WWE NXT Coverage
Andrew’s Ratings & Analysis: NXT UK TakeOver: Blackpool II
NXT UK Blackpool II…let’s all hope this is better than the first one.
NXT UK Blackpool II…let’s all hope this is better than the first one.
Now, since it comes on at a time when I’m at work, and I have other things to watch, NXT UK always falls by the wayside for me. So seeing that there’s a gap between NFL Playoff games, and Hard to Kill, I decided I might as well watch this.
WALTER versus Joe Coffey makes no sense to me since Coffey was punked out by WALTER and never seemed like a credible threat to anything aside from a Dairy Queen. Devlin and Bate is positioned to steal the show, especially since I don’t tend to care for these cluster ladder matches in NXT.
So let’s see if the Dairy Queen slayer of Gallus can prove me wrong.
- Trent Seven vs Eddie Dennis: Dennis wins via Neck Stop Driver @8:15 – ** 3/4
- UK Women’s Championship: Piper Niven vs Toni Storm vs Kay Lee Ray (c): KLR retains via Opportunistic Pin @13:10 – *** 1/4
- Tyler Bate vs Jordan Devlin: Bate wins via Spiral Tap @22:25 – **** 1/2
- NXT UK Tag Team Championship 4 Way Ladder Match: Gallus (Mark Coffey & Wolfgang) (c) vs South Wales Sub Culture (Flash Morgan Webster & Mark Andrews) vs Grizzled Young Veterans (Zack Gibson & James Drake) vs Imperium (Fabian Aichner & Marcel Barthel): Gallus retains @25:00 – **** 1/4
- NXT UK Championship: Joe Coffey vs WALTER (c): WALTER retains via Gojira Clutch @27:30 – *** 3/4
Trent Seven vs Eddie Dennis – Eddie Dennis came in trying to make an example of Trent Seven, and I suppose it worked. Granted, he looks like utter crap. Imagine if Johnny Gargano and Kanyon combined, yet forgot to eat for a month. Dennis’ offense looked forced and slow at times, but Trent did a good job fighting from underneath and trying to prove he wasn’t washed up. Short cuts from Dennis helped put him over, in classic heel fashion and the Razor’s Edge to the outside was a big fun spot…but generally a meandering match. Nothing bad, a few fun spots, but Dennis doesn’t convince me with his offense.
UK Women’s Championship: Piper Niven vs Toni Storm vs Kay Lee Ray (c) – Kay Lee had her work cut out for her in this match. Trying to turn two faces is usually volatile and comes to bite the heel, and this was no different. The work early was a little stop/start and slow at times, but told the story well enough that KLR was trying to pick her spots after the other two started swinging on each other. Piper hit a Scottish Destroyer on KLR, KLR hit a Gory Bomb on Piper and Toni blocked the referee’s count to break the pin; which shows how much she wanted the match. Storm Zero got hit pretty flush on KLR, but Piper broke up that pin. It looked like Toni was about to put things away after a Pedigree and then Frog Splash, but KLR slide in, kicked Toni in the face and stole the pinfall. Some things didn’t work and felt a little bloated, but it wasn’t a bad match at all.
Tyler Bate vs Jordan Devlin – Now this was a great match with a simple enough story that Devlin wanted to prove he was better than Bate. Granted, a few spots bothered me like the Hurricanrana that stalled waiting for feet for the counter and even the referee didn’t count right away. Then there was the terrible spot where they threw bad punches and no one came away with any bruising. Cause you know, you can get punched a dozen times in reality and walk out with no marks what-so-ever.
Aside from those nitpicks, the match was great. I loved Devlin blocking the stupid Bop and Bang early on, and Bate kept blocking the Devlin Side move. The fact that they were aware of signature moves, fought to block them and it was still a great back and forth, makes this match a great early contender on MOTY lists. But still, the nit picks I had dropped it a little for me personally, but I know others will overlook them.
NXT UK Tag Team Championship 4 Way Ladder Match: Gallus (c) vs Flash Morgan Webster & Mark Andrews vs Grizzled Young Veterans vs Fabian Aichner & Marcel Barthel – Now I haven’t been a big fan of how either NXT brand does multi-people ladder matches, but this was surprisingly different. There were a ton of spots and general carnage, but nothing felt like an over extended build your own TLC ring moment. When all the teams were on a ladder and the Welshmen were adding extras, it still worked well because there wasn’t lull in the action.
I loved how the one ladder pinned Gibson and then when he got freed, he did a great job at cleaning things up. Great close spots for all teams, it just all made sense. Hard to find anything to complain about since it was supposed to be organized chaos.
NXT UK Championship: Joe Coffey vs WALTER (c) – Joe Coffey had one of Pete Dunne’s worst matches as UK Champion and when WALTER debuted he punked him out pretty solidly. So given those facts and the fact that I don’t watch NXT UK weekly, this really seems like a stretch. Now I guess we get to see if Coffey can at least put together something respectable with WALTER, or if he should stay in mid card hell forever.
Coffey came out with some solid offense and looked to have a real shot for the first half of this match. Then WALTER reminded everyone who the hell he is. We saw a clunky spot on a missed boot, but both men saved it well to make it look more like MMA trying to find an opening, than groping for an out. The referee bump led us to something that felt unnecessary, because it just caused the match to last another 4 or 5 minutes.
Since Coffey got dinged because of the run in, I suppose we’re lead to believe that if it wasn’t for Ilja Coffey had a better shot, but come on. Coffey didn’t even get the visible 3 count when the ref bumped and he was fighting from underneath during the important portions of the match. WALTER asserted his dominance, rag dolled Coffey a bit and made the little girl tap out. Now let’s never put him in the main event again, okay NXT UK?
Overall Score: 7.5/10
All in all it was a fun show, capped off with Undisputed Era doing a run in on Imperium, heating up their World’s Collide angle. Bate and Devlin stole the show early, and sadly WALTER/Joe Coffey was pretty good but nothing to really close the show on. So it was a good thing that Undisputed Era had their run in to raise the energy level and punctuate the show.
So even without the weekly information, the video packages set the table nicely and the matches delivered well enough. A few pieces to build off of, like perhaps Dragunov has to go through Gallus, maybe even Bate to get a title shot. Devlin has to figure out where he stands in the big picture of NXT UK all while Trent Seven has to figure out his future in general.
Pieces of things to build off of, solid matches and a generally enjoyable show.
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Mitchell’s WWE NXT Results & Report! (3/21/23)
Time for a grudge match!
Will NXT be UNBESIEGBAR?
While Stand & Deliver is on the horizon, Ilja Dragunov and JD McDonagh look to settle their NXT rivalry! Will the Czar trump the Irish Ace once and for all?
- NXT Women’s Championship Qualifier: Tiffany Stratton VS Indi Hartwell; Tiffany wins and advances to the title match at Stand & Deliver.
- Ilja Dragunov VS JD McDonagh; Double Disqualification Draw.
- NXT Women’s Championship Qualifier: Lyra Valkyria VS Ivy Nile; Lyra wins and advances to the title match at Stand & Deliver.
- The Great Debate: Chase U VS The Schism; Chase U wins.
- Bron Breakker & Carmelo Hayes w/ Trick Williams VS Pretty Deadly; Bron & Melo win.
PLAY BY PLAY
Pretty Deadly heads to the ring.
Kit Wilson & Elton Prince, the hosts of Stand & Deliver, are apparently just fine after getting thrown through a table last week. Elton has the mic to say, “Attention, attention. Quiet please. It is us, your hosts of Stand…” “And Deliver!” #YESBOY! And as their first official act as the hosts of Stand… and Deliver, they are officially wiping the footage of last week’s closing segment from the archives! You will no longer be able to view those “neckbearded mouth-breathing” Gallus boys cheat to win!
Nor will you see Bron Breakker & Carmelo Hayes jump them from behind to put them through a table! Elton already pretends to not know what happened. The gumption of those two! If not for the fact that these two are the hosts of Stand… and Deliver, those two wouldn’t even make it to Lala Land. Last week is history, today is a mystery. But let’s not get too far off the point. Let’s talk outfits for Stand… and Deliver! Now, hold on, talking about outfits, did you see those horrid ensembles both Melo and Bron were wearing last week? Main event talent, sure. But main event style? But wait, here come Trick Melo Gang!
Trick asks if his mic is working. It is. Good. Because he told the two bobbleheads to be quiet when grown-ups are talking. But Pretty Deadly interrupted so they had to get some “table service.” Melo says not to get it twisted. He was so dripped out, he left puddles! Talk about it. While Melo prepares for his biggest match ever, Pretty Deadly is standing here with his name in their mouths? In all fairness, Mr. Melo, Kit said it. Don’t try and be cute. HEY! They were born cute! They don’t have to try. HEY! Remember what Trick said about talking during grown folks business! We’re talking about the FUTURE NXT Champion! We don’t need that bad juju.
Trick figures Pretty Deadly shouldn’t talk the talk, but walk the walk. Um, hold on, there might be a break down in communication. They only speak the king’s English. But if they want to have a match, if Melo wants to jeopardize the main event of Stand…! And Deliver, then they ACCEPT! Good! Because tonight, the main event, Pretty Deadly VS the man, the myth and the legend, Carmelo Hayes, and his partner… BRON BREAKKER! Trick even tricks Melo there! But then Pretty Deadly attacks! They throw Trick out then mug Melo! But here comes BRON! Bron CLOBBERS Kit, DECKS Elton, and then TOSSES Kit! Elton runs in, he also gets TOSSED!
Bron trophy lifts Kit, and THRWOS him out onto Elton! Pretty Deadly has a pretty nasty landing, and the fans fire up! Bron offers Melo a hand, Melo takes it, and the two stand. Bron says nothing is gonna happen to Melo between now and Stand & Deliver. Melo scowls and takes his leave, but will the champion and challenger be able to stay civil on the Road to WrestleMania Weekend?
Trick and Melo regroup backstage.
Melo asks Trick what the heck, and Trick says he doesn’t know. That was all Trick Melo Gang, they didn’t need Bron. Bron wants Melo at his best, and he’ll get just that. And that means NEW NXT Champion, but he’s teaming with Bron now? Trick always has Melo’s back, right? Yeah, but Melo doesn’t wanna do that “Can they coexist?” crap! But Trick has Melo’s back. Melo needs to know Bron’s speed, flow and body control. Now he’ll have a front row seat. He’ll have the blueprint. Trick himself takes care of the conversation: “Thanks, Trick.” “You’re welcome, Melo.” And Pretty Deadly is easy money. Trick will make sure of that.
And at Stand & Deliver, the most important thing is still the most important thing. That’s all it is, and that’s all it’s gonna be.
NXT Women’s Championship Qualifier: Tiffany Stratton VS Indi Hartwell!
Daddy’s Little Rich Girl claimed she was going to Stand & Deliver even before Roxanne Perez retained the title against Meiko Satomura. But now with the title quite literally up in the air, will she take a spot in the ladder match? Or will #IndiWrestling finally have her moment in Hollywood?
The bell rings and fans rally behind Indi. Indi and Tiffany tie up, Indi headlocks, but Tiffany powers out. Indi runs Tiff over, covers, ONE! Indi wrenches an arm, RAMS shoulders, then wrenches again. Indi RAMS Tiff again, then YANKS the arm. Indi whips Tiff to a corner, runs in, but into a BOOT! Tiff runs in to CLOBBER Indi! Cover, TWO! Tiffany is annoyed but she drags Indi up. Indi wrenches out, and short arm LARIATS right back! And then short arm LARIATS again! Tiff dodges the next one, kicks low and snap suplexes! Cover, TWO! Fans rally, Tiff stomps Indi and talks trash, but Indi hits back!
Tiffany CLUBS Indi, drags her up and whips her to a corner hard! Indi bounces off buckles and Tiffany taunts her more. Indi blocks the whip, blocks it again, and ROCKS Tiffany with forearms! Tiffany kicks low, whips Indi hard into another corner, then runs to handspring and back elbow! Tiffany runs, but Indi avoids the stomps! Roll-up, TWO! Indi stomps Tiffany, puts her through ropes, and then uppercuts, but misses! Tiff trips Indi, but Indi kicks her away. Indi goes to the apron but Tiff TRIPS her! Indi hits the apron, Tiff says this is HER world and we’re all just living in it. Fans boo as NXT goes to break.
NXT returns and Tiffany has Indi in a chinlock. Indi endures, fights up, and throws body shots. Tiffany comes back, but into a JAWBREAKER! Indi runs in but Tiff sends her to ropes! Tiff runs to HIP ATTACK! Cover, TWO! Indi is still in this and Tiffany grows annoyed. Tiffany scoops but Indi slips off and waistlocks. Tiff runs to RAM Indi into buckles, then she DOUBLE STOMPS Indi down! Cover, TWO! Indi survives and fans rally up again. Tiffany drags Indi up, whips her to the corner, but Indi reverses. Tiffany goes up and over and handsprings, then comes back, but into Indi’s BIG back suplex!
Both women are down and fans rally back up. Indi and Tiffany crawl after each other, and Indi throws a forearm! Tiffany throws it back, but Indi throws another! They brawl as they stand up, Indi ROCKS and kicks and CLUBS and DECKS Tiffany! Fans fire up and Indi puts Tiffany through ropes to UPPERCUT and BOOT! Tiffany falls, Indi covers, TWO! Tiffany hangs tough but Indi runs in. Tiff dodges the boot to POWERSLAM! Cover, TWO! Indi is still in this and Tiffany pounds the mat in frustration. Fans boo as she goes to the apron, and Tiffany springboards. Indi avoids the swanton! SPINEBUSTER! Cover, TWO!!
Indi is surprised Tiffany survives, but she hurries to bring Tiffany up. Tiffany RAMS Indi into the corner, but Indi ELBOWS her back. Indi goes up but Tiffany YANKS her down! Fireman’s carry, and ROLLING SENTON! BEST MOONSAULT WHATEVER! Cover, Tiffany wins!
Winner: Tiffany Stratton, by pinfall (advances to Stand & Deliver)
Love her or hate her, the spoiled rich girl backed up her big talk. She is now the third woman to compete in the ladder match, but just how many more participants is HBK going to add?
Gallus is at the bar again.
They have more pints, they’re playing more pool, and they’re happy to be past Pretty Deadly. It is still Gallus Boys On Top! Mark Coffey breaks, but in walk the Creed Brothers. Gallus, funny seeing you guys here. Uh, everyone knows where to find them, Brutus. They’re not hard to find. They fancy a game? Sure, Gallus can break. Alright. Two more pints for Gallus, and uh, two glasses of milk for the Creeds. Milk? C’mon! Brutus will have what they’re having, but Julius is already too wild sober. They play a game, and once again, Gallus dominates the green felt. Eight ball, corner pocket for the win.
Great game, lads. Well, 8 Ball was never their game. Now darts? BULL’S EYE. Well alright, Gallus will throw. And just as Julius said, he and Brutus dominate. They want another round? Yeah, best two outta three. Except that round goes to the Creeds, too. Well, Gallus never took the Creeds for a pair of archers. Hey, they work hard in the dojo, and play hard outside. Well, between pool and darts, that just means they’re tied, 1-1. And they could go all day, but Julius has a better idea for the tiebreaker. Wolfgang and Mark know, too. Stand & Deliver, for the tag titles. No Pretty Deadly, no Indus Sher, the Creeds want the belts back.
Well, Gallus will gladly see them in LA, but the titles are staying with them. See you then. They all shake on it, then head out. Only for Tony D’Angelo & Channing Lorenzo to be waiting. Where’s everyone going? Next round’s on The Don. Because they have business to discuss. Stand & Deliver, that is. Really? Well, this is gonna be a long night. Everyone goes back inside the bar, will Tony and the Underboss get themselves a part in the Hollywood title picture?
Lyra Valkyria speaks.
As she runs up the stairs and through the halls of an abandoned building, she says, “Stand & Deliver, Los Angeles, get ready to soar.” But will she overcome her first obstacle here tonight?
Backstage interview with Gigi Dolin.
McKenzie Mitchell is with someone who has already qualified for the NXT Women’s Championship Ladder Match, and asks Gigi her feelings on the field so far. Gigi say sit is too early to judge. As sad as it is, if Roxie didn’t get hurt, this match wouldn’t be happening. Also, in regards to Jacy Jayne and her bad shoulder, sorry not sorry. Jacy tried to make Gigi’s life a living hell, so she can stay home and watch as Gigi climbs the ladder. The last time Gigi was in a ladder match, she won it. And she has been put through the wringer since. But mentally, no one has any idea. Gigi will do anything to-
Tiffany walks in to interrupt. She “loves” the confidence and all, but did you see her just win and get in that match? So Gigi and every other woman’s chances just went from “possible” to “absolutely screwed.” That title is Tiffany’s. Oh, another Tiffany Epiphany! Tiffany’s gonna win by climbing that ladder all the way to the tippy top! And she’ll love it. Tootles. Gigi makes a face, will Gigi slap that smug attitude right out of Tiffany come Stand & Deliver?
Wes Lee is in the ring.
“OOOH YO! Things have been absolutely crazy around here, right? And y’all have been enjoying these open challenges, correct?” Fans cheer and Wes says that’s good, because he has, too. But he constantly gets asked, “Why? Why are you doing it this way? Why continue to roll the dice? Eventually, your number’s gonna get called.” To Wes, he doesn’t wanna be a hypocrite. When he won this title at Halloween Havoc, it was his first shot at it. And he just knew he had to give it everything he had, because if he came up short, he doubted he’d ever get another shot. And now, as champion, he vows to give anyone the opportunity that was in that same position he was in.
Now, secondly, he knows he’s looking deep within himself, but he has a chip on his shoulder. He needs to prove not just to the world, but to himself, that he can and will compete against the best athletes in the world! That he deserves to carry the title! That he deserves to be our NXT North American Champion! Fans fire up for that, but Wes says many have seen a bit of this fire from that “creeper” vid of him and HBK. And HBK made it clear Wes had four spots for four superstars to compete against him at Stand & Deliver. But wait, here comes DRAGON LEE! Speaking of one of the best from around the world…!
Dragon Lee joins Wes Lee in the ring and has the mic. “Wow, wow, wow. Thank you, all. Nice to meet you, Wes.” Wes says it’s nice to meet him. Dragon says that he came to NXT for the same reason as Wes. But to Dragon, Wes IS the best. But y’know what? Dragon LOVES the chaos! And at Stand & Deliver in LA, Dragon wants to part of that challenge against Wes. Wes says this is what he loves. Wes has followed Dragon’s career from Mexico to Japan, and has wondered what’d it be like if the two of them tangled. And when Dragon signed with NXT, Wes thought it’d be like six to eight months before they got to.
But everyone knows Wes is impatient! So let’s make it official! Dragon gets the first spot! See you in LA! But wait, here comes the Irish Ace! JD McDonagh is going to face Dragunov later tonight, but he says, “Look what it is! Wes Lee, Dragon Lee, the Lees putting each other over. It’s funny you two are running your mouths about the best in the world, I’m backstage warming up. So Dragon, you’re new here, I’ll give you a pass this week. But I suggest you grab a chair, sit your ass front row, and watch a grandmaster at work when I dismantle Ilja Dragunov.” Fans boo but JD tells Wes, “What’s your excuse?”
Wes’ excuse? What’s gonna be JD’s excuse after Ilja rips him apart? Fans fire up for that! JD steps into the ring, and he says Wes should count himself lucky that JD hasn’t had his eyes on that title. Because if he had, not only would Wes not be standing here with it, he wouldn’t be standing at all. But wait! Here comes the Czar! JD is here, so Dragunov isn’t gonna wait! Time for the grudge match! Will either man be left standing after this one?
NXT Anonymous has another video.
Whoever they are, they watch as Indi storms backstage and takes her frustrations out on a trash can. Then she gets mad at Zoey for smirking. Indi asks, “What the hell are you looking at?” Zoey says, “Definitely not the next NXT Women’s Champion.” Zoey heads off, is this the end of the road for #IndiWrestling in NXT?
Kiana James watches in the locker room.
She says that was a pretty good line from Zoey. Fallon Henley then walks in and Kiana mocks Indi for not making it to Stand & Deliver. But they are, tag champ! Isla Dawn & Alba Fyre don’t stand a chance- Enough, Kiana. She knows what’s going on here. Fallon, don’t worry, Kiana isn’t worried about the singles title. No, not that! Sebastian! Kiana’s eyes go wide, but then she denies even recognizing that name. Save it, Kiana. Fallon was in your office. What?! How’d she even get past security!? Fallon says that doesn’t matter, she saw the flowers and the card. Card? What? PROOF! Kiana freaks out again!
How can Kiana even sleep at night, cheating on Jensen!? Fallon knew better than to trust Kiana! Now she’s gonna go tell Jensen. Oh, yes, go run to Brooks and tell him. That’ll screw up EVERYTHING before the biggest match in their careers! But Jensen is family! Kiana may not care about him, but Fallon does! Fallon storms off, what can Kiana do to stop the truth from getting out?
Ilja Dragunov VS JD McDonagh!
NXT returns and the bell rings. These two fire off forearms and fists right away! Dragon watches ringside just like JD wanted as Dragunov ROCKS him! JD rebounds to ROCK Dragunov, but Dragunov rebounds to ROCK JD! They keep going back and forth, then Dragunov BOOTS JD! JD roars as he stays up, but Dragunov ENZIGURIS him down! Now Dragunov roars and fans fire up! Dragunov KNEES JD in the side again and again, then drags him up to CLUB him on the back! Fans rally up for that, “ONE MORE TIME! ONE MORE TIME!” and Dragunov CLUBS JD again! Dragunov then whips JD to a corner, runs in, but JD slips out!
Dragunov knees the buckles, and JD trips him to slingshot TORNILLO SPLASH! Dragon is impressed, but fans boo as JD throws down forearms. Dragunov gets away to a corner, but JD storms up to COHP! JD digs his knee into Dragunov, the ref counts, and JD lets off at 4. Fans boo but JD brings Dragunov up to short arm LARIAT! Dragunov flounders, JD covers, TWO! JD drags Dragunov up to snap suplex! Cover, TWO! Dragunov gets away to ropes but JD stomps him. JD drags Dragunov up to wrench, but Dragunov breaks free and trips JD! JD avoids the falling forearm, and the backhand! Dragunov avoids the headbutts!
The forearm start flying again, and both men DECK each other! Fans are thunderous for “NXT! NXT!” and Dragon nods his respect. JD and Dragunov go forehead to forehead, and JD SLAPS! Dragunov SLAPS! It is a SLAP fight! Fans are thunderous again as the SLAPS keep going! JD swings, misses, GERMAN SUPLEX! Dragunov drags JD back up, but JD throws elbows. Dragunov still GERMAN SUPLEXES! Fans want that ‘ONE MORE TIME!” so Dragunov drags JD back up. JD fights the waistlock, pries it free to switch and shove, but Dragunov hits the CONSTANTINE SPECIAL! Both men are down and the fans are thunderous again!
Dragunov drags JD to a cover, TWO! “This is Awesome!” as Dragunov stands back up. Dragunov runs in to KNEE JD in the corner, then puts him down. Dragunov goes up, KNEE DROP! Dragunov roars and goes back up top! But JD stands to ROCK Dragunov! And CHOP! JD climbs up, but Dragunov fights back with body shots! Dragunov HEADBUTTS JD away, then adjusts. JD comes back to grab hair! JD THROWS Dragunov off the top! Fans boo and JD brings Dragunov up to throw him into ropes! Dragunov flops out of the ring and fans boo more while NXT goes picture in picture.
JD grins as he watches Dragunov down on the floor. Dragunov sputters and stirs but JD goes out after him. JD drags Dragunov up for an APRON BACK SUPLEX! Dragunov flounders away, JD hurries in, and he drops an AX HANDLE! Cover, TWO! JD kicks at Dragunov, but Dragunov eggs him on. JD stands Dragunov to ROCK him! Dragunov CHOPS! And CHOPS! And CHOPS! But then his arm gives up! JD hits a BIG DDT!! Dragunov tumbles over his own head and neck! The ref checks him, he’s somehow okay to continue but he’s shaking. JD stands Dragunov up to whip him hard into the corner!
Dragunov falls to the mat, JD drags him to a cover, TWO! JD grows frustrated with Dragunov, and he clamps on a facelock. JD grinds Dragunov down, Dragunov fights up, and Dragunov pries free to wrench the arm. JD KNEES Dragunov low! Dragunov falls and clutches his gut, but JD stalks him to ropes. JD wrenches an arm, to hit an atomic BACKBREAKER! Cover, TWO! Dragunov is still in this but JD keeps his focus. JD stomps Dragunov around, digs his boot in, and then gets the arm. JD steps through for a standing leg hook nelson! Dragunov endures as JD puts on more pressure, and NXT returns to single picture.
Fans rally, Dragunov bridges up against the hold, but JD just pushes him back down. JD straightens out the arm like an armbar, but Dragunov still fights. Dragunov has turned this into a STRETCH MUFFLER! Now JD endures and flails for the ROPEBREAK! Dragunov lets go at 4 and fans rally up. JD PENALTY KICKS Dragunov in the back! JD drags Dragunov up for Kawada Kicks! And then a SLAP! But Dragunov kips up, only for JD to duck the Pele! JD fires off more Kawada Kicks, but Dragunov HEADBUTTS! JD HEADBUTTS, but Dragunov kips up to PELE!! Fans are thunderous as both men are down again!
JD and Dragunov slowly rise, and fans hope they “FIGHT FOREVER!” This has to end somehow, and Dragunov rains down HAMMER ‘N’ ANVIL ELBOWS! Dragunov puts JD in a corner to CHOP him! And then stalks him to another corner, to CHOP him! Dragunov shoves JD to a corner, JD ducks the chop to ELBOW back! But Dragunov stands up to CHOP! And CHOP! And CHOP! CHOP! CHOP! JD pie faces Dragunov, but that just pisses Dragunov off! MACHINE GUN CHOPS!! Dragunov stops but he brings JD in to waistlock and SIDE SLAM! Cover, TWO!! JD survives but Dragunov holds on!
“This is Awesome!” as Dragunov drags JD back up. JD fights to ropes, that HOTSHOTS Dragunov, and JD brings Dragunov in! POWERBOMB! High stack, TWO!! But JD holds on with a waistlock of his own. JD drags Dragunov up to GERMAN SUPLEX! JD still holds on, they stand again, for another GERMAN SUPLEX! JD lets go, and Dragunov just rises up! Dragunov swings, into another GERMAN SUPLEX! But Dragunov is up to ROUNDHOUSE JD down!! Fans give a standing ovation as both men fall! Dragunov staggers his way to a corner, and he shouts, “UN! BE! SIEG! BAR!!” TORPEDO- NO!! Takedown into body scissors!
Fans shout “NO! NO! NO!” but Dragunov fights the Irish Twister to rain down fists! JD kicks Dragunov away but Dragunov comes back, LEAPING FOREARM!!! Fans cheer “This is Wrestling!” as both men bail out. They SLAP and SLAP and SLAP! They both grab hair, and they tumble into Dragon Lee!! Dragon is pissed, but JD JABS him for the hell of it! Only for Dragunov to swing! JD dodges, the BACKHAND hits Dragon!! Dragon is FURIOUS, he fires hands on them both!!
Fans go nuts as we get a brawl between all three men! But then WES LEE FLIES IN!! The Cardiac Kid helps Dragon fight against Dragunov and JD! Refs rush in to stop this brawl, but fans want to “LET THEM FIGHT!” Will the only way to settle any of this be at Stand & Deliver?
Trick Melo Gang finds Bron Breakker backstage.
Melo tells Bron that he and Trick didn’t need Bron to handle Pretty Deadly, or to be in the tag match with Pretty Deadly. This isn’t that “Can they coexist?” crap! Bron doesn’t want that, either! The Melo that Bron wants to face at Stand & Deliver is the best Melo. They said it last week that they have an opportunity to make something special happen at Stand & Deliver. So Bron isn’t gonna let two clowns, i.e. Pretty Deadly… Though, Trick Melo Gang, too… Screw it up. What’s Bron mean by that? Well, Trick is always up to something. Trick says he’s up to nothing. He just wanted Bron to share the ring with the future NXT Champion.
Oh, is that so? Melo has Bron leave Trick alone. Bron wants the best possible Stand & Deliver, and so does Melo. Then let’s finish this. Good. Big tag match tonight. Nice doing business with you. Trick Melo Gang leaves, but will they be leaving the arena in one piece?
Backstage interview with Wes Lee.
McKenzie can tell Wes is riled up after that brawl. It seems chaos follows him everywhere. Wes admits, he threw himself to the fire on this one. But Ilja and JD will never be done with each other. But the last two weeks, JD has gotten in Wes’s face and Wes is sick and tired of it! So JD gets the second spot. And Ilja is Europe’s finest. The only way to put that to the test: he gets the third stop! So that leaves one spot left. Who will it be? Axiom walks in and says if there’s room for one more…
Wes knows Axiom wants this and he has been close so many times. But there are still so many others to consider. And Wes wants to give everyone a fair shot, sot he only way to do that, “the chaos continues. We’re about to have ourselves a battle royal, y’all! And the winner gets the fourth and final spot.” axiom says that’s fine. He just wanted a chance, and now he has it. Will the Undeniable Truth be undeniable in that chaotic Battle Royal next week?
Johnny Gargano is here!
Fans fire up for the Rebel Heart, as- Wait. That’s not Johnny Wrestling! That’s JAVIER BERNAL!! Big Body Javi just trolled everyone! “When that music hit, you all thought Johnny Gargano was coming out. But you were wrong! Hah! Just like I thought I was going to Stand & Deliver, the biggest event of the year. But I was wrong. And you know who’s to blame for that? JOHNNY GARGANO!” Johnny took Javi’s spot! Who the hell does Johnny think he is? He’s been gone for 6, 8, 10, 12 months! Has he not been watching NXT while he was away? Javi s the heart and soul of NXT! He has been busting his ass for seven YEARS! Well, no, months.
But what does Johnny have that Javi doesn’t? Johnny Wrestling? No, Big Body Javi is better! Javi would take himself over Gargano every day of the week! How many Christmas albums does Gargano have? NONE! And between the two of them, they’re Triple Crown Champion! *All Johnny. But HBK, Javi says you chose the wrong guy! Wait, here comes the REAL Johnny Wrestling! Fans fire up as Gargano goes right to the ring and he CLOBBERS Javi! Fans fire up more as Gargano TOSSES Javi out! Then RAMS him into barriers! And then RAMS him into steel steps! And then TOSSES him over the barriers!
Fans cheer on Johnny and he grabs himself a mic. “Grayson! Grayson! Grayson Waller! I know you’re somewhere around here, I know you’re listening. You wanna make things personal? You wanna raise the stakes? Let’s raise the stakes. In my hand is a contract for a type of match I know very, very, very well. April 1st, Stand & Deliver, Grayson Waller VS Johnny Gargano… in an UNSANCTIONED MATCH!! No rules! Anything goes! No one is liable for what I do to you. Grayson, all you have to do is come down here and sign it.” But Waller is here via tron. Fired up tonight, huh? Seems he feels better than when he was down and out on his own front lawn.
Waller gets it, Gargano is upset. But an Unsanctioned match? Does Gargano wanna embarrass himself on the biggest stage in NXT? That’s too far, even for Gargano. Not far enough! Come and sign this! Waller says if Gargano thinks he’s going down to that ring, he’s crazy. But Waller will let Gargano give that contract to Vic Joseph so Waller can sign it next week. And, it has to be on one condition: Gargano is BANNED from the building next week. If Waller whiffs even a bit of Gargano, he’s not signing and no one gets what they want. Gargano says if that gets Waller to do it, deal! Gargano gives Vic the contract to hold on to.
Gargano sees Javi get back up and in, and SUPERKICKS him down! Johnny Wrestling wants to unleash everything on Waller, but will he come to regret throwing away all the rules?
There is a moonlight ritual going on.
“There is more to us than you think. I appreciate the significance of my heritage, but I must carry the responsibility of progression. I will hold my people up, and lead the way forward.” Eddy Thorpe is ready to level up to NXT, next week!
Backstage interview with Ivy Nile.
McKenzie brings up how Tatum Paxley betrayed her last week, and can only imagine how devastated she must be. Ivy says she was surprised, just like everyone else. It took her a long time to trust someone like she did Tatum. She let her guard down, and got burned. Tatum is a little “out there,” so the rest of Diamond Mine let her do her. But they thought she was part of the team. So for Tatum to say they weren’t a team, that hurts. But tonight isn’t about Tatum. Tonight, Ivy has an opportunity. If she beats Lyra, Ivy goes to Stand & Deliver and possibly becomes NEW NXT Women’s Champion. Not even Tatum can ruin that.
Hank Walker speaks.
“Everyone’s journey is unique, and mine’s been one hell of a ride.” Security guard turned superstar, but he’s been an athlete his whole life, and was even a three-year starting offensive lineman at North Carolina State. But no sport could’ve prepared him for the WWE. There have been ups and downs, he’s made friends, found a mentor in Drew Gulak only to be abandoned by Drew Gulak. Gulak and Charlie Dempsey don’t see it. They say Hank’s not cut out for this, but he’s gonna work his ass off to prove them wrong. All he needs is himself, and all he needs to do is keep evolving. That is what NXT is all about.
Drew Gulak & Charlie Dempsey are watching.
Gulak mockingly calls that promo “cute.” Dempsey says that’s one way of putting it. Walker still lacks the killer instinct. Exactly! A teacher can only the door, but it is up to the student to see it through. That’s why Hank will be nothing more than “another nice guy.” The technicians have a laugh, but will Hank prove them all wrong?
NXT Women’s Championship Qualifier: Lyra Valkyria VS Ivy Nile!
The Morrigan and the Diamond Pitbull are going to fight tooth and nail to take that fourth spot in the ladder match! Will Lyra fly higher than the mountains to get that golden ticket? Or will Ivy move mountains to go to Hollywood?
NXT returns and Lyra makes her entrance. The bell rings and the two circle. They feel things out, tie up, and Lyra wrangles Ivy down then Oklahoma Rolls and turns it into an O’Conner Roll! TWO, and Lyra hurries up to go after a leg. Ivy blocks, facelocks, rolls and steps over to flip Lyra over! Cover, ONE! Ivy keeps on the arm but Lyra rolls free. Ivy TACKLES Lyra, drags her back, but Lyra rolls to her feet. Lyra trips Ivy, has a toehold, but Ivy pries her down to an ARMBAR! Lyra clasps hands, Ivy stomps her! They get up, Lyra headbutts low! And KICKS! Ivy grits her teeth but Lyra tells her she’s not gonna stand in her way. Ivy just KICKS Lyra back!
Ivy eggs Lyra on, so Lyra KICKS! Ivy KICKS back, but Lyra scowls. DOUBLE ROUNDHOUSES bring both women down! Fans fire up and we see Tatum watching backstage. Ivy gets a leg, Lyra blocks to hook the arms but Ivy fights the backslide! Ivy spins around, gut wrenches Lyra to SLAM! Cover, TWO! Ivy keeps cool, and she kicks, but Lyra ducks to kip up and ENZIGURI! Fans fire up and Lyra roars! SOBAT! Front kick! HEADBUTT! BOOT! Lyra then reels Ivy in, but Ivy blocks the lift! Ivy facelocks, to snap suplex! Fans rally up, Ivy runs in to CALF KICK her to a corner! Then DIAMOND DRAGON!!
Lyra flails, climbs the corner and goes up and over! GERMAN SUPLEX! Fans rally up again, Lyra HEEL KICKS Ivy down! Cover, Lyra wins!!
Winner: Lyra Valkyria, by pinfall (advances to Stand & Deliver)
The Morrigan breaks through Diamond Mine’s female titan, and now she is going to Stand & Deliver! But will she reach the highest point in the NXT Women’s Division by becoming champion?
Fallon Henley looks for Jensen.
But as she looks, Isla Dawn’s laugh echoes through the hall, and there’s a flash of lightning and crack of thunder! And Alba Fyre CLOBBERS her! Fyre & Dawn mug Fallon and mockingly ask where her friend went. But Kiana runs in to fire off on them! The champs fight back against their challengers, refs rush in but Fallon sends Fyre into the wall! Isla talks trash on Kiana, she and Fyre slip away. Kiana and Fallon regroup, and Kiana says that she can’t tell Jensen. Kiana has to be the one. Fallon agrees to that. Will Kiana let Jensen down gently? Will the team be able to stick together against the Wicked Witches of NXT?
NXT Media catches Wes Lee on his way out.
They ask him who he thinks will win next week’s battle royal. Wes says he doesn’t think you can predict something like that. Just sit back, relax, and watch as it unfolds. Just like he plans on doing, and just like he knows all the fans will do. But then Jinder Mahal walks over to say he will see Wes at Stand & Deliver. And then Dijak walks over to say, “Don’t think I’ve forgotten about you.” And then Dabba-Kato walks up with a big smile. There is no one that will stop him in this battle royal. Wes can’t even. But three of the biggest and baddest are throwing their names into the hat, will any of those giants be the winner?
It’s the NXT Great Debate!
Blake Howard welcomes us as this debate’s mediator, as the crowd is clearly divided between Chase U students and Schism loyalists. These two groups argue they have the better teaching method here in NXT. First up, Rip Fowler and Duke Hudson. “How has your group approached the topic of inclusion?” The first turn goes to Rip. Rip says “Togetherness has always been the founding principle of The Schism. Whilst others hide behind their masks, we have removed ours and prospered together. Duke Hudson, Ava presented you with a gift. An opportunity to remove your mask of phony school spirit, and the Schism will welcome you with open arms.”
Duke’s rebuttal: “Um… Yeah. I mean, Ava did give me a mask. I dunno. Our university has passion. It gave me a sense of belonging, right? It’s nice to feel included in things, I guess. That’s what I think about inclusion.” Andre Chase facepalms at the lack of enthusiasm and commitment from Duke. WTF, man? Thea and Ava are next. “How does your group make you feel safe?” Ava says “The world is a harsh and uninviting place. But I rest comfortably in loving arms, knowing that there is safety under The Schism’s tree. Andre Chase University offers a false sense of security made up of cement walls.
“But The Schism raises invisible walls that block out the world’s negativity, and allows our minds and bodies to wander freely beyond.” Thea’s rebuttal: With a motormouth pace, she says “Webster’s Dictionary defines ‘safety’ as the condition of being safe from hurt, injury, or loss. Protection from hurt, injury and loss come from healing! And I’ve learned a lot of methods of healing through the connections I’ve made at Chase University. The Schism, while claiming safety, brainwash you into believing in safety, and that is hazardous to the mind, body and soul. Thank you, good night.” Chase high-fives Thea on the rebound. Where’d that come from? She doesn’t know, she blacked out.
And thirdly, Professor Andre and Joe Gacy. “How would you rate the preparedness of the other members of your group to leave the nest?” Andre is given the first turn, but Gacy interrupts! “Mr. Chase, your students already answered that for you. They are not prepared! A marble-mouthed doubter, and a reprogrammed wind-up toy? They don’t know which way is up! Moderator, tally the scores.” But then TYLER BATE appears! He apologizes for his tardiness, but he steps forward to say his part. Chase allows it, as does the moderator. That means Bate and Jagger Reed have a showdown!
“How would you sum up the experience of your group?” Jagger says, “It’s simple. Four roots. One tree.” The audience even gets involved on that one. Bate’s rebuttal: “I can objectively say that to excel in NXT, it takes more than just physical prowess inside the squared circle. It takes a big strong mind, open to new ideas. To collaborate and learn, with a willingness to listen to what others have to say, just as they would for you. Now, the Chase University experience is one of growth and constant evolution. It’s ignited a career in Thea Hail, rejuvenated Duke Hudson, and fortified Andre Chase himself!
“Now, the growth of Chase University IS the growth of NXT! And that’s something that The Schism has never and will never achieve!” Chase U’s student section cheers that! Chase thanks Bate for that. And now that they’ve beaten The Schism down philosophically, it is time they beat The Schism down physically! A match! The Schism VS Chase U & Bate in a Mixed 8 Tag at Stand & Deliver! And in Hollywood, they will give The Schism an Andre Chase University sized ass kicking!! Gacy says NO! The Dyad beat Chase U as a team, and Gacy beat Chase 1v1. The Schism is far superior physically and philosophically. There’s nothing left to gain here.
Duke says they’ll put up the school. What? Yeah, Duke, what? You heard him. Winner gets control of Chase University. Then they’re on. Chase is unsure, but this could be Duke’s high stakes gambling past coming back to haunt him. Will Chase U come out of Hollywood with nothing?
NXT checks back in with the bar.
Everything’s a bit hazy, but Gallus, the Creeds, The Don and Underboss have made it through the night. Look at the time! This has been great, but Tony & Stacks have a thing to take care of. Nice place they found here. Might need a broom, though. Julius says, “Don’t you guys know a cleaning service?” Tony snatches his hat off Julius’ head, and says yeah, they do. But not the kind you’re thinking of. Brutus says that was fun. Wolfgang slurs and stammers as he says, “Why’s it gotta stop?” Cuz the Creeds got what they came for, and then some. Then let’s bring the fun to Stand & Deliver. Triple Threat Tag! See you boys in LA.
Oh, and don’t forget to tip the bartender. Gallus is in the best shape out of these boys, but will they still be standing tall after Stand & Deliver?
BREAKING NEWS for next week!
There will be still one more spot in the NXT Women’s Championship Ladder match! And in a Last Chance Triple Threat, it will be Sol Ruca VS Ivy Nile VS Indi Hartwell! Who will redeem themselves on the Road to WrestleMania to still have their shot at the title?
Bron Breakker & Carmelo Hayes w/ Trick Williams VS Pretty Deadly!
The NXT Champion and his challenger may not like Trick’s idea of a team-up, but if it means shutting up Kit & Elton, they’ll do it. Will Bron & Melo body slam the hosts of Stand & Deliver once again? Or will this be about “Can the coexist?” in the end after all?
The teams sort out and Elton rushes in! Melo dodges, but then Kit CLOBBERS Melo! Kit covers, ONE!! Kit drops a knee, talks trash, then runs, but Melo drops, hurdles and ducks! DROPKICK! Then arm-drags! Melo has the armlock, fans rally but Kit arm-drags, only for Melo to arm-drag right back! But that just puts them closer to the Pretty Deadly corner! Elton tags in, Kit holds Melo in place, and Elton runs to UPPERCUT Melo! Elton then brings Melo out to UPPERCUT Melo down. Melo bails out, Elton kicks him from the apron, and Pretty Deadly go after Melo together. But Bron storms over to keep them from throwing Melo into steel steps.
Bron says Pretty Deadly isn’t going to ruin Stand & Deliver. Pretty Deadly lets off of Melo, but then Kit CLUBS Melo on the back. Kit puts Melo in the ring, covers, TWO! Kit drags Melo up, wrenches, but Melo wrenches back and snapmares to PENALTY KICK! Melo runs, but Kit FLAPJACKS! Tag to Elton, he sucker punches Bron, then Pretty Deadly coordinate. “Yes, boy~!” Pretty Deadly both run, but Bron gets in so that he and Melo can stare Pretty Deadly down. Pretty Deadly look to each other, then they throw hands! The brawl is on and both Bron and Melo get the edge. Then they decide to work together!
Bron helps Melo with the SPRINGBOARD LARIAT! Melo flies over Kit to CLOBBER Elton! Bron then RANAS Kit out of the ring! Fans fire up with the champion and his challenger, but they bump into each other. Bron offers handshake, Melo shows fist bump, so paper covers rock. No, man! Melo & Bron wait on Pretty Deadly and fans bark it up as NXT goes picture in picture.
Kit & Elton regroup on the other side of the ring, so Melo tags Bron. Bron waits on someone, but Kit distracts and Elton runs in to CLOBBER Bron! Elton CLUBS Bron, wrenches an arm, but Bron wrenches back. Tag to Melo, he goes up and drops AX HANDLES on the arm! Melo CHOPS Elton to a corner, wrenches and brings him back, tag to Bron. Bron goes up and he drops AX HANDLES! Bron wrenches Elton, but Elton throws body shots. Elton headlocks, Bron powers out, things speed up and Bron hurdles, to then catch Elton for a SPINEBUSTER! Bron rolls through to fireman’s carry!
Bron pops Elton up to a suplex! Bron walks around with Elton and even Melo is impressed. Bron then SLAMS Elton, and he dares Kit to do something. Kit talks trash, steps inside, and Bron DECKS him! But Elton CLOBBERS Bron again! Elton CLUBS Bron, whips him to ropes, but Bron ducks ‘n’ dodges, only to run into a FLAPJACK onto ropes! Elton tags Kit, then Elton anchors Bron so Kit can drop the ELBOW! Cover, TWO! Kit runs to KNEE Bron in the side! And then he runs to KNEE Bron again! Bron goes to the apron but Kit drags him back in. Kit wrenches the arm as NXT returns to single picture.
Fans rally as Bron endures, and Bron fights up. Kit CLUBS Bron down, grinds the arm again, then grabs the other arm for a motorcycle stretch. Bron endures, fights up, but Kit knees low. Kit facelocks, Elton goes up the corner, but Melo GAMANGIRIS Elton down! Bron blocks the buckle bump to elbow Kit! Kit tags Elton, Bron dodges Kit, tag to Melo! Melo hurdles Elton to DECK Kit! Melo dodges Elton to springboard LARIAT! Fans fire up, Melo BOOTS Elton! Kit grabs Melo but Melo wrenches an arm to drag Kit over, slingshot suplex onto Elton! Cover, TWO! Fans rally behind Melo as he stalks Elton.
Melo brings Elton up to ROCK him and whip, but Elton reverses. Elton hurdles, Kit reels Melo in for a DDT! Elton hurries to cover, TWO! Elton drags Melo up to UPPERCUT him back down! Elton stalks Melo to ropes, he UPPERCUTS Melo again, then puts him in the corner. Elton stomps away but lets off as the ref counts. Elton poses, storms back up, but Melo kicks low! And kicks again! Kit tags in, he and Elton stomp Melo. Fans rally as Pretty Deadly double whip, and double shoulder! “Yes, boy!” SPLASH LEG DROP COMBO! Cover, TWO! Kit drops a leg of his own, then drags Melo from Bron.
Kit talks trash, stands Melo up, and ROCKS him! Kit runs in to UPPERCUT Melo! And DECK him with a right! Kit YANKS Melo into a BOMB! Cover, TWO! Melo kicks back from below but Kit CLOBBERS him! Trick coaches Melo but Kit clamps on a chinlock. Melo endures, fans rally up, and Melo fights up. Melo throws body shots, but Kit CLOBBERS him! Tag to Elton, and he stomps away on Melo! Fans boo as Elton drops an AX HANDLE! Cover, TWO! Elton drags Melo away from Bron and stays between them. Elton drags Melo up but Melo ROCKS him! Elton shoves Melo but Melo sunset flips on the rebound! TWO, and Elton CLOBBERS Melo! Cover, TWO!!
Trick and Bron coach Melo up and fans rally. Elton drags Melo up, but Melo ROCKS Elton! Elton ROCKS Melo, Melo ROCKS Elton, and then Melo ROCKS Elton again! Elton keeps Melo from Bron, but Melo breaks free, only to miss his enziguri! But Melo BOOTS Elton away! Hot tags to Kit and Bron! Bron rallies on Pretty Deadly! BIG shoulder tackle for Kit! Haymaker for Elton! GERMAN SUPLEX for Kit! GERMAN SUPLEX for Elton! Kit fires hands with Bron, Kit whips, but Bron ducks ‘n’ dodges to CLOBBER Kit! Fans fire up and Bron grins. Bron drags Kit up in a waistlock, to GERMAN SUPLEX!!
The straps come down, fans fire up with Bron, but Bron climbs up the corner. Fans bark it up, and Bron FLYING BULLDOGS! Cover, Elton breaks it! Melo hurries in to ROCK Elton and BOOT him! Elton flops into the ropes, Kit stands, and Bron runs in! Kit sends Bron at Melo!! Melo goes up the corner and Bron pulls up, avoiding the collision! But Elton struggling in the ropes distracts the ref, Melo hits a CODE BREAKER on Kit! Bron SPEARS Kit down!! Fans fire up as Bron tags Melo to give him the last shot. Melo with NOTHING BUT NET!! Cover, Melo & Bron win!
Winners: Bron Breakker & Carmelo Hayes, by pinfall
Melo don’t miss, and Trick finishes taking notes on Bron. Melo fetches the belt, but hands it over to Bron. Will the game plan be ready so that Melo becomes him? Or will nothing break the Big Booty Nephew?
A really good NXT here, and a lot of quick developments for Stand & Deliver. I do appreciate the consistency of tag teams challenging Gallus for the tag titles through bar games. Tony D & Stacks made their intentions known last week, so them confronting Gallus was expected, but The Creeds getting in on this was a surprise. The tag titles becoming a Triple Threat match is cool, but all three teams are essentially Faces. I’m sensing some kind of shenanigans brings one team around to be Heels, and it won’t be the Creeds. I would personally love it if was Gallus with Joe Coffey returning to help win. Gallus can’t truly be on top if they’re down a man.
Good stuff out of the NXT Women’s Championship story. Good match out of Tiffany VS Indi, and I figured Tiffany would win that. Gigi had a good promo to both address Jacy Jayne and the growing field, but also good promo from Tiffany to keep her character at that just insufferable level. Good promo from Ivy, decent one from Lyra, and good match, but not that strong of a match. I’m a bit torn, as this was a great opportunity for Ivy to even have this qualifier match, but honestly, it should’ve been Stevie Turner. Stevie was the one with that “randomizer” that chose to highlight Lyra, why not give us a match of those two? It’s not like Stevie’s actually busy streaming.
Good stuff out of the women’s tag title story, too. Kiana and Fallon were both great in talking about this Sebastian, and then I like the creativity of the ambush. Instead of lights out and teleporting in, or even just running in, Isla & Alba use fake lightning and thunder to disorient Fallon before the attack. Fighting Alba & Isla off was a decent way to bring Kiana and Fallon back onto the same page, and we’re going to get quite the moment next week in the go-home. And good promo from Hank Walker but also good promo from Gulak & Dempsey. Their story will have to wait until after Stand & Deliver, and could be something big for Spring Breakin’ 2023.
Javier swerving us was very clever, I did not think Javi would get in on this story. Good response from Gargano, and going right for Unsanctioned is nuts! No Disqualification, sure. No Holds Barred, sure. Last Man Standing even! But I guess this is all to represent how long Gargano’s stewed on his grudge for Waller, and how this escalated after Waller found the Gargano house. And given how Waller wants Gargano completely banned from the building next week, it’s so obvious Waller is going to threaten Vic physically, maybe even get physical with Vic, and Gargano can’t do anything about it, thereby adding more fuel to the fire.
Great stuff out of the North American Championship story, with a great promo from Wes and from Dragon Lee, and a good promo from JD ahead of his match with Dragunov. That match was awesome, as all the Dragunov VS JD matches have been, but I should’ve seen it coming that they’d end up colliding with Dragon Lee to bring this around into the North American title match. Wes VS Dragon VS JD VS Dragunov is awesome all on its own, but great move to have a battle royal to decide the fifth person in that match. Axiom has a good promo to let us know he’s gonna be in that match, but I also like that Jinder, Dijak and Dabba-Kato each had a couple lines to let Wes know they’re coming. Dijak’s had his shots, he surely won’t win. But Dabba is definitely a possibility.
Really good segment out of The Great Debate, and nice heroic appearance by Tyler Bate to help Chase U pull out the win. And just as I was hoping, we’re getting a Mixed 8 Tag, and this is going to be great stuff. Putting up the school, aka the faction in itself, is big stuff for Chase U, but I feel like the match could still go either way. And good stuff out of Pretty Deadly, Trick Melo Gang and Bron. The promo stuff was good for Pretty Deadly and Trick Melo Gang, and we got a really good match in the main event. But naturally Bron & Melo win because neither of them was going to suffer lost momentum this close to Stand & Deliver. I’m still voting for Melo winning the title and Bron being called up. After all, there’s a WWE Snickers commercial with Bron Breakker and AJ Styles, that feels like a sign.
My Score: 8.8/10
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Mitchell’s WWE NXT Results & Report! (3/14/23)
Who answers the Open Challenge?
Even more titles are on the line after Roadblock!
Wes Lee loved the chaos of his previous NXT North American Championship Open Challenge so much, he’s doing it again! Who answers the call this time? Plus, Gallus defends the NXT Tag Team titles against Pretty Deadly!
- NXT Tag Team Championships: Gallus VS Pretty Deadly; Gallus wins and retains the titles.
- NXT Women’s Championship Qualifier: Zoey Stark VS Sol Ruca; wins and advances to the title match at Stand & Deliver.
- NXT Women’s Tag Team Championships #1 Contenders Match: Alba Fyre & Isla Dawn VS Kayden Carter & Katana Chance VS Ivy Nile & Tatum Paxley; Fyre & Dawn win and will challenge for the titles at Stand & Deliver.
- NXT North American Championship Open Challenge: Wes Lee VS ???; No Contest.
- Apollo Crews VS Dabba-Kato; Kato wins.
- NXT Women’s Championship Qualifier: Kiana James VS Gigi Dolin; Gigi wins and advances to the title match at Stand & Deliver.
PLAY BY PLAY
Johnny Gargano is here!
The fans fire up for Johnny Wrestling as he makes his way to the ring, ready to stand and deliver. Fans chant “Johnny Wrestling!” as Gargano gets the mic. Gargano says, “Let’s see. Where did we leave off?” Fans chant, “Welcome Home!” Gargano smiles, and asks them a favor. Last time he was in this ring, Waller jumped him from behind with a chair. Watch his back for him, yeah? Gargano says last time he was in NXT, he said he’d teach his son how to be the best man he can be. And to be the best man you can be, you finish what you start. It’s WrestleMania Season! And there’s a lot of talk about finishing the story. Well, Gargano is back in NXT to finish his story!
“15 months ago, my story ended on a cliffhanger. And when I came back to Monday Night Raw in August, it felt like a little piece of me was missing. Because the last time you guys saw me, I was lying face down on that announce table, with Grayson Waller standing above me. Grayson Waller didn’t just take my last moment from me, he took closure from me. He took out the Heart & Soul of NXT in my last night in the company. And y’know what? I hate to say this… But I kinda respect it. I kinda do. That’s why I gave you a gift, Grayson. I waited. I wanted to see what you’d do with that moment. Because the last guy who took me out, his name was Tommaso Ciampa.”
Gargano says Ciampa became one of the greatest NXT Champions of all time. So Gargano sat back and watched. What’d Grayson do? Fans chant, “NOTHING!” Waller had two chances, and he FAILED. Then what? Waller whined, cried, complained and blamed everyone but himself! Waller started disrespecting the fans, the locker room, and most importantly, he started disrespecting NXT! “A lot has changed in 15 months, but one thing that will never change, no matter what brand I’m on, NXT is my home! And Grayson, you do not screw with a man’s home!” Fans like the sound of that!
Gargano says that for seven years, blood, sweat and tears, in front of all these people- Wait! Vic Joseph is getting Gargano’s attention. Waller is AT Gargano’s house!! Waller is watching Gargano on NXT right now! Gargano hurries out of the ring, will he make it home in time?!
NXT shares footage of when Wes Lee arrived.
And Axiom finds him. Axiom says he’s gonna follow Wes everywhere today. No one is taking the title opportunity from Axiom. Wait, the match is eight HOURS from now. What’s he gonna do until then? Whatever Wes wants to do. Alright… Is he hungry? Yeah, Axiom could eat. If Axiom is going to shadow Wes Lee until the title match, does that mean he’s hanging out with the Cardiac Kid even now?
NXT returns as Gargano is on the phone.
Gargano tells Candice not to open any doors, he’s on his way. McKenzie Mitchell hurries after to ask Gargano how he’s feeling. Gargano just has to get home. Gargano gets in his car and drives out of the parking lot. Will Johnny Wrestling get home to stop Waller from violating any more of the Gargano family’s privacy?
NXT Tag Team Championships: Gallus VS Pretty Deadly!
Speaking of titles, this all seems rather familiar. Mark Coffey & Wolfgang have made NXT their kingdom, but Elton Prince & Kit Wilson want those belts back! Will history repeat itself from NXT UK? Or will Gallus Boys stay on top?
The introductions are made, the belts are raised, and we see who gets to #SidePlateCheck!
The teams sort out, Mark starts against Elton and they tie up. They go around, Mark puts Elton on the ropes, but lets off as the ref counts. Elton SLAPS Mark! Then mocks him! Mark ROCKS Elton but Elton throws hands. Mark headlocks, and holds on as Elton tries to power out. Elton throws body shots, fans duel, and Elton powers out, only to get run over! Mark arm-drags Elton, has the armlock, and he brings Elton back up. Elton throws hands, knees, and whips Mark to a corner. Mark reverses, Elton reverses back but Elton runs into an elbow! Elton bails out but Wolfgang is there! Elton runs away to his corner.
Elton and Kit talk, then sneak a tag! Elton anchors Mark’s foot, Kit sunset flips! TWO, but Kit cradles, TWO! Kit taunts that it was that close, but Mark says he still has the belt. Kit rushes in, but into an arm-drag! Tag to Wolfgang, he takes the handoff on the arm, and he STRAIGHT ARM SUPLEXES! Kit goes to a corner, Wolfgang SPLASHES! Wolfgang TOSSES Kit across the way! Wolfgang runs in, Elton gets Kit out of the way, and Kit fires off on Wolfgang! Fans boo but Wolfgang shoves Kit back. Kit runs in, Wolfgang puts him on the apron, but Kit shoulders in. Kit slingshots, but into Wolfgang’s arms!
Wolfgang TOSSES Kit, tags Mark, and Gallus drags Kit up. They whip Kit to a corner hard and Kit falls! Then Gallus DOUBLE MONKEY FLIP Kit back the other way! Elton runs in, but Wolfgang trips him! CATAPULT BACK DROP! Kit gets up, Mark DECKS him! Wolfgang clotheslines Elton out of the ring! Fans fire up and NXT goes picture in picture.
Pretty Deadly regroups on the outside while Mark has Wolfgang cool off. Wolfgang returns to the corner and Mark waits on Kit. Pretty Deadly Kit try to fake Mark out but Mark sees Kit coming! Mark ROCKS Kit, UPPERCUTS him, then UPPERCUTS again! Tag to Wolfgang, Gallus mugs Kit, then Wolfgang UPPERCUTS! And UPPERCUTS !Kit yoyos, but into a clinch! Kit powers Wolfgang back, tags in Elton and they mug Wolfgang in the corner. Wolfgang hits back with big elbows! Elton CHOPS, but Wolfgang ROCKS Elton back. Elton CHOPS, Wolfgang ROCKS! Wolfgang stalks Elton but walks into a knee!
Elton headlocks, Wolfgang pulls hair and powers out, but Elton pulls hair to reel Wolfgang into another knee! Tag to Kit, but Wolfgang wrangles Kit to a hammerlock takedown! Wolfgang grinds Kit into the mat with a chinbar added on. Kit endures, fights up, but Wolfgang wrangles him back down! Wolfgang grinds on the hammerlock, chinbars again, and he drags Kit from the ropes. Kit fights up but Wolfgang has a cobra clutch! Kit throws hands but Mark tags in. Wolfgang RAMS kit, then feeds him to Mark’s FLYING SHOULDER! Cover, TWO! Mark now has Kit in a cobra clutch! Kit still endures as fans rally up.
Kit fights up, throws hands, but Mark ripcords. Kit still ROCKS Mark with another forearm! And another! Kit swings, but into a waistlock! Kit fights, gets a facelock, and now Mark endures the hold! Kit CLUBS Mark, facelocks again, but Mark pries free to put the cobra clutch back on! NXT returns to single picture as fans rally and duel. Mark ripcords, Kit gets around, Mark switches, O’CONNER! TWO, and Elton UPPERCUTS! Kit hits a BIG back suplex! Tag to Elton and he stomps away on Mark! Elton rains down fists then huffs and puffs. Elton drops a leg, covers, TWO! Fans rally up but Elton KNEES Mark in the back!
Elton tags Kit, Pretty Deadly double whip Mark to double elbow him down! Kit covers, TWO! Kit pie faces Mark, KNEES him in the side, then KNEES him again! Fans rally, Kit RAMS Mark into the corner, and Elton tags in. Elton taunts Wolfgang then runs to UPPERCUT Mark! Cover, TWO! Wolfgang coaches Mark, but Elton CLUBS Mark down. Elton stomps Mark in the corner, clotheslines, then stomps again! Elton repeats the process, pushes Mark down to cover, TWO! Mark hangs tough and fans rally up but Elton clamps on a chinlock. Mark endures as Elton grinds, and fans rally up more.
Mark fights up, but Elton wrangles him down! Cover, TWO! Elton tags Kit, Pretty Deadly mugs Mark. Kit soaks up the cheers and jeers, then waits on Mark. Mark rises, Kit BOOTS him down! Kit sits Mark up to BOOT him again! Kit clamps onto Mark with a neck wrench but Mark endures. Fans rally up again, Mark fights up but Kit knees low. Mark throws body shots, Kit knees low again. Tag to Elton, but Mark back drops Elton away! Then arm-drags Kit! Mark dodges Elton, hot tag to Wolfie! Wolfgang rallies on Pretty Deadly, fires off hands on Elton, then whips Elton for a CALF KICK! Then a SPLASH in the corner!
Kit rushes in but Wolfgang BOOTS him from the apron! Wolfgang goes up for an AX HANDLE! Wolfgang scoops to SLAM Elton, then he runs, for the BASEMENT SENTON! Cover, TWO! Elton is still in this but Wolfgang tags Mark. Gallus drags Elton up, hoist him up, DOUBLE URENAGE! Cover, but Kit dropkicks it apart! Wolfgang runs in but Kit fires off on him! Elton helps out, Pretty Deadly mugs then double clohtslines Wolfgang out! But Wolfgang drags them both out! Pretty Deadly mug Wolfgang again, then TOSS him over the announce desk! Fans go nuts over that one! Pretty Deadly then get up to their old tricks and grab the title belts!
Elton distracts the ref with his, but Kit CLOBBERS Mark with the other!! Cover, TWO!?!? Mark survives and shocks everyone! Tag to Kit, Pretty Deadly hurry to finish this! But Wolfgang dumps Elton out! Kit sees what happened, but turns around into an UPPERCUT! Mark tags Wolfgang and Wolfgang scoops Kit! Mark runs, KNEE-K-O!! Cover, Gallus wins!!
Winners: Gallus, by pinfall (still NXT Tag Team Champions)
A fast and furious finish fitting of Hollywood action movies! With this victory, will Mark & Wolfgang look to stand and deliver?
Fallon Henley & Josh Briggs sneak into Kiana James’ office.
What’s he wearing? She told him, “Covert ops!” Yeah, and? And, they can only see his face. That outfit is only good in the woods, not in an office building! Well, they’re here anyways. Fallon takes out a hairpin to pick the lock. But Briggs checks the knob. It’s unlocked! How’d Briggs know it’d be unlocked? Uh, the cleaning ladies let them in, so maybe she could try door handles first. Whatever, just look around for clues. Wait, Kiana has a Stand & Deliver guarantee? Fallon wants Briggs to read this, but he says it’s a paper in an office, big whoop. A noise makes Briggs hide behind Kiana’s plant.
Fallon says chill, this is a title match contract. Wait, really? Fallon reads it. “Kiana James agrees to be present and in condition for her NXT Women’s Championship Qualifying Match on Tuesday, March 14th.” That’s tonight! So much for being a team. But hey, why stop at one title, one guy, one relationship? That again? Just keep looking! There has to be proof! Briggs sees the photo of Kiana and Jensen at the diner. Briggs sure hopes for Jensen’s sake that they’re wrong. Did he get a good look at the card that came with the flowers? Nope, Kiana snatched it away and put it in a planner. Oh, like this one? BINGO! Bust it open, girl!
They flip through the pages, and Kiana even has something called “Operation: Boyfriend,” and it’s marked, “Ongoing.” What? Get Fallon team with her? Wasn’t that Fallon’s idea? She thought it was… Okay, the call home to mom and Zack, that checks out. Oh, the truth about ONE thing. Drinks with Sebastian? Dinner with Sebastian? THAT BITCH! Briggs tries to calm Fallon down, suggesting that Sebastian could just be a work colleague. Oh, c’mon. He’s really trying. OH! The card! From Sebastian!! “Thanks for the date. It was a truly unforgettable night. And morning?!” Poor Brooks…
Fallon can’t believe it! But now they have a name! Fallon, shh! They gotta leave quietly, too! Fallon snaps a pic of the card and puts the planner back. But who is this Sebastian?
Shawn Michael speaks.
Just as he tweeted out, HBK says, “As of Friday morning, Roxanne Perez was discharged from the hospital. However, after numerous tests, Roxanne’s health is still in question. With Stand & Deliver in less than three weeks, I have the obligation to announce we possibly have to crown a NEW NXT Women’s Champion. Starting tonight, there will be a series of qualifying matches with the winners advancing to Stand & Deliver to compete to become the NXT Women’s Champion in a Ladder match.” Will the Prodigy’s prize be literally up in the air in Hollywood?
NXT hears from the doctors.
Dr. Warren Becker says he and his team of sports medicine physicians have been running a series of tests on Roxanne Perez, checking three main areas: heard, heart and vessels in the body. Roxie’s bloodwork came back reassuring. She wasn’t dehydrated, her CT scans showed no abnormalities, and most importantly of all, her EKG came back showing no heart arrhythmia. But while all that is encouraging, it does present us the difficulty of knowing why Roxie collapsed. It is the doctor’s recommendation to continue testing, and maybe even bring in a clinical psychologist. They also do not have an estimated return date for Roxie.
NXT Women’s Championship Qualifier: Zoey Stark VS Sol Ruca!
The Hunter and the Surfer have collided before, and it was Stark’s win back then. But Sol prides herself on how hard she works on herself. Will Sol prove she’s leveled up past Stark? Or will Stark not be denied her golden opportunity in Hollywood?
NXT returns and Stark makes her entrance. The bell rings and the two tie right up. Stark puts Sol on the ropes but lets off with a shove. Sol shoves back! And again! And again! Stark knees low, whips but solo handsprings up and over! Sol kicks low, whips, and back drops! Stark lands hard, bails out, and fans taunt her, “OH~ Zoey is Angry~!” Stark gets in the ring in a huff, and she knees Sol low. Solo blocks buckle bump to buckle bump back! Sol bumps Stark more, whips her corner to corner, and runs in, but is put on the apron. Sol slingshots to CODE BREAKER! Stark flounders, fans fire up, and Sol stands Stark up.
Stark swings on Sol but Sol goes Matrix! Sol kips up to LARIAT! Cover, ONE! Stark bails out again but Sol pursues, into a SUPERKICK! Stark puts Sol back in the ring, covers, TWO! Sol rolls to ropes but Stark stomps her down. The ref counts, Stark lets off, and she CLUBS Sol. Stark whips, Sol reverses but Stark SMASHES her with a knee! Then SLIDING LARIATS! Cover, TWO! Stark cravats and cranks the neck but Sol endures. Fans rally up but Stark keeps Sol down. Sol moves around, keeps her shoulders up, then fights to her feet. But Stark SLAMS her right back down! Stark pushes Sol to a cover, TWO! Stark clamps right back on with the chinlock!
Stark CLUBS away on Sol, clamps on a chinlock tighter, but Sol still fights up. Stark CLUBS Sol, then has the cravat back. Stark thrashes Sol around but Sol still endures. Stark KNEES Sol in the head, but Sol spins to snapmare free! Sol blocks a kick to ROCK Stark! Stark ROCKS Sol back, the forearms fly! Sol dodges to FLYING SHOULDER! And another! Sol mule kicks, CLUBS and ENZIGURIS! Stark flounders to a corner, Sol runs and handsprings to SPLASH! Sol then scoops Stark for a POWERSLAM! Cover, TWO! Fans rally for Sol and she runs in to clothesline Stark up and out! Stark is dazed as she stands up but Sol is up top! ARIHARA MOONSAULT!
Fans fire up with Sol as she even sticks the landing! Booker T says that’s a ten! Sol puts Stark in, aims and springboards, but into a clinch! Z 360!! Cover, Stark wins!!
Winner: Zoey Stark, by pinfall (advances to Stand & Deliver)
Stark snatches victory away from Sol and is now heading to Hollywood! But just how many of these qualifiers does HBK have planned?
“They say give a man a mask, and he will show you his true face. From my corner of darkness, my eyes scan across NXT to see metaphorical, physical and emotional masks, cloaking the ideals, faces and true feelings of many. But my gaze… is drown to one man. Sincerely, Scrypts.” Is the wicked writer looking to erase a certain someone?
NXT Women’s Tag Team Championships #1 Contenders Match: Alba Fyre & Isla Dawn VS Kayden Carter & Katana Chance VS Ivy Nile & Tatum Paxley!
On a night where the Women’s Division is fighting for gold, three teams fight to be the ones going after Fallon & Kiana! Will the Fire Keeper and the Wicked Witch cast a spell to eliminate all that stand in their way? Or will another team move up to go for gold?
NXT returns as the former champions, Kayden & Katana, make their entrance. Lastly, the Diamond Mine’s duo make their entrance. In this kind of Triple Threat, one member from each team is legal, so Tatum steps up with Katana and Isla. Isla kicks, Tatum blocks it, and she spins Isla so Katana can ROCK Isla! Tatum ROCKS Isla, Fyre protests, but then Katana headlocks Tatum. Tatum picks her up but Katana also headscissors Isla to THROW them both! Fans fire up and Katana dodges Ila to sunset flip! Tatum drags Katana off to suplex, but Katana cradles! Isla pushes it over and then throws Katana out.
Katana is on the apron, she knees into Isla then body scissors to throw her out! Tatum runs in but into a shoulder! Slingshot sunset flip, TWO! Katana DROPKICKS Tatum, tags Kayden, and Kayden trips Tatum. Katana cartwheel KNEE DROPS! Kayden hurries in to waistlock but Tatum switches. O’Conner Roll, TWO, and Kayden holds onto Tatum. Isla runs in but both Tatum and Kayden duck the Penalty Kick! Kayden rolls Isla while holding Tatum with body scissors! DOUBLE COVER, TWO! Tatum runs in but Kayden ROCKS her! Isla whips Kayden into Tatum then BOOTS Tatum! Roll up on Kayden, TWO!
Isla drags Kayden over, tags in Fyre and Isla stomps Kayden while Fyre fires off on Tatum. They coordinate, Fyre traps Tatum while Isla whips Kayden corner to corner. Kayden gets sent into Tatum! Fyre then ROCKS Tatum! Kaydne ROCKS Fyre! Tag to Katana, Kayden DROP SPLASHES Tatum and Fyre! Then she gives Katana the wheelbarrow back suplex SPLASH! Cover, Tatum breaks it! Tatum and Katan fire off, but Tatum scoops Katana to SLAM her on Fyre! Cover on Fyre, TWO! Tatum drags Fyre over, tag to Ivy, and the Diamond Mine girls double suplex! Cover, Katana breaks it!
Katana facleocks but Ivy TOSSES her! Ivy dodges Fyre, then KICK PUNCH COMBOS them both! Ivy TOSSES Fyre to a corner, DECKS her, then TOSSES Katana to a corner! Katana BOOTS back, goes up, CROSSBODIES, but Ivy rolls through! Ivy lifts Katana to fireman’s carry, but Fyre SUPERKICKS her down! Katana also goes tumbling away, Fyre tags Isla. Isla hits a METEORA! Cover, TWO! Kayden calls to Katana but has to avoid Fyre’s sweep! Kayden then SUPERKICKS Fyre away! Isla swings but misses, and then turns around into a ROUNDHOUSE from Ivy! Ivy crawls over to Tatu, but Tatum LEAVES HER HANGING!?
Ivy doesn’t understand, but Tatum says, “We were NEVER a team!” Fans boo but Isla DROPKICKS Ivy out of the ring! Katana runs in, dodges Isla and hits a CODE BREAKER! Hot tag to Kayden and Katana goes up, only for Fyre to shove her down! Kayden DECKS Fyre but Isla ROUNDHOUSES Kayden! Tatum adds on to Ivy with a KICK to the side! Fans boo but Isla loves seeing this! Tatum feeds Ivy to the BACK STABBER SWANTON COMBO!! Cover, Isla 7 Fyre win!
Winners: Alba Fyre & Isla Dawn, by pinfall (NEW #1 Contenders to the NXT Women’s Tag Team Championships)
The Diamond Mine is falling apart and the party is over, because something wicked is coming to Hollywood! Will Fyre & Dawn soon break brittle bond between Fallon and Kiana?
Tony D’Angelo and Channing Lorenzo find Bron Breakker backstage.
The Don and Stacks say hey to the NXT Champion, and he asks what’s up. Bron says that Jailhouse Street Fight was a war, and Stacks says, “Yeah, you’re telling me.” Tony says it was, but that’s not why they’re here. Tell him, Underboss. Well, Bron has a big contract signing with Carmelo Hayes tonight, so they were just thinking, maybe they could “take him out” for Bron? That’s not what Bron had in mind. What’re they thinking? Oh, like the Sopranos or Godfather, right? Concrete shoes! Hit him with the Jim Brown! Ella Fitzgerald! Whoa, hold on, Bron, you’ve been watching too many movies.
Bron asks what they wanna do then. Take him to the park, pipe to the knee, crowbar to the biceps. Oh, bada bing bada boom boom bing bing! What? No. Bron says in all seriousness, he appreciates the offer, but he’s got this. Tony tells Stacks that it’s time they add gold to the family. So what? Tony VS the winner of Bron and Melo? Nah. Wes Lee Open Challenge? No. Tony said they add gold. Tag team titles! Stacks has been sticking his neck out for Tony for months, and almost lost his arm in that Jailhouse Street Fight! That doesn’t go unrewarded. So what does Stacks thing? The family as tag champs? He’s ready!
Ilja Dragunov is here!
Fans fire up as The Czar heads to the ring, and he gets the mic to say, “My career in WWE has been life changing. For me, for my son, for my wife, we have had opportunities that we never felt happening. But with every success, there was a blemish. Because with every step I take, there has been JD McDonagh cutting my legs out from under me. This could’ve been avoidable. But now, I have no choice. To keep my autonomy and to continue my ascension in NXT, I need to rid myself of JD McDonagh once and for all!” Fans love that, but speak of the devil, here comes JD!
The Irish Ace also has a mic and he says, “Ilja, please, do not come out here and pretend this was ever gonna be avoidable, because it never has been.” The two of them are two sides of the same coin. Whether Dragunov can see it or not, they are more alike than they are different. No, JD is wrong. And JD’s obsession will ultimately lead to his devastation! JD says, “My obsession with you!?” Dragunov is the one who drove him out of the UK, but then followed him to the States, and then put him in JD’s way of the title! And because of that, they both fell! Every time Dragunov draws them together, they both suffer!
JD says Dragunov needs to look in the mirror! “You can’t quit me!” Dragunov says this “friendship of suffering” is something JD talks about, but this is something Draguonv possesses. “Pain makes me feel alive. Pain makes the difference in my life. And I choose that life.” Funny he says that. Dragunov thinks he chooses pain and that puts him in control. Dragunov could not be more wrong, and that is not how things work around here. Dragunov’s greatest strength is what he’s willing to put his body through. But it is also the reason he’s in the ring with no title over his shoulder.
“We’ve been doing this, you and I, for years now.” Dragunov chases JD down because Dragunov wants to suffer. As for JD, he will never, ever getting tired of making up new ways to make Dragunov suffer. They are destined to do this for a long time together. Dragunov says no. This will end next week! There will be no more JD McDonagh. When Dragunov is through with him, there will be NOTHING left but a random pile of body parts, and the smell of fluids that spell out, “Here lies the Irish Ace!”
JD steps into the ring with Dragunov now, and tells him, “I look forward to our symphony of sadism more than you could ever imagine, Ilja. I’m going to commit it to memory. Because like a scalpel in my eye, it will be hard to watch. You and me, next week.” JD goes to headbutt but Dragunov dodges! The hands fire off, Dragunov gets the edge, but JD shoves him away. But then Dragunov clotheslines JD and himself out of the ring! But JD HEADBUTTS back! The brawl continues, fans fire up, and this goes to the back! Dragunov CLUBS JD down, stomps him, but JD gets up to ROCK Dragunov in return!
JD RAMS Dragunov into a door and they’re int he parking lot! Things are getting dangerous, what will it take for this to end?
Backstage interview with Pretty Deadly.
McKenzie says that was a tough loss to Gallus. At this point, they’re not going to Stand & Deliver. That’s harsh, McKenzie! Is she trying to rub salt in the wound? Have some class. But they can’t believe they lost to Gallus. Wait, wait. They are universally adored, are they not? They are. And then they don’t need Stand & Deliver. Stand & Deliver needs them! Of course, the fans can’t be deprived of seeing them! What match could contain them? NO match! It’s Hollywood! Why be on the show when you can BE the show? Yes! They should HOST Stand & Deliver! #YESBOY! Stand & Deliver? More like Snacks & Delicious! Now excuse them as they go pay a certain someone a visit.
Wes Lee heads for gorilla.
He fires himself up, but then he has to watch out as Dragunov and JD brawl right on through! Refs and security try to stop this, but that’s easier said than done. Wes tells JD to watch out or Dragunov’s gonna mess him up. JD pie faces Wes for that! Wes ROCKS JD, and now the brawl is 2v1! The refs stop Wes, he has to go to his Open Challenge! And Axiom is watching all of this from the shadows. Will The Undeniable Truth not be denied his shot at the champ?
Tyler Bate helps Thea Hail again.
He has her work on balance, but she has a hard time to stay on just one foot. She swears she’ll get it, but Andre Chase asks for a minute with Duke Hudson. Thea and Tyler leave and Chase asks Duke, “Well?” Well what? Duke’s clearly not happy with the Chase U win-loss record. Winning is everything, and people will judge them by their record. Chase agrees there. No matter what sport, anyone who is worth a damn believes that. “But then Chase U was born. And for the first time ever, it became about so much more than what the record books say. Chase U is more than buildings and books and desks. Chase U is a feeling.
“It’s where students can come to learn and grow and prepare for their future. Chase U is where I found my purpose in life, a place that I belong. And the same goes for you, too, Duke.” Duke doesn’t know about that, but Chase says to think about it. Before, Duke was happy just to skate by. But now, he is living and dying with every single win and loss. And why is that? Because for the first time ever, Duke actually cares. But wait, someone from The Schism sneaks up to listen to this. Chase says Duke was happy just to deal cards at the table and get his head shaved.
Duke may think Chase U has done nothing for him, but maybe, just maybe, Chase U’s done more for him than anything else in his entire life. Chase leaves, but then Duke notices the Schism person. It’s Ava Raine! And she leaves her mask with Duke. Which side will the former card shark choose to bet on?
Grayson Waller posts a video on Twitter.
Captioned, “Neighborhood Watch,” Waller cruises around Gargano’s home! “Wow, so this is what main roster money gets you, huh, Johnny? This place is like a palace! That must be at least six bedrooms in there. That’s so much room for action figures! You are living the high-life, Johnny!” But he knows Gargano isn’t home. This is a dangerous neighborhood! What if he left the door unlocked? Waller’s gonna go check, as as favor. The 21st Century Success Story continues to cross the line, will Gargano get home in time before he crosses another?
The brawl backstage is on!
Everyone, from Odyssey Jones, Damon Kemp and Quincy Elliot to Oro Mensah, Malik Blade and Edris Enofe are fighting it out to get at Wes Lee! Dante Chen slips through while Xyon Quinn fights off Von Wagner! Who will make it to the ring first?
NXT North American Championship Open Challenge: Wes Lee VS ???
Wes makes his entrance, but the chaos is already overflowing! Axiom doesn’t realize it, and he’s the first to get CLOCKED by Dante! Wes is amused and asks, “Who’s it gonna be?” Axiom just focuses on getting away, and he gets in the ring! But then SCRYPTS flies in!! Scrypts CLOBBERS Axiom and sends him back out! Wes is confused, he was more than willing to let Axiom get it on that. But then JD gets in the ring from behind and CLOBBERS Wes for earlier! Dragunov CLOBBERS JD! The brawling just gets wilder but Wes is pissed! Wes builds speed and he FLIES out onto everyone!! He bowls over the locker room!
Fans are losing their minds and loving it as this just keeps on going! Is the chaos too much? Is this Open Challenge canceled for the night?
Backstage interview with Dragon Lee.
McKenzie is with NXT’s newest signee, and welcomes him. He is thankful, and says that though he has been around the world, the fact he is finally here to start the biggest journey in his career is truly exciting. What can NXT expect to see from him? So much. He came to NXT to be a prime example of lucha libre and to show the world that Dragon Lee is Especial. And after seeing that Open Challenge, believe him, he’s gonna love it here. When and where will we see Dragon Lee hit the ring?
Backstage interview with Jacy Jayne.
McKenzie is with the Toxic Traitor, her arm in a sling, and notes that last week, she lost to Gigi Dolin, her long time friend turned bitter enemy. Jacy says she won’t even wait for a question, “Gigi Dolin did absolutely nothing last week. Even on her best day, she’s not even 1/10th as good as I am.” But she won… Oh, she won~! McKenzie, why don’t you report real news and real facts instead of pitiful gossip? One minute into the match, Gigi separated Jacy’s shoulder because she couldn’t handle her at 100%. Gigi had to take a shortcut, because that’s who Gigi is! Jacy could barely even lift her arm in that match!
“So Gigi wants to consider that a victory? Hah! she’s even more pathetic than I thought she was. Gigi, every day, every hour, every minute, every second that I’m away from this place, I’m gonna be thinking of you, and what you did to me. And when I return, I promise I’m gonna break your heart and your face, again!” Jacy leaves, but where and when will she return?
Apollo Crews VS Dabba-Kato!
Former friends have become bitter enemies, a story as old as time in pro-wrestling. Both men vow to make the other pay for their betrayal, but who is truly in the right?
Apollo doesn’t even wait for Dabba to get int he ring! He goes up top to CROSSBODY! Apollo SMACKS Kato off barriers, throws hands, but Kato hits back. Apollo RAMS Kato into barriers! Apollo fires hands, but Kato shoves him away. Apollo kicks low, CLUBS Kato again, and he eggs Kato on. Kato throws hands, CLUBS Apollo, but Apollo hits back. Kato clinches, but Apollo POSTS him! Kato CLUBS Apollo, puts him up top and he CHOPS! Apollo flops into the ring, Kato storms up, and now the bell rings! Apollo RAMS into Kato and they fall back out of the ring!! Fans fire up as Apollo HAMMERS away on Kato!
Apollo rains down fists but Kato shoves him away. Kato gets up but Apollo RAMS him into barriers! Kato CLUBS Apollo more, knees him low, then whips him into the barriers! Apollo just stands back up to ROCK Kato! And again! Kato RAMS Apollo into steel steps, but then Apollo dodges as Kato runs in! Kato hits the steps, and Apollo puts him in the ring. Apollo stomps Kato, digs his boot in, then lets off as the ref reprimands. Apollo stalks Kato but Kato ROCKS Apollo in return! And then he STOMPS Apollo down while standing!! Fans boo but Kato looms over Apollo as NXT goes picture in picture.
Kato checks his chin, then he has Apollo on the ropes. Kato CHOKES Apollo but he lets off as the ref counts. Kato clamps on a half nelson in the ropes, lets off as the ref counts again, and he shoves Apollo to the apron. Kato drags Apollo up, and CLUBS him against the ropes! Kato then goes out to fetch the steel steps! Kato brings those around but Apollo CLUBS Kato first! Apollo CLUBS Kato more but Kato throws body shots. They go around the way, and Kato ROCKS Apollo again. Apollo gets into the ring, Kato storms up, and Kato scoops Apollo. Apollo slips off to fire off body shots! Kato shoves Apollo away to BOOT him down!
Kato drags Apollo back up, scoops him, and hits a BACKBREAKER! Kato bends Apollo against his knee in a backbreaker rack! Apollo endures, fans rally, and NXT returns to single picture. Apollo pries the hand away from his face to KNEE Kato in the head! Apollo is free and fans rally up again. Kato stands in a daze, Apollo mule kicks. Apollo lifts but Kato’s too big! Kato scoops Apollo again, and hits a GUTBUSTER! Fans boo but Kato snarls. Kato stalks Apollo to ropes, brings him around, shoves him to CLUB him in the back! Fans boo more but Kato CHOKES Apollo on ropes again!
The ref counts, Kato lets off, and he brings Apollo back up. Kato swings but Apollo bobs ‘n’ weaves to fire off hands! Apollo throws body shots, haymakers, and Kato wobbles! Kato grabs at Apollo but Apollo ROCKS him! Kato KNEES low! Kato drags Apollo up, to BLINDSIDE LARIAT! Fans boo but Kato runs to drop a leg, brother! Apollo clutches the back of his neck, and Kato grins as he stands. Kato clamps onto Apollo’s face and says this is what he gets! Kato pushes Apollo against the buckles! The ref counts, fans rally, and Kato lets off at 4. Apollo goes to the apron, Kato storms over, but into a GAMANGIRI!
Kato staggers back over, but Apollo HOTSHOTS him! And then Apollo hurries in to BOOT! And BOOT! And BOOT!! Kato falls to a corner, Apollo SPLASHES! Fans fire up with Apollo and he manages the OLYMPIC SLAM!! Apollo hurries up to the top rope and fans fire up again! FROG SPLASH!! Cover, TWO!?! Kato survives and fans are shocked! But Apollo stays focused and he stalks Kato to the ropes. Apollo keeps Kato from crawling away, but Kato kicks Apollo away. Kato bails out, but Apollo goes around the way to LEAP, but into both hands! TWO HAND SLAM on the steel steps!! Fans boo but Kato leaves Apollo behind!
The ring count climbs, it’s at 5 of 10 as Apollo flops off the steps! Apollo crawls but the wrong way! We’re at 8, Apollo slides in at 9.9!! Kato is furious, he drags Apollo up again. TWO HAND SLAM!!! Cover, Kato wins!
Winner: Dabba-Kato, by pinfall
Big bad Dabba-Kato crushed his former friend and leader. Is Kato going to be the one going for gold now?
NXT Anonymous posts another video.
They’re spying on Wes talking with HBK. HBK tells Wes that he loves him and all, but the Open Challenge is causing too much chaos. Wes has to help HBK out here. Wes says all he wanted was a chance, and HBK gave him that in spades. Now he’s just paying it forward. He wants to give as many shots as he possibly can. HBK says Wes has already proven himself, he’s the NXT North American Champion. Wes says with all due respect, he disagrees, he has to continue to prove himself. And HBK should know best of all, because he did it day in and day out, especially after becoming a champion.
Wes wants to go even beyond that. At Stand & Deliver, Wes wants the TOP TEN! HBK can’t give Wes ten opponents. But he’ll meet him half way. Fatal 5 at Stand & Deliver, and Wes can pick who. Deal? Deal. They shake on it, and even hug it out. Then who will be in Wes’s top four to go on to Hollywood?
Jensen and Kiana try to reach Briggs and Fallon.
Where are they!? Kiana needs her partner! Her match is next! Jensen can go out there with her. No, she needs to be alone. Oh, okay. No, no, sweetie, not like that! Just for the match. Oh, duh! Then good luck. Thanks! She leaves without a good luck kiss, though. Is everything going to be fine? Or is this going to get real bad real quick?
NXT Women’s Championship Qualifier: Kiana James VS ???
The Calculator has tried to control the situation, as Fallon uncovered earlier tonight. But are there too many variables even for Kiana to solve? Or can she find a way to control her own destiny?
But wait, who is her opponent? It’s GIGI DOLIN! She avenged herself against Jacy, will she prove she can have gold all on her own?
The bell rings and fans rally for Gigi. She circles with Kiana, ties up, and Kiana gets the arm. Kiana wrenches to a wristlock but Gigi wrenches and wristlocks back. Gigi sweeps, rolls, and then steps over to La Magistrol! TWO, and Kiana rushes in, but into a waistlock, full nelson, spin and snapmare! Gigi keeps moving but Kiana ducks the Penalty Kick to roll Gigi up! TWO, and Kiana hurries, but Gigi wrenches, spins, cravats and KNEES to snapmare again. PENALTY KICK! Cover, TWO! Gigi smiles as Kiana gets away, and Gigi runs in, but Kiana dodges. Kiana bumps Gigi off buckles, then fires off hands!
Fans chant, “Who’s Sebastian?” at Kiana as she stomps a mudhole in on Gigi. Kiana handsprings then RAMS into Gigi! Kiana brings Gigi out to NECKBREAKER! Cover, TWO! Gigi hangs tough and Kiana grows frustrated. Kiana clamps onto Gigi with a chinlock and she grinds Gigi down. Fans rally, Gigi fights forward, ROPEBREAK! Kiana holds until 4, frustrated as she is, but she storms back up. Gigi elbows Kiana, ROUNDHOUSES her, but Kiana kicks back. Kiana clinches, but Gigi JAWBREAKERS! And BOOTS! And BOOTS again! Gigi wrenches, ROUNDHOUSES, and runs to STO! Cover, TWO!
Kiana is still in this but Gigi waistlocks to deadlift! Kiana fights, switches, O’Conner Rolls, TWO! Kiana runs, but into a clinch! FINAL NAIL!! Cover, Gigi wins!
Winner: Gigi Dolin, by pinfall (advances to Stand & Deliver)
What Kiana couldn’t account for was Gigi’s determination! Gigi has her golden ticket, but will it just be her and Stark? Or are we going to add even more fuel to the fire?
Speaking of fire, FYRE & DAWN appear, and they snatch Kiana out of the ring!! Fans boo as Dawn & Fyre stomp away on Kiana! Jensen runs out to stop this, but Dawn & Fyre just taunt Kiana. Fans continue to ask, “Who’s Sebastian?” Will the answer to that be the key to keeping the team together?
Gargano arrives home!
Gargano hurries out of the car and up to the front door. He looks around, but Waller CLOBBERS him from the bush! “Welcome home, Johnny!” Johnny TACKLES Waller! They brawl, Gargano throws Waller back into the bush! Waller writhes, Gargano is furious, but Waller throws dirt in Gargano’s eyes! Waller CLUBS Gargano, and he says this is HIS house now. Waller grabs the trash can but Gargano BOOTs it into him! And then TACKLES it into him! Gargano grabs the trash can to CHUCK it at Waller! Waller writhes, Gargano hurries after him to fire off haymakers! Gargano beats down on Waller at the steps!
Candice is there, Gargano tells her to stay in side. Waller LOW BLOWS Gargano in the distraction!! Waller beats down Gargano, and Waller tells Quill that he’s home! But Gargano LOW BLOWS in return! And then SLAMS Waller up against the wall! And again! Only for Waller to YANK Gargano into the wall! Gargano staggers, Waller gets the rake and he JAMS Gargano with the handle! Gargano sputters, Waller tells Gargano to go home. Candice wants the fighting to stop, but Waller BREAKS the rake on Gargano’s back! Candice tells Waller to stop while she calms Quill down. Waller doesn’t stop, he STOMPS Gargano into the dirt!
Waller grins as he sits Gargano back up to look at Candice. “This is your dad, Quill, and you’re proud of this man?” Waller pushes Gargano down, and he says Gargano ain’t the man he was. Candice calms the crying Quill, then hurries to Gargano’s side. Will Johnny Wrestling show his son that he is a man to be proud of? Will Gargano stand and deliver?
Briggs, & Jensen regroup backstage.
Jensen asks Kiana if she needs something. What she needs is to know why she got jumped by those witches alone! Fallon & Briggs arrive and Fallon asks what happened, why does she have nine missed calls? Uh, what’s Fallon wearing? What is BRIGGS wearing? Uh… Briggs says this isn’t what it looks like. Aw man. Briggs say that bear movie without him! No… Er, uh, yes! That’s totally what he did, but he’ll totally watch it with Jensen. Kiana asks where Fallon was! Jensen agrees, they need to know where she want, because those crazy redheaded ladies jumped Kiana! Uh, well, Fallon didn’t even know Kiana had a qualifying match. What’s that about, partner? Briggs adds, “Yeah!”
Uh, Kiana is not passing up an opportunity at THE NXT Women’s Championship! Jensen adds, “That’s right!” Kiana asks what they’re gonna do about Fyre & Dawn at Stand & Deliver? Wait, Stand & Deliver? What? Yeah, Fallon & Kiana have to face Fyre & Dawn because they are the #1 contenders after winning a Triple Threat tonight, and that’s why they were trying to call her! So whatever this is, handle it! Oh, it will be handled. But is this all playing right into the hands of their challengers?
Carmelo Hayes & Trick Williams head to the ring.
They’re dressed to kill because this is the contract signing for the NXT Championship! Melo waits by the table as Bron makes his entrance. Bron is still in jeans and a merch shirt because he still does things how he wants. They both take their seats now and fans applaud. Bron says it’s just gonna be them. Isn’t there someone to host this? Well, no, that’s not needed. The faster they get the contract signed, the sooner they can begin the countdown to a new champion. Oh, it’s like that, Melo? Bron didn’t think this was gonna be like all the other contract signings but Melo’s about to change Bron’s mind.
But wait! Pretty Deadly makes their way out! Elton says, “As your hosts of STAND & DELIVER, it only makes sense to come out here and host the contract signing for the NXT Championship match at STAND & DELIVER!” Kit adds, “But don’t mind us, guys. You’ll hardly know we’re here.” Kit & Elton get in the ring, they want everyone to keep calm. Melo and Bron sit back down and Melo says that he meant no disrespect. Bron’s carried the title and all the weight that comes with it. The responsibility, the legacy of all the previous champions, Bron did that and deserves to be recognized. Really, he does.
But on April 1st, you can feel it. The changing of the guard. Because Melo is taking that title, and he’s taking it way further than Bron ever could. Just like Melo did with the North American Championship and made it THE A Championship. So listen, respectfully, at Stand & Deliver, you’re coming in second to Melo. Kit & Elton react with “Oooh!” Bron will disagree except for that last part. Melo did take the North American title and made it, at least in his own mind, the top title. Melo made that title the top title because he knew he wasn’t ready for THE top title. And that’s fine.
But that’s not the Melo Bron wants to face. Bron wants to face the Melo that the fans get on their feet for. Bron wants the Melo that comes out here and fans chant his name. Bron wants the Melo that beat Ricochet! That beat Apollo! That knows deep down that in his heart and soul that he is READY! Melo don’t miss? Pretty fitting. Because on April 1st, there’ll be a first for everything. Fans chant, “BRON BREAKKER SUCKS~” a la “John Cena Sucks,” but Elton & Kit have a chuckle over how mad Melo’s getting. It’s so fun to watch! Kit’s favorite part is all the backhanded compliments. That’s all on another level.
Melo reminds Pretty Deadly they said they weren’t going to talk. Oh, right, right, sorry. Carry on. Then shut up! Melo tells Bron that in LA, here’s what Melo doesn’t want. Melo doesn’t want the Bron with the anger management issues. Or the Bron in the tux inducting his dad and uncle into the Hall of Fame. Or the Bron with the fishing pole or with the smiling. Leave that Bron at home. Bring the Bron that runs through walls. The Bron that won at WarGames. The Bron that made Ciampa tap out! As Melo says all these things, how can he deny Bron’s greatness? When Bron is that guy, he is unstoppable! Okay?
“Which is gonna make it oh so much sweeter when you give me everything you’ve got, and it’s still not good enough. And I don’t just say this because it sounds good, Bron. I say this because it’s true. I am him.” Pretty Deadly like that one. Bron says Melo IS him. Bron believes that! But Melo has to show it. Melo has to show “him” isn’t just something on a T-shirt! That “him” isn’t some random thing Melo came up with to further his character. Melo has to show Bron that it means something! Because if he does, he’ll get everything he wants outta this and Bron will get everything he wants.
Bron gets the smooth, the cool Melo, Trick Melo Gang that everyone has grown to love! The Melo that’s flying first class, because LA is more Melo’s vibe anyway. Melo is flying out, Bron stays in. Melo is up late, Bron’s in bed early. Elton points out these two are like yin and yang. Trick sees that. Bron tells them to stop, and Kit “scolds” Elton for interrupting. Bron says this is all 18 months in the making. This has the potential to be the biggest match in NXT history. Melo says it will be. Each guy points out the other unified titles. Bron’s had his for almost two years. And if anyone knows about long reigns, it’s Melo!
But then both of them need to understand that this is big. This is the “youngest” main event in WrestleMania Weekend history! There is a lot of pressure, a lot of eyes on them, but that is nothing new to either one of them. So Melo knows that at Stand & Deliver, he will deliver. He just wants to know Bron will, too. Bron smirks and says, “I guess something’s gotta give then, my dude.” Melo signs his part, and says he’ snot giving an inch. He passes the contract over, Bron signs his part, and says, “Neither am I.” Then it’s official! Bron Breakker VS Carmelo Hayes for the NXT Championship at STAND & DELIVER!
Melo and Bron shake hands, fans cheer the sportsmanship, but Pretty Deadly says no! Fans want drama! Not this! They need something more! Give them some action! Melo takes off the suit and glasses, Bron puts down the belt and tears off his shirt. Pretty Deadly fires up with the fans, and then Bron an d Melo step up. To DOUBLE BACK SUPLEX Pretty Deadly through the table!! Bron lifts up the belt and fans are thunderous! Who will come out of Stand & Deliver truly living the Hollywood dream?
A great NXT with a lot of development for Stand & Deliver, though I feel like we got a few go-home segments early. The final segment, for one, with the contract signing and a great promo from everyone involved, really could’ve been on the go-home episode. I also like the twist that Bron and Melo did their best to be respectful, but also passive aggressive. And then they take out Pretty Deadly to add on to those guys’ woes with that great table spot. As I’ve said, I think this has to be where Bron loses the belt. Melo can finally be THE champion, Bron can move on to RawDown, and the fans can relax and have someone they want to cheer as a Face.
Though I will say, Bron started tipping towards Heel in the promo he had with Tony D and Stacks. Bron and NXT really should’ve had him turn Heel sooner. Sure, there’s a lot of temptation to make him Scott Steiner 2.0, but he could still find ways of being an arrogant Heel unique to him. Tony and Stacks deciding to go into the tag division was a surprising choice, too. I feel like they should be adding new members to the faction to get back to that gang feel. Yes, they’re Faces now because of how the fans have grown attached, but that doesn’t mean they couldn’t add to the D’Angelo Familia. Make the new guys the tag team, Stacks is midcard guy, Tony is top title guy.
Speaking of the tag titles and Pretty Deadly’s woes, great tag title match out of them and Gallus. For half a second, I thought Pretty Deadly was going to win, but Gallus pulls it out to retain. I do like the idea that Gallus being a “firm,” aka Scottish mafia, they’re going to go up against the D’Angelo Familia, an Italian American mafia. They can do promos like Tony did with Legado Del Fantasma, or like Gallus did with Die Familie in NXT UK, and then give us an awesome tag match at Stand & Deliver that could really go either way. And honestly, that’d be a great place to bring Joe Coffey back so that he tips the scales in Gallus’ favor.
Great stuff in the North American Championship story, too. I just knew Axiom would keep his eye on Wes, I knew and loved that they gave us the brawling chaos again, but I did not think this is where they’d finally pull the trigger on Scrypts going after Axiom. They should’ve done it sooner, and honestly could’ve waited until after Stand & Deliver on this. Wes being given the chance to choose four opponents for the North American title, he really could choose anyone, but something makes me think the four are obvious: Axiom, Scrypts, JD McDonagh and Ilja Dragunov. Why else would Wes cross paths with the brawling JD and Dragunov?
Great promo from JD and Dragunov, which of course turned into that great brawl, and great to know they’re getting that 1v1 match. Both guys are definitely deserving of a title shot, I’m just unsure how to feel about them being woven into the North American title story in a Fatal 5. The winner of JD VS Dragunov should be the clear cut contender to face just the champion. But in the end, at least it means they’ll be on Stand & Deliver and part of the huge WrestleMania Weekend.
But what was up with Scrypts becoming Soundwave from Transformers? They didn’t do that with his promo before, why’re they throwing that in on him now? I feel like Scrypts as a concept was really undercooked. But at the same time, there is some meta to it. Even Spider-Man had to work on his costume before he perfected the look. And while Scrypts comes off more as a villain, there is something to him as this writer/wrestler going through “rough drafts” until he has the final form. And good stuff from Chase U and The Schism. Chase gives Duke a lot to think about but so does Schism. Duke’s allegiance can be the key of where this story is going.
Great things out of the Women’s Division tonight. They’re going further with the Roxie health condition angle, and good ol’ HBK loves Ladder matches so he’s giving us one for the women’s title. I am so very sure this will somehow bring things to a recreation of HBK VS Razor Ramon, aka they will crown an Undisputed Women’s Champion with another ladder match. But for tonight, great rematch for Stark and Sol, and while Sol did better than last time, it makes sense Stark wins. Stark has done a lot of good work in NXT, this could be her moment to get that title. Of course, same can be said of Gigi as she was the surprise in facing Kiana. And who knows who else gets in on this thing, but I would love if they got Lyra Valkyria involved somehow.
The romcom of Kiana and Jensen continues to entertain. Briggs and Fallon sneaking around was funny, and the plot thickens with this “Sebastian.” Giving him a name kinda ruins them being able to make this guy a wrestler from Level Up, as the fans would’ve recognized “Sebastian” right away. Great Triple Threat Tag, and while I didn’t see Tatum’s turn on Ivy happening tonight, this was a great opening to do that. I knew Fyre & Dawn were getting this one, but what a great surprise for them to go after Kiana after her match. Fyre & Dawn are most surely winning at Stand & Deliver, and they can have a good reign with those belts.
And great stuff out of the building Gargano and Waller story. It seems like Waller predicted Gargano was gonna bring up NXT being his home with him going right to Gargano’s home. I feel like Waller should’ve first posted a video where he brought up that detail, but we still got a great brawl from the two of them. This was very much like the Rollins and Edge feud, or even the HHH and Randy Orton feud, proof that HBK and HHH see big things in Waller like they do Gargano. Their match is going to be a real show stealer, I’m sure of it.
My Score: 8.8/10
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