NJPW’s biggest New Japan Cup continues into round two!
And the IWGP World Heavyweight Champion, Kazuchika Okada is back in action! Will the Rainmaker wash away the Way of the Grandmaster?
- Tiger Mask & Hiroshi Tanahashi VS Chase Owens & Bad Luck Fale; Chase & Fale win.
- BUSHI & Tetsuya Naito VS SHO & Gedo; Sho & Gedo win.
- 8 Man Tag: The United Empire VS Bullet Club; Bullet Club wins.
- Six Man Tag: Los Ingobernables de Japon VS Suzuki-Gun; LIJ wins.
- 2022 New Japan Cup Second Round: Hirooki Goto VS Dick Togo; Goto wins and advances.
- 2022 New Japan Cup Second Round: CIMA VS Yoshinobu Kanemaru; Cima wins and advances.
- 2022 New Japan Cup Second Round: Kazuchika Okada VS Master Wato; Okada wins and advances.
PLAY BY PLAY
2022 New Japan Cup Second Round: Hirooki Goto VS Dick Togo!
Chaos is very familiar with the House of Torture thanks to the New Years Golden Series. The Fierce Warrior goes up against The Spoiler, will Goto get some payback on Dick? Or will Dick actually play spoiler?
The bell rings and fans rally for Goto. Dick offers a handshake, but Goto knows better than that. Dick offers the handshake to the ref and the ref takes it. Dick tries to use that to prove he’s genuine. Goto just slaps the hand away! Goto and Dick approach, Dick kicks low to wrench the arm. Goto rolls, wrenches back, and wrenches again. Goto keeps on the shoulder, but Dick pulls hair and whips. Goto reverses to hip toss and KICK Dick down! Goto clamps onto the arm again and grinds the shoulder. Dick rolls to his feet but Goto wrenches the arm again. Goto wrenches one more time, then YANKS the arm!
Goto YANKS the arm more, then grinds the shoulder. Dick endures, fights up and rakes eyes! The ref reprimands but Dick throws Goto out of the ring. Goto gets back in as Dick hurries out, and fans cheer. Goto dares Dick to get back in but Dick takes his time. Dick gets to the apron but he just baits Goto into drag him out and RAM him into railing! Dick looks under the ring and he brings out a chair! The ref reprimands as Dick puts the chair in the ring, but he uses that as a decoy! He gets the SPOILER CHOKER! Dick chokes Goto, but lets off before the ref can see. Dick hides the choker then goes back to Goto.
Dick CLUBS Goto, puts him in the ring, then stomps Goto around. Dick chokes Goto but hides it in a cover. The ref sees the choke and counts, Dick lets off at 4. Dick shrugs but keeps his knee on Goto’s neck! The ref counts that choke but Goto lets off again. Fans rally for Goto but Dick stomps him more. Dick drags Goto up, but Goto CHOPS and CHOPS and- Dick rakes eyes again! The ref reprimands but Dick tells him to back off. Dick runs to FIST DROP! Cover, TWO! Fans rally up but Dick wraps on a chinlock. Dick grinds Goto down but Goto fights up. Goto throws body shots and gets free, but Dick kicks low.
Dick throws haymakers but the ref reprimands about the closed fist. Dick throws more punches but Goto eggs him on! Dick kicks low again, then wags his finger. Dick whips Goto to a corner but Goto comes back to run Dick over! Fans rally and Dick gets up in a corner. Goto runs in to MURAMASA! Then BULLDOG! Cover, TWO! Fans still rally and Goto focuses. Goto drags Dick up and fireman’s carries. Dick slips off, pokes Goto in the eye and headlock punches Goto down! Dick stomps Goto then drags him up to CLUB him. Dick whips again, and catches Goto, only for Goto to turn headlock into back suplex!
Fans fire up as Goto stands. Goto waits on Dick to get up, but Dick kicks him in the shin! Oklahoma Roll, TWO, into CROSSFACE! Fans rally, Goto endures, and Goto crawls his way over, but Dick pulls back harder! Goto still reaches out for the ROPEBREAK! Dick lets off quickly and fans continue to rally. Dick drags Goto up, reels him in, and underhooks the arms! Goto resists and powers out with a back drop! Goto storms over to bring Dick up, but Dick kicks. Dick runs, Goto follows and LARIATS! Fireman’s carry, USHIGOROSHI! Cover, TWO! But then the lights go out! The House of Torture is up to their old tricks!
Something is happening in the dark, and when the lights come back up, there’s no ref and Dick has Goto in the SPOILER CHOKER! Evil is here and applauding. Evil gets Goto’s staff, but Goto BOOTS Evil! Goto gets out of the choker, DECKS Dick, then blocks Evil’s next attack! Goto throws Evil, then SMACKS Evil with the staff! Dick begs for mercy, then he blocks the staff strike! Goto throws Dick away, and SMACKS him, too! Goto powers up, BUZZSAW! The ref returns as Dick flounders around. Goto gets the arm, omoplata and then the far arm! SHORYUKENKAI! Dick gives up, Goto wins!
Winner: Hirooki Goto, by submission (advances to the next round)
The Fierce Warrior survives the newest screw job the House of Torture attempted, and now he’s into the Sweet Sixteen! Will Goto continue to advance and return to the Cup?
2022 New Japan Cup Second Round: CIMA VS Yoshinobu Kanemaru!
The leader of Strong Hearts had a #GLEAT start in the tournament, but he’s taking on a rested Heel Master. Will the first round bye give Kanemaru the edge? Or will Cima make Kanemaru say bye to the Cup?
As Cima watches the ramp, Kanemaru sneaks in from the other side and dropkicks Cima’s legs out! The bell rings as Kanemaru stomps away on Cima! Kanemaru whips then dropkicks Cima’s legs again! Fans fire up while Kanemaru stomps Cima more. Kanemaru grabs a leg and SMASHES it into the mat! Then he stomps Cima to a corner. Kanemaru throws Cima out, then goes out to whip him into railing! Kanemaru stomps Cima more, but the ref tells him to get in the ring. Kanemaru brings Cima up, hooks the leg on railing and pulls! The ref reprimands, Kanemaru lets off, and then Kanemaru brings out a chair!
Kanemaru distracts the ref by throwing the whiskey bottle into the ring. The ref goes after that and Kanemaru uses the chair to SMACK Cima’s leg! Cima clutches his knee while stuck on the railing, but he slumps down to the floor. Kanemaru stomps the bad leg, but the ring count starts. Kanemaru gets in at 4 of 20 and leaves Cima to get up using the chair. The count is 12 before Cima stands, and Cima hobbles in at 15! Kanemaru stomps the leg, drags Cima by the leg then digs his boots in as he YANKS the leg! Cima writhes, Kanemaru grabs the leg again and YANKS the leg! Cima backs away to ropes but Kanemaru drags him back to center.
Kanemaru drops an elbow on the leg and pulls on the toehold. Fans rally as Cima endures, and Cima grabs at Kanemaru’s hair. The ref reprimands, so Cima drags himself and Kanemaru along, to get the ROPEBREAK! Fans cheer and Kanemaru lets off, but then Kanemaru digs his knee into the knee. The ref reprimands, Kanemaru lets off and drags Cima up. Kanemaru gets the leg but Cima fights the shin breaker with elbows! Cima CHOPS Kanemaru, then whips. Kanemaru reverses and drop toeholds! Kanemaru keeps on the leg with a deathlock but Cima endures. Fans rally and Kanemaru gets Cima up to trip him for a HALF CRAB!
Cima endures, fans rally more, and Cima crawls forward. Cima reaches out, hits Kanemaru in the back, and gets the ROPEBREAK! The ref counts, Kanemaru lets off at 4. Fans rally but Kanemaru baseball slide dropkicks Cima out. Kanemaru goes out after Cima and kicks the leg. Cima throws body shots but Kanemaru rakes eyes! Kanemaru has the leg, SHIN BREAKER! Cima falls over and the ref checks him. Kanemaru tags a swig from his whiskey while fans rally behind Cima. The ref gets in the ring and Kanemaru gets the leg to SMASH into the floor mats! Kanemaru leaves Cima behind again, at the mercy of the ring count.
The count reaches 7 out of 20 as Cima works on getting his bad leg moving. Cima uses railing to stand at 14, he hobbles over at 17 and manages to get in! Fans cheer but Kanemaru is right on Cima. Cima throws body shots and CHOPS, but Kanemaru kicks the bad leg! And stomps it, too! Cima CHOPS from below but Kanemaru stomps! CHOP, stomp, repeat! Kanemaru lets off to catch his breath but fans rally as Cima works on his bad leg. Kanemaru CLUBS Cima then kicks his leg. Kanemaru has Cima in a corner, whips him corner to corner, and Cima somehow makes it. Kanemaru BOOTS Cima down!
Kanemaru gives Cima toying kicks but Cima gets mad. Cima CHOPS, then CHOPS again! Kanemaru rakes eyes! Kanemaru scoops, but Cima slips out to waistlock. Kanemaru elbows free, runs, but Cima dodges to get around, BACKSTABBER! That’s double-edged given the bad knee! Both men are down while fans rally up, and Cima shakes out the bad leg. Cima grits his teeth as he gets up. Kanemaru is at the ropes, eh runs in but misses the dropkick! Cima clubs, whips, but Kanemaru tries to reverse. Cima reverses that to RUSSIAN LEG SWEEP! Fans fire up and Cima goes to one corner while Kanemaru goes to the other.
Cima manages to run in and METEORA! Cima then gets Kanemaru up to DDT! Roll into the ghost pin, TWO! The leg might’ve slowed Cima down but he gets back up. Cima drags Kanemaru up again, snapmares and hurries to the corner! Cima hops up, another METEORA! But that’s not all! Cima sits Kanemaru up then goes to the very top! But Kanemaru moves! Meteora crashes and burns!! Fans rally up as Cima crawls, but Kanemaru aims from the corner. Kanemaru runs and dropkicks the bad leg! Then step through, FIGURE FOUR!! Cima endures as Kanemaru puts as much pressure as possible!
Cima grabs at the ref but that does him no good! Kanemaru puts more pressure, Cima comes close but he refuses to quit! Cima drags himself over but Kanemaru pushes up! Cima thinks about it but he still refuses! Cima crawls over, reaches out, but Kanemaru turns him away from ropes! Cima powers through to go back, ROPEBREAK! Fans cheer while the ref helps Kanemaru undo the leglock. Kanemaru drags Cima back up, scoops and SLAMS him into a drop zone, then goes up top! MOONSAULT! Cover, TWO!! Cima survives but Kanemaru gets him back up! BRAINBUSTER!! Cover, TWO!?!
Fans fire up as Cima survives! Kanemaru goes up again, Cima manages to stand, and he manages to dropkick Kanemaru out of the air! Cima hurries to fisherman, PERFECT DRIVER! But the bad leg holds him back from the pin! Fans fire up even more as Cima grits his teeth. Kanemaru crawls to a corner, Cima forces his bad leg to work. Cima runs in, but into a boot! Kanemaru runs in, tilt-o-whirl but Cima denies the DDT! Cima kicks and runs, but Kanemaru uses the ref as a shield! Then Kanemaru dropkicks the legs out! Kanemaru has the leg, and he SMASHES the knee on the mat!
Kanemaru goes to his whiskey, pours some on Cima then takes a swig. But Cima gets up in a fury! He SUPERKICKS the whiskey out of Kanemaru’s mouth! Alabama lift, SCHWEIN!! Cover, TWO!! Kanemaru survives Cima’s take on the Air Raid Crash and fans fire up! Cima sits Kanemaru up, goes up top, and METEORA!! Cover, Cima wins!!
Winner: CIMA, by pinfall (advances to the next round)
The Heel Master tried to take Cima out at the knees, literally, but Cima fought through the pain to make it through this round! Will Cima be able to make it through the quarterfinals the same way?
2022 New Japan Cup Second Round: Kazuchika Okada VS Master Wato!
The Rainmaker had an opening round main event worthy of the Cup with El Desperado. And El Desperado beat the Way of the Grandmaster in their great IWGP Junior Heavyweight Championship match. Will Okada logically defeat Wato? Or will Wato set fire to the rain and get the biggest win of his life?
The bell rings and fans rally up as these two slowly circle. They tie up, are in a deadlock, but Okada uses his height to get leverage. They end up on ropes, Red Shoes calls for the break, and Wato slips away before Okada can do his usual shoulder pats. They circle again, approach, and Wato shoots around to get a headlock. Wato grinds the hold, Okada powers up to put Wato on ropes. Red Shoes calls for the ropebreak, Wato lets go but slips away again. Wato won’t let Okada play his usual games, and the two circle again. Fans rally up, the two approach again and knuckle lock. Wato shoots around to waistlock again, but Okada pries it open.
Okada wrenches, wristlocks, but Wato spins through to wrench and hammerlock. Wato cranks the hold but Okada reaches back to headlock. Okada grinds Wato now, throws Wato for a takeover, and fights off Wato’s headscissors. Wato keeps his shoulders up, rolls Okada for a cover, ONE! Okada holds onto the headlock but Wato fights up to his feet. Okada cranks on the hold, thrashes Wato around and brings him back to the mat! Wato powers through to get his own headlock, but then Okada headscissors. Okada holds tight as Wato tries to kip free! Okada pushes up to add pressure but Wato endures.
Wato bridges back, hops over, but Okada shifts to get the double wristlock. Wato gets to ropes and Red Shoes calls for the break. Wato turns things around on Okada, and Wato fakes the chop to pat the shoulders! Fans cheer Wato copying Okada. Okada smirks but then comes right at Wato, only for Wato to arm-drag him down! Wato has the armlock, Okada fights up, but Wato whips him to ropes. Wato back elbows, uppercuts and SOBATS! Wato also dropkicks the legs out then basement dropkicks Okada down! Cover, ONE! Fans rally and Wato waits to KICK and KICK Okada from all sides! Cover, TWO!
Wato clamps onto Okada with a chinlock, then shifts to a full nelson. Okada endures, fights to move forward, but Wato works to turn Okada. Okada still reaches out, ROPEBREAK! Wato stomps Okada, CLUBS him on the back, then runs. Okada gets Wato for a FLAPJACK! Fans fire up and Okada stalks Wato as he crawls. Okada stands Wato up, scoops and SLAMS him, then goes to the apron to slingshot senton! Fans rally and Okada stands on Wato. Red Shoes doesn’t consider that a cover, so Okada steps away. Okada looms over Wato as he sits up. Wato chops but there’s not much behind it.
Wato chops again, then CHOPS, but Okada turns him for a NECKBREAKER! Okada puts a chinlock on tight but Wato scrambles to the ROPEBREAK! Red Shoes counts, Okada lets off at 4. Okada paces and fans rally up. Okada kicks Wato, brings him up, but Wato throws body shots. They don’t do much but Okada still knees Wato low. Wato throws forearms now, but Okada withstands those, too. Okada then DECKS Wato with one shot! Okada gets Wato up, whips him to ropes but Wato reverses to dropkick! Fans fire up and Wato gets to the ropes. Wato stands up and KICKS, KICKS and KICKS Okada!
Wato whips Okada to ropes to calf kick him down! Fans rally up more and Wato runs corner to corner, but Okada puts Wato on the apron. Wato shoulders in, springboards, and FLYING UPEPRCUTS! Okada tumbles out of the ring and Wato builds speed! Wato FLIES and direct hit with the tope conjilo! Fans rally up Wato brings Okada up. Wato puts Okada in, goes to the corner and climbs up top. Wato missile dropkicks Okada down! Cover, TWO! Fans rally and Wato gets back up. Wato kicks but Okada ducks the buzzsaw! Wato fights the waistlock with elbows, gets free and runs. Okada prepares to back drop but Wato sunset flips! TWO!
VENDAVAL! Wato pulls on Okada’s arms and head, but Okada reaches out with a leg for the ROPEBREAK! Red Shoes counts, Wato lets off. Wato follows Okada outside and KICKS him! And KICKS! And KICKS! Okada blocks to CLUB the leg and DDT Wato to the floor! Red Shoes checks on Wato but he’s okay to continue. Okada gets up and he puts Wato in the ring. Okada waits on Wato to get up, and then he runs in to SHOTGUN dropkick Wato to the corner! Fans rally up and Okada stands Wato up to wrench and MONEY CLIP! Wato endures, reaches out, but Okada keeps him from the ropes!
Fans rally and Wato kicks and reaches out. But Okada cranks back on the Money Clip! Wato still fights and gets the ROPEBREAK! Okada lets go and fans rally up. Okada drags Wato up, Alabama Lifts, but Wato kicks free to CLUB away on Okada’s back. Okada EuroUppers back! Wato ends up in a corner, Okada runs in, but Wato dodges! Okada hits buckles, Wato turns in but is popped up to the Alabama! Wato fights the tuck, to have a FLOATING VENDAVAL! But Okada powers out, so Wato hits CODE RED! Cover, TWO!! Back to GROUNDED VENDAVAL! Okada endures and fans rally up! Okada reaches out, moves around, but refuses to quit!
Okada powers through to get the ROPEBREAK! Wato lets off cleanly and fans rally up. Wato drags Okada up, wrenches, reels Okada in, but Okada fights the Mouse Trap! Wato throws elbows, but Okada throws elbows back! Okada gets free, but Wato ducks the lariat to waistlock! Okada resists the lift, throws more elbows and is free. But Wato sobats and front kicks, to SUPERKICK! Waistlock and GERMAN SUPLEX! Bridging cover, TWO!! Okada escapes and fans fire up! Wato hurries to to the corner. Wato climbs up, but Okada gets up to throw a body shot! Okada ROCKET LAUNCHES Wato off the corner!
Fans rally up and Okada drags Wato back up. Wato KICKS, but Okada tanks it! Wato KICKS again, Okada eggs him on. Wato KICKS, and KICKS, but Okada just keeps taking them! Fans rally up and Okada eggs Wato on more. Wato fires elbows and forearms then CHOPS! Wato runs, but into the DROPKICK! Okada drags Wato to a drop zone and then goes up the corner. MACHO ELBOW! Fans fire up for the Rainmaker Pose! Wato slowly gets up, Okada brings him up to ripcord, but Wato gets under! Tilt-o-whirl to a jackknife! TWO!! BUZZSAW! Wato fires up and he gets Okada up to wrench and MOUSE-
NO! Okada gut wrenches free, LANDSLIDE! Okada gets Wato back up, ripcords and RAINMAKERS!! Cover, Okada wins!
Winner: Kazuchika Okada, by pinfall (advances to the next round)
Wato gets washed away by the IWGP World Heavyweight Champion! It seems it is still too early for the Way of the Grandmaster, but will this loss go a long way to making him stronger?
As for Okada, he gets the mic. “Wato… You’re not there yet. But you’re young, so you have plenty of time. Maybe you’ll get another shot at me in a few years. So please, try to make it more fun for me.” Fans cheer the bit of encouragement Okada just gave, and then he continues. “Thank you all for your hot enthusiasm and support today!” Okada knows he’s up against Taichi next, and vows not to lose that one, either. “The man holding this belt cannot lose now. I’ll keep winning and standing in this spot in front of all of you!”
Fans cheer that sentiment, and Okada says this is just the second round. “Everyone, please keep enjoying this. Don’t take your eyes off of NJPW, the New Japan Cup, or Kazuchika Okada! And I’ll keep making it rain in the New Japan Cup!” The IWGP World Heavyweight Champion continues to promise success, but will he have to be careful of the Holy Emperor?
Another great event, but again I did skip non tournament matches. Bullet Club winning all of their warm-ups clearly means a good number of them are losing. Fale is facing Tanahashi next round and Chase is facing Tiger Mask, so Fale & Chase win here because I’m pretty sure The Ace and Tiger Mask move on. Same thing with the United Empire and LIJ losing. Naito is going to win against Gedo, Great-O-Khan will beat Taiji Ishimori and Ospreay will beat El Phantasmo I did like that Bullet Club’s different parts worked together well, with the only dysfunction being whether they throw the Too Sweet up or down.
The rest of LIJ winning against Suzuki-Gun is to set up Suzuki brutalizing and beating Hiromu, while also keeping Takagi and Sanada even with their coming opponents. Goto of course beats Dick Togo, but I did like that he managed to thwart the screw job. Cima had one hell of a match with Kanemaru, great story and selling on the knee, that might come into play against Goto on Monday as part of round three, the quarterfinals. Okada VS Wato wasn’t one of Wato’s better showings, but I suppose that was the point given it’s Okada, the IWGP World Heavyweight Champion. Okada naturally moves on, has a closing promo that falls in line with his other ones, and is on to the next round. Okada VS Taichi should be a really good match, but I feel like the earliest Okada loses is the semifinals.
My Score: 8.5/10
Mitchell’s WWE NXT Results & Report! (1/31/23)
NXTag Team Tuesday!
Will tonight be a TEACHABLE MOMENT?
NXT is planning a Fatal 4 Way tag title match for Vengeance Day, and a Triple Threat will decide that fourth team! Who punches a golden ticket to Charlotte, North Carolina?
- The Creed Brothers VS Indus Sher w/ Jinder Mahal; Indus Sher wins.
- Zoey Stark VS Indi Hartwell; Stark wins.
- DIJAK VS Von Wagner w/ Robert Stone; Dijak wins.
- Tyler Bate VS Axiom; Bate wins.
- Stevie Turner VS Dani Palmer; Stevie wins.
- Charlie Dempsey VS Drew Gulak w/ Hank Walker; Gulak wins.
- Triple Threat Tag: The Dyad VS Malik Blade & Edris Enofe VS Chase U; Chase U wins and joins the Vengeance Day NXT Tag Team Championship match.
PLAY BY PLAY
The Creed Brothers VS Indus Sher w/ Jinder Mahal!
Julius & Brutus were denied a New Year’s Evil showdown with Sanga & Veer, but they get their moment just days before Vengeance Day! Will the Diamond Mine finally shine? Or will they be slain by the tigers hunting them down?
The teams sort out, Julius starts against Veer and they tie up. They go around as fans chant for the Creeds, and the two break. They go again, Julius waistlocks then shoves Veer. Veer nods, eggs Julius on, but then avoids Julius’ takedown. Julius waistlocks, Veer elbows free then runs, but Julius drops and Veer rolls. They keep moving, Julius ducks then jumps but Veer blocks the hip toss! Julius blocks a hip toss, and the hand start flying! Veer knees low, TOSSES Julius to the corner, then storms up. Julius slips away but gets clipped. Tag to Sanga, and tag to Brutus. Fans rally up as Brutus and Sanga circle.
The two tie up, Brutus waistlocks but Sanga THROWS him away! Sanga and Brutus go again, and Brutus tries to lift Sanga! Sanga CLUBS Brutus, whips him to a corner, then runs in. Brutus dodges, fires hands from all sides but Sanga shoves back. Brutus blocks a boot! Brutus has a leg but Veer tags in! Veer ROCKS Brutus, Sanga whips Brutus, and Sanga runs Brutus over! Veer drops a BIG elbow! Jinder applauds while fans are torn. Veer stalks Brutus, stomps him down, then stomps him again. Brutus gets up to RAM Veer into the corner! Tag to Julius, the Creeds mug Veer, and then Julius runs to forearm smash!
The Creeds DOUBLE HIP TOSS Veer! Fans fire up as Julius KNEES Veer in the side! Brutus KNEES Veer, then Julius gut wrench SLAMS Brutus on Veer! Cover, TWO! Jinder talks trash, Julius swipes at him, then goes back for Veer. Veer elbows Julius away, tags in Sanga, and they FLAPJACK HOTSHOT Julius down! Sanga throws knees, puts Julius in the ropes and bends him back! The ref counts, Sanga lets off, but Jinder hits a cheap shot! Ivy Nile protests but Sanga stands on Julius’ chest! Tag to Veer, Sanga has the legs and drapes Julius out, for Veer to LEAP FROG ATTACK! Fans are torn while Indus Sher stands over Julius.
Veer throws body shots on Julius at the ropes, then he reaches out for Sanga. Julius throws hands but Veer ROCKS and CLUBS Julius! Tag to Sanga but Julius tackles Veer! Sanga BOOTS Julius for that, then scoops him. Sanga gives Julius SNAKE EYES, and then waits on Julius before he stomps him back down! Tag to Veer, Sanga throws knees, CLUBS Julius down, but Julius TACKLES Sanga! Veer stomps Julius, stomps him more, and then has him at the ropes. Tag back to Sanga, Indus Sher mugs Julius, then double whip. They run Julius over with double shoulders! Sanga stalks Julius, and clamps on a SLEEPER!
Fans rally for Julius as he fights up. Julius stands but Sanga wrangles him back down! Julius fights up, but Sanga knees him in the back! Sanga puts Julius against ropes, kicks him and whips him to a corner. Sanga runs in to SPLASH! Sanga reels Julius in, for a SIDE EFFECT! Cover, TWO! Julius is hanging tough but Sanga throws off his armbands. Sanga drags Julius up but Julius powers Sanga back. Sanga CLUBS Julius in the corner, throws knees, then drags Julius over. But Julius shoves free! Sanga CLOBBERS Julius and smother shim into the mat! Sanga drags Julius back, tags Veer, and they hand off the leg.
Veer has a lock on the leg but Julius uses his other foot to pry at the hold! Julius hops up and ENZIGURIS! Hot tag to Brutus! Fans fire up as BRUTUS SMASH! And SMASH! And back body block for Sanga! BIG back suplex for Veer! Fans are thunderous as Brutus goes out to SMASH Sanga! Brutus drags Veer up to a GERMAN SUPLEX! Brutus roars, and he hammers away with fists! Sanga returns but Brutus DECKS him! Tag to Julius and Brutus STANDING MOONSAULTS! Julius STANDING SHOOTING STARS! Cover, TWO!! Sanga was almost there but Veer survives on his own. Fans rally, Brutus runs in and TACKLES Sanga out of the ring!
Julius drags Veer up, gut wrenches, and he double clutches to POWERBOMB! High stack, TWO!?! Veer survives and fans are thunderous again! Jinder panics but he coaches Veer up. Fans rally for “NXT!” as Julius hits the ROLLING SPINEBUSTER! The elbow pad comes off, but Jinder grabs Julius! Ivy storms over and fans rally for her! Veer ROCKS Julius, whips him, but Julius dodges! Only to BLAST Ivy off the apron by accident!! Julius can’t believe what happened, but he turns around into the MILLION DOLLAR LARIAT!! Tag to Sanga, choke grip and CHOKE SLAM! Cover, Indus Sher wins!!
Winner: Indus Sher, by pinfall
Jinder grins as he celebrates with his team, because a win is a win! Will Indus Sher look to take over the NXT Tag Division after Vengeance Day?
Axiom watches NXT UK episodes on Peacock.
Tyler Bate walks over to see it’s Tyler Bate VS A-Kid for the Heritage Cup. Bate was always a big fan of A-Kid’s. They had some excellent matches in NXT. Axiom agrees, A-Kid’s the best. What ever happened to him? Bate says Axiom reminds him of A-Kid. He isn’t sure what it is, he can’t put his finger on it. Axiom says he gets that a lot. But Bate, that Heritage Cup match was very unique, a real masterpiece. How about they create a masterpiece of their own tonight? Bate loves that idea! But then in walks Damon Kemp with sarcastic applause.
Kemp says he was walking around, and overhead them. Friendly competition makes him sick! “I respect your work a lot! I respect your work to infinity!” When Kemp was in NXT UK, he learned that all the Limeys are soft! And the European wrestling style is overrated! And if you ever see A-Kid personally, tell him that Kemp says he’s hot garbage! Well, if Axiom does see A-Kid around, he’ll tell him. Kemp walks off, but Bate says Kemp is a “right wazzock.” A what? A pendejo. Oh! Okay. Bate heads out, will Axiom get that friendly competition? Or will he first take care of Kemp’s attitude first?
Zoey Stark VS Indi Hartwell!
These two had an impressive showing in this year’s Women’s Royal Rumble match, though neither won their ticket to WrestleMania. But Indi also wants to get to the bottom of who attacked Nikkita Lyons in the parking lot. All signs point to The Hunter, will Indi get her to confess?
The bell rings and fans sing, “OH~ Zoey is angry~!” Zoey gets mad hearing that, and then ties up with Indi. They go around, Indi puts Zoey in a corner, and the ref counts. Indi lets off at 4, but Zoey shoves her back. Indi shoves back, then dodges to CHOP! And ROCK! Indi fires off and fans cheer her on. Indi whips, Zoey holds ropes, then Zoey bails out. Fans boo while Zoey throws a tantrum. Indi slips out after Zoey, they go around the way, and Indi avoids the elbow drop! Indi drags Zoey out to RAM Her into the apron, and again! Indi gets in the ring, drags Zoey up by her hair, and into the ropes for an UPPERCUT! And BOOT!
Zoey flops down, Indi drags her to a cover, TWO! Indi drags Zoey up for a short arm LARIAT! And then another! Fans rally but Zoey gets around and claws Indi’s eyes! Zoey snapmares Indi, runs and SLIDING LARIATS! Cover, TWO! Indi sits up, Zoey stomps her on the back. Zoey tells fans that THEY suck, and she clamps onto an armlock and chinbar. Indi endures, fans rally up, and Indi fights up. “OH~ Zoey is angry~!” Indi stands, arm-drags free, but Zoey comes back to CHOP! Indi CHOPS, Zoey CHOPS, repeat! Zoey kicks low, whips Indi hard into a corner, then whips her in again! Zoey soaks up heat and whips corner to corner.
Indi reverses, Zoey bounces off buckles and into a SIDEWALK SLAM! Cover, TWO! Indi gives a thumbs up and fans cheer. Indi puts Zoey in the ropes again, but Zoey avoids the uppercut to HOTSHOT! Indi falls, Zoey slingshots for the ARABIAN SENTON! Cover, TWO! Zoey snarls and she rains down fists on Indi! Indi gets up and flounders to a corner but Zoey snapmares her down. Zoey cravats for a neck wrench but Indi endures. Fans rally, Indi fights up, but Zoey wrangles her back down! Zoey cranks the cravat but Indi still endures. Fans rally up again, Indi fights up again, but Zoey shifts to a facelock. Indi still powers Zoey to a corner!
Zoey powers Indi back, but Indi RAMS Zoey into the corner! Zoey BOOTS Indi back! And then fires forearms! Indi hits back, they go shot for shot, but Indi kicks, JABS and DECKS Zoey! Zoey staggers up and Indi rallies with clotheslines! Indi dodges to SPINEBUSTER! Highs tack, TWO! Zoey is still in this but Indi keeps her cool. Zoey goes to a corner, Indi runs in but Zoey dodges! HEEL KICK! Zoey waistlocks, to GERMAN SUPLEX! Cover, TWO! Indi is still in this but Zoey is frustrated. Zoey waistlocks and drags Indi up, but Indi arm-drags out of the half nelson. Indi scoops but Zoey slips out to fireman’s carry! But Indi flights free!
Indi shoves Zoey away, runs in but is put on the apron. Indi ROCKS Zoey first, then springboards, but Zoey trips her up! Indi crashes down, Zoey drags her back up! Z 360!! Cover, Zoey wins!
Winner: Zoey Stark, by pinfall
Whether innocent or guilty in the whodunnit, Zoey Stark is still the winner here! But then Zoey attacks Indi! Sol Ruca rushes out and chases Zoey off! The Hunter has a target on her own back, will karma catch up to her one way or another?
The Schism speaks.
Joe Gacy says, “A day of vengeance is on the horizon for The Schism.” Rip Fowley says, “We seek vengeance for something that has been owed to us for far too long.” Jagger Reed says, “The NXT Tag Team Championships have been kept from us since The Dyad’s inception.” Gacy says, “Tonight, Rip and Jagger change their destiny by altering others’ reality.” Ava Raine tells Edris Enofe & Malik Blade, “We know who you are. But everyone at Chase University, you worship a false idol. You are not a family. You are abusive, devious, and delusional. School spirit will not help you tonight, because Chase University will fail. There is no unit stronger than the Schism.”
They are four roots, one tree, but will they be the final team to enter the Fatal 4 Way?
Apollo Crews speaks.
“The city of Charlotte. Packed restaurants, tons of foot traffic, bars with lines out the door. Cars flying down I-85. I came out early to feel Charlotte’s energy, and I feel the city’s excitement all the way up here. NXT’s coming, and I’m coming. I need two falls, two pinfalls, two submissions, or one each. I’ve visualized this match a hundred times. Money Melo is gonna be fast, he’s gonna be flashy, but I am ready for Melo’s handprint. My best will always be better than his best. And if Trick Williams wants to get involved, well Trick’s gonna get handled. Melo wants to call me the past and him the future? At Vengeance Day, the past will dictate the future!”
Apollo has spoken, but will he speak his vision into existence? And just who did Apollo see having his back against Trick Melo Gang?
Wes Lee heads to the ring.
The North American Champion is here, ready for his fight with #HardJustice this Saturday! Wes gets the mic to say, “Yo~! We are T-minus four days from NXT back on the road, and we are swangin’ through Charlotte, North Cackalacky, for Vengeance Day.” And it’ll be a big day for Wes literally because he has his biggest test in Dijak. Dijak is back and claims to be serving justice, but ultimately he just wants what’s shining on Wes’s shoulder. Saturday will be tough, Wes will probably take an ass-whooping. But just like Wes did with Tony and Carmelo, the Cardiac Kid will rise as your North American Champion!
But wait! Here comes DIJAK! “Mr. Lee, I want you to soak this in. I want you to soak it all in. Enjoy these moments, because these are your final days as NXT North American Champion. That was a real impassioned speech you gave, really powerful and motivating. But the reality is, it’s not gonna make a damn bit of difference. You had EVERY opportunity to hand me that championship, but you were too stupid to take it, weren’t you? And now… On Saturday, you’re gonna be standing across the ring, staring down the biggest and baddest man in the ENTIRE NXT locker room! And when that happens, I’m gonna rip that championship from your cold hands.”
Wes says that is exactly what Dijak will have to do! You will have to pry this title from Wes’s cold, dead hands! But understand that it’s much easier said than done. Wes didn’t win by accident. Every minute of training, every risk Wes took in and out of the ring, and every trial and tribulation, Wes has FOUGHT! When Wes felt like he couldn’t anymore, the chaotic support from every single one of the fans showed him that he can reach levels he had only dreamt of! So Saturday, Dijak isn’t just fighting Wes. He is fighting everyone on the #WesSide. Fans cheer Wes on! But Dijak says Wes might be fighting for the fans, but they won’t be fighting for Wes!
Wait! Von Wagner is here? He and Robert Stone walk out and Stone “apologizes.” But maybe his ears aren’t working properly. Dijak said HE’S the biggest and baddest? Have they forgotten about Von? Von tells Dijak, “Take those stupid sunglasses off, we’re inside. and I’m right here. And the only injustice is me getting overlooked.” Dijak tells Von that his eyes are focused on championship gold. Dijak has no issue with Von whatsoever. Wes says he isn’t sure about that. Fans chant “WAGNER SUCKS!” Wes says Dijak claims to be the biggest and baddest, but Von claims HE is the biggest and baddest, so Dijak is basically calling Von a liar.
Dijak tells Wes to shut up, and he knows what he’s up top. What? Wes just sees an injustice that needs to be fixed! Wes hears Von and Stone loud and clear about being overlooked. Come Tuesday… We may need to have a new #1 contender to the North American title. So uh… If Von happens to beat Dijak tonight, then Von will no longer be overlooked. Von will be looked at as a contender. And Stone says that is why they’re here! Right, right. So let’s please, PLEASE solve this injustice. Or Dijak can just give Von his jacket now. Dijak throws hands on Von! Von hits back, and fans fire up as the brawl is on!
Von clotheslines Dijak up and out! Refs rush out to stop this, but fans want to “LET THEM FIGHT!” Will we see this brawl turn into a match? WE WILL! Wes gets out of the way, who wins this battle of behemoths?
DIJAK VS Von Wagner w/ Robert Stone!
The bell rings, the haymakers fly again, and Dijak kicks low! Dijak whips, Von reverses and KNEES Dijak down! Stone fires up, Von scoops Dijak to FALL AWAY SLAM! Fans fire up while NXT goes picture in picture!
Von drags Dijak up to reel him in. Von suplexes but DIjak blocks! Von CLUBS Dijak, tries again, but Dijak still blocks! Dijak throws body shots, then suplexes, TIME TO FLY! Von crashes, writhes, and goes to a corner. Dijak runs in to kick Von and stomp aw mudhole in! Dijak CLUBS Von, Von kicks back and puts Dijak in a corner for elbows! Von whips corner to corner, Dijak reverses hard and Von falls to the mat! Dijak storms up, drags Von up and turns him to a NECKBREAKER! Cover, TWO! Von is still in this but Dijak grits his teeth. Dijak clamps on a cravat and grinds Von with a neck wrench.
Von endures, fans rally up, and Von fights up. Von throws body shots, then haymakers! Von whips Dijak to a corner, then lifts Dijak for a POWERSLAM! Cover, TWO! Von is annoyed but he watches Dijak stand. Von CLUBS Dijak, HEADBUTTS him, then ROCKS him with a right. Von whips, Dijak ducks ‘n’ dodges, then holds ropes! Von runs in but is sent into ropes! Von sputters, Dijak stomps him down, and then rains down fists! Stone protests but Dijak lets off to have the neck wrench again. Von endures, fights up, and he throws body shots. NXT returns to single picture as Von throws hands, but Dijak throws elbows and knees!
Dijak SMASHES then DISCUS LARIATS! Cover, TWO! Wes is on commentary and says it was only right that we find out who is truly the biggest and baddest in NXT. Dijak choke grips but Von fights free! Dijak wrenches, mule kicks, then back elbows hard! Dijak reels Von in but Von suplexes Dijak into buckles!! Fans lose their minds while Dijak flops down. Dijak stands up, Von runs in, and Von clotheslines! Von whips corner to corner, but Dijak BOOTS back! Von still fireman’s carries, but Dijak slips off! Dijak shoves Von away and ROCKS him at the ropes! Dijak runs but Von KNEES him low! Von runs, to RAM Dijak!
Dijak rebounds to RAM Von, then he ELBOWS, ELBOWS and CLUBS Von! Then he SUPERKICKS! Dijak runs, into a BOOT! Cover, TWO!! Dijak survives and Stone can’t believe it! Fans rally for “NXT! NXT!” and Von waits on Dijak. Dijak slowly rises, Von choke grips, but Dijak flips through the lift! To choke grip and HIGH JUSTICE!! Cover, TWO?!! Von survives and the fans are thunderous! Von goes to a corner, Dijak storms up, “This is Awesome!” as Dijak throws elbows. Dijak hoists Von up top, CLUBS him in the chest, then climbs up after him. Dijak choke grips again, but Von elbows Dijak over and over and over!
Von CLUBS away on Dijak, roars, and hits a SUPER BUTTERFLY SLAM!! Cover, TWO!?!? Fans are thunderous, Stone is beside himself, and Wes is loving this! Von gets Dijak up, OLYMIPC- NO, Dijak slips out to have the HAMMERLOCK SLEEPER! Von flails, reaches out, Stone coaches him, but Dijak says this is gonna be Wes’s future! Von is fading out, then Dijak torture racks! FEAST YOUR EYES!! Cover, Dijak wins!
Winner: DIJAK, by pinfall
Hard Justice has proven to be THE biggest and baddest man in NXT! But will he prove he is championship material? Or will Wes Lee prove he is must-see?
Tony D’Angelo and Channing Lorenzo are watching backstage.
Stacks says he can’t stand that Dijak. He’ll probably win the title on Saturday now. But The Don says not to worry about Dijak. “Street justice has no expiration date.” But what was this big impact Stacks was gonna have? Stacks has to take care of a few things. The first or the second? Both. Wow, really? Yeah, he’s the Underboss! That’s what they do. So next week, Stacks gets it done. Tremendous. Now let’s take care of that other thing. They head out, just what is Stacks going to do to handle his business?
Nikkita Lyons tweets out her status.
“Surgery was a success. Thank you deeply to the WWE universe, my Lyon Pride, for all the love and support you show. I’ll be back stronger than I’ve ever been. #ReadyToPounce Also, a big thank you to the wonderful surgeons, doctors and nurses.” It may be another setback, but will Lyons use that to set up a huge comeback?
McKenzie Mitchell is backstage with more.
McKenzie Mitchell says there are many questions surrounding the attack on Lyons in the NXT parking lot, so she has prepared some footage so that we can get a better idea of what happened. Among those on scene at the time of the attack are Valentina Feroz walking away, Dani Palmer, Arianna Grace and Alexis Leddy walking together going inside, and an unidentified woman driving away. There is also Elektra Lopez walking and talking with newcomer Lola Vice, closest to Nikkita but going on their own path. Freeze here, and you see Tiffany Stratton just going through her bag, but maybe she’s hiding the evidence.
And of course, Zoey Stark is spotted walking away, and even Tatum Paxley and Lash Legend at the very end of the lot. Indi Hartwell and Lyra Valkyria come to Lyons’ aid, and we then spot Wendy Choo peeking out of a car window. Did Wendy witness anything? McKenzie says no one is taking credit for this attack, but she will keep us informed if anyone comes forward with information. Who is behind NXT’s newest whodunnit mystery, and why did they do it?
NXT looks closer at Bron Breakker VS Grayson Waller.
The Big Booty Nephew’s NXT record is already golden, but the 21st Century Success Story isn’t impressed. In fact, he’s sick and tired of it. Waller has been running this for the last eight months, and now he’s made the decision that he needs to be champion. New Year’s Evil was going well until a freak accident took Waller out. So at Vengeance Day, their rematch will be inside a STEEL CAGE! Waller says Bron is a wild dog, and Bron admits his temper has gotten the better of him. But no one has taken advantage of it like Waller. Waller is living rent free in Bron’s brain. Bron says his temper has led to both is biggest wins and most crushing losses.
Waller says Bron will beat himself this time. Bron thought he needed to control the anger, but then he realized, with the steel cage all around them, there’s no need to hold back. Bron will beat Waller within an inch of his life, and pin what’s left! But Waller says he can read Bron like a book. And Waller has read that book, so he’ll past this test. Waller will not just beat Bron but he’ll embarrass him! Bron promises to break Waller inside the steel, but Waller went viral the last time he was inside a cage. This is what Waller wanted, but it’ll be Bron’s Vengeance Day. Who survives the steel to bring home the gold?
Tyler Bate VS Axiom!
Even with Kemp being a right wanker, the Big Strong Boy and the Undeniable Truth are going to focus on friendly competition! Will Bate continue to get A-Kid vibes from Axiom? Or will Axiom be even better than that?
The bell rings and the two circle. They tie up, go around, and Bate powers Axiom to ropes. The ref counts, Bate lets off, and fans applaud the sportsmanship. They reset, tie up again, and Bate has a cording hold. Axiom whips Bate away, Bate goes up and under and then knuckle locks. Bate steps over, headlocks, waistlocks, trips and body scissors to a clutch, TWO! They tie up, Bate cravats and snapmares, but Axiom is right up. Axiom sidesteps but Bate blocks the arm-drag to hit an arm-drag! Bate has the armlock and fans applaud the exchange. Axiom fights up, facelocks, but Bate powers out to keep on the armlock.
Axiom endures, fans duel, and Axiom goes up and around to whip Bate! Bate reverses to hit the arm-drag again! Fans cheer as Bate keeps on the arm but Axiom fights up. Axiom facelocks, Bate fights that, but Axiom goes up and around again. Bate still has the arm, he turns another whip into another arm-drag, but Axiom fights up. Axiom uses the ref for an assist to flip through! But again Bate reverses a whip! And again! Axiom is frustrated as Bate keeps on the arm. Axiom fights up, goes up and headscissors! Bate throws Axiom away, Axiom avoids the elbow to springboard arm-drag, kip up and ENZIGURI! Cover, TWO!
Axiom keeps on Bate with a facelock, fans rally up, and Bate rolls. Axiom rolls with Bate, covers, TWO! The two stand off, Bate SOBATS! Axiom staggers away, Bate runs in, but Axiom arm-drags Bate and himself up and out of the ring! Fans fire up while NXT goes picture in picture.
Both men stir, and Bate stands up first. Bate follows Axiom, UPPERCUTS him, then puts him in the ring. Bate stalks Axiom, brings him up and headlocks, to bop him with a boot! Bate hits the headlock takeover, but Axiom headscissors in return. Axiom pushes up to put on pressure, but Bate moves around. Bate headstands, pops free and has Axiom’s legs tied up. Bate goes back to the headlock but Axiom goes back to the headscissor! Bate kips free, but Axiom holds onto an arm to drag Bate back down! Axiom headscissors again, but Bate moves around again. Bate headstands, pops free and basement dropkicks!
Bate drags Axiom up by an arm and wraps Axiom up in a straitjacket stretch. Axiom endures, arm-drags free, and runs in at the corner. Axiom blocks a boot but not the KNEE! Bate goes up to FLYING UPPERCUT! Cover, TWO! Bate keeps cool and he keeps his eyes on Axiom. Bate UPPERCUTS again and Axiom goes to rpoes. Bate whips Axiom to ropes, then catches him to a COBRA TWIST! Axiom endures the stretch, pops free and hip tosses Bate down! Axiom waistlocks, they go to ropes but Bate bucks the O’Conner, only to turn around into a NORTHERN LIGHTS! Axiom floats to get the arm, but Bate stacks him, TWO!
Axiom has Bate in a Triangle Hold, and NXT returns to single picture. Fans chant, “This is Wrestling!” as Bate deadlifts Axiom to a fireman’s carry! AIRPLANE SPIN! Fans fire up as Bate goes around and around and around, fifteen times! Bate slows down, staggers a bit, squats, and then powers up to spin MORE!! And then POWERSLAM! Cover, TWO! Axiom survives and Bate has to catch his breath but fans rally back up. Axiom and Bate rise, Bate spins a few more times before he throws a forearm! Axiom throws a forearm back! Bate fires forearm after forearm but Axiom hits back! Axiom kicks, Bate blocks but Axiom hops the sweep to ENZIGURI!
Bate falls over, Axiom keeps moving, PENALTY KICK! Cover, TWO! Bate goes to a corner, Axiom runs in, he blocks the boot but gets another knee! Bate goes up and leaps, into an SLEEPER!! Axiom has the body scissors and fans rally up! Bate endures, fights the hold, turns over, but Axiom squeezes tighter! Bate stands, pries at the hold, opens it up, but Axiom waistlocks. Bate bucks the O’Conner again but Axiom kips up, into a RIGHT! But he SUPERKICKS right back! Axiom rolls Bate up but Bate sits on the cover, TWO!!! Axiom escapes and fans are thunderous! Both men slowly rise and fans rally up.
Axiom ROCKS Bate! Bate rebounds, but Axiom avoids the rolling kick! Bate avoids the Penalty Kick, Axiom slips through the roll-up. Bate blocks the Superkick to spin Axiom, Bop up and BANG in! Axiom wobbles, Bate runs and REBOUND LARIATS! Bate underhooks, but Axiom NORTHERN LIGHTS out! Bridging cover, TWO as Bate bridges up! Axiom pushes Bate back down, TWO as Bate gets back up! Underhooks, TYLER- RANA!!! Cover, TWO!!! Bate has the arms again! TYLER DRIVER 97!!! Cover, Bate wins!!!
Winner: Tyler Bate, by pinfall
A big strong win for the Big Strong Boy! “That was Awesome!” but will this earn Bate a title match on the other side of this Saturday? But Bate and the fans show Axiom respect. But then Kemp CLBOBBERS them both! And he hits Axiom with an IRISH CURSE BACKBREAKER! Kemp says he told them before, but then Bate chases Kemp off! Will Bate make sure Kemp learns European wrestling is anything but soft?
Isla Dawn speaks.
“In my land, Imbolc is the beginning of Spring. It is a time to exhale all that is behind us, and to mark new beginnings. Tonight, on the Eve of Imbolc, we purge the constraints of the past. We purify the negative energy surrounding us, and we transfigure the uninitiated into members of this house. There has always been a rage inside of you,” Alba Fyre. And she just needed a nudge to reveal it. “Shall we?” Fyre nods, and Isla says they are letting go of their unbridled passions, shed their egos, and relinquish their need for control. “These emotions no longer serve us.” Fyre repeats that, and throws water on the fire. With this, the initiation process has begun.
Isla and Fyre smile as they walk into the night. Will the darkness within Fyre grow stronger with the Wicked Witch’s influence?
Backstage interview with Carmelo Hayes & Trick Williams.
McKenzie is with Trick Melo Gang, and Trick is shaking. But he’s just joking. He’s “shaking like booty meat on a Friday night.” Not because he’s scared, but because it’s cold out. “But Trick Willy can’t lie. This whole Apollo thing, I mean, I don’t know. Should I even go to Vengeance Day? He looks, he sees in the future, that’s some Cleo stuff, man!” Melo has Trick calm down. Of course Trick’s going to Vengeance Day. Apollo can stay daydreaming, but they stay scheming. McKenzie notes the match is Best 2 out of 3, so how does Melo see this playing out? Melo says everyone knows him by now, so we know how Melo sees this playing.
“Apollo needs to realize that this ain’t Jackson, that this ain’t Jordan, that these shots I take don’t ever jam.” Melo is of a different caliber! Melo took Apollo from the sidelines to the headlines. Apollo could have a top combine vertical, and his fingertips still wouldn’t reach Melo’s level. Melo tells Apollo that you can be this or that, but until you beat Melo, you can never be HIM. That’s all it is, and that’s all it’s gonna be. But is Melo overlooking the wild cards in the equation?
Roxanne Perez and Toxic Attraction sit down for video interviews.
The NXT Women’s Champion is far, far away from Gigi Dolin & Jacy Jayne for this final interview before Vengeance Day. Vic Joseph notes Roxie is the youngest woman to ever compete in the Royal Rumble match. How did that feel for her? She was overwhelmed, and so grateful to hear her music hit in front of over 50 THSOUAND people, and make the run down the ramp she’s dreamed of for so long. It was so incredible! Jacy says, “Incredible? More like incredibly pathetic! RoXaNnE~, cOnGrAtUlAtIoNs~! YoU wErE iN tHe RoYaL rUmBlE~!” But you didn’t win! And you’re not going to WrestleMania, but to Vengeance Day, to lose your title.
Gigi says the reason Roxie lost the Rumble was cuz she got put through a table! That look on her face when she realized she got tricked was great. But it’ll all be over for Lil’ Miss Perfect real soon. Roxie says Gigi & Jacy act like they’re best friends, but Roxie knows there is a lot of truth behind what they said to each other last week. Gigi says the truth is that Roxie stands no chance at Vengeance Day. How is Roxie gonna beat them both? She has the same percent chance of winning the Triple Threat as she did winning the Rumble: ZERO! Roxie is good and all, but going against the two baddest women in NXT at the same time, she has NO chance.
Actually, Roxie says she has more of a chance- Jacy cuts her off to say that Roxie had a good run. Eight months in NXT is like a little jog. Good for her! But Roxie peaked at 21 years old. That sucks. But this Saturday, it’s all coming to an end. Roxie says it’s not. But Gigi says it is. At least Roxie can go home to Texas and tell everyone she had a “cup of coffee” in the big time. She just made one critical mistake: messing with Toxic Attraction. And look on the bright side! She can play the “What If” game! What if Roxie stayed in her lane and didn’t punch up? Roxie starts to speak but Jacy cuts her off again, telling her to shut up.
Jacy says “What if” Roxie was a good little girl and didn’t make any waves. Whether Roxie likes it or not, it’s 2v1. Gigi says Roxie’s ride is over, the 15 minutes of fame are over. Roxie storms out, and Toxic Attraction make fun of her for not being able to handle it. Vic says Toxic Attraction weren’t being fair, but Jacy says, “Who cares? After Saturday, she’ll be old news. You’re looking at the next NXT Women’s Champion right here.” Then which one will it be? Gigi says you’re looking at her! Gigi knows everyone, especially Booker, is a big fan of Roxie, and is just trying to find a crack between Toxic Attraction, but there isn’t one.
For almost two years, Toxic Attraction has controlled the NXT Women’s Division. But for the last six weeks, everyone’s been on a vacation from it. That changes on Saturday, as order will be restored when Jacy & Gigi take their rightful spot. This day has been a long time coming, Roxie is just the first one to push it to the edge. But at Vengeance Day, they course correct things back to Gigi- Er, they become NXT Women’s Champion. Jacy notices that “flub,” but before she can respond, ROXANNE POUNCES!! Roxie fires off with all the pent up anger on both of them! She TACKLES Jacy through the set!!
Fans fire up as security rushes in to stop Roxie from tearing into Toxic Attraction more! Will nothing, not even two opponents at once, stop The Prodigy from proving why she IS NXT Women’s Champion?
Stevie Turner VS Dani Palmer!
Updated, online and ready to play, the Fourth Dimensional Superstar is finally back in action! Will Stevie prove that she is always two steps ahead and two levels above? Or will Dani delete Stevie before she even gets started?
The bell rings and the two circle. They tie up, Stevie has an armlock, then wrenches Dani to wrangle her to the mat. Dani fights up, rolls, backflips and wrenches, but Stevie gets away. They go again, Stevie waistlocks but Dani switches, only for Stevie to elbow free. Stevie headlocks, Dani brings her down to a knee and handstands to slip free! Stevie avoids Dani’s headlock to BOOT, BOOT and then scrape Dani on ropes! Fans boo, Stevie runs side to side to BOOT WASH! Stevie laughs like mad and she pushes Dani down. Stevie then brings Dani up, but Dani pushes her away. Stevie kicks low, CLUBS Dani, then turns her for a HANGING NECKBREAKER!
Dani staggers to ropes, Stevie snapmares her and clamps on a chinlock. Fans rally, Dani fights up, and arm-drags free! Stevie runs back but into an elbow! Dani dodges to LEAPING LARIAT! And again! Dani keeps moving but Stevie kicks low! But Dani JAWBREAKERS back! Dani runs to THESZ PRESS! Dani rains down wild hands, thrashes Stevie around, and then drags Stevie up. Dani runs, but Stevie reels her in by her tights! Stevie whips Dani away, and BOOTS her down! Stevie hauls Dani up, TWISTING DDT!! Stevie isn’t done there, she drags Dani up, for the SIDE EFFECT! Cover, Stevie wins!
Winner: Stevie Turner, by pinfall
Stevie just rerouted Dani’s connection and has her first win in NXT! Will Stevie soon be the number one trend in wrestling?
Kiana James is on the phone.
She promises to see “Zack” there, and says, “Love you, too.” Fallon Henley then walks over and asks who she was talking to. No one, don’t worry about it. Fallon knew it! She KNEW Kiana would break Jensen’s heart!! Fallon, calm down, it’s not what you think. You don’t even know why you’re upset right now! Oh? Then who is Zack?! But then in walk the NXT Women’s Tag Team Champions. Kayden Carter points out the #1 contenders, and how they’re not talking about their upcoming match. Katana Chance says that sounds like trouble. Kiana says sound travels fast around here. But the only sound the champs will hear on Saturday is, “And NEW…!”
Has Fallon been giving Kiana a lot to drink lately? They’ve been a team for like a week while KC Squared has been a team for over a year! Fallon says with all due respect, we all know, we all get it, Katana & Kayden are BFFs. But Saturday is the biggest match of Fallon’s life, so she is going all out. Kiana says they are going all out. Well, we’ll see about that. But either way, the titles are staying with KC Squared. Katana & Kayden head out, and Fallon gets Kiana’s attention. Stay focused for Saturday, but just know this conversation isn’t over. Fallon heads out, is she making a mountain out of a mole hill?
Charlie Dempsey VS Drew Gulak w/ Hank Walker!
The Son of the Gentleman Villain cost the Philly Stretcher and his blue collar protégé last week, so this is all about vengeance before Vengeance Day! Will Gulak lock Dempsey down? Or will the Philly Stretcher be the one getting stretched?
The bell rings and the two circle. They tie up, go around, and Gulak headlocks for a takeover. Dempsey fights up, hits a back suplex, but Gulak holds on! Gulak has control again but Dempsey headscissors. Gulak moves around, has the legs, but Dempsey keeps shoulders up in the stack. Dempsey pushes Gulak away, they stand, and Gulak facelocks. Dempsey wrenches out, wristlocks, but Gulak grinds forearms. Dempsey wrenches, Gulak gets away, and fans rally up as NXT goes picture in picture.
The two circle, knuckle lock, and go shoulder to shoulder for a test of strength. Dempsey powers Gulak down to his knees, but Gulak powers back up. They go shoulder to shoulder again and now Gulak powers Dempsey back. Dempsey bridges, but Gulak has the cover! TWO as Dempsey gets an arm up! Gulak puts that arm down, TWO as the other arm comes up! Gulak has both arms, TWO as Dempsey bridges back up! Gulak stands over Dempsey, brings him up, but Dempsey monkey flips! Dempsey rolls back to a cover, TWO as Gulak sunset flips! TWO, and Dempsey headlocks to keep Gulak down! Fans applaud as the technical exchange continues.
Gulak fights up to his feet, powers his way to a facelock, but Dempsey snap suplexes to a cover, TWO! Gulak has the facelock but Dempsey stands up again. Dempsey goes for a trip but Gulak uses that to get a cover, TWO! Dempsey fights up, Gulak facelocks, then scoops and SLAMS Dempsey into ropes! Dempsey clutches his legs but Gulak storms up. Dempsey throws body shots and uppercuts! Gulak DECKS Dempsey in return! Gulak hurries to a cover, TWO! Gulak grabs Dempsey’s legs and steps through, but Dempsey resists. Gulak still pushes through to get the deathlock, and then he gets the chinlock for a REGAL STRETCH!!
Dempsey endures, reaches out, but Gulak keeps the pressure on the hold! Dempsey still moves forward, NXT returns to single picture, and Dempsey pries the facelock away! Dempsey turns to trip Gulak into a HEEL HOOK! Gulak kicks away to get free! Dempsey UPPERCUTS, has the leg, DRAGON SCREW! Gulak clutches his knee and fans rally up again. Dempsey covers, TWO! Dempsey underhooks the arm, BUTTERFLY SUPLEX! Bridge, and then roll into the BUTTERFLY STRETCH! Gulak endures, fights up, but Dempsey shifts to have a FUJIWARA ARMBAR! Gulak endures, Dempsey turns it to a ghost pin, TWO!
ANOTHER BUTTERFLY SUPLEX! Bridging cover, TWO!! Dempsey keeps on Gulak with a deadlift GERMAN SUPLEX! Bridging cover, TWO!! “This is Wrestling!” as Dempsey brings Gulak up. Gulak wrenches the arm, CLUBS it, and then has the CROSSFACE CHICKEN WING! Dempsey pries free, arm-drags Gulak away, and storms up, to get the leg! Gulak slips out of the Dragon Screw, but Dempsey gets the leg again! DRAGON SCREW! And then Dempsey has the leg for a HEEL HOOK! Gulak kicks with his free leg, and he gets away! Both men rush in, Gulak blocks the forearm to LARIAT! Cover, TWO!
Gulak clutches his leg and Dempsey goes to ropes. Fans rally up, Gulak headlocks, but Dempsey hits a BACKBREAKER! Cover, TWO! Gulak is hanging tough and Hank coaches him up. Fans rally, Gulak and Dempsey slowly rise. Dempsehy runs in, into a SLAP!! Gulak just pissed Dempsey off! Dempsey BOOTS, but Gulak TACKLES Dempsey! Cover, TWO, but Dempsey has a SLEEPER! Gulak rolls out to get the arms! But Dempsey rolls, stands, but Gulak spins. Into Dempsey’s CROSSFACE CHICKEN WING! Gulak moves around, but Dempsey pushes on the bad leg! Dempsey drags Gulak down, body scissors are on!
Gulak fights, gets free of the body scissors, and Hank coaches Dempsey! Gulak runs to ropes and Dempsey is sent into Hank!! Gulak rolls Dempsey up, Gulak wins!
Winner: Drew Gulak, by pinfall
Hank is dazed, did he just get used as a pawn? Is Gulak using his own student to help him cut corners?
Von is fuming backstage.
He throws a chair at the wall, and Stone says it ain’t working. This is not working. Von throws a locker room bench, and shouts, “YA THINK?!” Stone asks a question: Why does Von have Stone managing him? Stone has been managing Von for over a year now, yet he knows nothing about Von! Who IS Von Wagner? He’s big, he growls, but so do a lot of other guys. If Von wants to get to the next level, then he has to show Stone who he is! He has to show us who he is INSIDE! Help Stone help Von! Stone storms off, will these words help unlock Von’s true potential?
Triple Threat Tag: The Dyad VS Malik Blade & Edris Enofe VS Chase U!
The New Day, Pretty Deadly and Gallus are waiting as there’s still room for one more for Vengeance Day! Will Rip Fowler & Jagger Reed plant the roots of The Schism in Charlotte? Will the underestimated underdogs finally unlock their potential? Or will Andre Chase & Duke Hudson share this #TeachableMoment with everyone? We find out, after the break!
NXT returns as Malik & Edris make their entrance, followed by Chase U’s entrance. In this kind of Triple Threat Tag, only two teams are legal at any given time, so Malik & Edris agree to let the other teams start. Duke and Rip circle as fans rally behind Chase U. Duke and Rip tie up, Rip knees low and whips Duke, but Duke blocks! Duke glares at Rip, reels him in and scoops to SLAM! Tag to Chase, Duke whips Rip and Chase drop toeholds for the “LET’S GO~!” ELBOW! Chase covers, TWO! Chase drags Rip up but Rip gets away to the third corner. Rip CHOPS Edris as part of the tag! Edris steps in and he circles with Chase.
Chase and Edris shake hands, then tie up. Edris wrenches, steps over, then arm-drags, but Chase blocks to step over and La Magistrol! ONE, but Edris wrangles Chase for a La Magi- NO, Chase blocks it to have a cover, TWO! Edris and Chase stand off, and Chase says that was a teachable moment! Fans cheer but Edris rushes in. They go around, Chase bucks the O’Conner, and things speed up! Edris jumps then DROPKICKS Chase down! Chase staggers up, Edris runs in and rolls off Chase’s back to tag Malik before the arm-drag! Malik hurries in, he and Edris double whip, to trip, BOOT and LARIAT! Malik covers, TWO!
Malik facelocks but Chase JAWBREAKERS free! Reed sneaks a tag before Chase whips. Malik reverses, Chase ducks ‘n’ dodges but Reed trips Chase up! Malik realizes what happened, the ref has him exit, and Reed keeps after Chase. Reed fires forearms and DECKS Chase! Chase bails out, Rip drags him up, and The Dyad coordinates, PLANCHA SHOULDER BREAKER! Chase clutches his arm while Rip pushes him around. Fans boo and Duke storms over but the ref has everyone stay back. Rip drags Chase up and puts him on the apron, to SLAM him on the edge! Chase sputters but Rip drags him around.
Fans rally, but Rip hits a BIG back suplex! Cover, TWO! Rip clamps onto Chase with a cobra clutch but Chase endures. Fans rally for Chase U as Chase fights up. Rip ripcords to LARIAT! Cover, TWO! Rip smothers Chase, has another cover, TWO! Rip and Reed are upset but the ref says his count is fair. Rip UPPERCUTS Chase in the back, then clamps on with another clutch. Fans rally, Chase fights up, but Rip ripcords to back elbow! Rip then suplexes, but Chase blocks it! Rip CLUBS Chase down, taunts Duke, but Chase fights up. Chase suplexes Rip! Fans fire up while both men are down! Reed tags in to run and DROPKICK Duke!
Reed turns around, into a BIG back drop! But no Duke means no tag! Thea Hail coaches Duke up but Rip tags back in. Rip goes after Chase but Chase throws him out! Malik & Edris call to Chase, they’re his only option! Chase runs over, but then The Dyad trips Malik & Edris up! Chase has no one, and turns around into a throat chop! Tag to Reed, the Dyad sets Chase up for a POWERBOMB BACKSTABBER!! Cover, TWO!?! Chase survives and everyone is shocked! Fans are thunderous for Chase U, but Rip says Chase is a hypocrite, a joke and a fool! Thea is furious on Chase’s behalf, and Reed runs in, but Chase goes up and over!
Hot tag to Duke! Duke rallies on The Dyad with big hands! Scoop for Rip, SIDEWALK SLAM! JAB after JAB for Reed! Rip rushes in, so he gets JAB after JAB! Flip, flop and U~! ELBOW! Then a SENTON! SPLASH for Reed, a whip corner to corner, and Reed tumbles up and out! Duke runs in to BOOT Reed down! Fans are thunderous as Duke fetches Reed back into the ring. Duke shoulders into Reed, slingshots and GERMAN SUPLEXES! Cover, TWO!! Reed survives but the student section fires up! Duke tunes up the band, but Malik tags in! Malik GAMANGIRIS Duke, springboards and CROSSBODIES Reed!
Malik goes back to ropes, to SLINGSHOT RANA Duke!! Malik is fired up and fans can’t help but fire up with him! Tag to Edris, Malik goes up a corner, FROG SPLASH onto Reed! Edris goes up, MACHO ELBOW!! Edris drags Reed up, fireman’s carries, and Malik runs! ROLLING NECKBREAKER! Cover, Rip AND Chase break it! Fans are electric as “NXT! NXT!” gives them this amazing main event! Thea is also all pumped up as all six men start brawling! Reed tumbles out but Chase and Duke throw Rip out to join him. Malik & Edris DOUBLE DROPKICK Chase U out! Then they build speed, to DOUBLE TOPE CONJILO!!
“This is Awesome!” as Edris puts Reed in! Edris goes back up top, but Reed hits ropes! Edris lands bad up top, and Reed ROCKS him! Reed climbs up after Edris, but Malik CLUBS Reed! Malik climbs up but then Rip YANKS him down! Rip RAMS Malik into steel steps! The Dyad has Edris together now, but Chase sneaks a tag! Chase joins in, and using his physics knowledge, hits a TOWER OF DOOM!! Fans are thunderous as Chase fires up! Spell it out! C! H! A! S! E! U! What’s that spell?! “CHASE U!!” But Ava Raine distracts Chase! Reed CLOBBERS Chase! But Thea YANKS Ava down! Reed is shocked!
Reed runs at Chase, GRIT YOUR- NO, Chase dodges! Hot tag to Duke, and Duke turns Reed! Gory Especial, and Chase adds on, ROLLING COMPLETE SHOT!! Cover, Chase U wins!!!
Winners: Chase U, by pinfall (join the NXT Tag Team Championship Fatal 4 Way)
Thea is the most excited of all as the red ‘n’ black now get to compete for some gold! But then we see Gallus appear in the perch and Pretty Deadly appear on stage, with the New Day on the tron! Gimme a C! H! A! S! Well, we know the rest. Congrats to Chase U! This wins means they’re going to Vengeance Day! So then, New Day will see Chase U, and Gallus, and Pretty Deadly of course. Put it together for all these teams! But will this road game be a big win for Chase U? Will Pretty Deadly redo the #SidePlateCheck? Will Gallus Boys be on top? Or will ya bois the NEW~ DAY~, still be your W, W, E, N, X, T, Tag, Team, CHAMPIONS~?
Now this was a go-home episode! No need for filling/wasting time with recaps, just give us promos, action and other stuff to hype up what’s coming. Good promo from Apollo Crews, and good response from Trick & Melo. Apollo’s vision seems to foreshadow Oro Mensah being his back-up, as I’m pretty sure I saw his dreadlocks in that silhouette. At the same time, even if someone were to cancel out Trick, that doesn’t guarantee Apollo wins. Melo could win one fall cuz of Trick, Apollo could win one fall cuz Oro cancels out Trick, and then the third fall is truly 1v1. I’m leaning towards Melo since he makes sense as the next challenger to THE NXT Championship.
Speaking of, we got a pretty good promo vignette for Bron VS Waller in the steel cage. And from how they’re talking about it, this is going to be a No Escape Steel Cage match, where the door isn’t an option and climbing the walls won’t win it for you. I am all for that, and I think all Steel Cage matches should be like that to get rid of some of the more overused tropes of a Steel Cage match. Good interview promos from Roxie, Gigi & Jacy, and while part of me wanted Roxie to explode on Toxic Attraction verbally, her going after them directly was just as good. Roxie really should show she has grit, but I feel like her initiating the brawl is tantamount to her standing tall. I hope this doesn’t put the go-home math against her, she only just got that belt.
Stevie Turner’s first match back was pretty good, and I’m actually happy to see they came up with a completely kayfabed chat box for her entrance, as I imagined last week. Good promo from Isla & Fyre to establish that they’re a team now. I was sensing there’d be something building towards Valentine’s Day in a couple weeks, and I think this whole “Who is Zack and what is he to Kiana?” is gonna be the thing. Kiana is gonna reveal that’s like her brother and Fallon’s gonna feel dumb for getting protective of Jensen’s feelings. But with that, I don’t think they win the tag titles at Vengeance Day. That should probably be Isla & Fyre.
We also got a real good “NXT Investigates” promo from McKenzie to point out just how many suspects there really are in the Whodunnit of Lyons’ parking lot attack. Indi VS Stark was a good match to play off that, but I’m starting to wonder if Valentina Feroz did it. Feroz seems like the least likely, so that’d be quite the twist. Given her talk with Elektra Lopez about doing underhanded things, Feroz said she couldn’t do anything to Wendy Choo because Wendy’s a friend. But Feroz and Lyons have no connections, so Feroz could attack her from behind with no problems.
Good promo from Wes Lee, Dijak, Von and Stone to set up Dijak VS Von. That was a good match, but of course Dijak won to have momentum going into the North American title match. I still think Wes wins, but what was really interesting to come out of this was Stone getting fired up telling Von to bring out some personality. Is Von going to suddenly have a gimmick? I can’t even be sure what that’d be. Also, good promo from Tony D and Stacks. I thought Von was gonna be the big guy Stacks went after but then this happened, so maybe Stacks calls out Odyssey Jones or Quincy Elliot to give one of those guys some screen time. And also a win, because I feel like Stacks is gonna bite off more than he can chew.
We also got some great technical wrestling singles matches. Gulak VS Dempsey was not as good as Bate VS Axiom, but I like the detail that Hank takes the hit to tip things in Gulak’s favor. Hank might confront Gulak on that move, and we get closer to Heel Gulak. Then we got just a hilarious and very meta promo out of Bate and Axiom referencing A-Kid. Kemp sticking his nose in things is fine, he needs something to do and honestly should’ve had more time in NXT UK. Bate winning makes sense, he’s also back and needs some momentum. Kemp’s blindside attack definitely earns him a match with both of them in turn, probably winning against Axiom but losing to Bate.
Really good stuff out of the NXT Tag Division tonight, too. The opener of Creeds VS Indus Sher was good, though I feel like maybe they’re going for too real of a fight feel. Julius just came off like he forgot the match flow they discussed. But it was a clever move to have Indus Sher win because of the mishap with Ivy. This will add something more to the Diamond Mine story, and Indus Sher really should be climbing up the rankings. Especially with everything going on in the title story.
Great Triple Threat main event, and as great as all three teams are, it makes sense Chase U won. New Day is Face, Gallus and Pretty Deadly are Heel, so there needed to be another Face team. There’s intrigue in the Chase U story and it can play out in the Fatal 4. And Indus Sher being Heels, if New Day retains (or even if Chase U wins), that’d be a great program going to Stand & Deliver.
My Score: 8.8/10
Mitchell’s AEW Dark Results & Report! (1/31/23)
Orlando stays Dark!
Universal Studios is still the AEW Dark Arena!
As they prepare to go after the AEW World Trios Championships, AR Fox & Top Flight reunite to take on The Wingmen: Peter Avalon, Ryan Nemeth & Cezar Bononi!
- Six Man Tag: AR Fox & Top Flight VS The Wingmen; Fox & Top Flight win.
- Red Velvet VS Sofia Castillo; Velvet wins.
- Zack Clayton VS Fulton; Clayton wins.
- Brock Anderson & Brian Pillman Jr. w/ Arn Anderson VS Rosario Grillo & Dean Alexander; Anderson & Pillman win.
- Skye Blue VS Renee Michelle; Skye wins.
- Shane Taylor Promotions VS Mr. G & Dante Casanova; Shane Taylor Promotions wins.
- Yuka Sakazaki VS Avery Breaux; Yuka wins.
- The Workhorsemen VS Liam Gray & Adrian Alanis; The Workhorsemen win.
- Angelico w/ Serpentico & Luther VS Konosuke Takeshita; Konosuke wins.
A solid line-up, and I like that we’re getting to see Brock Anderson & Brian Pillman Jr. in action together after a backstage promo on Elevation not too long ago. Not sure what the team name is but two second generation stars together is a logical combination. Angelico VS Konosuke, that is going to be a great match, but I give the win to Konosuke. Red Velvet is in action again after also being on Elevation, she’s definitely building momentum towards taking on Jade Cargill for Jade’s 50th match. And good to see Shane Taylor Promotions in action here. They’ll be a strong part of the ROH Tag Team Division, even after having lost to Keith Lee after Swerve abandoned Keith.
And good to see AR Fox & Top Flight in action, and against The Wingmen. For one, good to see Avalon, Nemeth & Bononi teaming all together again. And this will be a good match to build momentum for Fox & Flight.
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