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NXT TV REPORT
OCTOBER 4, 2022
WINTER PARK, FLA. AT THE CAPITOL WRESTLING CENTER
AIRED ON USA NETWORK
REPORT BY KELLY WELLS (@spookymilk), PWTORCH CONTRIBUTOR
NXT Commentators: Wade Barrett, Byron Saxton & Sudu Shah
Ring Announcer: Alicia Taylor
Backstage Correspondent(s): McKenzie Mitchell
Tonight after the show, join the PWT Talks NXT self-proclaimed “gang of idiots” (including me) to break down the show with calls and emails.
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-Wade introduced Saxton and Shah. He jokingly thanked immigration for keeping Vic away from him for a week. Non-jokingly, I agree.
-Pretty Deadly’s music played and they were both wearing powdered wigs and dressed in regal garb. They puffed each other up and talked about how much they had improved the USA. They said they were looking for new #1 contenders, but they’ve beaten everyone. They ran down the babyfaces in the division, then cut on The Dyad. Elton Prince “decreed” that they be awarded the tag team championships for ever, in the absence of opponents.
The Brawling Brutes’ music played, bringing them to the ramp. They said they were here to test Pretty Deadly. Ridge Holland said all they do is talk and talk and talk, but this is Tuesday, and that means…fight night! The Brutes postured and cleared the ring of the champs. Carmelo Hayes was introduced awkwardly so the show could promote the opening match of Hayes vs. Oro Mensah, and it was odd because everyone in the opening segment just had to ignore the music and entrance. [c]
-Earlier today, Toxic Attraction arrived in the parking lot and got attacked by Alba Fyre. Not sure when the audible was called, but tonight’s match is now Lyons & Stark vs. Dolin & Jayne for the #1 contendership rather than the promoted six-person.
(1) ORO MENSAH vs. CARMELO HAYES
Hayes shoved Mensah a couple of times, then walked into a wristlock. Reverse. Mensah took down Hayes with an armbar. Quick reversals led to a reset. Mensah took down Hayes again with a armbar, and then Hayes backed up and shrugged off a dropkick. A second made better contact. Suplex and a two count by Mensah. Hayes bailed and Mensah nailed a plancha. Hayes laid out Mensah using the buckle, then the apron. He rolled Mensah back in and covered for two.
Hayes hung up Mensah on the top rope, then threw a chop. Mensah reversed a back kick into a rollup for two. Thrust kick by Hayes, followed by a springboard lariat for two. Hayes threw some rights to the back of Mensah, then tried a bulldog, but Mensah yanked Hayes face-first into the second buckle. The two exchanged rights. Mensah won the exchange and managed a back body-drop and a German suplex with a release. Springboard moonsault from the second rope by Mensah, but Williams distracted Mensah long enough for a jawbreaker by Hayes. Hayes hit his finisher.
WINNER: Carmelo Hayes at 5:34.
Hayes wanted some mic time, but Andre Chase’s music cut him off as he, Thea Hail and Bodhi Hayward entered ahead of the next match. Hayes was likely sticking around to scout the next qualifier for the ladder match. [c]
(Wells’s Analysis: No frills from Mensah, really, but the fundamentals are all strong and he didn’t look out of place with Melo. Hayes will naturally be promoted as the man to beat in the ladder match, and will likely be involved in the finish as someone overcomes him to become the new champion, leaving Melo to move up to the main roster. I can’t imagine there’s much left for him to perfect about his act at this point)
-An Extreme Rules spot focused on Morgan-Rousey.
-Damon Kemp’s beatdown of Brutus Creed last week was covered. A trainer checked on a livid Brutus as Julius Creed and Ivy Nile stood by. Duke Hudson showed up to mock Brutus. Julius Creed stood up and got in Hudson’s face, and Creed demanded a match later. Hudson said “I’ll see what I can do.”
(2) ANDRE CHASE (w/Chase U) vs. VON WAGNER (w/Mr. Stone) – Qualifying match for the Ladder Match for the vacant North American Championship
Wagner dominated early as a corner graphic promoted Brawling Brutes vs. Pretty Deadly for the NXT Tag Team Championship tonight. Chase managed a dragon screw as Carmelo Hayes put himself over on commentary and Wade Barrett asked for the others to respect him more. Chase hit a basement dropkick to cut down Wagner, then another. Russian leg sweep by Chase and the crowd was into it. Chase did his CHASE U stomp. Mr. Stone went up to the steps and distracted Chase, but Thea Hail put him on her back. He escaped and threw the Chase U flag, drawing boos. Hail picked him up and slammed him to a huge pop. Chase remained distracted for some reason, giving Wagner the opening to finish. Saxton called it an “impressive display,” apparently ignoring the fact that Wagner needed a full breakdown by Chase to win.
Hayes kept putting himself over, and he suddenly flipped out as Wes Lee flew in with a boot and a beatdown.
WINNER: Von Wagner at 3:35.
(Wells’s Analysis: Chase was pretty good on offense here, though whether anyone can believe he’d get so much against Wagner is a different story.)
-Sanga and Nathan Frazer spoke backstage and the camera was angled to really show off the size difference. Friendly uncle Sanga pumped up Frazer for his match next week. After Frazer left rejuvenated, Veer Mahaan entered the frame and he and his former Indus Sher partner (they’ve been teaming on house shows) stood and looked at one another.
-Lash Legend cut a promo into the camera ahead of her appearance after the commercial. [c]
-Earlier today, a creep in a mask tried to hand out stuff to promote the Schism, and was denied by people walking by. Grayson Waller drove up and asked some “security guys” to park his car.
(3) WENDY CHOO vs. LASH LEGEND
Lash swung Choo’s pillow at her ahead of the match, which she was correct to no-sell. The bell rang. Choo cleared out Legend, then went out after her. Legend caught Choo in a very nice-looking uranage backbreaker. Back inside, Legend battered Choo to the floor. Legend leaned on Choo against the middle rope, then covered for two. Legend ran the ropes and hit an elbow drop to Choo’s back after a couple of poses. Cover for two. Legend charged Choo to a corner, then another. Choo fought off a third attack with a boot, but Legend laid her out. Legend missed an elbow drop and Choo laid in a right, then some kicks to the back of the leg. Choo tripped Legend and threw a basement dropkick, then hit a cartwheel elbow in the corner. Choo went high and jumped, and after a couple of reversals Choo rolled Legend up for two. Choo hit a backsplash from the top to get the win.
WINNER: Wendy Choo at 3:48.
(Wells’s Analysis: Legend still isn’t being asked to fill a lot of minutes, but there was no hint of clunky spots here as she continues to polish her work in the ring. Choo proved to be a good opponent for her as, quick though it was, it was probably Legend’s most complete match to date)
-Kelly Kincaid interviewed Wes Lee backstage. Lee started cutting a promo on Carmelo Hayes and Channing “Stacks” Lorenzo showed up. He said he and Tony D know how to make things look like an accident, but in Wes’s heart, he knows he hurt Tony on purpose.
-Gallus hype video.
-Toxic Attraction entered ahead of their #1 contender’s match. [c]
-Kayden Carter & Katana Chance hype. They had a sit-down promo backstage, taped earlier. Carter called out how they shouldn’t even be partners, because Chance is a goody two-shoes. Chance said Carter was nice sometimes. Chance acknowledged, for the first time on TV I believe, when she stepped away for a while and considered leaving wrestling. They talked up both of their potential opponents from this match. They came off as very engaging and fun in this segment – in fact, more so than ever. A segment like this would’ve been lovely before their push to the titles, but better late than never. Good stuff.
(4) ZOEY STARK & NIKKITA LYONS vs. TOXIC ATTRACTION (Gigi Dolin & Jacy Jayne) – #1 contender’s match for the NXT Women’s Tag Team Championships
Lyons and Dolin opened up. Dolin made a quick tag and Lyons overpowered Jayne also. Stark tagged in and got an okay “Zoey” chant. Jayne took Stark to a corner and taunted her. Stark charged out and things sped up to reversals and covers for one and two. Jayne charged Stark to the heel corner and made the tag. Stark hit a springboard cross-body on Dolin for two. Both tagged. Lyons threw some rights and Barrett called her the “best striker in the women’s division.” Well, she does attempt the most strikes. The faces cleared out the heels heading into split-screen commercial. [c]
Dolin and Lyons were legal. Dolin worked a wristlock and tagged. She and Jayne threw tandem kicks and Jayne covered for two. For whatever reason, the audience was pretty out of this match. Lyons reversed a whip attempt into a rollup for two. Lyons managed a dropkick and both tagged. Stark destroyed both members of TA and dominated Dolin with strikes. Running knee got two for Stark. Lyons tagged in and hit a German suplex. Jayne made the save. All four got involved as we got another look at the champs watching on a monitor backstage. Rope run and a lariat by Dolin. Tag to Jayne, who hit a neckbreaker for two, broken up by Stark. Jayne sold frustration.
Jayne and Lyons fought to their feet. Lyons got some shots in and tagged. Jayne took Stark out with what Barrett called a “bullhammer-like strike.” Dolin was isolated and Stark hit her spinning kick. Lyons tagged in and hit what remains the least painful-looking finisher in the company.
WINNERS: Zoey Stark & Nikkita Lyons at 10:26.
(Wells’s Analysis: I wish I knew whether the voting that put Lyons in the top four of the fan vote for breakout superstar of the year was real or gimmicked, because her progression remains so slow I can’t think of another reason to keep sinking effort into the act. Otherwise, fine if basic action throughout)
-Ilja Dragunov hype segment. He ran around a park and trained as he narrated about how at Halloween Havoc, his opponents were stepping into the ring with a machine. He was, as always, properly intense and focused. [c]
-Grayson Waller introduced the Grayson Waller Effect. He introduced the “Tony Hawk of NXT” – Cora Jade. Jade entered in her now-signature black leather to her screaming metal theme. Roxane Perez entered to cheers wearing a bizarre half-suit that’s hard to explain unless you see it. Waller apologized to Perez for not having a booster seat for her. Jade asked Perez how many people she had to cry to in order to get this rematch. The women kept cutting on each other until Waller said it was his show. He asked Perez how she felt, and Perez said she felt nothing. Jade asked her if she was going to cry (huh?) because this is another sob story. Perez said they were supposed to raise the bar together, but Jade got mad when Perez stepped in front of her. Jade said Perez was a whole lot of internet hype and not much talent, and not good enough for the Generation of Jade. Perez said Jade put on a nice guy act for a year that “no one was buying.” Waller cut her off and took over again and said he had two surprises. He said in a couple of weeks, they were going to play a game of Pick Your Poison, with the two picking the opponent for the other, with all WWE wrestlers as fair game. The other is that their match at Halloween Havoc will be a “Spin the Wheel, Make the Deal” match. That woke up the fans a bit. Waller said they should spin the wheel right now to another pop. He went back to spin the wheel, but there was a druid near the wheel and Waller freaked out for a moment. He checked the skin tone to make sure it wasn’t Apollo Crews. He spun and got a “Weapons Wild Match.” Back in the ring, the women were going at one another and security broke them up. Waller used the moment to take a selfie in the ring, and we could see in his screen that Apollo Crews was right behind him. Crews yanked Waller out of the ring and apparently the scene. We saw Waller outside again and his eye was bleeding, as foretold in Crews’ vision last week. [c]
(Wells’s Analysis: That was a lot to ask from two women who struggle to sound realistic on the mic. It sort of rambled and a lot was asked of Waller to try to keep it rolling. The crowd was just totally gone for this, unfortunately, other than a few choice lines and the reveals from Waller).
-Backstage, all three members of the Schism laid into the guy in the hoodie and asked if this was a joke to him. Joe Gacy quieted the yelling members of The Dyad and simply said the guy in the hoodie “needs to be better.” The Schism walked off and the unseen guy in the hoodie hung his head.
(5) JULIUS CREED vs. DUKE HUDSON
Creed dominated early with suplexes. His hard basement lariat finished. Okay!
WINNER: Julius Creed at 0:51.
Brutus charged and attacked Hudson as Julius and Ivy Nile tried to stop him. Damon Kemp was up on the perch. Brutus was losing his mind and Kemp said he had his chance, and now it was Julius. Julius said he was his brother’s keeper. Kemp said his brother was his bitch. Kemp said that they’ll face off at Halloween Havoc, and if Julius loses, he isn’t gone – but Brutus is. Brutus yelled “He accepts!” Julius said there was ice in his veins, and he was going to send him out of here the same way he sent out Roddy. It’s Julius vs. Kemp in an ambulance match. Kemp told Julius to call Roddy and make room for him.
(Wells’s Analysis: Absolutely the correct winner, but this isn’t Hudson’s only loss of this type and I can’t fathom why he keeps getting this exact treatment. The Creeds-Kemp segment, though, was very strong and represented a good-sized step up on the mic for Kemp. I remain convinced Julius Creed has the highest upside of anyone in NXT, other than maybe Carmelo Hayes)
-JD McDonagh segment. He made a foreboding proclamation about the triple threat at Halloween Havoc.
-The other security guys pumped up Hank Walker. Quincy Elliott showed up and all the security guys excitedly yelled his name. Elliott warned Walker than Xyon Quinn was in a pretty bad mood right now. Walker vowed to take care of business. [c]
-The announcers promoted the Hurricane Ian relief fund.
-Axiom promoted next week’s rubber match between he and Nathan Frazer, with the winner getting a spot in the Halloween Havoc ladder match. Axiom said both could’ve gone either way, and he expects this one to be “even closer.”
(6) HANK WALKER vs. XYON QUINN
Walker had good ol’ boy music now as he smiled his way to the ring. Quinn dominated early until Walker hit an arm drag. Quinn took over again with a spinebuster. Quinn threw hard knees against the ropes, then went out and threw an elbow as Walker was draped on the apron. Quinn hit a backdrop for two. Quinn worked a headlock. Walker escaped and threw his shirt off to get serious. The crowd is eating this act up. Walker took Quinn from one corner to another. He missed a running knee and Quinn hit a running back elbow.
WINNER: Xyon Quinn at 2:14.
Quinn looked to continue the beatdown, but Quincy Elliott cleared him out. Walker went for a fist bump and Elliott smacked him on the backside, surprising him. Elliott danced as Walker tried to figure out what to do.
(Wells’s Analysis: Walker’s silly act can really work, but if he gets pushed to a high level it kind of stops working, so I agree with the decision to give Quinn a rare win and do an odd couple pairing with Quincy Elliott)
-Cameron Grimes tried to pump up the sullen hoodie guy, but the Schism charged from offscreen and beat him with the usual backstage stuff. Gacy welcomed the hoodie guy to the “Schism’s tree” and hugged him. We still didn’t see who it was as the four of them walked away.
-Briggs & Jensen and Enofe & Blade both talked to the Brawling Brutes backstage. The Brutes said they could have a shot later if they patched the holes in their respective games. [c]
-Kelly Kincaid tried to interview Bron Breakker, but Javier Bernal showed up and wondered why he would agree to a triple threat, considering that’s how he lost the first time. Bron said his temper got him into the first one and his pride got him into the second, but Bernal’s stupidity got him into a match with Breakker next week. That’s a pretty decent line.
-Wes Lee vs. Stacks was promoted for next week.
(7) THE BRAWLING BRUTES (Ridge Holland & Butch) vs. PRETTY DEADLY (Kit Wilson & Elton Prince) (c) – NXT Tag Team Championship match
Alicia Taylor handled formal intros. Holland and Prince to start. Holland dominated with power and Wilson tagged in to be immediately hip-tossed. Wilson managed a few strikes, then was denied on a suplex as Holland reversed. Butch tagged in to cheers, and the Brutes hit a dropkick/slam combo. Butch worked the digits as Wilson wailed, then did the arm stomp spot. Prince tagged in and stomped Butch to boos. Prince worked a headlock briefly. Rope run ended with a Butch lariat. Holland tagged in and the Brutes did Sheamus’ chest-battering count-along. The match went to split-screen. [c]
Pretty Deadly was in control upon return. Prince was dominating and taunting Butch. The two exchanged rights and Butch fired up and got a bunch in. He made the hot tag and Holland destroyed Prince with pounces, then a corner splash. Wilson interfered and got laid out. Holland powerslammed one onto another, then covered Prince for two. Prince kicked up to get some separation, but Holland hit a hard lariat. Holland was selling a bunch of offense that never really happened, weirdly. Wilson tagged in and jumped up on Holland’s back for a sleeper. Holland walked to his corner and tagged. Butch rolled up Wilson for two. Butch did his repeated stomps, then worked an arm submission. Prince tried to yank Wilson to safety and Butch stomped his arm. Butch hit both with suplexes but their numbers caught up and Wilson hit a lungblower for two, broken up by Holland.
Prince tagged in and the two threw rights at Butch, then cleared out Holland. Big lariat by Wilson got two. Butch dominated inside as the others brawled outside. Butch slammed Wilson and the referee had to awkwardly get into a worse position to allow the spot where the other heel breaks the count by putting a foot on the rope. The Brutes were in control until Imperium showed up and caused trouble, leaving Ridge Holland prone to Spilled Milk. Prince covered for the win to retain as the Brutes brawled to the back with Imperium.
WINNERS: Pretty Deadly at 12:26.
Edris Enofe & Malik Blade showed up on the ramp and Briggs & Jensen appeared on the perch. Both babyface teams stared in at Pretty Deadly, who held up their belts as the show ended at 9 past the hour.
(Wells’s Analysis: A decent enough match marred heavily by the fact that there’s no way a main roster act would beat an NXT act for their championship (so soon again, anyway). It managed to call a bit of attention to a main roster major show while also potentially setting up Pretty Deadly for a triple threat defense at Halloween Havoc.)
FINAL THOUGHTS: Anyone really expecting a major change in NXT because the logo changed and a number went away must either be kicking themselves or rejoicing, assuming things are back to what they consider normal. The only change I’ve seen, and it’s a very positive one, is a more cogent and organic approach to feuds and storylines while allowing a lot of time for genuine development; for instance, five of the matches tonight were under six minutes long and four of those were under four. This upcoming Halloween Havoc really is the rarest sight in NXT – a premium event that actually gets significant hype instead of being slapped together in three whirlwind weeks that don’t allow NXT to be the developmental show it’s intended to be. Check out PWT Talks NXT tonight with Bruce Hazelwood and me, as long as my dodgy Skype app plays along, or stream tomorrow. Cheers.