8/12 NXT in Sacramento, Calif.: Gargano vs. Itami, Asuka vs. Moon vs. Cross, No Way Jose vs. Almas

Drew Galloway (art credit Matt Charlton & Sam Gardiner © PWTorch)


AUGUST 12, 2017

The venue felt weirdly more intimate than San Jose, Calif. the night before… There were more seats on the floor compared to San Jose where they had more empty space. Only 40-50 percent full on the second level here in Sacramento tonight. They announced there to be a “great crowd tonight” and this crowd is more lively. Even more Bullet Club shirts than the night before. There was some guy dressed up as Broken Hardy but little reaction for him. At intermission he tried to walk around to get people to take pics with him. The last time I was in Sacramento was Raw when C.M. Punk punched a fan. I believe that was October 2012.

(1) No Way Jose beat Andrade Cien Almas. Jose did the Conga line around the building. It was a slow start, with Almas trying to get loud boos. He did. Jose was full of energy and it was a great way to start things off.

(2) Sarah Logan & Ruby Riot beat Sonya Deville & Mandy Rose. That theme song of Mandy Rose so much like “Pour some sugar on me” and it was even called out by fans around me as Mandy Rose entered. Rose gets the best cheers of all the heels. Pretty much same match back and forth as last night.

(3) Lars beat Oney Lorcan (introduced as Oney “The Hammer” Lorcan). Again, there’s a spot where Lars hits Lorcan with a cast strong lariat that twists Oney 1.5 turns followed by a sidewalk slam style move and Lars wins. Though most of the match was dominated by Lars, there was a spot with Lorcan going for a sleeper and giving us hope. It was mostly cheers for Lorcan the whole time. However, once Lars hit that lariat and flipped Lorcan, the crowd was immediately impressed with and respectful of the power of Lars. The crowd gave a respectful cheer when Lars won. Lars started to leave but then hit that slam again. Lars was getting cheered after that lariat, but got boos once he did the double slam after the match.

(4) Killian beat Kassius Ohno. Good back and forth until a double crossbody takes ohno down and then it was all Ohno. Heavy heavy hitting. Ohno went to too rope and missed the moonsault. Killian ended up doing a slam from the second rope and got the win.

(5) Asuka beat Ember Moon and Nikki Cross in a Triple Threat match for the NXT Women’s Title. Best reaction of the night is for Asuka. Asuka and Ember had a staredown and Nikki came off ropes to attack Ember. Ember hit her finisher, but Asuka came in and dumped Ember and pinned Nikki for the win. This was an incredible match. Better than any match last night and best of the night so far.


William Regal came out again after end of intermission and said there were 1,500 in attendance and repeated the line from the night before about starting five years ago with only being able to get 50 people in the seats on any given night. He once again got the loudest pop of the night. As he was getting ready to leave, No Way Jose’s music started and he came out in WWE shirts and encouraged Regal to dance. Regal hesitated but got into it. Regal eventually then coerced Drake to come in and dance as well. Regal said it was 1,500 people at the show tonight whereas last night in San Jose he said they went from 50 people to being sold out with 2,000 people. Regal didn’t even attempt to pretend they were sold out in Sacramento, though.

(6) Sanity beat Authors of Pain via DQ so AOP retained the NXT Tag Team Titles. No Killian Dane and no Paul Ellering. This went exactly as the night before in San Jose.

(7) Johnny Gargano beat Hideo Itami. Hideo still got quite a few cheers and a only about a third boos
Good and even back and forth chants of “Johnny Wrestling” and “Hideo.” Hideo went for GTS and Gargano slipped out and put him in a submission to make him tap.

(8) Drew McIntyre & Aleister Black & Roderick Strong beat Robert Roode & Tino Sabbatelli & Riddick Moss. McIntrye and Aleister competed for wrestler reactions with Asuka. Big pops for them tonight. Roddy got a better reaction than in San Jose where he actually got booed a little. I didn’t hear any boos tonight. Roode did the same thing where he threw his one in the face of the announcer. People actually booed him for that. That was a relief. The match started off strong with Roode not wanting to get in the match, doing everything he could to avoid fighting. As things really started getting going, he eventually got in with both Strong and Drew both wanting him. Aleister just wanted to beat somebody up. It was a great action. The match ended when bobby Roode rolled up Drew and pulled the tights out of the view of the ref. Drew got pissed after the match and said enough is enough, this is the last chance he has before next Saturday. While he can’t reverse the match ending, the three of them challenged them to a Sacramento Street Fight. Moss, Sabbatelli, and Roode all started gearing up and ran toward the ring, but just as they got to the ring, Roode turned around and ran up the ramp. Sabbatelli and Moss second-guessed whether they should even try but then decided to give a shot. They ran into the ring and just got beat up. Kick by Drew and a back-breaker by Strong. After that, McIntrye and Aleister stayed around and went around the ring signing autographs, handshakes, too sweets, and high-fives all around. Neither seemed to want to leave. They both owned the night for me and seemingly for others as well.

FINAL THOUGHTS: Regal got the biggest pop with bows and loud chants… I have to say, without a doubt, the audience was way more into this show. As a result this show was way more fun than the San Jose show. There were also fewer kids. I saw maybe a total of about four or five versus two or three dozen kids at the San Jose show… This crowd was so much more involved and so much louder than San Jose… Best match of the two nights was easily the three-way women’s match in Sacramento… McIntrye was even more impressive than I had imagined. He has great energy in and out of the ring. His audience participation was fantastic. I could easily see him representing WWE as needed as champ.

NOW CHECK OUT THIS REPORT ON THE NIGHT BEFORE: 8/11 NXT in San Jose, Calif.: Detailed report including Roode vs. Strong, Black vs. Itami, Asuka vs. Moon, Sanity vs. AOP

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