By Zack Zimmerman
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NXT on WWE Network
Taped September 15 in Winter Park, Florida at Full Sail University
A video recapped Samoa Joe’s promo from last week, leading to his vicious attack on NXT Champion Shinsuke Nakamura who ended up being stretchered out… The opening video played…
Inside the arena, Samoa Joe’s music hit to kick things off and he made his way to the ring with a piece of paper in-hand. The commentators recapped the slam on the ring steps before Joe spoke. Joe said that it was fitting for him to come out and address what happened. He said that he’s so persuasive that he managed to get a copy of Nakamura’s medical report. He quoted it and noted contusions to the lumbar, inflammation in the elbow, a separated clavicle, and a separated shoulder. He noted that surgery was not required, however he requires extensive rest upwards of 6-12 weeks.
Joe said that patience may be a virtue, but he is not a virtuous man. Joe called out NXT GM William Regal and said that he wouldn’t wait 12 weeks nor 6. He wanted a match with Nakamura before then, or strip Nakamura of the NXT Championship. Regal came out. He questioned how Joe managed to get a copy of the report but admitted that everything Joe said was correct. Regal said that the NXT Championship and everything that happens in NXT is his to take care of, and he will do just that. The crowd chanted for Regal.
Joe said that he didn’t want it to come to this, and then menacingly walked up the ramp towards Regal. He stopped short of Regal and warned that if Regal doesn’t give him what he wants, the entire roster will end up like Nakamura. Regal’s eyes told the story of his predicament as Joe took off backstage…
The commentators, Tom Phillips and Corey Graves, threw to a recap of Cedric Alexander vs. Kota Ibushi from the second round of the CWC where the crowd chanted for him to be signed post-match… Backstage, Cedric Alexander was asked what’s going through his mind tonight before he makes his NXT debut against Andrade “Cien” Almas. He said that the past 7 years of hard work and doubters go through his mind. He said that he wanted the best, and Regal delivered by giving him Almas. Cedric said that he’s going to come out on top…
Austin Aries vs. Oney Lorcan was hyped up next… [C]
Zim Says: NXT doesn’t do many talking segments to open shows, but when they do they tend to be effective and not overstay their welcome. Joe is so on-point with his character right now and Regal is a perfect authority foil.
Backstage, Liv Morgan was asked why she think’s she’s at the level to call out women’s champ Asuka like she did. Liv said that she didn’t come to NXT to play limbo, she came to jump over hurdles. She took exception to Asuka claiming to have cleared the division when she’s still there. Asuka approached her and said if Liv thinks she’s ready, she will just have to find out…
Back in the arena, Oney Lorcan made his entrance. He was followed by Austin Aries.
1. Austin Aries vs. Oney Lorcan. The crowd chanted for Oney at the bell as the two grappled into the corner. Aries got the better with an amateur takedown and grabbed a headlock for a while. Aries mocked Lorcan by posing in the corner, so Lorcan slapped him in the face and took a headlock of his own. Aries got sent up and over to the apron, but when he looked to come through the ropes with a shoulder thrust, Lorcan was right there to catch him in a headlock and drag him back into the ring and down to the mat.
Aries backed Lorcan into the corner, but Lorcan fired off a couple more hard slaps to the face. Aries had enough and lifted Lorcan for a back suplex, but dumped him over the top rope where Lorcan barely clipped the apron and toppled hard to the floor. [C]
Back from break, Aries was firmly in control as he caught Lorcan with a diving elbow to the lower back. Aries fired off forearms and chops in the corner, but that just angered Lorcan, who growled wildly and fired back with uppercuts and rapid chops in the corner. Lorcan charged with a series of back-elbows in the corner, but Aries avoided a third and sent Lorcan toppling to ringside.
Aries came off the top rope to the floor with a diving axe handle, but when he tried to follow up off the top rope back in the ring, Lorcan caught him with a hard uppercut out of the air. Lorcan charged and hit a hard low-angle running uppercut for a two-count. Lorcan looked for his half-and-half, but Aries fought out and caught Lorcan with a rolling elbow. Aries hit a high impact dropkick in the corner, and then lifted Lorcan for a suplex before dropping him forward into a GTS-style knee strike. Aries hooked in the Last Chancery and Lorcan was forced to tap.
Austin Aries forced Oney Lorcan to submit in about 6:30.
A series of replays aired before Aries took a microphone and addressed Hideo Itami. Aries said that Itami puts people to sleep while Aries taps people out. Aries said that people have been buzzing since last week not about Samoa Joe nor Shinsuke Nakamura, but where was Austin Aries. Aries said he was at home taking it easy. He said that now that he’s there, he would call out Hideo Itami but he knows Itami won’t come out because he’s nothing but false bravado.
With that, Itami’s music hit and he hit the ring in his gear. As soon as he made it through the ropes, Aries hopped out to ringside. He ran around the ring with his arms in the air and then went directly backstage. Itami was left standing in the ring looking frustrated…
Corey Graves transitioned to a brief video to introduce new signee Dan Matha. He is big and jacked-up, and was announced to be coming in two weeks… Cedric Alexander vs. Andrade Alas was hyped for later in the show… [C]
Zim Says: Fun little match, but I’m really disappointed with how off-and-on they seem about Lorcan. It reminds me of Solomon Crowe/Sami Callihan and Kassius Ohno/Chris Hero who were both featured inconsistently; sometimes winning, sometimes losing, but never gathering any traction nor momentum before being sent back to the indies. The indies certainly aren’t a bad fate, but I’d really like to see him get a better shake than that. They’re keeping this Aries vs. Itami build consistent, but I’m wondering how due or overdue the match will feel once they finally get to it presumably in Toronto.
The roving reporter caught up with Johnny Gargano and Tommaso Ciampa in the parking lot following their tag team win at the CWC Finals. Ciampa began to speak about how they respect all of the competitors in the CWC, when they noticed The Revival standing a short distance in front of them and immediately began to brawl. They were broken up by some bystanders and The Revival took off…
Back in the arena, Aliyah made her entrance to no reaction. Billie Kay was out next.
2. Aliyah vs. Billie Kay. Aliyah managed to get the better Kay and worked her over with a submission hold in the ropes. Aliyah came off the middle rope with a leg drop for a two-count, but Billie came right back with a discus forearm and a gutbuster to take control. Billie hoisted Aliyah into a cut-throat torture rack, and then dumped her into the turnbuckles. Aliyah ducked Billie’s boot and hit a low-angle blockbuster for two, but Billie caught her with the boot seconds later and scored the win.
Billie Kay pinned Aliyah in about 3:15.
Andrade Almas and Cedric Alexander were shown on a split-screen warming up for their match… [C]
Zim Says: Not much to the match but it was fine. Aliyah looked to be more competent than she has in the past. Billie has good presence, but she has yet to put on a good match on NXT TV and that’s something I’m really waiting on.
A Sanity vignette aired… Backstage, Mandy Rose was asked why she had been overheard recently talking badly about Ember Moon. Rose said that Moon doesn’t fit the mold, looking like something out of Hunger Games and Red Riding Hood. Mandy said that she is what a real star looks like, and she’s going to eclipse Ember… Liv Morgan vs. Asuka was hyped for next week…
Back in the arena, Cedric Alexander made his entrance and got a big reaction from the Full Sail crowd. Andrade “Cien” Almas was out next. He didn’t have on the fedora and suspenders, but rather a jumpsuit sporting the Ingobernables logo on the back. Interesting.
3. Cedric Alexander vs. Andrade Almas. The crowd chanted for Cedric at the bell. The two traded some fancy armlock reversals and headlocks to a stand-off mid-ring, and once again the crowd voiced their support for Alexander. Tom Phillips on commentary noted that Almas was a former IWGP Intercontinental Champion, but stopped short of mentioning that in fact he won it from Shinsuke Nakamura.
Almas used a nice springboard ‘rana, but after another fun sequence of reversals they were once again at a stand-off, and once again the crowd chanted for Cedric. Almas faked Cedric out with the tranquillo pose in the ropes and sent him toppling to ringside before following up with a slingshot dropkick and triangle corkscrew press. Almas was in control as they went to a break out of nowhere. [C]
Back in the ring, Cedric fought out of a chinlock with a jawbreaker and began to rally. he hit a series of clotheslines and a great looking back-handspring enzuigiri. Almas went to ringside, but Cedric was right there in pursuit with a huge flip over the ropes to wipe Almas out. Alexander connected with a high springboard clothesline for a two-count back in the ring. Almas avoided a Michinoku Driver and planted Alexander with a schoolboy bomb for a two-count of his own.
They traded shots mid-ring before their battle went to the top rope. Almas sent Cedric crashing to the mat and then did his big moonsault into a standing moonsault for another two-count. Almas rocked Cedric with elbows and set up for the knees in the corner, but Cedric caught him charging and tossed him up with the Lumbar Check to score the win in his debut.
Cedric Alexander defeated Andrade Almas in about 8:00.
Alexander celebrated his win before a series of replays highlighted the match. The two competitors shook hands mid-ring before Almas pulled him in for a hug and raised Alexander’s hand high. Almas applauded Alexander and then left the ring to him to close the show…
Zim Says: Fun stuff. This was probably the best Almas has looked so far and it made for a strong debut by Alexander. They had chemistry right off the bat, which is nice considering their different backgrounds. I’d like to see more from these two going forward. This was a solid little show. Nothing great, but nothing bad. The show felt pretty fresh and felt like a show that made progress rather than being a holding pattern, which having been at the tapings I think should carry right through to the next Takeover in Toronto. Thanks for reading along!
Check back tomorrow for the Member-Exclusive DotNet NXT Audio Recap, plus Darren Gutteridge’s NXT Hitlist which will be available to everyone.
Throw comments, questions, criticisms, or corrections @DotNetZim or DotNetZim@gmail.com; always happy to discuss.
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