7/22 NXT Level Up results: O’Connor’s review of Duke Hudson vs. Hank Walker, Ru Feng vs. Bryson Montana, and Brooklyn Barlow vs. Thea Hail

By John O’Connor, ProWrestling.net Contributor (@thereal_JOC

NXT: Level Up (Episode 23)
Taped July 19, 2022 in Orlando, Florida at the WWE Performance Center
Streamed July 22, 2022 on Peacock/WWE Network

Thea Hail with Andre Chase and Bodhi Hayward made her way to the ring as the broadcast team of Sudu Shah and Nigel McGuinness welcomed us to the show…

1. Thea Hail (w/Andre Chase, Bodhi Hayward) vs. Brooklyn Barlow. Hail applied a headlock early and followed up with a dropkick on Barlow. Barlow then blocked a punch as the two exchanged pinfall attempts. Hail attempted a running bulldog from the corner but Barlow held on and applied a headlock of her own. A backbreaker across the knee got a near fall for Barlow who then applied the abdominal stretch as Shah and McGuinness on commentary talked about cheesecake for some reason. Hail escaped the hold from Barlow and hit a standing moonsault and the spinning DDT for the win.

Thea Hail defeated Brooklyn Barlow via pinfall in 5:25.

Backstage, Kelly Kincaid interviewed Hank Walker who said that he makes the most of any opportunities and that he has learned from his previous outing on ‘Level Up’ and is ready for Duke Hudson.

The commentary team hyped Ru Feng vs. Bryson Montana for after the break…[c]

John’s Ramblings: An enjoyable opener with the crowd 100% behind Hail and ‘Chase U’. They are the firm fan favorites in the Performance Center that’s for sure.

2. Ru Feng vs. Bryson Montana. A stalemate early until Feng grabbed the head and took Montana down to the mat. Montana attempted to escape but Feng followed up with a scoop slam and side kick for a near fall. Montana responded with a side slam and grabbed the chinlock. Montana hit a Michinoku driver and a reapplied the chinlock as Feng escaped using kicks and a heart punch for a two count. Feng ran the ropes to follow up but was hit with the Sky High by Montana for the victory.

Bryson Montana defeated Ru Feng via pinfall in 4:38. 

The commentary team hyped the main event…[c]

John’s Ramblings: I liked the style that Feng brought to the match but the right person in Montana won. Montana looked good in there.

3. Duke Hudson vs. Hank Walker. Hudson and Walker tied up early as Walker was dragged into the ropes by Hudson. Both men ran the ropes to attempt to knock the other down to no success. Walker powered Hudson into the corner and hit a side slam for a two count but missed an elbow drop to allow Hudson to take control and hit a reverse DDT followed by a chinlock. Walker escaped and hit a flying crossbody and powered Hudson down for a close near fall. Walker missed a splash in the corner as Hudson responded with a running big boot for the win.

Duke Hudson defeated Hank Walker via pinfall in 6:04. 

John’s Ramblings: A by the numbers big man match but consider me surprised I really enjoyed this one. Good to see Hudson pick up a win, as I’ve seen him lose more than he wins in recent months. An enjoyable episode with all of the matches serving their purpose this week. The Hudson vs Walker main event is worth taking a look at.

SPECIAL EPISODE

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