– Tonight’s WWE NXT episode opens up on the USA Network with a video package.
– We’re live on a tape delay from the NXT Arena on the campus of Full Sail University in Winter Park, Florida. Mauro Ranallo welcomes us and he’s joining us from home once again. WWE Hall of Famer Beth Phoenix is also on commentary, from home once again.
Io Shirai and Tegan Nox vs. Dakota Kai and Candice LeRae
We go to the ring for tonight’s opener and out comes NXT Women’s Champion Io Shirai. Dakota Kai suddenly attacks her on the stage as the crowd of developmental trainees boo. They brawl and Tegan Nox makes the save. Candice LeRae is out next. The brawl carries to the ring and the referee calms things down briefly. The bell rings and here we go with LeRae and Nox starting out.
Back and forth to start. LeRae mounts some offense but Nox fights back. LeRae takes Nox back down and mounts her with strikes. LeRae with more offense and a second 2 count. Nox fights and gets an opening. LeRae gets rocked and in comes Kai. Shirai also tags in and they go at it. Kai drops Shirai and talks some trash in her face. Shirai comes right back with a big kick. Shirai works Kai over while she’s down. More back and forth but Shirai gets the upperhand. Kai with a basement dropkick and a kip up as the crowd rallies.
Kai blocks and turns it around, launching Shirai back from the mat. Kai with more offense, taking it back to the corner for a tag to LeRae. LeRae takes Shirai down for a 2 count. Kai tags back in and works on Shirai while LeRae holds her in the corner. Kai takes Shirai right back to the mat for another pin attempt. Kai uses the middle rope on Shirai but still can’t put her away. Kai with more trash talking. Shirai counters and drops Kai face-first with a Flapjack for a pop.
Shirai keeps Kai grounded with a knee into her back now. Shirai drops down into a submission but LeRae runs in to break it up. Nox runs in and sends LeRae to the floor. Nox and Shirai go for a double suplex but Kai blocks it.. LeRae pulls Shirai to the floor. Kai kicks Nox in the face, sending her to the floor. LeRae goes out and sends Nox shoulder-first into the steel ring steps. Nox is down on the floor in pain as we go to commercial.
Back from the break and LeRae goes down with Nox after they collide. Shirai comes in and goes at it with Kai now. Shirai unloads and hits a dropkick for a pop. Shirai fights off both competitors from the apron, sending LeRae to the floor. Shirai flies back in with a springboard kick to take Kai down for a close 2 count. Shirai goes for the Tiger Driver but Kai blocks it. Shirai with a German suplex to Kai.
Shirai goes to the to but Kai cuts her off and drops her, preventing the moonsault. The crowd boos as Kai climbs up and pounds on Shirai. Shirai resists the superplex. Shirai decks Kai in the throat and turns her upside down in the Tree of Woe. Shirai flies high with the big double stop. Kai still kicks out at 2. Kai tags in LeRae. Shirai immediately kicks her through the ropes and nails a missile dropkick. Shirai with the running knees in the corner. Shirai with a suicide dive to Kai next on the floor.
Nox runs in and hits the Shiniest Wizard on LeRae while the referee isn’t looking. Shirai comes back in and goes to the top, nailing the moonsault on LeRae in the middle of the ring. Shirai covers for the pin to win.’
Winners: Io Shirai and Tegan Nox
– After the match, Shirai and Nox stand tall as Shirai’s music hits. They raise their arms as we go to replays. Shirai raises the title in the air and then hugs Nox while Kai looks on from the stage.
– Tom Phillips is at ringside on commentary, by himself. He brings up the incident between Adam Cole and Pat McAfee, which happened on The Pat McAfee Show podcast earlier this week. We see a video on what happened, and then Triple H’s appearance, via video chat, where McAfee said they should find a time where he and Cole can talk about what happened. We go to commercial.
– Back from the break and we see how Bronson Reed earned a spot in the “Takeover: XXX” Ladder Match for the vacant NXT North American Title.
Johnny Gargano vs. Roderick Strong
We go back to the ring and out comes Johnny Gargano as Alicia Taylor does the introductions. Roderick Strong is out next.
The bell rings and they size each other up. Strong with a quick 1 count before they go back and forth on the mat now. Strong keeps Gargano down on the mat. They tangle some more and Strong blocks the GargaNo Escape. They finally get back to their feet and stare each other down. They get aggressive now, shoving each other. Strong takes Gargano down and grounds him. Gargano turns it around with a submission of his own. We get a quick 2 count but Gargano takes Strong right back into a headlock.
Gargano hits a hurricanrana after they run the ropes. They tangle some more and end up on the outside. Gargano counters a slam into the Plexiglas barrier and drops Strong face-first by his arm. We go to commercial with both competitors on the floor.
Back from the break and Strong drops Gargano with a backbreaker in the middle of the ring. The crowd rallies as Strong chops Gargano from corner to corner. More back and forth now. Gargano with an enziguri from the apron. Gargano looks for One Final Beat but Strong catches him in another big backbreaker. Strong ends up taking Gargano back to the top. Gargano fights back. Gargano headbutts him. Gargano counters with a twisting Flatliner from the second rope. Strong still kicks out at 2.
Strong makes it back up but Gargano talks some trash while beating Strong around. Strong misses an enziguri and Gargano rolls him for a pin attempt. Strong ends up missing the Olympic Slam. Gargano goes on and applies the GargaNo Escape on the mat. Strong gets free and goes for the StrongHold but Gargano fights him off, dropping him with kicks from the mat. Gargano walks into boots from the mat.
More back and forth between the two. Strong ends up on the floor. Gargano misses a baseball slide but he still launches Strong into the barrier. Strong goes into the steel ring post next. Gargano slams Strong into the Plexiglas, then rolls him back into the ring. Gargano brings it back in and drops Strong with One Final Beat DDT. Gargano covers for the pin to win.
Winner: Johnny Gargano
– After the match, Gargano stands tall as his music hits and the boos pick up. We go to replays. Gargano makes his exit.
– McKenzie Mitchell is backstage with Dakota Kai. She asks about Kai walking out on Candice LeRae and their match earlier tonight. Kai, who does not have Raquel Gonzalez with her once again, says she doesn’t care about LeRae, and she’s not a team player anymore. She says she’s done with jumping through hoops and multi-person matches to become the new #1 contender. Kai declares that she is the #1 contender and she’s in Io Shirai’s head, and she’s coming for the NXT Women’s Title. Kai rushes off but here comes Rhea Ripley, calling her back. Ripley says that’s good that Kai is going for Shirai, but she has a problem with Kai saying she’s next to get Shirai. Ripley says Shirai is hers and she has no problem with going through anyone else. Kai says we will see what NXT General Manager William Regal says about it. Ripley tells her to do just that as she walks off. Back to commercial.
– Back from the break and McKenzie is backstage with Timothy Thatcher. She asks about tonight’s main event and he’s confident about torturing both Dexter Lumis and Finn Balor in the ring. We see Lumis watching Thatcher from the background. Thatcher walks off.
– The Undisputed Era is backstage – Adam Cole, Roderick Strong, Kyle O’Reilly and Bobby Fish. O’Reilly is tired of the nonsense. He gets hyped up and shoves everyone, reminding him who they are and how they’ve dominated NXT. O’Reilly declares The Undisputed Era is back in business. They walk off.
Shotzi Blackheart vs. Mercedes Martinez
We go back to the ring and out comes Shotzi Blackheart in her mini-tank. Out next comes The Robert Stone Brand – Mercedes Martinez with Aliyah and Robert Stone himself. Martinez hits the ring to pose and they stand behind her.
The bell rings and Shotzi unloads on Martinez with strikes, dropping her. Shotzi charges but Martinez tosses her over the top rope to the floor. Stone and Aliyah taunt Shotzi, distracting her. Martinez comes out and attacks from behind, dropping Shotzi to boos. The referee counts. Martinez slams Shotzi face-first onto the apron edge. Martinez brings it back in and mounts Shotzi with rights and lefts.
Shotzi blocks a Fisherman’s Buster and looks to make a comeback. Blackheart with a big boot and a shot in the corner while Mercedes is down. Martinez kicks out of the Sunset Bomb. Shotzi avoids a clothesline, then drops Martinez on her face. Shotzi with big forearms and a Switchblade kick in the middle of the ring. Shotzi yells out and hits a reverse senton while Martinez is positioned on the middle rope. Shotzi covers but Martinez kicks out at 1.
Shotzi charges again but Martinez catches her with a big Spinebuster in the middle of the ring. Martinez covers for a 2 count. Martinez mounts Shotzi in the middle of the ring with more strikes. More back and forth now. Martinez blocks Sliced Bread #2 out of the corner. Martinez climbs up with big forearm shots to the chest. Martinez hits a huge super German suplex from the top for a pop.
Martinez picks Shotzi up in the middle of the ring and drives her down into the mat. Martinez covers for the pin to win.
Winner: Mercedes Martinez
– After the match, Martinez stands tall and is joined by Stone and Aliyah. We go to replays. The boos get louder as Martinez poses in the corner.
– Still to come, Keith Lee will address Karrion Kross. Back to commercial.
– Back from the break and out comes NXT Champion Keith Lee to a pop.
Lee takes the mic and addresses what Karrion Kross did to Dominik Dijakovic last week. Lee says Dijakovic is a grown man and will be just fine. On the other hand, this other man thinks the sound of sand is the sound of a clock. Lee yells and says Kross has made it a point that he wants Lee’s attention, and Lee’s title. Lee says Kross has done so much extra bullshit. Lee lays the title down in front of him as a “bullshit!” chant breaks out. Lee says all of Kross’ extra bullshit means nothing when he can’t face him like a man. Lee says right now he’s doing something in the ring that Kross doesn’t seem to have the balls to do – man to man. Lee says he’s calling Kross out. The crowd pops. The music interrupts and out comes Cameron Grimes instead.
Grimes takes the mic and says we should be talking about him, not Kross. Lee isn’t happy. Grimes says Lee gave away the NXT North American Title before he could take them both. Grimes says he’s here to say that he will take the NXT Title from Lee and go straight to the moon. Lee still hasn’t turned around to look at Grimes. Grimes is on the apron now, yelling at Lee to face him. Lee turns around and immediately grabs Grimes by his neck, bringing him over the ropes with a slam. Lee manhandles Grimes as the crowd pops. The lights go low and the stage is dark now.
Lee turns to see Scarlett standing under a spotlight on the ramp. Someone actually yells “Scarlett you suck!” from the crowd. Scarlett and Lee briefly stare each other down. Grimes attacks out of nowhere but Lee drops him with a Spirit Bomb. Lee turns back around to stare at Scarlett. She points to the big screen and there’s Kross. Kross asks what kind of man does nothing while his friend suffers, like Lee did last week. Kross says Lee has to live with that now. He gives Lee two choices. The easy way – Lee gives him his title shot. Or the hard way. Kross says Lee doesn’t even want to know what that is because everyone will suffer. Tick Tock, Kross says. Kross disappears on the big screen.
Lee takes the mic and says Kross wants to talk about choices. He tells Kross to pick the time and the place, and he will whip that ass. Lee picks the title back up and is fuming as the crowd pops. He stares ahead as we see a shot of Scarlett turning to exit to the back. Back to commercial.
– Back from the break and we get a video package for tonight’s main event with Finn Balor warning the other competitors.
Imperium vs. Ever-Rise
We go back to the ring and out come NXT Tag Team Champions Marcel Barthel and Fabian Aichner of Imperium for this non-title match. Out next are Matt Martel and Chase Parker of Ever-Rise.
Barthel starts off with Martel and they go to the corner. Barthel takes Martel down first and works on the arm. Aichner tags in for some quick double teaming. Aichner takes Martel down and works on the same arm. Parker tags in after Aichner runs into a boot. Parker slingshots in with an elbow to the back. Barthel runs in but Parker fights him off. Ever-Rise double teams the champions now but it backfires. Aichner slams Parker onto Martel.
More back and forth with Imperium taking control and hitting big dropkick. Imperium keeps control and hits more double teaming on Parker. They hit the big double team European Bomb on Parker from the corner. Aichner covers for the pin to win.
– After the match, Aichner and Barthel stand tall as the music hits. We go to replays. Barthel takes the mic and declares that they have returned. The music hits and out comes The Undisputed Era to a pop. Adam Cole, Bobby Fish, Kyle O’Reilly and Roderick Strong all rush the ring. Imperium starts brawling but the numbers game catches up. The Undisputed Era destroys Aichner and Barthel, hitting their finishers in the middle of the ring. Cole takes the mic and says they run NXT, and this is what happens. The music starts back up as The Undisputed Era exits the ring and stands together on the ramp.
– Tom shows us a video package on Bronson Reed, who earned a spot in the “Takeover: XXX” Ladder Match for the vacant NXT North American Title with last week’s Triple Threat win. Reed doesn’t care who else qualifies for the match because his dream will come true at Takeover. Back to commercial.
– Back from the break and Tom has a video message from NXT General Manager William Regal. Regal tells Karrion Kross and NXT Champion Keith Lee that he will not be bullied into making title matches as those opportunities are still earned in NXT.
Isaiah “Swerve” Scott vs. Jake Atlas
We go back to the ring and out first comes Isaiah “Swerve” Scott. Jake Atlas is out next. We get a sidebar video from Atlas where he talks about getting on top now that he’s been cleared to compete. Atlas is fighting for Drake Maverick.
The bell rings and they go at it. We get an early stalemate as they break and smile at each other. Atlas takes Scott down and shows off some. More back and forth and showing off between the two. Atlas with a dropkick in the middle of the ring. Scott blocks a big kick and rolls Atlas for a 2 count. Atlas takes it to the corner with a big chop. Atlas with another chop in the opposite corner. Scott catches a kick and then kicks Atlas in the face, dropping him in the corner. We go to commercial.
Back from the break and they’re going at it. Atlas nails a springboard Blockbuster from the apron but Scott kicks out at 2. Scott turns it around but Atlas slides out of a hold. More back and forth now. Scott runs into a big kick to the face. Atlas with a DDT for a close 2 count. Atlas with more strikes against the ropes. Scott dodges a kick and rolls Atlas for a 2 count. Scott counters that with a German suplex. Scott goes on for another close 2 count.
Scott tries to set up a move in the corner but Atlas kicks him away. They end up on the second rope now, trading shots. Atlas hits a huge modified Samoan Drop out of the corner but Scott still kicks out at 2. Atlas cartwheels but can’t hit the DDT, ending up on the apron. They tangle and Scott kicks him in the face. Atlas is turned upside down now, hanging down to the floor. Scott goes out and nails a House Call to the face.
Scott brings it back into the middle of the ring and delivers the JML Driver for the pin to win.
Winner: Isaiah “Swerve” Scott
– After the match, Scott stands tall as the music hits. We go to replays. Swerve poses and looks on as the crowd cheers him on.
– McKenzie is backstage with Damian Priest now. It’s announced that he will face the debuting NXT UK Superstar Ridge Holland and Oney Lorcan next week in a Triple Threat qualifier for the “Takeover: XXX” Ladder Match. Priest says there’s no situation where he will not become the new NXT North American Champion at Takeover. He goes on and says there will be no upset next week like there was last week with Bronson Reed. He says the favorite will win at Takeover and then his reign of infamy will begin.
– Back from the break and the following matches are also announced for next Wednesday – Rhea Ripley vs. Dakota Kai in a #1 contender’s match, plus Kyle O’Reilly and Bobby Fish vs. Imperium for their NXT Tag Team Titles.
Triple Threat Qualifier for the North American Title Ladder Match at Takeover: Finn Balor vs. Dexter Lumis vs. Timothy Thatcher
We go to the ring for tonight’s main event as Dexter Lumis comes out first. Timothy Thatcher is out next, stopping to look at the vacant NXT North American Title on display. Finn Balor is out last. The winner of this match will earn the second spot in the five-man Ladder Match for the vacant NXT North American Title at the “Takeover: XXX” event. Bronson Reed has already qualified.
Balor and Thatcher go at it early on as Lumis watches from the middle of the ring. They come back in and he just sends them back out. Lumis runs the ropes for a dive but stops in between both competitors, hitting the landing and staring at them both. The brawl comes back into the ring now. Balor fights Thatcher but Lumis runs over them. Lumis keeps control and nails a big backdrop driver on Balor for a 2 count.
Thatcher gets sent to the floor by Lumis. Balor goes to work on Lumis and beats him down in the corner. Balor focuses on the leg, then takes him from corner to corner, keeping the attack up. Balor with a big chop now. Thatcher runs in with an European uppercut to Balor, then several to Lumis. Thatcher with a belly-to-belly suplex on Lumis for a 2 count in the middle of the ring. Thatcher with a double wristlock to keep Lumis down now. Lumis blocks a shot and slams Thatcher throat-first on the top rope. Balor drops Lumis from the apron with a kick.
Balor goes to the top but Thatcher knocks him off to the apron. Balor clutches his knee and Thatcher stares at him, hyping himself up. We go to commercial.
Back from the break and Lumis gets dropped. Thatcher works on Balor now. Balor rolls him for a 2 count out of nowhere. Thatcher comes right back with a European uppercut. Thatcher chokes Balor with the middle rope now as the crowd rallies. Tom says Lumis suffered a left ankle injury before the commercial break.
Thatcher continues to dominate Balor, driving a knee into him on the mat. Thatcher keeps Balor grounded with a hold now, bending the fingers back. Balor resists and Thatcher clubs him. Thatcher slams Balor and drops an elbow for a quick pin attempt. Lumis gets on the apron but Thatcher knocks him right back to the floor. Balor and Thatcher trade big strikes in the middle of the ring now. Balor drops Thatcher. Thatcher knocks him into the corner. Balor fights out and drops Thatcher. Balor drops Thatcher again but gets kicked away. Lumis comes in and knocks both opponents down. Lumis with a bulldog to Thatcher. Balor drops Lumis with a pele kick.
The crowd rallies while all three are down now. Balor gets up and chops Lumis in the corner. Balor with a reverse DDT on Thatcher, then a Slingblade to Lumis. Balor waits for Lumis to get back up, pointing his guns from the corner. Thatcher pulls Balor down and to the ring post, slamming his leg around it. Thatcher bends Balor’s leg while on the apron now. Lumis rocks him with an uppercut. Lumis has Thatcher alone in the ring now. Lumis with a big Spinebuster in the middle of the ring.
Thatcher fights off the Silence submission now. Thatcher drops him with a leaping kick. Balor comes in but Thatcher takes the leg out with a Dragon Screw leg whip, sending Balor back to the floor. Thatcher and Lumis tangle again. Lumis with the Uranage and then the Silence submission. Balor comes flying off the top to break it with a Coup de Grace. Balor with a 2 count on Lumis as Thatcher breaks it. Thatcher with an ankle lock on Balor now but Balor resists. Thatcher takes Balor down and tightens the hold on the leg. Lumis crawls up behind Thatcher and applies the Silence submission, while Balor is still stuck in Thatcher’s submission. Thatcher fades and passes out, which frees Balor from Thatcher’s hold. Thatcher passes out due to Lumis’ Silence submission, giving him the win.
Winner: Dexter Lumis
– After the bell, Lumis sits up and stares out as his music hits. Lumis is going to Takeover. Lumis slithers out of the ring as we go to replays. Lumis stands next to the NXT North American Title on display as we see Balor and Thatcher recovering in the ring. NXT goes off the air with Lumis standing at the strap.