By John Moore, Prowrestling.net Staffer (@liljohnm)
Aired October 10, 2018 on WWE Network
Taped September 20 in Winter Park, Florida at Full Sail University
NXT started off with the ad for the Ricochet vs. Pete Dunne vs. Adam Cole North American Championship match ad. The NXT Theme aired…
Mauro Ranallo, Nigel McGuinness, and Percy Watson were on commentary. Tommaso Ciampa’s entrance theme opened the show. Percy Watson pointed out that Ciampa was talking to his title belt. Ciampa reiterated his claim of being the best sports entertainer of all time who now has the best entrance music of all time. Ciampa also reiterated that the best part of his music is that it drowns out the booing from the “sheep”. Tommasso Ciampa then turned his attention to Velveteen Dream, which invoked a “Velveteen” chant from the crowd. Ciampa said Dream went about it the wrong way to get the Champ’s attention by blaming him for the Aleister Black attack and that this has nothing to do with Dream’s business.
Velveteen Dream made his entrance. Dream mocked Ciampa’s claim of being the greatest sports entertainer. Dream said he also doesn’t like Ciampa’s threats and that Ciampa thinks he’s a bad bad man. Dream said the championship needs a real experience and not the guilt trip of a bald man with insecurities. Ciampa tried to get a word in and was drowned out by Velveteen chants. Ciampa said he may be an angry bald man, but he’s an angry bald man with a shiny title belt. Ciampa said he gets that Dream wants the spotlight and the NXT title. Ciampa said he doesn’t think Dream thinks Ciampa attacked Black but rather likes attention. Ciampa told Dream (with a calm tone) to admit it. Ciampa said the title is telling Ciampa that Dream may not be “Tough Enough” to admit it. This drew “awwww”s from the crowd. Dream said he isn’t just trough enough, but he’s man enough. Dream said he may be more man than Ciampa can handle.
Nikki Cross’s entrance interrupted the Dream and Ciampa confrontation. Cross slammed around her jacket in the ring. The crowd chanted “Triple Threat”. Nikki started rubbing against Dream and Ciampa like a kitten. The crowd then chanted “Nikki knows a secret”. Cross creeped out Dream at first. She also started to talk to Ciampa’s title belt. Cross and Ciampa then had a face off. Ciampa dropped the microphone. Nikki Cross went into the prone position and started ranting about how she knows. Cross scared away Velveteen Dream with her weirdness. Ciampa tried to pick up the mic but Cross punted the mic away. Nikki Cross left saying “I Know” while Cross said “I know” several times. Ciampa was left alone in the ring as his theme played.
Adam Cole was shown stretching… [c]
John’s Thoughts: A nice promo exchanged that got odd, but nicer as soon as Nikki Cross entered the scene. I know we don’t get intergender matches in WWE, but Nikki cross is oddball and powerful enough to put herself in position for a intriguing intergender match situation. Because this is WWE, that’s not going to happen. The Aleister Black storyline is going a bit too long at this point (because the timeline is connected to Black’s recovery time) but at least they are putting in effort to use it to enhance its stories. Maybe they should pull back a little bit to try to develop some of their developmental dudes and dudettes maybe?
Pete Dunne was shown taping up his wrist tape…
Keith Lee made his entrance next. Kona Reeves made his entrance looking like Impact Wrestling’s heel Moose…
1. Keith Lee vs. “The Finest” Kona Reeves. Kona started off his match as usual with a rant that said he’s NXT’s finest. Lee just laughed it off. Reeves cornered Lee with the initial collar and elbow. Reeves tried to slap around and yell at Lee in the corner. Lee turned the tables and overpowered Kona with strikes and a double chest slap. The crowd wanted another slap. Lee showed off his cruiserweight-like agility and then hit Reeves with a dropkick. Lee then suplexed Kona to the outside of the ring. Lee soaked up the cheers. Kona Reeves was angered as he pounced and pummeled Lee.
Reeves hit Lee with his trust fall elbow drop. Reeves locked Lee in a chinlock. Lee got up no selling Kona’s strikes. Lee caught Reeves with a running pounce. Keith Lee hit Reeves with the Jackhammer Power Slam which the commentators called “The Supernova” for the win.
Keith Lee defeated Kona Reeves via pinfall in 3:59.
Nigel McGuinness cut to a Shayna Baszler training vignette. Shayna Baszler talked about her journey to the Women’s Championship and how she got to the title faster than anyone else in history. Baszler said she slipped up at the last Takeover. She said Kairi didn’t beat her, Shayna just slipped. Shayna said it pisses her off that people are saying that this was all Kairi. Shayna said she’s going to show Kairi what Shayna does with anger.
Kairi Sane had a press conference outside of full sail. Kairi was excited about competing at Evolution. Sane said “ahoy”. Sane said she will also beat Shayna Baszler again.
John’s Thoughts: A decent squash to continue to build up Lee’s agile moveset to the NXT audience not familiar with his work. I like what they’re doing with Baszler. Baszler’s weakness is promos, but they make her come off well with the UFC style sitdown documentaries. Kairi Sane does need a little work but that will come along once she get’s better hold of the English language.
William Regal gave the interviewer a update in saying that he’ll reveal his remaining suspects a little later. Kassius Ohno interrupted and started ranting to Regal about not being noticed. Ohno wanted to see Regal’s “shiny new toy” (Matt Riddle?). Ohno then said that the new toy might have attacked Black. Regal just excused himself and walked into his office. Nikki Cross was behind Regal and she told Ohno “I know what you did?”…
Nigel McGuinness advertised Kyle O’Reilly and Roderick Strong vs. “War Raiders” Hanson and Rowe for next week. A highlight package to hype the match aired…
Kayla Braxton handled the formal ring introductions for the North American Championship title match…
2. Ricochet vs. Adam Cole vs. Pete Dunne for the NXT North American Championship. The crowd started the match with dueling “One and Only” vs. “Bruiserweight” chants. Ricochet and Dunne were about to do a collar and elbow but then turned their attention to double-teaming Adam Cole. Cole escaped the corner by taking advantage of the two opponents shuffling. Cole tossed Ricochet into Dunne. Ricochet avoided all of Cole’s strikes to initiate his agile offense. Ricochet taunted Dunne with the superhero pose. Cole used that taunt to toss Ricochet away. Dunne gave Cole a lariat when he entered the ring. Now it was time for Dunne and Ricochet to square off.
Dunne dominated the lockup with his joint manipulation. Ricochet managed to escaped and turn it into a chain wrestling sequence. Cole tried to run in but he ran right into a surfboard by Dunne which Ricochet decided to watch. Ricochet then gave Cole a basement dropkick while he was stuck in the surfboard. Dunne and Ricochet celebrated. Dunne responded with a right hand and a shrug. Dunne went into his finger manipulation spot on Ricochet. Dunne also stomped on the arm of Ricochet. Ricochet then countered Dunne and locked Dunne in his old mentor Konnan’s finisher, the Tequila Sunrise.
Adam Cole interjected himself and put the boots to Ricochet and Dunne. Cole tossed Ricochet outside and hit Dunne with a neckbreaker. Ricochet tried to interrupt with a springboard but he was tripped by Cole. Cole took down Dunne with a pump kick for a two count. Dunne caught Cole with precision strikes and then knocked him down with a enzuigiri. Ricochet took down Dunne with a high flying Huracanrana. Ricochet sent Cole outside and hit Dunne with a springboard uppercut. Cole escaped a Bennadryller attempt from Ricochet. Dunne took down Ricochet with an enzuigiri and then kicked Cole in the Temple with a roundhouse. Dunne then locked Cole and Ricochet in a double Boston Crab.
Ricochet escaped the hold. Ricochet locked Dunne in an octopus hold. Cole came in with a backstabber for a two count on Ricochet. The three men had a three way rapid punch spot. Cole caught Ricochet with a running knee for a nearfall. Ricochet gave Cole a forearm strike. Ricochet caught Dunne with an axe kick. Many kicks were traded grounding all three men after Ricochet hit Dunne with a running Shooting Star. Ricochet went for a lionsault but Dunne and Cole superkicked Ricochet out of the air just like Cole did to Ricochet at Takeover. Dunne and Cole made it to their knees for some Japanese strong style brawling. Dunne got Cole’s hands under his feet for a simple but effective stomp. Dunne went for a suplex but Cole countered into a DDT on the ring apron. Cole used this moment to rest up his fingers. Cole went for a Superkick on Dunne but Cole superkicked steel steps. Dunne then stomped on Cole’s hand.
Ricochet caught Dunne with a 619. Dunne regained control in the ring and then hit Ricochet with an X Plex. Adam Cole broke up the pin. Cole and Dunne brawled to the top rope. Ricochet joined them and hit both Cole and Dunne with a singular Frankensteiner. Ricochet hit Dunne with a Paydirt for a nearfall. Cole crotched Ricochet on the top rope. Cole escaped the finger break spot and then pinned Dunne with the feet on the ropes. Mauro noted there was no DQ. Dunne kicked out. Ricochet hit a shooting star on Dunne but Dunne countered into a Kimura. Ricochet tried to go for the powerbomb but Dunne countered into the finger break. Cole caught Ricochet with the shining wizard Last Shot and then hit Dunne with the Ushigiroshi Last Shot for a near fall. Dunne kicked out and turned Cole inside out with a lariat. Dunne hit Cole with the Bitter End. Ricochet caught Dunne with a springboard 450 for the victory.
Ricochet defeated Pete Dunne and Adam Cole via pinfall in 18:29 to retain the NXT North American Championship.
Highlights from the match aired. An ad aired for next week’s “Double Main Event” show with Undisputed Era vs. War Raiders and Bianca Belair vs. Nikki Cross…
John’s Thoughts: The talent level in this match ensured a really good match and my favorite part about the finish was Ricochet winning the match with a move that wasn’t his finisher. I will criticize Dunne just a little bit. The guy’s great, but since he doesn’t win matches with moves that aren’t his finisher, his nearfalls lose just a bit of drama. Back to the match, a good clash of styles. Ricochet has his high flying stuff. Dunne has his UK Brawler stuff. Cole has his WWE style stuff. No one seemed out of place because they did wrestle unique offense. If I were to compare this to recent big time NXT TV main events, this wasn’t the best, but it was really really good.
This show took up most of the hour with only a few minutes at the top of the hour and minimal commercials. This episode really seemed to fly by though. I felt like we didn’t get “a lot” of stuff but that’s not a bad thing. I’ll be by tomorrow morning with my NXT Hit List and Members Exclusive Audio Review.