By John Moore, ProWrestling.net Staffer (@liljohnm)
NXT TV Live Review
Taped August 15, 2019 in Winter Park, Florida at Full Sail University
Streamed September 11, 2019 on WWE Network
An SUV was approaching Full Sail. A chauffeur got out of the door and opened the back door to reveal that Rhea Ripley was inside of it. Rhea left the SUV and entered Full Sail for business. The NXT Slipknot theme aired…
John’s Thoughts: Nice segment with zero words but it made Rhea Ripley look like a big deal.
Mauro Ranallo, Nigel McGuinness, and Beth Phoenix were on commentary. Nigel hyped a segment for later where Johnny Gargano will address his NXT future…
1. Damien Priest vs. Boa. Damien Priest continued to try to get over his archer thing during his entrance. Priest and Boa were pretty even power-wise early on. Priest then clubbed Boa with a forearm and then dominated Boa with strikes after Boa protested. Priest no-sold a kick and returned the favor with his own kick. Priest hit Boa with a Falcon Arrow. Boa used a kick combo on Priest and dominated for a bit. Priest came back with a lariat, cyclone kick, and The Reckoning (Cross Rhodes) for the victory.
Damien Priest defeated Boa via pinfall in 2:41.
Priest continued to act like he was shooting arrows and doing poses…
John’s Thoughts: A standard squash. Priest looks good, but overall his act is a bit confusing. His vignettes were good and expressed him as some sort of goth rock star. Suddenly he’s into arrows? He may be a dark character? He really needs either promos or vignettes. Don’t rip them off, but maybe something similar to Aleister Black’s early gothic church promos.
A video package aired spotlighting Roderick Strong using a flare to burn Velveteen Dream’s sex couch…
Velveteen Dream vs Roderick Strong for the NXT North American Championship was advertised for next week… [c]
Johnny Gargano made his entrance to the Full Sail crowd wearing street clothes. He soaked in “Johnny Wrestling” chants for a bit. The chants lasted a good minute or three. Johnny talked about how everyone from the fans to his mom has been hearing rumors of Johnny leaving NXT. Gargano chronicled his career a bit. Gargano then talked about how the locker room inspires them with how they try their hardest to put together the best damn show they can. Gargano was presumably about to announce his NXT retirement by saying “I’m officially….” before he was cut off by Shane Thorne.
Thorne received a good amount of heat. Thorne mocked Gargano for being a waste of time. Thorne said Gargano was grandstanding because he could have done this announcement via a selfie or something. Thorne talked about how NXT will be better without Gargarno. He told Gargano to take a walk. Gargano said he’s NXT and he’s not going anywhere. Johnny clocked and knocked out Thorne in the center of the ring… [c]
John’s Thoughts: A good promo from Gargano, but I couldn’t shake the idea that NXT never made it really a threat that Gargano will leave NXT (I didn’t hear anything from the spoilers, but if Gargano did leave his announcement would have seeped past the spoilers). On one hand it was predictable. On another hand, we heard this promo before. This was very similar to the promo he cut about the Evolve locker room. That aside, Shane Thorne showed great promise here and I think the guy has huge breakout potential as a babyface or heel. There’s also a chance he ends up as a perpetual designated enhancement guy if he’s not treated with creative care.
A Forgotten Sons vignette aired. They hyped each other up and Ryker ended the promo by saying that they will be forgotten no more…
John’s Thoughts: I like the effort in terms of giving these guys a promo, but these guys need some sort of alt-ctrl-delete reboot because aside from Ryker, the act is dead in the water.
2. Pete Dunne vs. Angel Garza. Mauro noted that Garza is a 3rd generation wrestler. Garza started off the match by teasing his pants rip spot while Nigel continued to have fun at Beth Phoenix’s expense (Nigel always jokes about Garza’s pant rip spot turning Beth on in a playful way). Dunne got Garza to the mat and did his joint manipulation. Garza escaped and locked Dunne in a unique straitjacket squat submission. Garza tossed Dunne outside and then popped the crowd with his pants rip spot. Garza eluded Dunne and got Dunne trapped in a handstand at the apron. Garza hit Dunne with a superkick.
Dunne escaped the corner with an Irish whip. Dunne hit Garza with a slap combo, a flip out of the corner, and an enzuigiri. Dunne hit Garza with a release German. Dunne double stomped Garza’s hands and followed up with a roundhouse for a two count. Garza escaped a Bitter End attempt and hit Dunne with a dropkick. Dunne countered a Tiger Driver with a Power Bomb on Garza. Garza trapped Dunne elevated in the corner. Garza hit a pinpoint dropkick on Dunne’s thigh. Garza got a two count. Dunne hit Garza with Liu Kang bicycle kicks but Garza came back with a boot. Dunne stood up and hit Garza with reverse curb stomps.
Dunne hit Garza with a spinning roundhouse. Garza countered Dunne with a pop up punt. Garza went for his finishing swan dive lionsault, but he was way off of position, which allowed Dunne to move his feet. Dunne locked Garza in his signature finger break wishbone spot. Garza tapped out.
Pete Dunne defeated Angel Garza via submission in 8:03.
Rhea Ripley was shown stretching backstage… [c]
John’s Thoughts: A highly entertaining match. Both of these guys are guys who can really turn on the switch in terms of in-ring storytelling. I really liked that it wasn’t spot fest based. It was a lot of fun and practical moves. We see so many flips and flops these days where new grounded moves seem innovative. Garza is a future star (as long as he stays healthy) and has the potential to be the next big hispanic star in WWE. It helps that like Alberto El Patron, Garza has name legacy (even more than Patron because Hector Garza was well known in the US as opposed to Dos Caras).
An episode of Street Talk, with the Street Profits aired from “This monday”. Montez Ford and Angelo Dawkins were shown cutting a promo in New York’s central park. They talked about being at MSG for the first time as the Street Profits. Dawkins said it’s not the same without the Tag Team Championships and a bit of that special feel is taken away. Ford then went into hyping up the move to USA by saying that it would be great to see the Street Profits take the NXT Tag Team Championships back. Dawkins said before that they have to take care of a little business at Raw. Dawkins and Ford were standing on top of a giant rock. Dawkins wondered if they should jump off, but then he found a path they could walk…
3. Cameron Grimes vs. Raul Mendoza. Grimes wore a top hat and brown vest before his match. Mendoza went for La Magistral early on but Grimes countered it with rollup reversals. Mendoza laid chops on Grimes. Mendoza went for a slingshot, but he dove right into a dropkick form Grimes. Nigel hyped up next week’s NXT move to USA which will feature Velveteen Dream vs. Roderick Strong for the NA Championship.
Grimes overpowered Mendoza. Mendoza escaped and hit Grimes with a dropkick. Mendoza hit Grimes with a dropkick and shooting star for a two count. Grimes got to the bottom rope for the break. Mendoza caught Grimes’s kick and then hit him with strikes. Mendoza went for a Phoenix Splash but Grimes got out of the way. Grimes caught Mendoza with a standing double stomp out of nowhere for the victory.
Cameron Grimes defeated Raul Mendoza via pinfall in 3:50.
Candice LeRae barged into William Regal’s office. She complained about Regal rewarding Io when Io keeps breaking the rules. Regal said he understands LeRae’s complaints and she’s right. Regal turned the triple threat for number one contendership into a fatal four way between Bianca Belair, Io Shirai, Mia Yim, and Candice LeRae. Regal said he may have to add Rhea Ripley to the match if Rhea can win later on in this episode. LeRae said she’s just ok as long as she can get her hands on Io… [c]
A vignette aired to hype Dakota Kai’s return to NXT…
Nigel McGuinness advertised Matt Riddle vs. Killian Dain in a street fight on the WWE Network portion of NXT next week…
4. Shayna Baszler vs. Rhea Ripley in a non-title match. Both women traded holds early on. Baszler went for a Kirafuda early on but Ripley countered into a body slam. Ripley gave Baszler clubbing blows. Baszler went for a rollup. Ripley hit Baszler with a dropkick. Baszler trapped Ripley’s right leg in the top rope by dodging a kick. Baszler used the rope as fulcrum to inflict pain on Ripley’s right leg. Baszler managed to lock Ripley in the Kirafuda clutch, but it was illegal since Baszler was sitting on the top rope. Rhea dropkicked Baszler to the outside for a moment of respite.
Ripley put Baszler in the Electric Chair position and then slammed Baszler’s face on the steel steps. Marina Shafir and Jessamyn Duke ran out for interference. The referee didn’t call for the bell because Ripley easily dispatched of Shafir and Duke without the goons laying a hand on her. Duke gave Baszler a steel chair. Ripley caught the chair shot and then hit Baszler in the back for the DQ.
Shayna Baszler defeated Rhea Ripley via DQ in 5:59.
Rhea Ripley posed in the ring to close the show…
But wait? There’s more! After the WWE signature flashed on the screen, they cut to an NWO-style Undisputed Era promo. Adam Cole talked about his prophesy was coming true and Roderick Strong will finally give Undisputed Era all the titles. Roderick Strong said he caught Dream’s attention and how he hated that couch and he hates Velveteen Dream. Strong hyped his match against Dream on USA. Adam Cole said everything is changing due to the Undisputed Era. Cole said nobody is going to stop UE once they have all the gold. Cole said that isn’t a threat or a prophesy, that is Undisputed…
John’s Thoughts: This was a little bit main-roster-ish in terms of booking the champion against a challenger in a non-title match. There was only one real route they could have gone and this was it in order to keep Rhea Ripley from taking a loss. One one hand the booking is confusing, but I like that they’re trying to make Rhea Ripley out to be a big deal. That said, the match was just eh and never really got into the next gear.
Another nice hour of NXT and the last singular hour of NXT ever. It was a good run. Now it’s time for NXT to move on to the two hour landscape with it’s unique studio-produced twist to things. We’ve been taking up for years how much better NXT booking is than the main roster, so now it’s time to see how NXT does as a main roster show now that they’re on a big network. This can all go to crap, I understand that, but I’m also optimistic in terms of seeing how this journey goes now that they’re entering a new phase.
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