8/17 NXT TV results: Moore’s review of the NXT Takeover 36 go-home show with Samoa Joe and Karrion Kross meeting face to face, MSK vs. Fabian Aichner and Marcel Barthel for the NXT Tag Titles, Roderick Strong’s open challenge, Cameron Grimes vs. Josh Briggs, Dexter Lumis and Indi Hartwell vs. Robert Stone and Jessi Kamea


By John Moore, ProWrestling.net Staffer (@liljohnm)

Live from Orlando, Florida at Capitol Wrestling Center (WWE Performance Center)
Aired August 17, 2021 on USA Network

[Hour One] Highlights from last week’s NXT show aired…

Vic Joseph, Beth Phoenix, and Wade Barrett were on commentary….

Malcolm Bivens, Roderick Strong, and Hachiman were in the ring to start out the show. Bivens yelled that Kushida was being a coward for not wanting to face Roderick Strong. Bivens let out a Open Challenge against Roderick Strong. Vic Joseph noted that William Regal announced on social media that Kushida “is not medically cleared to compete” tonight. Ilja Dragonov accepted the challenge…

1. Roderick Strong vs. Ilja Dragunov. Strong dominated early on with a flurry of chops. Strong dominated for a few minutes. Dragunov took control after a knife edge chop to the hamstring of Strong. Ilja gave Strong some Muay Thai knees. Strong blocked a 619 with a dropkick. Dragunov dominated Strong at ringside. Hachiman distracted Dragunov so Strong could slam Dragunov at ringside.[c]

Strong planted Ilja with a back suplex back from break. Ilja’s face was busted open and had a crimson mask. Ilja gave Strong a series of German Suplexes. Ilja was going to tackle Strong but he walked right into a high knee (sick looking given the crimson mask). Ilja rebounded on the ropes and hit his finisher, the Torpedo Moscow, on Strong for the win.

Ilja took the mic and called out WALTER. Walter didn’t accept and the segment ended with Ilja’s theme playing…

Wade Barrett hyped up Adam Cole and Kyle O’Reilly’s “Prime Target” video package for later in the show…[c]

John’s Thoughts: Odd two weeks of NXT. We were supposed to get Sarray vs. Ember Moon last week and had that switched to Dakota Kai vs. Sarray (and I assume Sarray would have won if she was facing Moon, so booking might have changed too). There’s no guarantee that Strong would have beaten Kushida, but Strong had a better chance of beating Kushida compared to the top contender to a “world” title like Ilja (a similar situation as Dakota Kai).

Vic Joseph, Wade Barrett, and Beth Phoenix checked in from the commentary table and sent the show over to the Kyle O’Reilly and Adam Cole “Prime Target” video package. The package hyped up the upcoming Cole vs. O’Reilly best of 3 falls match. As usual, the package was shot like a sports teaser, with background music, words from the competitors, cinematic highlights, and production values…

Hit Row made their entrance to call out Legado Del Fantasma. Isaiah Scott was about to call out Santos Escobar. Escobar cut off Scott’s promo by appearing on the big screen. Escobar noted that he did disrespect Scott’s culture by ripping out Scott’s teeth grills. Escobar said he got that message after Scott burned the luchador mask. Escobar asked Scott to join him in the parking lot so he could hand Scott the grill and end this dispute. Scott agreed and left the rest of Hit Row to meet Escobar in the parking lot.

For some reason, the camera changed to cinematic cameras. Before Scott could get to Escobar, he was ambushed by Wilde and Mendoza. Ashanti and Dolla ran out for the save, but were overwhelmed by Legado Del Fantasma. The tables turned when B Fab started whacking people with a metal baseball bat. Wilde and Mendoza were tossed aside. Scott slammed Escobar into a garage door. Scott took his grill back as Hit Row walked away looking like badasses…

A WWE.com exclusive video aired where LA Knight paid Josh Briggs to be Cameron Grimes’s opponent after the break…[c]

John’s Thoughts: Hit Row continue to be NXT’s hottest act on NXT. Even if NXT wasn’t in a rut, Hit Row would stand out as unique and cool. Yes, Scott did look dumb for a second for falling for Escobar’s obvious trap, but that was turned around when B Fab rolled out there like a badass, whacking everyone with her steel baseball bat (I continue to be really high on the potential of B-Fab, and we’ve haven’t even seen if she could wrestle yet. Maybe she doesn’t have to wrestle?). I also liked the usage of the cinematic cameras to enhance the segment as opposed to trying to put some sort of “4th wall” into the scene.

Walter, Marcel Barthel, and Fabien Aichner cut a quick promo backstage about wanting to get respect out of MSK and about how they were going to bring honor back to the sport of pro wrestling…

Ted Dibiase joined the announce table for the next match….

2. Cameron Grimes vs. Josh Briggs. Briggs dominated with knees early on. Briggs slammed Grimes and hit him with a standing splash. LA Knight joined the commentary table and traded verbal jabs with Knight. Knight and DiBiase apparently were also making bets on the match too. Grimes made a comeback and hit Briggs with a Spanish Fly Power Slam. Grimes beat Briggs after hitting him with a Cave-in.

Cameron Grimes defeated Josh Briggs via pinfall in 2:07.

LA Knight punched Ted Dibiase after the match. Grimes went to check on DiBiase but he walked right into LA Knight who hit him with the Blunt Force Trauma to leave him lying…

Johnny Gargano and Candice LeRae were arguing with Indi Hartwell backstage, not approving of the In-Dex relationship. Indi was gushing over all of her recent dates with Lumis. Lumis showed up and Gargano called Lumis a creep. Gargano asked Lumis if he liked the cake last week. Hartwell said Lumis liked the cake and even had “room for pie” afterward. The pie comment confused LeRae and Gargano…[c]

John’s Thoughts: Good match, but I get afraid every time one of these breakout guys looses in a virtual squash. I hope Briggs isn’t on the chopping block because the guy is solid in the ring and has good size. You can’t help but think this after what NXT has gone through in the last few weeks.

McKenzie Mitchell interviewed Zoey Stark and Io Shirai. Stark talked about how she is trying to become closer tag partners with Io by doing things like learn Japanese. Shirai said she still doesn’t like Stark, but she likes the championships.

3. Indi Hartwell and Dexter Lumis vs. Robert Stone and Jessi kamea (w/Franky Monet)  in a mixed tag match. Stone was grabbing Lumis’s leg and Lumis no sold Stone. Franky Monet tried to trip up Lumis, but Lumis just used his foot to drag Monet in the ring. The referee ejected Monet from ringside. [c]

Lumis dominated Stone with throat punches. Lumis got a two count after a spinebuster. Hartwell and Kamea tagged in. Hartwell hit Kamea with a spinebuster. Stone broke up the pin. Kamea hit Hartwell with a body slam and then put Hartwell in a half crab. Lumis started into the eyes of Hartwell which gave Hartwell the power to get to the ropes. Hartwell knocked Lumis off the apron. Stone went for a plancha, but he crashed and burned on the floor. Kamea punched Lumis at ringside, who no-sold it. Hartwell slammed Kamea into the ple

In-Dex defeated The Robert Stone Brand via submission. 

[Hour Two] Lumis and Hartwell did Lumis’s snake walk while staring at each other. Hartwell crawed to ringside and told something to Beth Phoenix off mic. Hartwell got on her knee in the ring and had a ring box in hand. She put the couple ring on Lumis. Beth Phoenix noted that In-Dex is engaged.

The commentary team hyped up words from Dakota Kai and Raquel Gonzalez after the break…[c]

John’s Thoughts: Pointless match, but fun post-match segment. I guess we’re in store for one of those pro wrestling weddings.

McKenzie Mitchell tried to interview Roderick Strong about his recent loss. Bivens interrupted. Bivens said that since Ilja is a heavyweight and not a cruiserweight, the match didn’t count. Bivens said if you want to speak to Strong, you have to speak to him…

The show cut to Beth Phoenix conducting a split screen interview with Raquel Gonzalez and Dakota Kai. Gonzalez said she isn’t surprised at what Kai did after what Kai did betraying Tegan Nox. Gonzalez said she’s a superstar and that Kai isn’t taking the title away from Gonzalez. Kai said that Gonzalez is delusional. Kai said she taught Gonzalez everything she knows, but not everything Kai knows. Kai said she made Gonzalez a somebody and Gonzalez is going to be somebody that Kai beats to become champion.

Gonzalez joked about Kai finding another Raquel Gonzalez to take down Gonzalez, but that will be impossible because there is noone like Gonzalez. Gonzalez said that Kai will have to fight this upcoming battle alone. Kai said that Gonzalez can call her names or a jealous bitch, but in five days she’s going to be NXT Women’s Champion. Gonzalez ended the segment by calling Kai a “sidekick”…

Entrances for the next NXT Breakout Tournament match took place…

4. Duke Hudson vs. Carmelo Hayes in a semi-final match of the NXT Breakout Tournament. Hudson shrugged off Hayes when Hayes went for a gutwrench. Hayes managed to put Hudson in a side headlock. Hayes hit Hudson with a flying strike for a two count. Hudson tossed Hayes to ringside heading into commercial.[c]

Hudson gave Hayes a belly-to-belly. Hayes dumped Hudson to ringside. Hayes caught Hudson with a scissors kick. Hayes hit Hudson with a few shortarm kicks. Hayes hit Hudson with a sick looking floating DDT into the ring apron. The replay showed that there might have been an awkward ending with Hudson’s shoulder going into the mat. Hayes hit Hudson with a La Mistica slam for a two count. Hayes got a two count off a small package. Carmelo hit Duke with a top rope leg drop to the back of Hudson’s neck for the victory.

Carmelo Hayes defeated Duke Hudson via pinfall in 5:39 of on-air time to advance to the finals of the NXT Breakout Tournament. 

The bracket showed that the finals are Carmelo Hayes vs. Odyssey Jones. A new NXT interviewer interviewed Carmelo Hayes at ringside about making it to the finals. Hayes talked about beating guys three times his size in the tournament. Hayes said that people have to face final bosses in video games and that Hayes is the final boss. Odyssey Jones made his entrance and laughed at Jones calling himself the Final Boss. Jones said after next week’s match people will be sounding the alarm. Vic Joseph hyped Odyssey Jones vs. Carmelo Hayes in the finals fo the tournemt for next week’s NXT…

Jacy Jayne cut a promo about how people are holding down “us” (Jayne and Dolan?). Jayne talked about how they were going to break free…[c]

John’s Thoughts: A good breakout tournament match, but the tournament continues to be a filler dud on the show. The finals of the tournament don’t look so hot either with Odyssey Jones not necessarily looking like he’s ready for TV at the moment. Jones has a good look and great energy, but he’s very green in the ring and very generic on the microphone. Not his fault, WWE’s just shoving him on television before he’s ready. I have to say, Carmelo Hayes vs. Trey Baxter, that might have had the potential to be Takeover-worthy. Hayes vs. Jones? I hope Jones doesn’t accidentally hurt Hayes in any real shoot way?

Ted DiBiase walked up to Cameron Grimes and apologized to Grimes for putting him in this position. Grimes said it’s not Ted’s fault and it was the money that made Grimes want to be Million Dollar Champion. Grimes said he dropped the ball. Grimes said that he’s fired up because DiBiase came to him to support him when he’s down. Grimes yelled his promo and said that on Sunday, he and Ted are going to be Million Dollar Champions who will go “to the moon”…

Entrances for the tag team championship match took place. Alicia Taylor handled the formal in ring introductions for the championship match. Vic Joseph noted that no one has defeated MSK in 2021…

5. “MSK” Wes Lee and Nash Carter vs. “Imperium” Marcel Barthel and Fabien Aichner for the NXT Tag Team Championships. Lee sent Aichner to his corner and tagged in Carter who hit Aichner with boots. Barthel tagged in and pressed Carter on the mat. Barthel locked Carter in a hammerlock. Carter escaped with aflips and an armdrag. Carter tried to run the ropes, but ran right in to a European Uppercut. Carter went for a dive, but he was chopped out of the air. Barthel hit Carter with an underhook suplex.

Aichner tagged in. Carter escaped a suplex and tagged in Lee. Lee and Carter hit Aichner with a plethora of kicks. MSK dumped Barthel to ringside. MSK went for stereo suicide dives, but were both caught into stereo body slams from Imperium. The show cut to picture-in-picture.[c]

Imperium traded quick tags to keep momentum over Wes Lee, cutting the ring in half. Lee managed to slip away and bring in Carter for the hot tag. Carter hit Aichner with a PK . Lee tagged in and hit Aichner with Hot Fire Flame. Walter got on the apron to distract MSK. This allowed Imperium to set up Lee for the European Bomb, but Ilja Dragunov ran out, which disracted Aichner and Barthel. This allowed MSK to regain control. MSK hit Aichner with a Blockbuster Power Bomb to give Lee the pinfall win.

MSK defeated Imperium via pinfall in 10:59 to retain the NXT Tag Team Championships. 

Imperium recovered and managed to leave MSK and Ilja Dragunov lying. Before the segment ended, Walter decided to add insult to injury by putting Ilja in one more sleeper before leaving him to lie. Imperium did their pose over the fallen body of Ilja Dragunov…

Samoa Joe and Karrion Kross were shown at different parts of the WWE PC, heading to the ring…[c]

John’s Thoughts: Solid tag team match, but how many times can Imperium take losses before WWE decides to shake them up? I would have made Barthel and Alexander Wolfe a tag team to boost their charisma levels, but Wolfe isn’t with the company anymore.

Pete Dunne and Ridge Holland were cutting a promo in front of a brick wall. Hudson called out Timothy Thatcher while Pete Dunne was firing him up…

Vic Joseph, Wade Barrett, and Beth Phoenix checked in from the commentary table. The commentary team ran through the advertised Takeover card…

Samoa Joe made his entrance for his face-to-face against Vic Joseph noted that Samoa Joe hasn’t wrestled since February 2020. Kross cut a promo on the way to the ring saying that he’s asking NXT security to show up at ringside, not as protection for Kross, but for Joe. Kross asked Joe if he thinks he has a shot. Kross said he thinks he’s going to drop Joe real fast. Kross joined Joe in the ring. Joe immediately attacked Kross and dumped him to ringside.

Joe hit Kross and the security guards with a suicide dive. Referees and guards pulled away Joe, this allowed Kross to slam Joe into the steel steps. Trainers like Steve Corino and Scotty Too Hotty ran out to try to separate everyone to no avail. NXT roster members ran out to separate Joe and Kross, but couldn’t either. Kross and Joe kept throwing each other trough the barricades at ringside. The show ended with Kross and Joe rolling on the ground in exhaustion…

John’s Thoughts: Nothing too unique, but effective in Kross and Joe looking uncontrollable. If only Raw didn’t make Kross look so weak in recent weeks, I felt like they could have built more compelling segments heading into the Kross vs. Joe match on Sunday. Overall, this show still has a weird dreary aura around it after the last set of releases and all the reports coming out that there may be a rebrand of NXT to being solely a developmental. Forgive me for a bit of a rough review this week, my computer was having technical problems to the point where I lost a section of the review for a bit.


Readers Comments (1)

  1. “LA Knight joined the commentary table and traded verbal jabs with Knight.”

    I would pay to see that!

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