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ROXANNE PEREZ vs. INDI HARTWELL
We’ve seen a bit of an edgier Indi Hartwell as of late, trying to be taken more serious as a singles competitor. Roxanne Perez has gotten on Indi’s bad side these past few weeks leading to this match tonight.
Booker T looked on like a proud Papa as his two former students kicked off the show. Hartwell was in control for the majority of the match with an intensity that we’ve probably never seen out of her before. She’s really taking this heel turn seriously.
While this match was far from a technical masterpiece with both women ever so slightly mistiming a few moves, it still told the entertaining story of the underdog Perez and Hartwell’s continued journey as a heel.
Roxanne Perez picked up a win after hitting her finish, perhaps giving reason for her to enter the Iron Challenge match?
DIJAK vs. DANTE CHEN
Last week saw the return of Dijak to NXT. Thank god, what the hell is a T-Bar anyway? (Please don’t link me to Urban Dictionary…)
Dijak has a new edge to him, taking out both Wes Lee and Carmelo Hayes last week. This week, Dijak destroyed Dante Chen in a pretty brutal squash match.
This is exactly how I want to see Dijak booked. He finally has a character worth paying attention to for the first time in his WWE career. His first NXT run as Dominic Dijakovic was great don’t get me wrong, but his character was pretty bland. As T-Bar he was relevant for a few weeks until Retribution was more or less scrapped, and he’s been floundering around ever since.
DUKE HUDSON vs. GREYSON WALLER
Earlier in the night, Duke Hudson was apologizing to Andre Chase for accidentally superkicking him last week. Hudson is working on a petition to get Andre Chase into the Iron Challenge match, when Greyson Waller stuck his nose into their conversation. Hudson took exception to Waller saying Chase would never stand a chance in the match, and challenged him to one himself.
Duke Hudson is playing the perfect Chase University student, making everyone wonder what his ulterior motive is. Though over the last month or so that he’s been teaming with Chase U, he’s only shown allegiance to them.
Waller was in control for the majority of the match, until Hudson hulked up and made his comeback. But was still defeated by Waller after Hudson almost hit Thea Hail and was distracted by it. Waller hit a stunner for the win.
KIANA JAMES vs. FALLON HENLEY
For weeks, Henley and James have been butting heads backstage or interfering in each others matches over a bar that Henley’s family owns, and James is trying to steal out from under her.
This match was much better than I expected it to be. The two really sold their rivalry and made you believe they hate one another. They both were crisp and clean in the ring and elevated one another with their performance.
Kiana James picked up the win, earning bragging rights, after distracting Henley with her briefcase. How the ref didn’t see it is beyond me.
Verdict: Lukewarm HIT
JAVIER BERNAL vs. AXIOM
Big Body Javy’s mouth finally got him in trouble. After calling out a plethora of wrestlers backstage during various interviews, Axiom was the name called out the most. Axiom was finally cleared for competition and challenged Javy to put his money where his mouth is.
Axiom stretched Big Body Javy for the majority of the match, reversing nearly anything that Javy tried throwing at him. Javy eventually got the upper hand after the commercial break and targeted the recently injured knee of Axiom. Just when it looked like Axiom was down and out, he picked up the win and temporarily shut the mouth of Big Body Javy.
JD MCDONAGH vs. JULIUS CREED
Earlier in the night, McDonagh entered the Diamond Gym (sounds like something out of Pokemon, doesn’t it?) basically just to tell the Creeds that he doesn’t think they’ll be able to beat Indus Sher at Deadl1ne. Julius looked to shut McDonagh up and challenged him to a match.
As you may expect, this match was a technical banger with both men showcasing their amateur backgrounds and fast-paced styles. After the commercial break, Indus Sher made their way to the ring to intimidate Julius and his brother Brutus, ringside. The Creeds didn’t show any fear, and Julius actually seemed to become more intense with their presence.
McDonagh went to go hit Julius Creed with a steel chair outside the ring, when Sanga of all people pushed Creed out of the way and took the chairshot himself. This disqualified JD McDonagh for some reason and then the match just ended. That was it. No brawl between McDonagh and Indus Sher. Or Indus Sher and the Creeds… Very strange.
Verdict: Lukewarm HIT
VON WAGNER vs. MALIK BLADE
Earlier in the night, Odyssey Jones and Endris Enofe hyped Malik Blade up backstage for this match against the massive Von Wagner. The pep talk seemed to help, as Blade didn’t get completely squashed. He even was able to get a bit of offense in on Von Wagner for the first half of the match. Even once Von Wagner had the momentum, Blade was reversing nearly everything Von Wagner threw at him.
As expected, Von Wagner finally got the upper hand after a moment and got the easy win. Enofe and Jones came out to make the save, with Jones being the successful one.
TOXIC ATTRACTION vs. KAYDEN CARTER, KATANA CHANCE & NIKKITA LYONS
Earlier in the night, this match was about to happen when Zoey Stark attacked Nikkita Lyons during her entrance. The match was postponed while medical looked at Lyon’s knee. They deemed her fit to compete and they moved the match to the main event slot, but clearly that knee was going to play into the story of the match.
This was a bit of a chaotic and busy match, as a lot of six-person tag matches are. Toxic Attraction playing their role well, keeping the faces isolated from their corners. The Women’s Tag Champs did the majority of the work with Nikkita selling her knee without even tagging in until the end of the match. She was tagged in and took everyone out before attempting to make the winning pin. Surprisingly, Mandy broke up that pin. Just when it looked like Nikkita had the advantage, her knee “buckled” (she awkwardly fell over trying to make it look like her knee buckled) and allowed Dolan to pick up the win for Toxic Attraction.
Verdict: Lukewarm HIT