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NXT Review 17/10/23





We’re back to normal this week and that means we could be in for something interesting. With a week to go before the first week of Halloween Havoc, it is time to figure out what is going to be on the two-week special. That includes a #1 contenders match for the NXT Title this week so let’s get to it.




Match 1 Tag Team Battle Royal


Creed Brothers, Drew Gulak/Damon Kemp, Brawling Brutes, Angel Garza/Humberto Carrillo, Hank Walker/Tank Ledger, Chase U, Malik Blade/Edris Enofe, Gallus, Josh Briggs/Brooks Jensen, Bronco Nima/Lucien Price


If one member is out, the whole team is out and the last two teams have a regular tag match next week for a Tag Team Title shot the following week. Kemp is out less than ten seconds in and Gulak is not pleased. Ledger and Walker are out rather quickly as they’re clearing the ring pretty quickly to start.



Brawling along the ropes and on the apron ensues until Wolfgang low bridges Jensen out. Holland picks up Enofe and Blade for the double elimination as Stacks and Tony D’Angelo are having a nice spaghetti and meatball dinner while watching from the balcony. The Creeds get rid of Gallus and we’re already halfway done.


The Brutes and Nima/Price go out at the same time and fight to the back, leaving us with the Creeds, Chase U and Garza/Carrillo. Carrillo is backdropped out but the referees are dealing with the brawl in the aisle. That lets Garza and Carrillo toss the Creeds (the referees didn’t see them go over the top) but that’s it at 5:02.


Official Result Chase u win


 


Rating: C. This wasn’t much of a battle royal but if you’re going to have something like this, I can go with blazing through it as fast as they did here. It’s smart to find a way to get rid of the Creeds as they’re the best team around while leaving the fans someone to cheer for in Chase U. The match was just a means to an end to set up the regular tag match, but they even have something with the Brutes vs. Nima/Price so well done on booking for the future.


The #1 contenders match is right now. So Vic Joseph can’t be trusted to get his dates straight.


Match 2 Chase U vs. Angel Garza/Humberto Carrillo



Jacy Jayne and Thea Hail come out with pom poms as Chase U cheerleaders. Chase takes over on Garza in the corner to start and Hudson’s elbow to the back gets two. We take a break and come back with Garza giving Chase a heck of a running knee (setting up an even better sell from Chase).


Carrillo chokes on the rope but Chase fights out of the corner, only for the villains to take Hudson off the apron. The tag goes through a few seconds later and Hudson gets to release Rock Bottom Humberto out of the corner for two. Chase tags himself back in with a high crossbody for two but a DDT on the floor drops Hudson. Back in and Carrillo hits a sitout powerbomb for two on Chase but cue the Creeds to take Carrillo and Garza down. The distraction lets Chase grab a rollup for the pin at 10:07.


Official Result Chase U Win 




Rating: C+. The match was fine and I can always go for the prospect of Chase U winning something. They’re still a popular act and they almost have to win something at some point. The match wasn’t much and the cheating at the end ties into the battle royal rather well.


Blair Davenport wants to face Gigi Dolin again at Halloween Havoc.


We get another Lexis King video, as he rants about how much his father left him alone and how he doesn’t love him. He is in no one’s shadow and will make his name bigger than Brian Pillman’s ever was, starting at Halloween Havoc.


Here is Carmelo Hayes for a chat. Last week he was standing next to John Cena and the Undertaker and he can’t believe it happened. Cue Baron Corbin to interrupt, saying he doesn’t want to hear about Hayes being a fanboy. Fans belong in the stands but Corbin heard about Hayes asking the legends about pictures. Maybe if Hayes focused on something other than being a fan, he would still have his championship.



Cue Dijak to interrupt, saying he’s going to beat them both and then become NXT Champion. Dijak talks about how Hayes is going to know the truth when he looks in his eyes, but Corbin points out that no one can look into Dijak’s eyes because he’s wearing sunglasses inside. 


He keeps going on about Corbin, who calls Dijak “just plain stupid”. Ilja Dragunov pops up on screen to say he’s looking forward to the match, but Cody Rhodes made one more ruling: the #1 contenders match is now a fatal four way, with Trick Williams included.


Hayes is STUNNED, leaving everyone to say what they want to talk about (Corbin is in favor of discussing Williams’ ugly pants). 


Hayes isn’t happy with Williams being in the match but he’s willing to put anyone down to get the title back. He’s asked if that includes Williams and the brawl is on, with Williams and Hayes clearing the ring.


A bunch of the women’s division talk about the Breakout Tournament when Tiffany Stratton comes in to brag about making it to the finals last week. Fallon Henley doesn’t want to hear about it but Stratton leaves.


Match 3 Women’s Breakout Tournament First Round: Karmen Petrovic vs. Jaida Parker


Petrovic drives her against the ropes to start and spins around into a hammerlock. A knee to the ribs and a head scissors give Petrovic two but Parker starts in on the arm. Petrovic is sent into the corner and Parker sits on her ribs for two. Parker gets caught with a dragon screw legwhip though and Petrovic grabs something like Carmella’s Code Of Silence for the tap at 3:36.


Official Result Karmen Petrovic wins 


Rating: C. This really wasn’t the best match though that’s kind of the point: these aren’t polished, experienced stars and they aren’t going to have the best match most of the time. Petrovic feels like a potential star and has been around on LVL Up in recent months. Parker hasn’t been around as much so Petrovic going forward makes a bit more sense, though neither exactly stole the show.


Natalya gives Tegan Nox a pep talk.


Match 4 Tegan Nox vs. Lyra Valkyria

Natalya is here with Nox, who works on a wristlock to start. Valkyria takes her down to the mat and cranks on the leg, only for Nox to reverse into an armbar. Back up and Valkyria gets a sunset flip for two, followed by a knockdown into a crucifix for the same. Nox gets sent outside for a dropkick through the ropes as we take a break.


We come back with Valkyria hitting a Northern Lights suplex for two. Valkyria scores with a big kick for two but Nox drops her for the same. A Molly Go Round gives Nox two and she hits another one from the apron to the floor. Cue Chelsea Green and Piper Niven, with the distraction allowing Valkyria to hit a spinning kick to the head for the pin at 11:31.


Official Result Lyra Valkyria wins 


Rating: B-. Good stuff here, which shouldn’t be a surprise as there was a lot of talent involved. Nox losing isn’t the biggest surprise as she might be on the main roster but Valkyria is gearing up for a major title match at Halloween Havoc. They even got some time here and had a solid match, as you probably saw coming.


Post-match everyone but Valkyria brawl to the back. That leaves Valkyria to talk about Becky Lynch coming to her old school and seeing something in Valkyria. 


Now Valkyria is ready to win the NXT Women’s Title. Lynch pops up on screen to say Valkyria was the first woman she wanted to face, because Valkyria is intogood. She can say Lynch is her hero all she wants but she is going to have to get that same chip on her shoulder again. Welcome to the big time.


Carmelo Hayes is not happy when Trick Williams comes in. Hayes wants to know what that was and Williams says he’s listening to John Cena’s advice last week. 


Williams is ready to move up and he’s at the same place Hayes was at last year. Hayes gets it and Williams says yes, he should have come and talked to him. That seems to calm Hayes down but they have to go head to head tonight. They agree they’ll do whatever it takes, but they’re still cool. It’s still bizarre to see two wrestlers behaving like adults.


Gigi Dolin says Halloween Havoc is her favorite event of the year and that means Spin The Wheel, Make The Deal is coming back. Dolin spins and gets…..Lights Out, so Blair Davenport better be ready.


Von Wagner is going through physical therapy after Bron Breakker attacked him. Mr Stone is with him and doesn’t want to see Wagner like this. He knows when Wagner is ready, he’ll finish it. Wagner wants to work harder.


Match 5 Kiana James vs.Shotzi



Shotzi forearms her into the corner to start but James takes her down. That earns a rather loud screech from Shotzi, who jumps on James’ back for a choke. James sends her outside though and we take a break.


 Back with James hitting a shoulder to the ribs in the corner but Shotzi sends her throat first into the ropes. That doesn’t matter as James is back with a running clothesline, followed by the chinlock.


Shotzi fights up and strikes away, including something like a DDT onto the middle rope. James knocks her off the top but here is Roxanne Perez to check James’ bag, which contains a brick (makes sense for her as Money Inc. did it with their briefcase thirty years ago).


 Shotzi gets the bag and throws it to James before falling down. An annoyed James misses a charge into the corner and Shotzi hits a top rope backsplash for the pin at 8:35.


Official Result Shotzi Wins 


Rating: C+. Shotzi feels like much more of a star with the new haircut and look. That’s more than I would have expected and it’s great to see her having another chance. At the same time, Perez vs. James could be a good feud, as it gives Perez something to do to build her back up to the next title shot at some point in the future.


Meta Four is panicking because Jakara Jackson is in the hospital. Noam Dar is with her and mocks McKenzie Mitchell for questioning Jackson’s injury. Akira Tozawa comes in, looking for Dar, but obviously, he’s not here. Tozawa says to let him know.


Trick Williams has been attacked. Post-break, he is officially out of the #1 contenders match.



Dominik Mysterio is in the back when Nathan Frazer comes in to start the brawl. They fight through backstage and into the arena with Frazer clearing him out.


Roxanne Perez and Shotzi are in the back, with Perez not getting Kiana James’ deal. They find the Wheel, with Perez spinning to a Devil’s Playground match. Apparently, she’s fighting James at Halloween Havoc.


Match 6 Women’s Breakout Tournament First Round: Brinley Reece vs. Arianna Grace


Reece is replacing the injured Jakara Jackson. Grace knocks her into the corner to start and pulls her back out, setting up a suplex for two. Another suplex is blocked but Grace pokes her in the eye. Grace loads up a Rock Bottom but flips Reece forward onto her face for the pin at 2:50.



Official Result Arianna Grace wins 


Bron Breakker brags about how awesome he is when Mr. Stone comes in. He doesn’t care what happened to Von Wagner, which has Stone thinking Breakker just doesn’t care. Stone’s kids ask what is next for Wagner but Breakker just laughs. Breakker tells him to do something about it so Stone challenges him for Halloween Havoc. Stone realizes he screwed up as Breakker agrees, telling him to call the hospital.



Here’s what’s coming at Halloween Havoc.


 Match 7 Baron Corbin vs. Carmelo Hayes vs. Dijak

For a title shot against Ilja Dragunov at Halloween Havoc. The big guys stagger each other so Hayes slugs away where he can. Dijak catches Hayes with a rather high chokebreaker but Corbin hits a clothesline. Hayes is back up with a springboard clothesline but Dijak pulls him out of the air.


A big toss sends Hayes flying, leaving Corbin and Dijak to slug it out again. Hayes’ springboard double DDT plants them both for two each and we take a break.


 Back with Corbin suplexing Dijak before dropping Hayes for two. Corbin takes Hayes outside for a Death Valley Driver as the fans declare this awesome.


Dijak kicks Corbin off the apron and takes him back inside for High Justice. Hayes superkicks Dijak for two and the slugout is on. 


One heck of a big boot gives Dijak two on Hayes and they go to the corner. Corbin breaks up a superbomb but Hayes is right there to turn it into a Tower Of Doom. Corbin knocks Hayes to the floor and plants Dijak with End of Days. Hayes gives Corbin Nothing But Net though and steals the pin at 12:37.


Offical Result Carmelo Hayes wins



Rating: B-. I wasn’t really feeling this one and it didn’t get to the great level that they seemed to be shooting for. If nothing else, all of the superkicks and one four-way favour Breaker he’s Official one-on-one got a bit annoying and the idea of Hayes vs. Dragunov III isn’t overly appealing. It wasn’t a bad match, but it didn’t exactly reach that top level.


Lyra Valkyria looks at a picture of Becky Lynch and says it’s in one week. Jade Cargill pops up on a screen and points at her wrist like a watch.


 

 

Overall Thoughts


Maybe it was coming off of last week’s huge show but this one didn’t exactly come off great. There were some good matches and it helped set up Halloween Havoc, which should be a much bigger show next week. For now though, this was just kind of a there show with some nice parts included. Just get to the big stuff though, as it needs to be an upgrade over this week.




   


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