By John Moore
NXT TV on the WWE Network
Taped June 23, 2017 in Winter Park, Florida at Full Sail University
Mauro Ranallo, Nigel McGuinness, and Percy Watson were the commentary team. Mauro hyped up the main event number one contendership match between Killian Dain and Drew McIntyre. Mauro cut to a clip from two weeks ago where Ruby Riot told Ember Moon that it’s her time to get a shot at the NXT Women’s Championship…
1. Ember Moon vs. Ruby Riot. Ember Moon started off with an early headlock. Riot and Moon traded rollup attempts. The rollups actually lasted about a minute or so. Moon and Riot slapped hands in a show of respect. Moon hit a headscissors takedown. Riot came back with an armdrag. Riot landed a Monkey Flip with Moon landing on her feet. This invoked a “This is Wrestling” chant. Riot called for and got a test of strength. Riot got a nice shortarm armdrag. Riot then got great rotation out of a huracanrana.
Moon came back with a drop toehold. Moon then locked Riot in a bow and arrow. Nigel called it and Riot rolled into a pin attempt which helped her escape. Riot drove Moon’s face in the turnbuckle with her knees. Riot suplexed Moon and got a two count. Moon hit a kick combo into a backbreaker into a flatliner. [C]
Moon took a shoulder to the gut back from the break which set her up for a top rope senton by Riot. Moon dodged a knee in the corner and hit a spinning sideslam. Riot staggered Moon on the top rope and met her at the top. Riot hit Moon with a Frankensteiner to lead to a nearfall. Riot sold surprise at this point. Riot dominated Moon with strikes. Moon ended Riot’s momentum with a discus elbow. Moon hit Riot with a single leg shotgun kick. Moon then landed a sitout sideslam. After a corner elbow Moon went for and hit the Eclipse to pick up the pinfall victory.
Ember Moon defeated Ruby Riot via pinfall in 8:17.
Nigel narrated highlights from the match. Mauro then cut to a set up to next week’s Kassius Ohno vs. Hideo Itami match. Itami was shown kicking a trash can during an Ohno press conference. Onno talked about wanting this match. Mauro then hyped up a Danny Burch vs. Oney Lorcan match…
John’s Thoughts: That match was splendid. Good work by both women. Of course, Ember Moon’s wins these days have the caveat of predictability due to her presumed status the chosen one to become Asuka’s successor. Even though she’s great in the ring as we saw here, Moon isn’t quite ready from a character perspective due to those mopey interviews killing off her mystique and her matches against Royce/Kay getting old. Moon should look to Gail Kim as motivation and go for more of the stone-cold killer character.
A Street Profits vignette played during the commercial. Oney Lorcan came out for his upcoming match…
2. Oney Lorcan vs. Danny Burch. Burch cornered Lorcan early on before the ref broke them apart. Lorcan got a side headlock takedown which Burch quickly escaped. Lorcan managed to smother Burch in the corner before the breakup. Burch gained the first advantage of the night with a right hand and boots in the corner. Burch hit Lorcan with a missile dropkick and kip up. Lorcan caught Burch with a forearm. Burch came back with a kick and hanging cutter. Nigel called it the “Tower of London”.
Lorcan hit a running blockbuster and basement shoryuken on Burch. Burch and Lorcan growled at each other. Burch and Lorcan took turns giving each other European Uppercuts. Burch hit a tough knee. Lorcan hit some stiff slaps. Burch hit a powerbomb for the nearfall. Burch showed the effects from the stiff slaps with a bloody nose which Nigel pointed out was similar to Itami vs. Lorcan.
Burch put Lorcan on the top rope. Lorcan pushed Burch off and rolled Burch into a single leg crab. Lorcan picked up the surprise victory.
Oney Lorcan defeated Danny Burch via submission in 4:37.
They showed clips from that sequence where Lorcan laid in the stiff slaps to the face. They then showed the ending. Lorcan and Burch shared a handshake. Burch didn’t let go asking for one more match. Lorcan agreed to set up a future match. Killian Dain was shown hyping himself up in the darkness… [C]
John’s Thoughts: Lorcan matches are so fun to watch if you like that stiff brawling style. Burch has been great in his recent NXT run as well. Something had to give here because Lorcan and Burch don’t win too many matches in NXT. What makes things better for both Burch and Lorcan, is we’re going to get more of this. Here’s hoping Burch wins the next one to set up a rubber match.
No Way Jose danced his way to the ring. Cezar Bononi made his entrance. Nigel cut to the clip of the ending of Bononi’s match against Andrade Almas where he picked up a surprise win.
3. No Way Jose vs. Cezar Bononi. Jose danced during the lockup and dominated early on with the arm drags. Bononi grabbed Jose by the hair to turn the tide. Bononi put the boots to Jose in the corner. Bononi then hit Jose with a high dropkick. Bononi hit clinch knees on Jose. Jose came back with axe handle chops and hip toss. Jose hit Bononi with an elbow. Jose rallied up the crowd at this point. Bononi took Jose’s pop-up KO punch to pick up the win.
No Way Jose defeated Cezar Bononi via pinfall in 2:08.
Andrade Cien Almas was randomly at ringside. Almas put the boots to Bononi. An unnamed female (Thea Trinidad) barked order to Almas. Almas taunted Jose to the ring. Jose accepted but Trinidad called Almas outside and stood between No Way and Almas. No Way went on to dance in the ring. Drew McIntyre was shown slowly pacing backstage before his main event match… [C]
John’s Thoughts: No Way is fine in the ring and his character is fun, but he seems to be in no man’s land since his disappearance and sudden return. I still feel that he would have been best served in a tag team with Rich Swann. Here’s hoping I get that wish with a cancellation of 205 Live. One can dream! Bononi looks like an impressive look and agility for a big man. I also love saying his name. Bononi!
4. Drew McIntyre vs. Killian Dain to become number one contender to the NXT Championship. Dain was without his Sanity stablemates. Mauro hyped up both men’s undefeated streaks in NXT. Dain and McIntyre tried to overpower each other early on. They then hyped each other up. McIntyre hit some strong forearms on Dain. Drew hit Dain with a top rope clothesline. Dain came back with a low angle crossbody heading into commercial. [C]
Dain put the boots to Drew in the corner. Dain tossed Drew around the ring. Dain gave McIntyre some strong right hands. Dain continued the onslaught with quick elbow drops. Dain hit McIntyre with a leaping elbow drop. Dain had a prolonged streak of dominance over McIntyre with constant pin kickouts by McIntyre. Dain overpowered McIntyre with a wrenching chinlock. McIntyre shifted his head and gave Dain a chop and jawbreaker. Dain quickly responded with a clothesline.
Dain put McIntyre on the top rope. McIntyre came back with a powerbomb to get his own two count. McIntyre pummeled Dain with clubbing strikes. McIntyre came back with a flying clothesline. McIntyre hit Dain with the Celtic Cross which Mauro said was a tribute to Fit Finlay. McIntyre tuned up the claymore but Dain caught Drew with a Wasteland, Senton, and Vader Bomb.
Dain looked for the One Winged Angel but McIntyre countered and went for the Future Shock DDT. Dain rammed Drew in the corner to block the Future Shock. Dain hit Drew with a powerbomb. Dain went for and hit a Super Fisherman Suplex to lead to a nearfall. Drew hit the Future Shock DDT. Killian Dain kicked out at one. McIntyre hit the Claymore on Dain but Dain nosold it. Dain asked for a second one and got it. McIntyre won off the second Claymore Kick.
Drew McIntyre defeated Killian Dain via pinfall in 10:34 to become number one contender to the NXT Championship.
They cut to the clips from the match including Dain’s no-sell of the first Claymore. Drew yelled about Roode and said he was coming for Roode and his bloody title. Mauro closed out the show…
John’s Thoughts: That was a solid brawl between two big men who can do some high-impact and high-agility moves that most guys their size don’t do at a high rate. Even though McIntyre’s a huge dude, he plays the babyface in peril so well to the point where it’s not a credibility killer. I get the purpose of the no-sell of the first Claymore and it made Dain look badass for shrugging it off and asking for another. Dain also got to become the third Sanity member to have a masochistic moment which plays well for the stable. The one thing I would have extricated from the match was Dain kicking out of the Future Shock. Both Impact Wrestling and WWE have done a great job in the past few years to protect the double underhook DDT utilized by McIntyre and Dean Ambrose. I’m not a huge fan of the kickout after he brings it back to WWE for the first time. Minus that, it was a good match and Dain looked good standing across from Drew.
This was a solid wrestling episode of NXT. Not many angles or progression, but there were some good stories told in the ring. Even the little story progression looked good with Almas possibly getting a push with Thea Trinidad as his new valet. I’ll have more thoughts on this show in my NXT Audio Review.