By John Moore, ProWrestling.net Staffer (@liljohnm)
Taped June 27, 2023 in Orlando, Florida at the WWE Performance Center
Aired July 4, 2023 on USA Network
[Hour One] Vic Joseph and Booker T were on commentary. Alicia Taylor was the ring announcer…
Blair Davenport was making her entrance for the opening match. Roxanne Perez jumped Blair on the ramp and beat her down before the bell rang…
1. Blair Davenport vs. Roxanne Perez. Perez dominated the early part of the match with aggression. Davenport got her first advantage after a baseball slide. Davenport dumped Perez to ringside and hit her in the back with a double stomp. The show cut to picture-in-picture.[c]
Perez rolled up Davenport for a two count. Davenport reversed a bulldog into a back suplex. Perez came back with a monkey flip. Davenport reversed a uppercut and dragged Perez to the top rope. Perez reversed a superplex into a crossbody. Perez and Davenport traded Yay Boo forearms. Perez used knife edged chops for momentum. Davenport got a two count after a Knockout Punch.
Davenport avoided Pop Rocks and ate a crossbody for a two count. Perez gave Davenport overhead clubbing blows and dumped Blair to ringside. Davenport avoided a dive, but ate a running uppercut from Perez. Davenport tossed Perez into the steel steps and gave her a knee strike into the steps. Perez beat the ten count. Perez kicked out of a Falcon Arrow. Blair gave Perez two consecutive Kamigoyes for the pinfall win.
Blair Davenport defeated Roxanne Perez via pinfall in 12:02.
John’s Thoughts: A good win for Davenport to start off her run in NXT US. Perez loses nothing defeat and even got to show a bit of a mean streak. It’s smart to put Blair over strong this early in her NXT US run because she has the potential to be a top heel in any of WWE’s women’s divisions. Now that we’ve seen her impress in the ring, we need to see her do some promo work.
McKenzie Mitchell interviewed Ivy Nile about The Creeds putting their NXT careers on the line later in the show. Nile said she was nervous. Tiffany Stratton interrupted the interview and said that she should be interviewed due to her title defense last week. Nile pointed out that Tiffany tapped out. Tiffany said the referee didn’t see it and that’s what counts. Nile said she’d make Tiffany tap out. After Nile left, Tiffany wondered if Nile has to leave NXT if the Creeds lose? McKenzie said only the Creeds and Dyad have their NXT careers on the line…
Mustafa Ali made his entrance for the next match…[c]
A Baron Corbin cinematic promo package aired. He talked about being bummed out after last week. He said he’s embarrassed and pissed off. He said he tried to invoke the nostalgia of the lone wolf and it wasn’t enough. He said he has the money, the fame, and family, but he doesn’t have the reputation. Corbin was shown drinking whiskey. He said people see him as “safe”, “consistent”, and “good”. Corbin took exception to being called “good”. He said he wants to be feared and respected.
Corbin was shown heading to a furnace. He said to dictate his future, he can’t bank on the past. He said he has to kill his past. Corbin tossed his crown, Happy Corbin hat, bum ass Corbin shirt, and other past gimmicks into the furnace and burned them all. He said he has to burn all the ships. Corbin said it’s no more gimmicks, nonsense, and bullshit…
John’s Thoughts: Hopefully he also burned that cheap gym attire he wore a few weeks ago. Anyways, Great cinematic promo and great character development for Baron Corbin. I loved how he tied in his past gimmicks to spark whatever evolution he’s going to have now. His talent is not in question, he was just never given the ball to run with. That’s just the downside of being a good comedy actor, you get pigeonholed. Hmmm, if Damian Priest is being kicked out of Judgement Day? If they want another heater, Corbin might not be a bad replacement (albeit they do look very similar and bring a lot of similar things to the table).
Tyler Bate made his entrance…
2. Tyler Bate vs. Mustafa Ali. Ali got a two count after a crucifix rollup. Bate dominated the joint manipulation. Ali flipped and rolled out of the wristhold. Ali mocked Bate’s strong boy pose after a shoulder tackle. both men traded quick pin attempts. Bate hit Ali with a dropkick and diving shoryuken. Bate hit Ali with a dive at ringside. The show cut to picture-in-picture.[c]
Bate rallied with European Uppercuts. Joseph noted that Ali was complaining to the referee during the break, acting like he’d be a better ref. Ali avoided a Bop and Bang attempt, but got a Bop and Bang after a slingshot. Ali reversed a Tyler Driver into a superkick. Ali put Bate in a STF. Bate deadlifted Ali to escape the hold. Bate did a helicopter spin on Ali. Ali reversed the spin into a DDT for a nearfall.
Bate dumped Ali to ringside and hit him with a top rope clearing dive. Ali gave Bate a PK to the shoulder and hit Bate with a suicide dive. Bate came back with a rebound lariat for a nearfall. Bate gave Ali two body slams. Ali avoided Bate’s spiral tap. Ali did a pullup to get on the top rope. Bate staggered Ali with a uppercut. Bate and Ali teetered on the top rope. Ali begged for mercy and crotched Bate on the top rope. Ali hit Bate with a 450 for the win.
Mustafa Ali defeated Tyler Bate via pinfall in 13:32.
Ali went to the camera and challlenged Wes Lee to a match at Great American Bash…
John’s Thoughts: Good match with Bate protected due to Ali continuing to act real sus. At a certain point, there needs to be some sort of evolution for Ali because he’ll start making his opponents look dumb for falling for his tricks. I wouldn’t mind seeing them run this match back down the road with maybe 5 more minutes.
Vic Joseph and Booker T checked in from the commentary table. Joseph was wearing a red sweater, but not to be outdone by Booker who wore a black tank top. They sent the show to McKenzie Mitchell who interviewed Ava and Joe Gacy. McKenzie wondered why Gacy would put The Dyad’s career on the line. Ava talked about Gacy doing what’s best for the family. Gacy said tonight a problem will be eliminated from NXT forever…[c]
Tatum Paxley was already in the ring. Her opponent was Kelani Jordan, who was accompanied by Dana Brooke. A graphic showed some of Jordan’s athletic accomplishments…
3. Kelani Jordan (w/Dana Brooke) vs. Tatum Paxley. Jordan got a rollup for a two count. Jordan hit Paxley with a nice Tiger Feint armdrag. Paxley came back with a running elbow and backbreaker. Paxley worked on Jordan with methodical offense. Jordan managed to hit Paxley with a Stundog Millionaire out of nowhere for the win.
Kelani Jordan defeated Tatum Paxley via pinfall in 2:47.
Cora Jade made her entrance with a mic. Jade congratulated Jordan on her first NXT win. Jade then said that a friend of Dana Brooke is a enemy of hers. Jade talked about not needing mentors or fans. Jordan cut off Jade and challenged Cora to a match on the spot. Cora said you can’t tell her what to do, ever. Jade left…
The show cut to an Andre Chase University skit. The class gave Chase a welcome back chant. Chase said he truly appreciated all the well wishes. Chase talked about Duke Hudson doing a good job keeping Chase U alive while he was gone and is a true definition of being an MVP. Hudson took his seat by kicking out “nick”. Andre Chase then talked about how Drew Gulak and Charlie Dempsey are bad examples to the youth in WWE.
One student wondered if Gulak and Dempsey wouldn’t be guest teachers anymore? Chase was about to yell at the student, but Hudson did the yelling for him. Chase said it was good to be back!
The NXT ring crew took apart the wrestling ring for the upcoming NXT Underground match…[c]
[Hour Two] Entrances for the NXT Underground match took place. Random developmental wrestlers surrounded the ring. Unfortunately there was no Shane McMahon or strippers. Alicia Taylor handled formal in ring introductions for the NXT Underground match. A graphic aired that clairified that you can only win via knockout or submission..
4. Eddy Thorpe (w/Gable Steveson) vs. Damon Kemp (a.k.a. Bobby Steveson) in an NXT Underground Match. Eddy kept Torpe at a distance with Muay Thai strikes. Kemp got the advantage with a double leg take down and some ground and pound. Kemp put Eddy in a Rear naked Choke. Thorpe managed to reverse the guard. Both men traded forearm smashes. The brawl spilled to ringside.
Kemp used a random female wrestler as a meat shield to get the advantage over Thorpe. Kemp and Gable stared each other down at ringside (Kemp is Gable’s real life brother Bobby). Kemp went for a Juji Gatame, but Kemp reversed it into a power bomb on the apron. Kemp gave Thorpe a deadlift German Suplex in the ring. Kemp went back to slams and a Rear Naked Choke. Thorpe escaped wtih an armdrag.
Thorpe hit Kemp with a boot and German Suplex. Thorpe hit Kemp with a Saito Suplex. Gable was coaching Kemp at ringside. Thorpe hit Kemp with a high knee. Kemp gave Thorpe a sick suplex to ringside. Gable went to Thorpe and showed him the US Gold medal to try to inspire him. Booker rightfully wondered what I did and how was that going to help? Thorpe sent Kemp into the ringpost and hit him with a suplex.
Thorpe locked Kemp into a Triangle. The referee called the match when Kemp couldn’t defend himself from overhead elbows.
Eddy Thorpe defeated Damon Kemp via TKO in 7:28.
Gable Steveson raised Thorpe’s hand in victory. A random developmental wrestler walked up to Gable and started to mock him. This caused Gable Steveson to suplex random developmental wrestlers that tried to jump him. One big man tried to confront Gable, and ate a suplex. Thorpe put the Olympic Gold Medal on Gable after the suplexes. The crowd and wrestlers beat the ring to the beat of Thorpe’s entrance theme…
John’s Thoughts: Good reintroduction to the Raw Underground concept and this was more about the fight than all the distractions from the Shane McMahon version. The old version had too many quick camera cuts and bad McMahon commentary that distracted from whatever they wanted to do in the ring. Hey, if they do bring back stuff from the old Raw Underground, bring back the generic background music, and bring back Dabba Kato! Both men here got to play to their strengths here and looked good. The post match stuff was a bit weird though and more of way to get TV time to the Olympic Gold Medalist. Gable’s brother is TV ready. I wonder how ready he is because we barely see him on NXT?
The show cut to a promo with Trick Williams and Carmelo Hayes. Hayes talked about Rhea Ripley trying to send him an ultimatum last week. Trick said mami was looking good though. Melo talked about how Damien Priest can cash in on his title so nobody is safe. Carmelo invited Judgement Day to show up next week on NXT because he and Trick are the Judge, Jury, and Executioners in NXT…
Jacy Jayne made her entrance…. [c]
Stacks was meeting with Tony D’Angelo at the visitation room. Stacks claimed he didn’t betray Tony and only made a deal. Joe Coffey showed up. Tony wondered why Stacks would make a deal with the rat. Stacks said that he’ll have a match with Joe Coffey next week where if Stacks wins, Tony is released from jail, but if Joe wins Tony stays locked up.
Tony wondered why Stacks would agree to this because he’s in a 3 on one situation. Stacks talked about how business have been good since he took over while Tony was in jail. Tony continued to yell at Stacks. Stacks said Tony has to live with this decision. Stacks left. Joe picked up the visitation phone and said “good bye don”. Tony broke the visitation phone on his end…
John’s Thoughts: So HBK is able to book prison stipulations now? I guess. Only in wrestling.
Lyra Valkyria made her entrance. Joseph talked about Rhea Ripley giving Lyra props last week…
5. Lyra Valkyria vs. Jacy Jayne. Jayne gave Lyra punches in the corner. Lyra escaped the corner and got a one count after a Sunset Flip. Lyra worked on Jacy’s left arm. Jayne reversed Lyra into a headscissors. Lyra got to her feet and escaped the hold. Lyra rolled up Jacy for a two count. Lyra dropkicked Jacy to ringside. Jacy reversed a wrecking ball kick into a facebuster. The show cut to picture-in-picture.[c]
Jacy had Lyra in a Boston Crab. Jacy rolled up Lyra for a two count. Lyra rolled up Jacy for a two count. Jacy hit Lyra with a Scorpion Kick. Lyra avoided a cannonball attempt. Lyra rallied with lariats and an axe kick. Lyra hit Jacy with a slingshot forearm and leg drop for a nearfall. Lyra hit Jacy with a wrecking ball dropkick. Jacy avoided a top rope bicycle kick and slammed Lyra for a nearfall.
Lyra avoided a cyclone kick and hit Jacy with a enzuigiri. Lyra hit Jacy with the Crescent Kick for the win.
Lyra Valkyria defeated Jacy Jayne via pinfall in 8:54.
Jacy attacked Lyra after the match to get her heat back. Jacy ripped up Lyra’s “wings” that she wears during her entrance…
John’s Thoughts: Good match with Jacy getting her heat back after the match to extend this past one match. Lyra is starting to finally connect with the US audience with slight tweaks to her presentation and a string of good matches. I like the nice touch of other wrestlers, heel and babyface, putting over Lyra’s talent to make her a big deal.
Noam Dar was out on a date. He acted like he was talking to a person, but he was talking to the Heritage Cup. He said he thinks about “her” every night and needs her back in his life. The camera panned back to show he was talking to a picture of the heritage cup. Oro, Jakara, and Lash went to console and drag away Noam…
John’s Thoughts: How wonderful would if have been if the camera panned back and it was instead the beautiful “Alicia foooooox”. That time was peak Noam Dar. I’d be down for Alicia to return to NXT, just for something with Noam Dar and the Meta Four. When Noam had the Heritage Cup, I wonder what he drank out of it? Part of me assumes it was a bunch of hot chocolate. Don’t know why? Just a hunch.
Kiana James was heading to her office where there was a “wet paint” sign on the door. She went into the office to find it trashed and grafiti’d. A note from Gigi Dolin said that Kiana can’t hide from her past. Kiana said it’s on…
Cut back to the performance center ring, Von Wagner was beating up Big Body Javi presumably for mocking him. Robert Stone prevented Von from power bombing and press slamming Javi. The crowd chanted “Tables”. Von cleared the announce table and power bombed Javi through it. Von posed and soaked in cheers from the crowd…
John’s Thoughts: It’s taken a while, and a lot of bad acting, but Von Wagner might finally be connecting with the crowd. The bad acting is still there, but it’s a bit of a term of endearment for Von now. Now he needs merch. Give this man a “come tuesday” shirt based off his Kyle O’Reilly meme. Hey, did Von’s therapist “come tuesday”? I’m sorry… crass joke…
The show cut to the latest Lucien Price and Bronco Nima introductory vignette. They were leaving the corner store. They continued to brag about their street knowledge and collegiate accomplishments. Nima and Price debut next week…
Entrances for the Loser Leaves NXT Match took place. The Dyad jumped The Creeds before the bell.Julius managed to hit Reid with a Suplex. Brutus hit Fowler with a cannonball flip dive…
6. “The Creed Brothers” Julius and Brutus Creed (w/Ivy Nile) vs. “The Dyad” Jagger Reid and Rip Fowler (w/Joe Gacy, Ava) in a loser leaves NXT match. Julius hit Reid with a Shooting Star Press. Gacy dragged Reid to ringside to prevent the pinfall. The referee ejected Gacy heading into picture-in-picture. [c]
Fowler worked on Brutus with methodical offense. Joseph wondered if it’s actually The Dyad that Gacy is trying to punish? Brutus managed to get a window of opportunity after a deadlift Brainbuster. Julius and Reid tagged in . The Dyad quickly ended Julius’s suplex rally. Julius dumped The Dyad to ringside, hit them with a wrecking ball kick, skinned the cat, and hit The Dyad with a Corkscrew Plancha.
Brutus tagged in and hit Fowler with a modified Hart Attack for a two count. Fowler rolled up Julius for a nearfall. Fowler dropped Julius with a throat punch to give Reid a two count. Julius hit Reid with a power bomb. Fowler broke up the pin with a chop block. Reid also hit Julius with a chop block. The Dyad tossed Julius into the steel steps, injured leg first, heading into the picture-in-picture.[c]
Julius used boots to escape a Half Crab by Fowler. Brutus tagged in and gave Fowler overhead gorilla blows. Julius hit Fowler with Shellshocked. Brutus hit Fowler with a slingshot 450. Brutus put Fowler in an Ankle Lock. Fowler escaped and gave Brutus a throat punch. Fowler hit Brutus with a top rope Codebreaker for a two count. Reid took off the wrist tape and pummeled Brutus with punches.
Julius told Brutus that he loves him and to not give up. This caused Brutus to hulk up, no sell Reid’s punches, and turn Reid inside out with a lariat. Fowler held on to Brutus’s leg to prevent the Doomsday Device. The Dyad managed to hit Brutus with a Doomsday Device at ringside. Julius hit The Dyad with a double suplex. Julius hit They Dyad with a moonsault. Ivy Nile attacked Ava when Ava tried to interfere.
A masked “fan”/”cultist” from the crowd entered the ring and gave Julius a headbutt. The random heavyset man ran back in the crowd. The Dyad hit Julius with a double Codebreaker for the victory.
The Dyad defeated The Creed Brothers via pinfall in 17:58 in a loser leaves NXT match.
Vic Joseph sold the moment with his somber voice. The Dyad and Ava celebrated up the ramp while the random masked person watched on from the crowd…[c]
John’s Thoughts: Well worked tag team match that subverted expectations. Unfortunately, I couldn’t avoid this spoiler, so the shock factor was down for me. I could also imagine that’s the downside for a lot of people since this episode was taped for the holidays. That said, I suspected the swerve might happen based off Ava’s promo last week, and that this might lead to a Creeds callup. That said, we know that The Dyad are one foot out of the door already. Either that or WWE managed to resign them? We’ll see what happens on that front.
[Overrun] The show cut to Finn Balor backstage. Balor said that he’s not sweatin’ the Trick Melo gang. Balor said Melo was sweating all over the ring when he was tossed around the ring a week ago. Balor said Melo is just here for the Finn rub. Balor said he’ll see Melo next week…
The following segments were announced for next week: Stacks vs. Joe Coffey for Tony D’Angelo’s freedom, Tiffany Stratton vs. Ivy Nile in a non-title match, Andre Chase and Duke Hudson vs. Drew Gulak and Charlie Dempsey.
Vic and Booker checked in from the commentary table and cut to the footage of Julius and Brutus waving goodbye to the NXT crowd during the break…
Bron Breakker made his entrance. Breakker took the mic and noted how he competed in the biggest match in NXT History two weeks ago. Breakker talked about how it was the highest rated NXT show in 2 years. Breakker said nobody believed that Bron Breakker had a shot to beat Seth Rollins, until he speared Seth and heard the energy in the arena drop. Breakker talked about being that close to winning the WWE World Heavyweight Championship.
Breakker said he’s only had 78 matches in his career. Breakker talked about not having a chance to tour the independents and people saw his development here in NXT. Breakker talked about getting his first win against one of WWE’s hottest stars, LA Knight. Breakker said he’s proved that he can hang with the best in the business and is that damn good.
Breakker said people are wondering what’s next for the most intense star in WWE, the badass Bron Breakker? Ilja Dragunov interrupted and said that what’s next for Bron is “me”. Ilja said he’s confronting Bron like a man, not attacking him from behind. Ilja said that Bron is in between him and the NXT Title. He said he’s here to eliminate Bron.
Ilja said Bron talks about “danger” and is standing in front of the most dangerous man in NXT. A brawl ensued. Ilja and Bron managed to dump the random developmental wrestlers in the pull apart. Eventually enough wrestlers and referees got in between Ilja and Bron. Ilja managed to break free and get more blows in. NXT closed with the brawl still ensuing…
John’s Thoughts: So, they hyped this segment to pay off last week’s stinger segment; but they didn’t really pay off anything? I was guessing they were setting up a loser leaves NXT match for Bron Breakker, which they still might, but all we really got in the end was the expected heat on his presumed match against Ilja. Bron is on a four match losing streak, and is probably due for another loss against Ilja. We’ll see what they have in store for him, but for now we should expect a Ilja vs. Bron number one contenders match.
This week’s taped edition of NXT was solid. Sucks that a bit of the drama was taken away from the Creeds vs. Dyad match because of the taped nature (yes, we can avoid social media, but it’s tough). The highlight of the show was probably the NXT Underground match which gave WWE yet another match type they can utilize on the main roster. Another highlight might be the Baron Corbin cinematic vignette. I’ll be by in a bit with my audio review for the Dot Net Members and patreon patrons. Have a happy holiday! Happy America Day!