeze has a new NXT photoshoot.
Prince Pretty finishes up and Cathy Kelly asks for an interview. Breeze agrees, so long as they walk and talk. Cathy walks with Breeze about losing to Roderick Strong. Well the thing about NXT now is that it’s good to have someone watching your back. So Breeze either adapts or- The Forgotten Sons walk in and can’t believe there’s another “blast from the past.” But Steve Cutler tells Breeze this isn’t the old NXT, this is not the Tyler Breeze Show. This is the NXT where real men compete.
Breeze is a man, check the beard. But yeah, Breeze hasn’t been here awhile, but good to see Cutler and Wesley Blake are still stuck here. And didn’t Jaxson Ryker used to be Buddy Murphy? The Forgotten Sons say Breeze’s jokes are why he’s never been taken seriously. Ryker is a savage, and Breeze has never faced a man like him. Well guess what? Breeze has seen everything he needs. Will Breeze still be gorgeous after a going against the Gunner?
The #EvilGenius will return to action next week!
Io Shirai’s new entrance, new look and new attitude came with the simple message: “I don’t need anyone.” Will this new attitude be what she needs to make it back to the top? Her return match against American Ninja Warrior, Kacy Catanzaro, will test that theory!
Apollo Crews VS KUSHIDA!
The Time Splitter is still undefeated in NXT, and he is willing to take on anyone and everyone from within the WWE! Now SmackDown’s rising star returns to Full Sail to test the Super Junior, will Kushida’s streak continue?
Full Sail “Welcome Back!” Apollo as he heads to the ring. The bell rings and Apollo shakes hands with Kushida to show this is a respectful match. The two circle and tie up, and Apollo gets out of Kushida’s grip. Apollo comes back to get the waistlock and throw Kushida down. Kushida works his way up and around to waistlock and facelock. They roll around and Kushida holds on to then float all over Apollo, back to a gator roll and cover, TWO! Apollo ducks the Penalty Kick just in time, and Kushida lets him know how close it was. Fans duel as the two circle and tie up again. Apollo headlocks but Kushida powers out, only for Apollo to run him over. Things speed up and Apollo shows his agility, but so does Kushida! They keep moving and Apollo dropkicks Kushida right down!
Apollo strikes a pose before he wrenches and whips Kushida corner to corner. Apollo hits a corner clothesline then whips again, but Kushida slides out. Kushida plays cat ‘n’ mouse to then handspring heel kick Apollo down! Apollo is down but Kushida goes out to fetch him. Kushida puts Apollo in, then goes after the arm. Kushida headbutts the shoulder then runs, but into a pop-up gutbuster! Both men are down and fans rally up. Apollo stands to drag Kushida up, then suplexes and holds Kushida up for over 20 counts! Cover, TWO! Apollo keeps on Kushida with a chinlock and thrashes him about. Kushida endures and fans rally up.
Kushida stands, fights back, then runs, but into Apollo’s elbow! Apollo drags Kushida back up to throw haymakers. Apollo throws hands in the corner then whips Kushida corner to corner again. He hits a big splash then a big overhead suplex! Cover, TWO! Apollo drags Kushida up again for forearms, backing Kushida down to a corner. He whips Kushida corner to corner agian but misses the splash this time! Kushida throws forearms back! Apollo mule kicks, runs to a corner, but Kushida catches his headscissors to KICK Apollo down! Fans rally as Kushida gets up first.
Kushida forearms Apollo at the ropes but Apollo reverses the whip. Kushida handsprings to back elbow Apollo down! Apollo is in the corner, Kushida runs in, but Apollo boots Kushida away. Apollo runs but into Kushida’s hip toss! Kushida cartwheels and dropkicks to add on! Apollo gets to a corner as fans fire up with Kushida. Kushida goes to the apron to kick Apollo out of the corner! Then step-in springboards in for a tornado DDT! Cover, TWO! Kushida drags Apollo up and wrenches the arm to a shoulder breaker. Kushida runs and slides under to kick away on the arm. Apollo catches the kick, then blocks the takedown counter! He fireman’s carries but Kuhisda slips out to a waistlock. Apollo standing switches, but Kushida elbows free. Kushida runs into a BOOT! Cover, TWO!
Kushida survives but Apollo drags him up for a deadlift German Suplex! But Apollo holds on for a second, a la the Gold Medalist, Kurt Angle! The third German is a release, and leads to a standing shooting star! Cover, TWO!! Kushida survives again and Apollo is shocked. Full Sail is thunderous for “Both These Guys!” as Apollo stands Kushida up again. Apollo trophy lifts but Kushida slips out. Kushida catches Apollo to give him a buckle shot! Then Kushida springboards, huricanrana but Apollo rolls through, TWO!! Kushida Peles but Apollo enziguris! Both men are down and fans are loving “NXT! NXT!” for this match.
A standing count begins and Apollo slowly sits up. Apollo gets up at 4 to go to the apron. Apollo then climbs, but Kushida hurries over. Kushida stops Apollo with a forearm, then throws more as he climbs. Apollo gives forearms back, and the two start trading. Apollo sends Kushida down, but Kushida is up to handspring heel kick Apollo back! Kushida climbs up and stands Apollo, for a SUPER ARMBAR TAKEDOWN! Apollo flails and works his way up to his feet. He drags Kushida but Kushida rolls Apollo away, SAKURABA LOCK! Apollo endures the kimura but taps out, Kushida wins!!
Winner: KUSHIDA, by submission
An incredible battle brings Apollo and Kushida to their limits, but it is the Super Junior’s streak that continues! How long will it take the Time Splitter to fight for a title?
Backstage interview with Keith Lee.
The Limitless One moves into his second year in NXT beginning, but what are his feelings towards his tenure here? “Tenure” makes Lee think of “progress,” but what progress has he made with his stop-and-go momentum? Lee has been here a year now, but what is the real keyword? Opportunity. Opportunities were supposed to be set at his feet, but… It feels more like Lee has been passed over. There is the Breakout Tournament, but why wasn’t that here when Lee arrived? And now there’s this new guy, Damien Priest, and he’s all the buzz. But maybe Lee should change the narrative. Maybe Lee should be the one that replaces Priest in everyone’s conversations. Will Limitless #LiveForever against the Archer of Infamy?
NXT Championship: Adam Cole VS ???
He’s back, BAYBAY! Adam Cole’s victory lap finishes with Full Sail, and he’s promised a title defense just for the fun of it. Cole picks up a mic to say, “For the past few weeks, I’ve been traveling all across the globe on the BAYBAY Championship Tour.” What he did is to show the morons what a true champion is. He showed us what true power is! And while he’s been gone, the Undisputed Era has been taking care of business. There is now an #UndisputedPowerSwitch in NXT, but Cole is a fighting champion. Anyone, anytime, anywhere! And that starts tonight! And against… Johnny Gargano?!
A video of Gargano plays, from when he shared the NXT Championship belt with the aspiring wrestlers in Cleveland. It was such a surreal moment for those young stars, and so… “Twan Tucker, c’mon down!” And he’s here in NXT! Cole says it’s good to see him again. Hopefully Twan realizes this is the opportunity of a life time. And he promises this will just be the two of them, no Undisputed Era around. This is a fair chance to slap the taste out of Cole’s mouth. Oh so it’s just Cole and Twan? Too bad, because Twan didn’t come alone! Twan brought JOHNNY GARGANO!! Cole is in shock as Johnny Wrestling storms out and past Twan, to brawl with Cole! Gargano rallies, blocks a superkick and gives a SUPERKICK! Then one from the apron!
Gargano chases Cole and throws hands as they go around the outside. Cole throws Gargano into railing and retreats up the stands, but Gargano still chases him down! Gargano rains down hands and Full Sail is thunderous! Gargano CHOPS and punches Cole against the railing, then pushes him back to ringside. Cole keeps retreating, but Johnny Badass keeps coming. But Cole elbows Gargnao back! Cole whips but Gargano reverses to send Cole through barriers! Gargano hops on to rain down hands and bounce Cole off the floor! Referees rush out to drag Gargano away. Cole stands tall with his title, until Gargano FLIES off the stage!!
Referees go after Gargano again but he still goes after Cole! They end up in the ring, Cole kicks low to run, but gets a SUPERKICK! And then the DIY style, into GargaNO Escape! Cole taps, but it doesn’t matter right now, Gargano wants to hurt the cocky champ! Referees pry at the grip around Cole’s neck, but Gargano lets go when he’s satisfied! Gargano defended the honor of The Land, but will he bring the title back in yet another match with Adam Cole, BAYBAY?
NXT GM William Regal responds to this chaotic ending!
As seen on WWE’s YouTube, Regal sees things between Adam Cole and Johnny Gargano will not be over so easily. So his choice is to give Gargano and Cole another Best 2 Out of 3 Falls, but where Gargano chooses one stipulation, Cole chooses another, and if need be, Regal chooses the third. In other words, NXT brings back the Three Stages of Hell!! What will Gargano and Cole choose to do to each other in order to finally, decisively, and indisputably end this feud?!
WOW that was an incredible episode for NXT! We waste little time getting to hard hitting action as Arturo Ruas makes his debut (ignore when he was Adrian Jaoude) and against Matt Riddle. It was great to see legit MMA-trained wrestlers give us just samples of what they can legitimately do, and what a great choice to make this a TKO, referee stoppage win as opposed to a pin or submission. It really ups Riddle’s power, which he’ll need after Big Damo destroyed him. It was a great spot to have them break the stage, but it was easy to see the exact panel on the stage they were going to break. I’m reminded of old cartoons, where you could tell if something was about to move because it was slightly different in shade. That aside, Dain VS Riddle is going to be awesome!
We got an awesome “fan filmed” section where Mia Yim went off on Marina Shafir. I’m surprised they didn’t have a response promo from Shayna, but we can definitely get that next week. If anything, Mia might do something like this to Jessamyn Duke so Shayna will have no one in Toronto. Meanwhile, Io Shirai’s Heel persona starting her in-ring journey is going to be great, but I’m sure this all leads to her and Candice LeRae for at least the “post” TakeOver episode. Reed VS Lumis was a pretty solid opening round finale, and both guys got great shine. The second round is going to be even greater with Garza VS Myles and Grimes VS Reed. Street Profits gave us a quiet but strong promo, solidifying that Toronto will feature all parts of Undisputed Era to either make or break the #drapedingold prediction.
Kushida VS Apollo, WOW! This is the Apollo we’ve been wanting to see back in the ring, but the main roster doesn’t use him nearly enough. Kushida keeps rolling, so he’ll definitely be primed for a title match after Toronto onto Chicago for Survivor Series weekend. And the announcement of Cole having a title match on NXT TV set up expectations, such as a ridiculous squash, what we got was so much better! Twan let Gargano go right after Cole and their brawl all over the arena was great. And now hearing that we’re getting the (not officially named) return of Three Stages of Hell, this is going to give us the truly decisive and truly over-the-top finale to this saga between Gargano and Cole. There are any number of things the three falls can be, and you know they’re doing all three falls, Toronto is going to be insane.
My Score: 8.6/10
The WWE TV YouTube Experiment (Week 5: RAW/ July 15, 2019)
Monday Night RAW happened. Or did it? Let’s talk about what we saw on YouTube and discuss whether anything actually occurred at all.
The WWE TV YouTube Experiment
Monday Night RAW/ July 15, 2019/ Long Island, New York
I had Night 3 of New Japan’s G1 Climax to watch on Sunday (and Night 4 on Monday), so I didn’t see Extreme Rules. The results seemed okay, but it’s worthless to cover it here if I didn’t actually see it. I did, however, take advantage of a 3-month subscription for 99 cents a couple of days ago, which follows the 2-month subscription for 99 cents that ended this week. So that’s awesome. I can justify spending what translates into less than 40 cents a month on the WWE Network. I can’t justify 10 bucks a month. And it has nothing to do with the current product.
I’m not going to get on a soapbox, but in short, I signed up on day one and kept my subscription even after I stopped watching regularly, and even after I stopped watching altogether. But when they signed the Saudi deal, I was not happy. And then they doubled down by continuing on with the show after the murder of an innocent journalist. It runs deeper than that, but that’s the gist. As soon as they decided to run that show, I decided that morally, I couldn’t give them $120 bucks a year any longer. So that’s that. I started a free trial at the end of January. Got a second one at the beginning of April, and then accepted 2 months for 99 cents in May and 3 months for 99 cents in July. A buck ninety-eight for 9 months? Yeah, I don’t have a moral obligation that stops me from throwing couch change at someone. In reality, when my subscription ends in mid-October, I’ll have paid 22 cents a month. Hey, I’m even doing numbers analysis up here. How about that?
Monday Night RAW 7/15/2019
Total Number of Clips: 13
Total Time: 34 minutes, 18 seconds
*Note: In the interest of saving space, I won’t be embedding every clip, only the ones that I feel are necessary.*
Brock Lesnar’s SummerSlam opponent to be revealed (4 minutes, 56 seconds)
This was the longest clip of the small batch this week, running more than a full minute longer than the second longest, and that one (Truth, Maverick, and the 24/7 Title) was one YouTube clip but 3 actual TV segments. The next longest video that was only one segment was a full minute and 56 seconds shorter than this. The Women’s 4-Way and angle afterward got a 3-minute video. More on that later. This was fine, standard fare from Heyman, and although the outcome at the end of the night was disappointing, at least based on this segment it felt like maybe someone fresh would get a title match. Good enough. (1 for 1)
2-out-of-3 Falls Six-Man Tag Team Match (2 minutes, 59 seconds)
This got Robert Roode on TV, which is good. He actually feels like a guy who would fit well as a regular partner/ally for The Revival. Match seemed fine, and the aftermath was good, with Ricochet getting taken out by The Club, which means they aren’t done with him even though AJ took his belt at the PPV. I hope something big happens with The Club and it’s not just AJ as a mid-card guy with 2 guys as his backup. Or even AJ as a main event guy with 2 guys as his backup, like they did in his feud with Roman Reigns in 2016. If that’s all they do, eh, it’s fine, but it’s nothing special. Finn has to become part of this when he returns in the fall, right? (2 for 2)
The Viking Raiders vs. Vinny Gruner & Jackson James (1 minute, 36 seconds)
Man, they came really close to killing that guy with the pop-up powerslam finish. It’s good to see these guys aren’t getting the Ascension treatment, but they have been on TV for exactly 3 months as of this episode of RAW. It’s time to start doing something with them because the crowd doesn’t seem to care very much. It was just an inoffensive squash and they’re not being beaten up by 60-year-old men every week, so I’ll take it. Next week is the RAW Reunion, though. If I were these guys, I might consider not showing up. (3 for 3)
Cedric Alexander vs. Drew McIntyre (2 minutes, 17 seconds)
After the unbelievably bad angle they did last week to close the show, they needed to give Cedric something, and thankfully they did in the form of a quick win over Drew McIntyre. I get the feeling Drew probably isn’t going to be challenging, much less defeating, The Undertaker at SummerSlam. He’ll probably just be in Shane’s corner for his match against Kevin Owens. Oh well. That’s close, right? I’m interested in seeing if they follow up with Cedric now, or if this was just an apology match for the shit that happened on the previous show. Either way, this was exactly what they needed to do. (4 for 4)
Finn Balor vs. Samoa Joe (1 minute, 47 seconds)
Joe picks up another win in extremely quick fashion (the match was under a minute and a half long), which is good after losing his 50th title match in a row. Getting beat up by Finn immediately after was completely unnecessary, though. I know that Finn is a fighter, but why bother? Instead of Joe getting what was essentially just a fluke roll-up, why not have him tap Finn or choke him out? Finn is leaving in a few weeks, and it’s going to be The Demon, not Finn Balor, who is going to take on Bray at SummerSlam, so at this moment Finn Balor is a disposable entity. This did nothing for Joe. (4 for 5)
Bray Wyatt returns and attacks Finn Balor (1 minute, 21 seconds)
I will say, the mask is definitely scarier in the ring the way it was presented here than it was when it was revealed in the Firefly Fun House vignettes. It looked like a corny, failed attempt to look scary, at least to me. I liked the outfit with the striped pants and whatnot since it’s a different attire than he was wearing when he left, but the mask was uninspiring. It was scary as shit on Monday, though. This was very well done, and I really hope Bray beats The Demon at SummerSlam. Hopefully, they can do that and then drop the silly gimmick that The Demon is a creature that uses Finn as a host (that’s pretty much what they’ve made it) and just let Finn be Finn, a cool dude in a leather jacket who sometimes likes to paint himself up because he enjoys the showmanship of it. This was about as good as they were going to get for the re-debut of Wyatt. I hope, almost exactly 6 years after his original main roster debut, they get it right this time. I also wonder if he’s going to wrestle in the mask and if the mask looks a little different because it’s not the exact same one from the promos, and instead has been altered to be worn in the ring. (5 for 6)
The Street Profits predict Brock Lesnar’s next challenger (1 minute, 59 seconds)
Can they be done with this now, please? It started off as amusing, but now it’s getting annoying. This is a terrible use of a pair of guys who are absolutely terrific. If they aren’t joining the RAW tag division, please just keep them in NXT. (5 for 7)
Zack Ryder vs. Mike Kanellis (1 minute, 50 seconds)
Next. (5 for 8)
Lucha House Party vs. The Club (2 minutes, 51 seconds)
This was exactly what it needed to be, with AJ, Gallows, and Anderson picking up a win as a team in what appeared to be a solid match. My big issue with this is similar to other omissions that don’t make much sense. Ricochet interfered in this match and went after AJ (it’s what they used to stop the match for the commercial break). Why not show that? It’s important in the build of the feud that Ricochet isn’t going to let these guys walk all over him. Outside of that, this was still an entertaining clip and the right thing to do for The Club, so I won’t let that drag it down. (6 for 9)
Natalya vs. Naomi vs. Carmella vs. Alexa Bliss
I assume that between entrances, the match, and the post-match promo this probably took around 40 minutes of the show to itself, and that would be why this week there are only 13 clips instead of the usual 17-to-19. The only parts of the match that they showed were the 3 eliminations, which means I only saw a minute and 21 seconds of what everyone is agreeing was a Very Bad 25-minute match. That means to me, as a viewer of only the YouTube content, this was actually just fine. Sadly, the last fall did include the “Let’s Go Cena/Cena Sucks” dueling chant, along with a very, very brief “Goldberg” chant immediately after. Natalya is suddenly a heel, maybe, or maybe she’s just trying to get on Becky’s level in terms of being a loose cannon on the microphone. I guess we’ll see next week. It was a bit cringeworthy, but I also like Natalya more than a lot of people do, so I’m okay with this. Thanks to the fact that the only parts of the match they showed here were good, this gets a thumbs up from me. (7 for 10)
The Miz pummels Dolph Ziggler on “Miz TV” (2 minutes, 57 seconds)
It was a different promo than the one that Ziggler has been cutting for the last 3 years, so that was good. The last thing we need is another feud between these two. I have enjoyed most of the stuff they’ve done together over the years, but we don’t need more. I sort of thought this was going in the direction of Ziggler helping Miz get his head back on straight, possibly leading to them forming a tag team that would be somewhat similar to the Awesome Truth. Maybe that is the plan. I’ll wait and see with this. I also might be the last person outside of Vince McMahon and Dolph Ziggler himself who still thinks DZ can be rehabbed and do something good, so I may be judging this on a bit of a curve. Going with a thumbs up for this. (8 for 11)
R-Truth Invades Drake Maverick’s hotel room (3 minutes, 52 seconds)
As I mentioned earlier, this video was all 3 of the night’s segments all put together, which made sense to do. This may have been the best 24/7 stuff I’ve seen since I started 4 weeks ago. This was a lot of fun. (9 for 12)
Cross-Branded All-Star Top 10 Battle Royal (2 minutes, 53 seconds)
Boy, oh boy, there is a LOT to unpack from the name of this match. I won’t do it, but wow. That’s something. I don’t know… the excerpts from the match itself were good, as you would expect with the talented guys involved. The winner was disappointing but Seth was really the most obvious winner, and nobody should have expected WWE to go an unexpected route like Big E, even though the crowd seemed to be supporting him the most, and the fact that he’s been ready for the spot for like 3 years, or more. Again, this was fine. I don’t really care very much. I will say, though, that I thought Rollins was showing a ton of fire in the post-match promo, and it almost made me care. And then he had to shoe-horn in the “reigning, defending, undisputed Universal Heavyweight Champion” line, and it ruined the whole thing for me. I’m listing this as a negative because I wish they would explore different directions. This was a perfect opportunity. Whatever. (9 for 13)
The July 8 episode, the final RAW before Extreme Rules, was really quite awful. I hated it. This week is a step above that. I’m mostly apathetic toward it. I felt nonplussed by pretty much everything. I’m glad that it was under 35 minutes long because it went by extraordinarily quickly, but when I was done it felt like I watched a whole lot of nothing. With the exception of the Bray Wyatt return, this week’s episode could have not happened at all, and nothing would be different.
Come to think of it, that’s probably worse than a bad show because contrary to what I said last week it wasn’t bad TV that drove me to stop watching. It was the fact that with the exception of some really strong matches, the show was the same thing every single week. There were a number of occasions where I would miss 2 weeks and not check out the reviews, and when I saw the show again, there had been such a minimal amount of storyline progression that the episodes I missed might not have even existed at all. I hope something happens next week. At least they appear to be doing fun stuff on SmackDown, with Kevin Owens if nothing else.
Average Clip Length
Week 5: 2 minutes, 38 seconds
Week 4: 2 minutes, 10 seconds
Week 3: 2 minutes, 33 seconds
Week 2: 2 minutes, 44 seconds
Week 1: 2 minutes, 32 seconds
The average length of each clip is back on par with the first 3 weeks after last week’s sizeable drop. After a little under 48 hours, here are some viewership numbers:
- Bray Wyatt’s return has over 2.5 million views
- Just over 2 million views for R-Truth pinning Drake in the hotel
- The Battle Royal has over 1.7 million views, as one might expect
- The Women’s 4-Way has 555k views
- Over 400k for Cedric vs. Drew
- Viking Raiders at under 87k views, by far the least-watched
Bray’s return came very close to outclassing, in under 48 hours, the most-watched clip from last week’s show, which was the Roman/Cedric vs. Shane/Drew match. That had around 2.6 million views as of last Friday night, more than 2 days longer than the Bray return clip. As of the writing of this, Wednesday evening July 17th, that clip has only earned about another 100,000 views, at just over 2.7 million.
The 24/7 Championship saga must have had some buzz, which it hasn’t had for the last 2 weeks. It’s the second-most-watched clip for the July 15th RAW. The 24/7 stuff didn’t even earn enough views last week for me to even mention it in more than a single sentence — there were 3 clips (probably should have just put them all together in one) and only one of them was over 100k. The one with the word “consummation” in the title was just under 300k last Friday and sits at 662k as of Wednesday evening. The other two videos are well below 350k. Hitting over 2 million views this week is back up to form and makes me happy.
I don’t recall any other video featuring the women’s division going above 300,000 views, especially not in under 48 hours. I would wager that the reason it’s at more than half a million views is that people heard the match was awful, and they were curious to see it for themselves. Those people were likely both disappointed and relieved at the same time. No disrespect to the women, but this match had a ton of buzz online and it wasn’t positive attention. Very few people checked the 4-way match video out because they were interested in the outcome, and Becky Lynch isn’t in the thumbnail, her name isn’t in the title of the video, and the title doesn’t even specify that the match was for a title shot.
The Viking Raiders continue to be one of, if not the least-viewed videos every week. After just under 48 hours, they have well under 100,000 views, Even the Street Profits hit 104k. Also, after hitting 1.4 million for Maria’s in-ring destruction of Mike Kanellis a few weeks ago, that angle has stalled out big time both in development and in YouTube hits. Ryder squashing Kanellis has only 284k views. The “pickles and ice cream” video from the July 8th episode, which was the awful follow-up to the original angle from July 1st (which peaked at 1.8 million as of this writing) is at a pitiful 184k after more than a week. Maybe they should be glad that nobody is checking them out. The fewer eyes, the better.
Well, that’s all I have for this week. I’m officially at the halfway mark, as there are 3 more episodes of RAW before SummerSlam and my last will be the night after. So far, I’m not leaning toward going back to being a regular RAW viewer. I might start checking out SmackDown, though. It seems like fun.
Nick Marsico/ Writer (kinda)
The Chairshot Dot Com