This Week In NXT 12th Edition: News and Recap
Welcome back ladies and gentleman to another edition of this Week in NXT. The first episode of NXT on the USA Network aired tonight. The first hour was on the USA Network and the second hour was on the WWE Network. It did not disappoint one bit. I just finished watching. No news this week, so I’m a get right into the recap.
The show kicked off with a video package. Triple H was the narrator. He was hyping up the brand before they went live. Once it ended, he came out briefly on stage to the live crowd. The set up was a little different. The stage and commentator area has changed up a bit. Makes sense to switch things up a little to give the live show a fresh feel to it.
The first match of the night was a number one contender’s match to see who would take on Shayna Baszler for the NXT Woman’s Title. Mia Yim vs Candice LeRae vs Io Shirai vs Bianca Belair. These four ladies did not this disappoint. They all got to showcase their skill sets. Belair hit a beautiful springboard moonsault early on in the match. Shirai got excellent height on a missile dropkick. Candice hit the octopus submission that AJ Lee used as a finisher when she wrestled. I believe she called it the tarantula.
Candice would pick up the win with her signature moonsault off the ropes. I had a feeling she would win this match. The other three ladies already faced Shayna. When Candice was heading to the back, Shayna and her girls Marina Shafir and Jessamyn Duke confronted her and had a staredown. It was announced that in two weeks Candice will get her title match against Shayna on Oct 2nd when NXT will officially go head to head with AEW. This should be a good match. It would be nice to see Candice win, but I have a feeling Shayna retains.
They showed a video package for Keith Lee and Dominik Dijakovic highlighting their feud. They will go one on one on next weeks show. These two have been going at it when they have had matches together. Their last match is a match of the year candidate I feel. I’m sure they will not disappoint in their 3rd meeting.
The next match of the night was between Sean Maluta and Cameron Grimes. Grimes seems to have this country carnival-type gimmick he’s using these days. This was a squash match. Grimes hits Maluta with the double knee strike and gets the victory.
The main event for the first hour was Velveteen Dream defending his North American Title against Roderick Strong. Very good match with these two gentlemen. They have great chemistry. We get some outside interference from The Undisputed Era (Adam Cole, Bobby Fish, and Kyle O’ Reilly). Strong had a near fall with the End of Heartache. Velveteen gets on the top rope and takes a superkick from Cole that the ref doesn’t see. Strong hits the End of Heartache again for the win to become the new North American Champion. The Undisputed Era has all the gold now. That’s how you Shock The System!
Hour one was awesome now it’s time for the second hour to begin. The first match was between The Bruiserweight Pete Dunn and Arturo Ruas. Ruas looks like a Street Fighter character. This was a physical style match. When Dunne begins that joint manipulation, it is insane. He stomped on Ruas’s arm, tried to snap his toes, and end the match trying to snap his fingers. Ruas taps out and Dunne gets the win. I loved Dunne’s expression after the match. He shrugs his shoulders as if to say yeah that’s what I do.
Last week we saw a video package for the return of Dakota Kai. We got another one this week. This time it was announced that she will be returning next week. She’s been out for a while now after suffering a torn ACL. She has so much potential. I can’t wait to see what’s in store for her. She can bring a lot to the NXT woman’s division.
Next match is between Xia Li and Aliyah who is accompanied by Vanessa Borne. I love Borne and Aliyah together. This match was all about Li. She was very impressive here with her offense. Aliyah barely got any moves in. Xia hit a spinning back kick that pretty much sealed Aliyah’s fate. Xia wins with the Windmill kick. Hopefully, we get to see more of Xia. She shined here big time. Don’t sleep on Borne and Aliyah either. They will be back. If they decide to bring the Woman’s Tag Titles to NXT at some point, these two ladies should be first in line for a title match. We shall see.
Kushida was supposed to compete in the next match against Denzel Dejournette. Denzel comes out first and all of a sudden the ring is surrounded by NXT UK’s Imperium (Marcel Barthel, Fabian Aichner, and Alexander Wolfe). Did you know Imperium means absolute power? You learn something new every day. They attack Denzel. The crowd is chanting for the fourth member of Imperium Walter. Low and behold he comes out next. He gets on the mic and talks about bringing respect back to wrestling.
All of a sudden, Kushida’s music hits. He says that this is his time. It looks like it was gonna be a 4 on 1 attack. Kushida ends up getting the upper hand on the 4 men. This could be a very interesting feud. I knew with the extra hour, we’d see some NXT UK talent get an opportunity. Who will help Kushida in this feud? The possibilities are endless.
In one of the biggest surprises of the night, we saw Lio Rush return to the NXT brand. He took on Oney Lorcan in a number one contender match for the cruiserweight title. We haven’t seen Rush in months. I love how Mauro Ranallo said Rush had more issues than a magazine, he’s faster than 5G and is cooler than an ice cube. That is just awesome. I love his commentary style.
The match was great. Lorcan was wearing Laker colors. As a Laker fan, I could appreciate that. Lorcan got the upper hand early and went for a quick pin. I was thinking we would have another squash match. Lio got himself together. Rush hit three suicide dives in a row to Lorcan. Rush also hit this crazy springboard Stunner/RKO off the ropes for a near fall as well.
These two guys were going at it. Speed and quickness vs ground and pound. After trading a series of strikes back and forth, Rush hit a beautiful counter into a Spanish fly. Rush would go on to hit the Dragon’s Call Frogsplash and pick up the win. What a great story. I know people were giving Rush a lot of crap for his behavior. Rush is only 24. He’s still very young in the business. I’m not making excuses for his behavior but we have all done dumb stuff when we were young. I’ve met the guy. He was very cool. I saw him put on two awesome matches at MCW (Maryland Championship Wrestling) against Anthony Henry and Flip Gordon. Being in NXT will help him for sure. I’m pulling for the guy. He showcased here what he is capable of. Rush vs Cruiserweight champion Drew Gukak should be a good one.
In the final match of the night, we got a Street Fight between Matt Riddle and Killian Dain. These two have been feuding since Dain returned earlier this summer. This was probably the craziest match of the night. The two men brawl in the ring. They take the brawl backstage and eventually outside. Things get chaotic. The Forgotten Sons, Imperium, The Street Profits, Pete Dunne, Dominic Dijakovic, and several other members of the NXT roster all get involved.
They bring the fight back to the ring, and they bring all the guys from backstage along with them. Security tries to get involved. That didn’t help much. One of the security guys even took a suplex from Riddle. They brawled into the show went off the air. Wow, I surely wasn’t expecting things to end like that. It made for good tv tho.
I just got some new information from the official NXT Twitter page. After the cameras went off, General Manager William Regal came out to restore some order. He said that the Street Fight will continue next week between Killian Dain and Matt Riddle. He added that the winner will meet Adam Cole for the NXT Title. This is huge and adds some extra incentive for these two men.
I know it’s just one week, but I was very impressed with what I saw tonight. NXT brought their A-game like I knew they would. They exceeded my expectations for this show. If they keep bringing it like this, AEW is gonna have to step their game up once the two go head to head starting Oct 2nd. Rather you believe AEW is competition or not, they are someone to keep an eye as they get their company going.
I hope a lot of new fans turned in to give the NXT show a try tonight. That’s what I’m happy most about is the mainstream exposure the brand will get now being on a big-time network. I’m happy for all the talent too. Behind the scenes and in front of the camera. They have worked so hard to build up the brand to what it is today. I look forward to seeing what is in store moving forward. What a great time to be a wrestling fan.
I’ll see you guys back here next week for another recap of the show. The We Talk NXT podcast will be returning this weekend with my friend Keda. I’ll post a link in next week’s recap so you all can check it out. I’m looking forward to getting that show going again. Until next time, take care and continue to support the NXT brand.