9/20 NXT results: Moore’s review of Tyler Bate vs. JD McDonagh for an NXT Title shot, Grayson Waller vs. Oro Mensah, Von Wagner vs. Sanga, Carmelo Hayes and Trick Williams vs. Andre Chase and Bodhi Hayward, Cora Jade vs. Wendy Choo, Axiom vs. Nathan Frazer in a best of three series match, Rip Fowler and Jagger Reid vs. Malik Blade and Edris Enofe

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

NXT TV
Taped September 14, 2022 in Orlando, Florida at the WWE Performance Center
Aired September 20, 2022 on USA Network

[Hour One] Highlights from last week’s NXT show aired… Footage was shown of Carmelo Hayes and Solo Sikoa in the office of Shawn Michaels. Michaels talked about how he respects Solo stepping up, but Solo competed in a match that he wasn’t sanctioned to wrestle in. Michaels asked Solo to hand back the championship. Solo talked about how he was happy to finish his unfinished business in NXT, by beating Melo for the title. Solo handed over the title. Michaels wished Solo well on his future on Smackdown and Raw. Solo gloated to Melo saying he told Melo that “I had next.” Solo left.

Melo assumed Shawn would hand the title to him. Shawn said that Melo tried to game the system last week, but ended up getting burned. Shawn said he respects that Melo is cocky, but every time you disrespect the business, the business will slap you in the face. Michaels said Melo will get another chance to wrestle for the title in 6 weeks at Halloween Havoc, but Melo will wrestle other wrestlers in a ladder match…

John’s Thoughts: Interesting opening. What was the point of putting the title on Solo if they were just going to take it off him one title defense and a week later? Wasn’t the plan to drape the Bloodline in gold? I also wonder if this was just a one-off or are we getting the babyface version of “Commissioner Michaels” To fill the William Regal role?

Vic Joseph and Wade Barrett were on commentary. Alicia Taylor was the ring announcer…

1. Axiom vs. Nathan Frazer. Axiom has new red ring gear. Both men started with rapid fire rollups. Axiom put Frazer in a rear naked choke that Frazer broke with a jackknife pin attempt. Axiom and Frazer maintained a stalemate about 2 minutes in. Frazer got the upperhand with axe handle and headlock takedowns. Axiom came back with a handful of submissions. Axiom hit Frazer with a Northern Lights for a two count. Frazer dumped Axiom to ringside with a huracanrana. Axiom blocked a dive with a forearm. Frazer blocked a crossbody with a dropkick. The show cut to Picture-in-Picture.[c]

The picture-in-picture logo still says NXT 2.0 with all the paint splatter, so it might take a bit of time for them to update all their graphics. Frazer had Axiom in a waistlock. Axiom tried to put Frazer in an octopus hold, but Frazer escaped. Axiom hit Frazer with a hip toss. Axiom hit Frazer with a CQC combo and dropkick. Axiom hit Frazer with a top rope lariat for a two count. Axiom hit Frazer with a series of kicks. Frazer came back with a enzuigiri. Frazer kicked out of Axiom’s surprise pin.

Axiom hit Frazer with a slice kick. Frazer blocked Axiom’s jumping superkick with a nice looking regular superkick. Frazer got a two count. Axiom staggered Frazer on the top rope with a Gamengiri. Axiom hit Frazer with a top rope side slam for a two count. Frazer hit Axiom with elbows. Axiom reversed a moonsault into a Rear Naked Choke. Axiom went for a Yes Lock, but Frazer got a foot on the bottom rope for a break. Frazer hit Axiom with a Superplex and Final Cut. Frazer hit Axiom with a Phoenix Splash for the victory.

Nathan Frazer defeated Axiom via pinfall in 13:14 to tie the best of 3 series at 1-1. 

Highlights from the match aired…

John’s Thoughts: This match stuck in a methodical phase longer than I would have wanted, but by the third portion of the match, the action really picked up. The result was predictable given how pro wrestling tends to stretch these “best of…” series to the maximum length. Looking forward to the finals of this series. At the same time, I hope the final match leads to character development for one or both of these guys. I’m hoping for more than just a handshake and a hug.

Alba Fyre cut a promo backstage about how she’s coming after the NXT Women’s Championship…

Gigi Dolin and Jacy Jayne asked Mandy Rose if she’s ok with Alba Fyre coming after here. Rose talked about how she’s going to take care of Alba Fyre and how Toxic Attraction will still be above everyone else in status…

Toxic Attraction made their entrance…[c]

Vic Joseph and Wade Barrett checked in from ringside. Joseph sent the show to a Damon Kemp sitdown promo. Damon Kemp had a spray paint can, where he sprayed an x on his Diamond Mine singlet. He talked about how it was priceless when he cost The Creeds the title last week. They aired camera footage showing that Roderick Strong rejected a bribe from Tony D’Angelo. More footage showed that Damon Kemp took the bribe money instead. Kemp said that his plan to make Stacks and D’Angelo tag champs was ruined by Santos Escobar.

Kemp then talked about how he totally knew that Julius and Roddy will be at each others’ throats. Kemp talked about how Roddy got hands on the footage that showed Kemp accepting the bribe. Kemp said that caused him to destroy Roddy’s phone and put Roddy in the hospital. Kemp said that Roddy was still in the hospital since he just sent over some flowers. Kemp said he was relishing in how the Creeds are pissed off. Kemp said he’s a world class athlete, but he’s not going to challenge the Creeds 2-on-one. He said he’ll challenge one Creed in the ring, and the other in the back…

John’s Thoughts: Nice promo! I really like the attention to detail and events that led to the Damon Kemp heel turn (But if Roddy had the footage all along, then why would he not just publish it via the production truck an instead he goes to try to show it to Damon at ringside.  It’s the stupid drama thing of having the footage saved on the phone while not having a USB backup). Kemp seems very poised on the mic too, but it also helps that this was pretaped.

Ivy Nile was angry saying that she’s pissed that Kemp betrayed Diamond Mine. Tatum Paxley told Nile to stay focused for their next match. Nile said she was focused. Nile and Paxley made their entrance…

2. Toxic Attraction Gigi Dolin and Jacy Jayne vs. Ivy Nile and Tatum Paxley. Paxley and Dolin dodged each others’ moves to start the match. Dolin landed the first lariat and tagged in Jayne. Jayne hit Paxley with a running senton for a two count. Paxley rolled up Jayne for a two count. Jayne came back with an elbow. Dolin tossed Paxley to the mat for a two count. Dolin hit Paxley with a shortaerm forearm. Paxley rolled up Dolin for a two count. Paxley hit Dolin with a facebuster. Nile and Jayne tagged in with Nile hitting Jayne with a strike combo. Nile hit Jayne with a rolling Sobat and Suplex for a two count.

Dolin broke up Nile’s pin. Jayne hit Nile with a discus forearm. Dolin tagged in. Nile took down Dolin and Jayne with strikes. Toxic Attraction hit a rough looking version of their high low kick finisher for the win.

Toxic Attraction defeated Ivy Nile and Tatum Paxley via pinfall in 3:58.

Joe Gacy, Rip Fowler, and Jagger Reid were shown heading to the ring from backstage…[c]

John’s Thoughts: The finish didn’t look good. Hopefully Nile cleans up that moveset a bit. I do think she’s NXT main show ready though because they seem to be wasting her on Level Up. Interesting that they had Nile take the clean loss in a short match, because she was presented as a buzzsaw at one point. My guess is they’ll say she was distracted by Damon Kemp betraying her dojo.

Tyler Bate was shown entering the WWE Performance Center (he’s still wearing the same chef looking shirt). They also showed JD McDonagh entering the PC…

The Schism were in the ring. Gacy, Reid, and Fowler said some of their usual inclusive rhetoric. Edris Enofe and Malik Blade ran into the ring to clear the Schism from the ring. A ref ran out to start the match…

3. “The Dyad” Rip Fowler and Jagger Reid vs. Edris Enofe and Malik Blade. Enofe hit Fowler with a crossbody for a two count. Reid tagged in and worked on Enofe with methodical offense. Enofe rolled under a double lariat to tag in Blade. Blade and Enofe dumped The Dyad to ringside. Blade hit The Dyad with a flip dive heading into break.[c]

Fowler and Reed cut the ring in half on Blade. The three schism members had a group hug at ringside for some reason. The isolation lasted a few minutes. Blade managed to dodge both Dyads to tag in Enofe for the hot tag. Enofe got both Dyad members in the corner so he could pummel them with punches. Enofe dumped Reid to ringside with a dropkick. Enofe hit Fowler with a reverse Sling Blade. Fowler came back with a jawbreaker. Enofe held Fowler in the air so Blade could hit him with a Fameasser for a two count. Reid dumped Blade to ringside. Reid and Enofe traded rollups. Reid jumped off Fowler’s back to hit Enofe with a Canadian Destroyer. The Dyad hit Enofe with Ticket to Mayhem to give Reid the victory.

The Dyad defeated Enofe and Blade via pinfall in 9:17.

John’s Thoughts: Hey, Bray Wyatt may or may not be coming back right? Can we finally give up on Good Value Bray Wyatt Joe Gacy? Gacy performs the role to the best of his ability, but the gimmick is just dull. Let’s allow Fowler to grow his beard back so he can go back to being a Grizzled Young Veteran. Reid actually looks ok with the shave, though the dress shirt makes him look a bit like Right to Censor Stevie Richards. As for the match, it was actually good, but I’m totally done with anything involving Joe Gacy and his lame ass cult. This is worse than that lame cult Cameron Grimes led in TNA.

Vic Joseph sent the show to highlights from Quincy Elliot’s debut last week…

Wendy Choo made her entrance…[c]

The show cut to a Roxanne Perez promo. She talke about how she was nervous to go against Meiko Satomura. She showed that she had bruises after her match due to how stiff it was. She said she may have lost, but she earned Meiko’s respect. Meiko cut a selfie promo saying that she respects Perez’s fighting spirit. Meiko said she’s looking forward to the day Perez becomes a champion. They aired footage of Cora Jade attacking Perez with a kendo stick after the Meiko match. Perez said Meiko unlocked a new grit in her and she’s going to use that against Cora Jade. Perez said Jade is going to face a rougher, tougher, and more determined Roxanne Perez…

[Hour Two] Back at the Performance Cetner ring, Cora Jade made her entrance…

4. Cora Jade vs. Wendy Choo. Jade pressured Choo to the corner. Choo and Jade traded ground headlocks. Choo did a wheelbarrow rollup for a one count. Choo kicked Jade to dump her to ringside. Jade blocked a baseball slide and slammed Choo’s legs into the bottom rope. Jade worked on Choo with methodical offense. Jade hit Choo with a slingshot double shot for a two count. Jade swung Choo around with a straitjacket hold. Choo connected with some kicks and a lariat. Choo hit Jade with a Belly to Belly toss.

Choo hit Jade with a German Suplex. Jade tripped Choo into the 2nd rope. Jade hit Choo with a Dirty Deeds for the victory.

Cora Jade defeated Wendy Choo via pinfall in 4:14. 

Lash Legend showed up after the match and gave Choo a pump kick…

John’s Thoughts: Simple showcase for Jade, but I think this was Jade’s best showing as a heel so far. Her heel run hasn’t been impressive due to the lack of real chemistry with Roxanne Perez. We also didn’t get any time to acclimate to Jade’s heel style and moveset. This was a good showcase overall. Now, why are we getting another Lash Legend feud with, anybody? Legend will learn a lot working with Choo, but why does it have to take up NXT tv time to continue to watch Lash Legend’s developmental growing pains? They really need to keep Legend on Level Up or the house shows until she’s ready for TV. Either that or put her in a role similar to a handful of developmental talent on NXT where they don’t get exposed as green.

McKenzie Mitchell interviewed NXT Champion Bron Breakker for his thoughts on the Tyler Bate vs. JD McDonagh match. Bron spoke in his natural voice. He thanked the NXT fans for voting him as superstar of the year. Breakker said he was choosing Tyler Bate to win…

Trick Williams was psyching up Carmelo Hayes backstage. Trick and Melo then headed to the ring…[c]

A debut vignette aired for Oro Mensah (a.k.a Oliver Carter)…

Oh look a Quinn McKay sighting (former ROH TV host)! She’s Kelly Kincaid now. Kelly interviewed Oro Mensah in the locker room about his upcoming match against Grayson Waller for a shot at the North American Championship. Mensah talked about how his name means gold so it makes sense that he goes after gold. Kincaid wished Oro luck and sent the show back to the main arena…

Carmelo Hayes and Trick Williams made their entrance. Trick silenced the crowd and set up Melo for the promo .Melo said vote or no vote, he’s the biggest star in NXT. Melo said that the person that played solo’s music, counted Solo’s win, and ran the bell for the victtory, all of them should be fired. Melo said no matter what bloodline Solo comes from, Carmelo Hayes is still the A-Champion. Andre Chase, Thea Hail, and Bodhi Hayward walked out . Melo cut off Chase when he tried to say his “Teachable Moment” catchphrase, several times. After being cut off two times, Chace got his catchphrase in. Chase cleared Melo and Trick from the ring. Apparently a match is starting…

5. “Chace U” Andre Chase and Bodhi Hayward vs. Carmelo Hayes and Trick Williams. Trick sent chase to his corner and tagged in Melo. Chase armwrenched Melo and tagged in Bodhi. Melo sent Bodhi into Trick and tagged in Trick. Trick landed a suplex on Bodhi. Bodhi hit Trick with an armdrag and Three Point Stance tackle. Chase tagged in and landed the Chase U boots on Trick. Bodhi put Trick in a Torture Rack, but Trick managed to get a hand to Melo to tag in melo. Melo hit Bodhi with a lariat and springboard clothesline.

Melo hit Bodhi with a low thrust kick for a two count. Bodhi ducked Trick’s right hand and tagged in Chase. Chase hit Trick with strikes, an atomic drop, and body slam. Trick came back with a pop up punch.  Melo hit Chase with a pump kick and then hit Bodhi with a superkick. Chase countered a leaping Melo into a modified rollup for the upset win.

Andre Chase and Bodhi Hayward defeated Carmelo Hayes and Trick Williams via pinfall in 4:15. 

Sanga and Von Wager were shown at different parts backstage, heading to the ring…[c]

John’s Thoughts: Weird, but we’ll see where it goes. Carmelo Hayes didn’t mention that Shawn Michaels stripped Solo Sikoa of the title. So either they came up with the decision to take the title away from Solo recently, or they just didn’t want word to get out on the title strip due to this being a taped show. They did have Solo defend the title on Smackdown. Anyways, I like Andre Chase, but I wonder where they are going by having one of NXT’s winningest wrestlers lose to their undercard enhancement guy? It was Melo losing clean too, not Trick.

Gallus had their own personal pub set up backstage, complete with kegs and a poker table. Brigss, Jensen, and Henley  confronted Gallus. Wolfgang tried to shoo them away. Briggs said that Jensen can probably drink all three Gallus guys under the table, or maybe they can toss them through a table. Security guards showed up to pull about both groups…

Entrances for the next match took place…

6. Sanga vs. Von Wagner (w/Mr. Stone). Sanga managed to take down Wagner with a shoulder tackle. Wagner came back with strikes. Sanga took down Wagner with a clothesline. Wagner escaped a Snake Eyes attempt. Wagner pummeled Sanga with strikes in the corner. Sanga rallied back with punches. Wagner ended that rally with his own strikes. Sanga powered out of a headlock. Sanga hit Wagner with a sidewalk slam. Sanga knocked Wagner off the apron with a big boot. Sanga gave Wagner a lariat at ringside. Stone went for a dive and was caught by Sanga . Wagner took advantage of the distraction and tossed Sanga into the ringpost and steel steps. Wagner lifted up the giant Sanga and hit him with a twisting Death Valley Driver for the victory.

Von Wagner defeated Sanga via pinfall in 2:52. 

John’s Thoughts: Impressive win for Wagner made even more impressive with that big slam on the big man. Sanga has really impressed me with his character work, so I saw this as it could go any way with the winner presumably getting a bit of a push. I hope they start giving Wagner some momentum. He is decent in the ring and has a better look than when he started in NXT. All they have to do is keep him off the mic. The guy has a manager. Let him look like an old school monster.

Wes Lee was shown sitting on a sidewalk. Lee talked about how Melo put a number on him last week, but he’s ready to qualify for the North American title now. Lee said that Shawn offered to automatically qualify him due to what Melo did last week. Lee said he refused because he refuses special treatment. Lee said he felt like he left the fans who voted him last week down. He said he’s going to earn a shot at the North American title…

McKenzie tried to recap the promo, but Channing “Stacks” Lorenzo showed up saying that Lee is stupid for not taking the free bye. Stacks announced that Lee will be facing Tony D’Angelo next week…

Grayson Waller made his entrance…[c]

Cameron Grimes cut an angry promo backstage to hype up an upcoming match against Joe Gacy…

Oro Mensah made his entrance. His video wall was nightclub inspired. The commentators noted that he’s Swiss and Ghanaian…

John’s Thoughts: Welp, thank god Vince McMahon is gone or else Oro Mensah would be “Too Swiss” for NXT. I kid, I kid.

7. Grayson Waller vs. Oro Mensah to qualify for a spot in the North American Championship Ladder Match at Halloween Havoc. Waller dominated early on with methodical offence. Mensah tried to come back with strikes but Waller came back with a pop up Belly to Back suplex. Waller blocked a Sunset Flip and punched Mensah in the back. Waller gave Mensah elbows to the neck. Mensah rallied back with elbows and clotheslines. Mensah hit Waller with a springboard moonsault.

Mensah hit Waller with a Liger Kick. Waller came back with a jawbreaker on the top of the rope. Waller was about to go for his finisher but he stopped in his tracks when Apollo Crews showed up. Apparently, Crews has a “bloody” eye for some reason. Mensah hit Waller with a suicide dive. Mensah then hit Waller with a handstand heel kick for the win.

Oro Mensah defeated Grayson Waller via pinfall in 5:23 to qualify for the North American Championship Ladder Match at Halloween Havoc. 

John’s Thoughts: Uhm, super powers or not, if his eyes are still bleeding at this point shouldn’t he have a doctor check that or something. Anyways, an okay match, but we didn’t really get a feel for what Mensah is all about.

Julius Creed was beating up a punching bag while Brutus was beating up a training dummy. Julius and Brutus argued over who would face Damon Kemp. Ultimately, Julius agreed to let Brutus have the match. Julius asked Brutus to end Kemp’s career…

Bron Breakker made his entrance and led one of the Connor’s Cure cancer patients to ringside. Vic Joseph hyped Bate vs. McDonagh for after the break…[c]

A Sol Ruca debut vignette aired. She’s a surfer. She talked about how she does music, photography, and artwork. She said her home is in the middle of the ocean where she’s with the spirit of the water. She said there’s no distractions and absolute peace. She said when the tide rises, it’s time to come ashore. She said she’s leaving the beach next week to head to the ring. Sol Ruca will debut next week.

Vic Joseph announced the following matches for next week: Joe Gacy vs. Cameron Grimes and Wolfgang and Mark Coffey vs. Josh Briggs and Brooks Jensen in a “Pub Rules Match”…

Entrances for the number one contenders match took place. Bron Breakker joined Joseph and Barrett on Commentary. Joseph noted that he voted for Bron last week while Barrett voted for Toxic Attraction. Breakker asked Barrett “What’s up with that?”…

8. Tyler Bate vs. JD McDonagh for a shot at the NXT Championship. Bate and JD traded positions in the opening chain wrestling. Bate hit JD with a hard rollup for a two count. Bate dominated JD with a armbar, while also going for pins. Bate hit JD with a diving uppercut. JD reversed a helicopter spin with a rollup. Both men traded quick rollups for two counts. Both men traded pin counters for a bout a minute or two. Both men took each other out with simultaneous lariats heading into the picture-in-picture.[c]

[Overrun] Bate used a pushup to get to the ropes for a rope break. Bate reversed JD’s short-arm kicks with a powerful Irish Whip into the corner to send McDonagh to ringside. Bate gave McDonagh a rope clearing dive to send him into the announce table. Joseph noted that McDonagh was smiling even though he got hit. Bate hit McDonagh with an Exploder Suplex and Standing Shooting Star Press for a two count. McDonagh avoided an elbow in the corner. Bate put McDonagh in a Fireman Carry and then did a long Helicopter Spin into a Michinoku Driver.

McDonagh dumped Bate to ringside by pulling the top rope down. McDonagh hit Bate with a PK and Asai Moonsault. McDonagh hit Bate with a 450 for a two count. McDonagh hit Bate with a Brainbuster for a two count. Bate and McDonagh traded hockey punches. McDonagh blocked Pop and bang, but Tyler landed a clean right hand. McDonagh countered Bate’s rebound lariat with a Spanish Fly, but Bate caught McDonagh off guard with a nice left hand from the lying position. Bate and McDonagh brawled to the top rope. McDonagh curled his biceps to block a Super Tyler Driver and countered with a headbutt. McDonagh hit Bate with a Super Spanish Fly. McDonagh hit Bate with a Devlin Side for the clean win.

JD McDonagh defeated Tyler Bate via pinfall in 12:54 to earn a shot at the NXT Championship. 

Breakker stood face to face with McDonagh in the center of the ring. New entrance music music started to play, with Devlin yelling “NOOOOOOOO!”. Ilja Dragunov walked to the ring to make his return to NXT U.S. Breakker held the title over his head, standing between McDonagh and Dragunov to close the show…

John’s Thoughts: An awesome main event that didn’t overstay it’s welcome. Bate and JD are two stellar veterans who never disappoint in the ring. Bate in particular can make a match go long and not drag. This was long enough to be compelling and not too long as to allow both of these men to run it back with more stakes down the road. Loved the counters here. The best counter in my opinion was Bate catching McDonagh with a simple left hand while JD was firing himself up. I love that we’re getting Ilja Dragunov in NXT U.S. and presumably he’s recovered from his injury (?). Thankfully the recovery period wasn’t long, but I understand stripping him of the UK Title because they had to record months of television and he couldn’t make it.

While the show wasn’t bad by any means, I thought that this was underwhelming and middle-of -the road. There are still a lot of relics and graphic design still left over from the “old” NXT 2.0. I get that the show’s going to be a hybrid, but there are still a ton of graphics still plastered on the screen with the numbers “2.0”. Maybe WWE’s going to use the two week break due to tapings to come up with new graphics? I hope so; and along with that I hope they also initiate a soft-reboot.

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