Welcome to another installment of the NXT Spotlight here at TJRWrestling. We are getting ever closer to Takeover: Houston and with a lot of storylines in the air and matches to be determined, let’s see what this week has in store.
Our show starts with William Regal who states due to the way she lost in her qualifying match, Nikki Cross will get a shot in the women’s battle royal tonight. He says he’s also spoken to Undisputed Era, Sanity, & Authors of Pain and made them aware that next week Authors of Pain will get their tag title rematch against Sanity, and anyone not competing in the match is barred from ringside.
Danny Burch & Oney Lorcan vs. Tino Sabbatelli & Riddick Moss
Lorcan and Moss start the match. Lorcan lights Moss up with a chop and European uppercut. Moss forces Lorcan into the corner but Lorcan comes out and hits a nasty looking dropkick. Burch tags in but Moss is able to pick Burch up and force him into his corner. Sabbatelli tags in now and they double team Burch. Burch gets his knees up in the corner and then goes up to the second rope for a front dropkick on Sabbatelli. Burch isn’t able to capatalize as Sabbatelli kills him with a lariat. Moss tags back in and works Burch over in his corner. Sabbatelli tags back in and Moss feeds Burch into a dropkick from Sabbatelli. Sabbatelli works Burch over and then lays in a knee before tagging in Moss. They try double teaming Buch, but he escapes and tags in Lorcan. Lorcan is going nuts and eventually hits a Blockbuster on Sabbatelli but then turns into a fallaway slam by Moss. Sabbatelli comes back in the ring and they hit a nice looking Gory Special/Bulldog combo on Lorcan and they pick up a pinfall with it.
Winners: Tino Sabbatelli and Riddick Moss
K-Tank’s Take: I love both these teams but I would think quite the surprising result. I’m not complaining though as Sabbatelli and Moss are the more established team. Burch and Lorcan paired up is the right decision and I’m interested to see where they go from here.
We get a recap of how Nikki Cross lost her qualifying match two weeks ago that Regal referenced at the beginning of the show.
NXT Women’s Title Qualifying Battle Royal
Really thought this would be the main event but I’m guessing not. Lot of participants in this match. The majority from Mae Young Clasic of course. They show entrances for Billie Kay and Nikki Cross after a commercial break when everyone entered. Nikki goes straight for Taynara Conti, who was the one who cost her two weeks ago. Conti is eliminated rather quickly, but pulls Nikki out (not over the top rope) and hits her on the guardrail before leaving. Peyton Royce, who is looking mighty fine at ringside, then throws Nikki into the stairs. Rhea Ripley and Zeda are both eliminated by Bianca Belair as we go to commercial.
Sage Beckett eliminates Dakota Kai with a back body drop over the top. She then follows that up by kicking Aliyah off the apron and eliminating her. Nikki Cross is back and goes to the top rope and does a cross body onto everyone. Now one by one she takes out all the women. She tosses Vanessa Bourne over the top and then low bridges Sage Beckett to get rid of both of them. Santana Garrett is next with a clothesline over the top. Abbey Laith charges and she gets back body dropped to the floor. Sarah Logan was set up on the top rope by Bianca Belair and Mercedes Martinez then dropped her to the flood with a forearm shot. Candice LaRae trips up Lacey Evans and eliminates her. We’re down to five… Cross, Kay, LaRae, Belair, Martinez. Belair shows some really impressive strength by gorilla pressing LaRae and throwing her onto Beckett and Logan on the floor. Down to four. Belair tries to eliminate Kay, who uses Belair’s own ponytail to hold on to to stay in the ring. That got a great reaction and was really well down. Belair did not appreciate it because she gives a country whipping to Kay with her ponytail. Cross spears Kay to the floor but they are not eliminated. Martinez sets Belair up on the top rope and delivers a big boot, but Belair only goes to the apron. Belair suplexes Martinez over to the apron with her. They are fighting and here comes Nikki and she clotheslines them both to the floor. Kay comes from behind and tries to sneak the win but Nikki only goes to the apron. Billie charges with her big boot but misses and Nikki uses that to her advantage to dump Kay and we have our fourth participant!
Winner: Nikki Cross
Post match, William Regal is in the ring with the NXT Women’s Title. Peyton and Nikki start arguing until Ember Moon’s music hits and she makes her way to the ring. That, of course, leads to Kairi Sane coming out. All four women look at the title.
K-Tank’s Take: If you would’ve asked me after Sane won the Classic and it was announce we’d have a Fatal 4 Way, who should be the other three, I would’ve said these three. The fans were WAY behind Nikki, which is great to see as she is awesome in her role. Ember has always been on the cusp but almost feels forgotten now that her feud with Asuka ended abruptly. Peyton and Billie are great as a group so should always be near the top of the division and so I’m glad to see them represented.
We go to earlier this week where Drew McIntyre is meeting with the media. He talks about what’s coming up on his schedule until Zelina Vega shows up and wants to know why Andrade Almas hasn’t received his contract for an NXT Title match yet? Drew says he’s said it more than once, all Almas has to do is be like Roddy Strong and just ask. Once he does that, maybe Drew will be inclined to give him what he wants. Until then, adios.
Aleister Black makes his way to the ring for a match, when with some really cool camera work, we see The Velveteen Dream appear out of nowhere, behind Black. He throws Black in the ring and ties him up in the ropes. He screams for Black to say his name and then slaps him hard repeatedly. Black just looks at him defiantly. TVD runs from the other side of the ring but Black gets a boot up and then gets himself out of the ropes. Black goes for Black Mass but TVD moves out of the way and decides better of it for now.
Andrade “Cien” Almas (w/Zelina Vega) vs. Roderick Strong
Before the match, Vega grabs a mic and says that you don’t get to be as successful in business as she has become by being a patient woman. They’ve waited a week for a contract from Drew McIntyre for a NXT Title match. She understands climbing the mountain is hard, but just like the last time he was in WWE, the higher you get up the mountain, the harder it is to breathe. She knows Drew is ducking Almas. He’s not good enough to breathe the rarified air of a champion like Almas.
13 minutes left as the bell rings. Both men aggressive early with chain wrestling and takedowns. Roddy blocks a hiptoss and turns it into one of his backbreakers. Both men end up on the apron after countering each other. Almas lands a Reality Check on the apron and then gets him back in the ring to drop some right hands as we go to commercial.
We return with Almas chopping Roddy in the corner. Roddy gets caught in the ropes with Almas’ armbar until the ref makes him break it. Almas gets back in the ring and goes back to work on that arm. Roddy is able to throw Almas out of the ring and then he comes back in, Roddy is waiting with a big boot. Both men trade shots until Roddy comes off the ropes with a clothesline. He goes for an Angle Slam but Almas reverses it into an arm drag. Almas runs into a gutbuster though. Roddy charges him in the corner but Almas gets a boot up and then goes back to that armbar. Roddy avoids it this time though and puts on the Strong Hold in the ropes. Both men on the apron again and this time it’s an enziguri followed by a backbreaker on the apron. Roddy gets him in the ring for a pin but Almas kicks out. Almas on the 2nd rope and avoids Roddy enough to hook on a Tornado reverse DDT. Roddy manages to kick out. Roddy goes for a Tiger Driver but Almas turns it into a hurricanrana in mid air. He gets Roddy in the corner and lands his running double knees but Roddy still kicks out. Almas wants the Hammerlock DDT but Roddy fights out. Both men battling until Almas gets Roddy down for the double knees again. This time Roddy gets up and lands a knee strike himself. He hits an Angle Slam and then clotheslines Almas over the top rope. He hits a wrecking ball dropkick but after he gets Almas back in the ring, Vega comes off the apron and does a hurricanrana that sends Roddy into the steel steps. That was cool looking. Almas grabs Roddy and hits the Hammerlock DDT and gets the win.
Winner: Andrade “Cien” Almas
Post match, Vega and Almas head to the announce table. Vega grabs Mauro’s headset and tells Drew they hope he’s a man of his word because next week they’re meeting face to face. Almas says Drew is scared of him and then they walk to the back. The camera goes back to Roddy in the ring and now Undisputed Era’s music hits. The threesome make their way to the ring and they want to talk to Roddy. They tell him he is not a loser and he needs to join them. He can be a winner in their era. Adam Cole BAY BAY takes off his armband with the logo of the group and hands it to Roddy. He tells him to think about it as the world can be theirs. They leave the ring as Roddy is left to think about it and that’s our show.
K-Tank’s Take: It was announced on WWE.com after the show ended by William Regal that Almas will in fact get his NXT Title shot against Drew McIntyre at Takeover: Houston. The face off next week will be to officially sign the contract. I hope people are interested to see this match because I really think it’ll surprise some people. It’ll be as hard hitting as it gets. Vega has worked wonders for Almas and her involvement in the match this week was perfect.
That’s it for this week but next week is lined up to be a huge episode. So I will see you all then and until next time, don’t do anything I wouldn’t do… but if you do, name it after me.