By Zack Zimmerman
NXT on WWE Network
Taped May 25, 2017 in Winter Park, Florida at Full Sail University
A hype video advertised No Way Jose vs. Killian Dain and Hideo Itami vs. Oney Lorcan for tonight’s show… The opening video played…
Inside Full Sail Arena, the crowd chanted “NXT” before the show kicked off with Heavy Machinery making their entrance. Their opponents were already in the ring. One of them was the Shrek-looking guy who destroyed his partner after losing to #DIY a month or two ago. He had a new partner who cut an insight promo admitting he was a bit nervous.
1. Heavy Machinery (Tucker Knight and Otis Dozovic) vs. Lars Sullivan and Victor Andrews. Knight and the big-man Sullivan went toe-to-toe in tests of power early. Sullivan took Knight down with a clothesline, but Knight came back a short time later with a dropkick. Sullivan hit a modified powerslam (Jeff Cobb’s Tour of the Islands) and tagged in his partner to capitalize, but that proved to be a mistake.
Machinery tossed Andrews back and forth with bear hugs, before Knight launched him overhead with a huge belly-to-belly. They followed up with their awesome running pancake to Andrews’s head. Knight crushed him in the corner with a splash before Machinery finished him off with their piggyback World’s Strongest Slam, which has been dubbed The Compactor, in awesome Heavy Machinery fashion.
Heavy Machinery won in about 3:55.
The winners celebrated, and also yelled that they want their shot at the tag champs Authors of Pain. Meanwhile, Lars Sullivan was standing on the apron glaring at his partner. He waited for Machinery to leave before re-entering the ring.
Sullivan snapped and massacred Andrews. He wore him out with crossface shots, knee strikes, and a shot-put slam. Sullivan lifted Andrews into an overhead backbreaker rack and stretched him out before dropping him to the mat and leaving the referees to tend to him…
A replay from last week showed No Way Jose returning to fend off Killian Dain, which allowed Roderick Strong to defeat Eric Young clean… Backstage last week, Sanity members Dain, Young, and Alexander Wolfe were interviewed afterwards. Dain said that nobody is safe; especially not No Way Jose…
A graphic advertised No Way Jose vs. Killian Dain for later in the show… It was announced that Roderick Strong will address the fans up next… [C]
Zim Says: Heavy Machinery continues to be my favorite team in all of wrestling and this Sullivan guy is super intriguing, so that segment gets a big thumbs up from me.
The band who does the new NXT theme song, Powerflo, was plugged…
Back in the arena, Roderick Strong made his entrance in street clothes. The crowd chanted his name as he took a microphone in the ring. He said that the last year has been a big roller coaster. He said it started with him coming to NXT, and continues with having a beautiful fiancé and handsome baby boy at home.
Roderick said that he was unsure about how he would be perceived after opening himself up to the fans like he has recently, and then thanked them for the support they’ve shown him. He declared that his life has never been better. However, he added, there’s still one thing he needs: the NXT Championship.
He said that it’s no longer “Roddy vs. The World,” but now it’s “Roddy, Marina, and Troy vs. The World.” Roderick said that he’s more motivated than ever to reach his potential and become NXT Champion. Just then, he was interrupted by the music of NXT Champion Bobby Roode. Roode walked out wiping his eyes with a tissue and pretending to cry.
Roode asked for a minute to collect his emotions after that story. He continued and heaped feigned praise on Strong like he’s “finally” starting to win matches, he has a “marginally hot” fiancé, and a kid who is “kind of normal.” Strong began to get pissed off. Roode says he understands that Strong wants to play the “Roode lottery” because diapers are expensive.
Roode called Strong a “good hand,” but warned him to stay in his lane. He offered one last piece of advice, and that’s not to play the Bobby Roode lottery because he’s simply not man enough to win. Roode was given the last word, as he left, yet for whatever reason the segment closed with Strong’s music. Odd…
On a roof, Nikki Cross called for Asuka and Ruby Riot to come play. The idea was that it was her promo going into next week’s match, but her character isn’t really one to cut a promo… A graphic advertised next week’s elimination triple-threat for the NXT Women’s Championship with Asuka defending against Cross and Riot…
Hideo Itami vs. Oney Lorcan was advertised for later in the show… [C]
Zim Says: That promo segment started so strong and Roddy has come across so well lately, but Roode really cut him down and left him with his d*ck in his hand. I’m sure there will be follow-up, but it was one of those things where in real life the conversation would not just end there, and if it did, Roddy would be a huge pushover.
An Authors of Pain vignette aired. Paul Ellering ripped out pages of a book as all of the tag teams in NXT were shown…
Back in the arena, Sarah Logan (formerly Crazy Mary Dobson/Sarah Dobson) made her entrance. “The Iconic Duo” of Peyton Royce and Billie Kay were out next.
2. Sarah Logan vs. Peyton Royce (w/ Billie Kay). Logan used a fireman’s carry takeover in the opening minute, but she ran right into a wicked spinning back heel kick for a near-fall seconds later. Royce settled into a low-key STF as a rest hold. Royce continued with two out of Three Amigos, before delivering a Finlay Roll to finish it off.
Royce looked to follow up, but Logan fired back with straight headbutts. She threw a series of chops and then ran Royce over with a hard knee strike for a near-fall of her own. Her momentum was short-lived however, as Royce came back and hit a knee strike of her own before scoring the pin with a fisherwoman’s suplex…
Peyton Royce pinned Sarah Logan in about 3:40.
A replay from last week showed Andrade Almas’s surprising loss to Cesar Bononi. Cameras then caught up with Almas outside of Full Sail afterwards, and he couldn’t have cared less as his focus was completely on the ladies around him. One of them, Thea Trinidad, cussed him out in Spanish, asked if this is all he is now, and then slapped the hell out of him when he said “yes…”
A graphic advertised Hideo Itami vs. Oney Lorcan up next…
Zim Says: It’s becoming clear that Royce and Kay will forever be the mid-card fodder heels in the NXT women’s division (until they’re called up to be the mid-card fodder heels on the main roster). The match was fine and Logan looked tough in a way that she stood out, but it was otherwise forgettable.
Back in the arena, Hideo Itami made his entrance. In a brief backstage interview, he said that a loss to Bobby Roode isn’t going to send him packing back to Japan; he’s not done yet. Oney Lorcan was out next.
3. Hideo Itami vs. Oney Lorcan. Within the opening minute, things got stiff with Itami slapping the hell out of Lorcan. Oney fired back with some body shots, but Itami put him down with a couple of hard knees to the gut. It didn’t let up, whacking Lorcan with a stiff kick to the back.
Lorcan fought back with a running blockbuster at the two-minute mark. He looked for a dive onto Itami at ringside, but Itami caught him with a kick coming through the ropes. Itami continued on the offensive with a diving clothesline. He teed off with some strikes, but Lorcan fired back with some vicious chops of his own.
It got insane (before the 3:30 mark, mind you) as Itami invited stiffer and stiffer shots. Lorcan’s chops to the chest turned to brutal slaps and chops to the face and neck. Lorcan hit the ropes and leveled Itami with a running uppercut, and then another. Itami rolled to ringside and tried to collect himself, but Lorcan followed right up with a huge flip dive off the top turnbuckle onto Itami.
Lorcan tossed Itami back into the ring and looked to follow up, but Itami was selling the leg and the referee backed Lorcan away. The distraction allowed Itami to catch Lorcan with a kick and then tee off with a series of knees, slaps, and kicks. Itami hoisted Lorcan up and connected with the Go To Sleep. The crowd booed as Itami looked down at Lorcan.
Itami lifted him back up and connected with a second and third GTS. He was going to continue when finally Kassius Ohno hit the ring. He put himself between Itami and Lorcan, who was out cold on the mat. Itami tried to shove Ohno, so Ohno shoved him down to the mat. Itami rolled out of the ring and backed up the ramp with a look on his face that he hasn’t shown before in NXT…
The match ended in an apparent no-contest in about 6:30.
A graphic advertised No Way Jose vs. Killian Dain as the main event up next… [C]
Zim Says: Jeeeeeeeeezus that was brutal. Lorcan’s matches have been so fun because they’re so different from anything else happening in WWE. Hopefully that begins to gain him some traction with the fans and management alike, because he’s really been standing out in a way that warrants a push or at least some wins. The Itami turn was executed well. I’ll be interested to follow along with what appears to be n upcoming Itami/Ohno program.
A Drew McIntyre vignette aired and he was advertised to be in action next week… The triple-threat elimination match for the NXT Women’s Championship was also advertised for next week…
The now-cleared to compete Ember Moon was interviewed backstage. She said that she lost her first title shot, and then sat out with an injury. She said that she want’s to deal with Peyton Royce and Billie Kay first, but she’ll have her eye on the three-way and the winner of the match. Moon said that she’s more focussed than ever and her next opportunity will be “the” opportunity…
Back in the arena, No Way Jose made his entrance for the first time since before WrestleMania weekend. A replay showed him being attacked and taken out of action at the WrestleMania Axxess show. An altered version of the Sanity theme played, with some Irish twists to it, as Killian Dain made his entrance flanked by stablemates Eric Young and Alexander Wolfe. However, Young and Wolfe left before the bell.
4. No Way Jose vs. Killian Dain (w/ Eric Young and Alexander Wolfe). Jose managed to use his agility advantage to get the better of Wolfe early and send the show into its final break. [C] Back from break, Dain crushed Jose with a high-impact running crossbody to take control.
The crowd chanted “Fuzzy Wuzzy” at Dain. Meanwhile, Dain hit a Wasteland slam and a jumping senton, which the commentators called the Belfast Blitz. He continued to assault Jose as he rained down clubbing strikes. Dain lifted Jose for his finisher, but Jose slipped out.
Jose began to fire up with a series of shots, but Dain wouldn’t leave his feet. Jose hit a hard clothesline and managed to get Dain up for a TKO, but Dain kicked out at two. Jose wound up for his baseball punch, but Dain fired off a straight headbutt which rocked Jose. Dain charged with a shotgun dropkick and then dropped Jose with the Ulster Plantation for the win.
Killian Dain over No Way Jose in about 8:00 or so.
The commentators noted that this was Dain’s first singles match in NXT and marveled at how impressive he looked. Replays aired and the show closed with Dain standing tall in the ring…
One final hype video aired for the Women’s Championship match next week…
Zim Says: Good showing for Dain, and Jose is right back where he was before he left. It’s not like I really expected much different, but I expected SOMETHING different. Oh well. This show had some really fun stuff on it that make it worth checking out. The opening segment with Heavy Machinery and Sullivan was a hit, the women’s match was fine, and the last two matches were very nice as well with a big Hideo Itami turn. This was the first show from NXT that felt important in a while, so thumbs up here. I’ll have more to say for members in audio tomorrow, so be sure to sign up and tune in! Thanks for reading along.
Throw comments, questions, criticisms, or corrections @DotNetZim or DotNetZim@gmail.com; always happy to discuss.
Great review! I too agree that the Itami turn was played out very well, I can’t wait to see a program between him and Ohno that would be very interesting! I wasn’t too impressed with the main event but I think it done what it had to and I am looking forward to seeing Dain compete as a singles competitor.