By John O’Connor, ProWrestling.net Contributor (@thereal_JOC)
NXT: Level Up (Episode 9)
Taped April 12, 2022 in Orlando, Florida at the WWE Performance Center
Streamed April 15, 2022 on Peacock/WWE Network
Roxanne Perez (f/k/a Rok-C) made her way to the ring as the broadcast team of Sudu Shah and Nigel McGuinness welcomed us to the show…
1. Roxanne Perez vs. Sloane Jacobs. Roxanne took the early advantage in her debut match with arm drags and a head scissors for a near fall and worked on the arm of Jacobs before Jacobs dropped Roxanne onto the top rope to gain control. Roxanne escaped a chinlock, hit Jacobs with a Lou Thesz press, a twisted senton splash and the Code Red for the victory.
Roxanne Perez defeated Sloane Jacobs via pinfall in 4:17.
The commentary team hyped Troy Donovan vs. Damon Kemp for after the break…[c]
John’s Ramblings: Good to see Roxanne Perez the artist formally known as Rok-C make her way over to NXT. The match was short and sweet and was a good debut for her.
2. Troy Donovan (w/Channing Lauren) vs. Damon Kemp. Kemp, the older brother of Gable Steveson, took Donovan to the mat early as he imposed his strength on the youngster. Despite being rocked by a punch from Donovan, Kemp continued to take control until a distraction from Lauren on the outside allowed Donovan to gain the advantage. Donovan hit a spinebuster for a two count before grabbing a chinlock on Kemp to wear the big man down.
Kemp responded with a pair of belly-to-belly suplexes and a shoulder block on Donovan. A falcon arrow from Donovan could not put Kemp away and Donovan missed a top rope crossbody. Attempted interference from Lauren was thwarted by Kemp as Kemp hit Donovan with an elevated neckbreaker drop for the three count.
Damon Kemp defeated Troy Donovan via pinfall in 6:00.
The commentary team hyped the main event…[c]
John’s Ramblings: Kemp continues to impress on ‘Level Up’ with his power-based offence. The commentators were quick to point out his winning streak so it looks like he is going to continue to be highlighted on the show going forward.
3. Tatum Paxley vs. Kiana James. Paxley escaped an armlock from James with neither woman gaining the early advantage to start. Ivy Nile appeared on the stage to scout the match as James sent Paxley into the middle rope and kicks to the gut saw her take control. Paxley escaped and drove James into the corner and rolled her up for a near fall. Paxley would continue to be distracted by the presence of Nile but fought through the attempted comebacks by James and hit a twisted splash for the win.
Tatum Paxley defeated Kiana James via pinfall in 3:58.
John’s Ramblings: The last time we saw Paxley in a match on the show it went over 6 minutes and the match went off a cliff. The match this week was shorter and was all the better for it. Ivy Nile coming out to scout the match continues the story of Paxley attempting to impress ‘Diamond Mine’ for a spot in the faction. I’m interested to see whether Paxley is successful in her quest or if they have another person in mind for a spot.
None of the matches were standouts this week but they continued to showcase the characters and lay the foundation for future episodes and storylines. If you check anything out from this edition though make it the debut of Roxanne Perez. This girl is super talented.