2/21 NXT REPORT: Hazelwood’s live report on Breakker vs. Mahal for title, Dragunov vs. Williams, Jayne vs. Hartwell, Fyre vs. Nile, more


Full WWE NXT 6/13 match card


FEBRUARY 21, 2023

NXT Commentators: Vic Joseph, Booker T

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.

•CALL: (515) 605-9345

•EMAIL COMMENTS/QUESTIONS: pwtorchnxt@gmail.com


-The show began with the camera panning the crowd with a few shots as Vic Joseph welcomed viewers and mentioned Roadblock and Stand & Deliver. Trick Williams’ music hit for his opening match with Ilja Dragunov. He had a mic and said he came to prove that he can do more than just talk and back up every single word that he says. He called out Ilja Dragunov and his “imaginary band” and worked through a “What?” chant which his cadence was perfect to induce. Dragunov’s new new(?) music hit as he entered. It sounds different than when he returned.

(1) ILJA DRAGUNOV vs. TRICK WILLIAMS – Singles match

Williams got in a stiff forearm before the bell, but Dragunov just took it to him after the bell early with some gnarly grapples and forearms on the face. Williams tried gaining the advantage, but ate two loud chops in the corner. Dragunov applied a side headlock and then hit a takedown, holding on the Williams’ head. Williams applied one of his own for about a second before Dragunov slammed him and reapplied his own. Williams came off of a rope run and was taken down judo style by Dragunov, but landed a right hand to Dragunov on the feet.

However, Williams took too long to pose and ate a discus hop and a corner knee before a stiff kick to the back. A few chops against the ropes preceded Dragunov hitting another corner knee. He went to the second rope, but Williams knocked him off and his right knee dangled in the rope briefly. Dragunov no-sold it and hit a stiff forearm across the back, then another. He kicked the quad and then hit a diving forearm to the mouth. Dragunov hit another corner attack, a running lariat, and went to the second rope. Williams kicked the right leg and then punched Dragunov. He sent him to the floor, landing on the apron first as the crowd chanted “Whoop that trick.” JD McDonagh made his way to ringside. [c]

Williams had a cravate on as they returned. The crowd clapped for Dragunov, but the cravate was on for about a minute. They showed a replay of Williams tossing Dragunov into the ropes, his neck snapping against the ropes. Dragunov was able to fight back with his rope rotation lariat. McDonagh joined commentary. Dragunov hit some big chops to Williams, then hit a forearm combo that dropped Williams. Williams kicked the leg, but Dragunov sprung up with an enziguri. Tyler Bate is live, next. Dragunov hit yet another corner knee, his third televised one, then finally hit the second rope knee drop. He signaled for a deadlift German, but Williams rolled out and then hit a capoeira head kick and a sliding STO variant for a near fall.

Williams set in the corner for a cyclone kick, but Dragunov caught hit and powerbombed him for a two-count, then hit his falling forearm like it was an MMA bout. He went for the deadlift, but Williams unclasped the hands. Dragunov reclasped the hands and hit the release deadlift. He set in the corner and said and hit Torpedo Moskau. McDonagh threw down the headset in frustration.

WINNER: Ilja Dragunov at 13:07 (Torpedo Moskau)

-a video played on Jinder Mahal as he said timing is everything, which is why he didn’t call out Bron Breakker immediately. He said he waited until the burden of being a champion began to take its toll. They played the fans booing him. He reminded fans of what happened last year when Breakker lost to Dolph Ziggler. He went through each of his title wins and said fans never expected them and he’s going to shock again.

-Fallon Henley was in the locker room leaving a message for Brooks Jensen that she meant well. Josh Briggs entered and said she’s left ten texts and five voicemails. Henley said it was weird that Kiana James dragged it out, but Briggs said ultimately, Henley was wrong. She said she should go apologize to James. [c]

(Hazelwood’s Take: Maybe it was just me, but the first part of that match felt slow. Williams did look better, but there were still definite spots showing his lack of experience and confidence, like that cyclone kick spot. Williams was a nice divergence before the ultimate Dragunov-McDonagh match, though I’m not sure what I saw tonight from Dragunov gives me much confidence that he’ll recapture his form from before the injuries.)

-They returned with an earlier today video of women training and Meiko Satomura entering the ring. She told them they will learn to train her way and asked if they could survive. They replied yes. Roxanne Perez suddenly jumped up and asked to join. They did sit-ups, push-ups, and more exercises. Of course, the last one standing was Perez. Satomura did all of this with them as well. The final two dropped out during the 1,000 squats. Perez said arigato after and went to leave. Satomura asked where she was going and said that was just a warmup. To be continued…


Bate made his entrance in street clothes. There was a Union Jack in the crowd. He said a man of many words often he’s not. A “We want Waller” chant started from a small yet loud section of fans. Bate said that the love that he’s received from “most of you” has infused a passion unbeknownst to his former self and thanked them; the crowd gave light applause. He said some things happen for a reason, pointing to his big loss to Breakker, but he said they are about to embark on a mystical journey together. He repeated the line and added- no Schism’s music hit.

Joe Gacy said they were preparing for The Dyad’s match and couldn’t help to hear what he was saying. Gacy said they are kindred spirits and forward thinkers. Bate said he appreciates the input, but he would pass on drinking whatever concoction it is he’s given  his mates. Now just Ava said they may be kindred spirits always, but not all ways. Gacy said the journey a man takes does matter; you just have to be careful who you surround yourself with. He said the people won’t help him, and Schism is a true family while Bate left his across the ocean. He mentioned Chase U and what life could be like for Thea Hail with them. They slowly surrounded the ring and said to heed their message. Ava said Bate has no one, but they are four roots, one tree. Chase U ran down for the save. [c]

(Hazelwood’s Take: Bate has gone full His Dark Materials on us with his use of words like “unbeknownst” and “concoction” and “embarking on a mystical journey.” At least his words finally match the whole monk-from-A-Knight’s-Tale look, but that whole segment, to me, was just a dud. It dragged, specifically once Schism hit, and couldn’t end soon enough.)

(2) THE DYAD (Rip Fowler & Jagger Reed w/Joe Gacy & Ava) vs. CHASE U (Andre Chase & Duke Hudson w/Thea Hail) – Tag team match

The match was in progress as they returned, so the time will be televised time. Hudson was in there with Fowler, then tagged in Chase. They hit a drop toehold-falling elbow combo. Fowler forced Chase into their corner and Reed tagged in, landing punches to Chase’s head and then a foot choke on the apron. A stomp followed a snapmare, then a short-arm clothesline for a two-count. Hail looked back to her normal self after two weeks of jumpy timidity. Fowler tagged back in and landed a big forearm, then taunted Chase about being a leader. He hit a shoulder breaker, a now old-school move that was once the finisher of one Rocky Maivia, then cinched in a modified rear chin lock. Reed tagged back in and landed a huge forearm as they cut the ring off for Chase.

Gallus faces Edris Enofe & Malik Blade later tonight in a non-title match. Reed kept to work on the left, then a gut knee to prevent a tag. Chase escaped and tagged in the big man, who went to work on both men in a furious sequence that saw him land punches, a sidewalk slam, his Chase U elbow, a senton, some corner attacks, and an overhead belly-to-belly that threw Reed onto Fowler. Chase tagged in and hit an assisted enziguri, then a superkick for a two-count. Hail suddenly began screaming and almost crying at ringside. Fowler took out Chase as they went for a Gory finisher, but then Hudson took out Fowler. Fowler tagged, unbeknownst to Hudson (now I’m saying it, Bate!), then took him outside and he was hit with a middle rope tope from Reed. [c]

Fowler had Hudson in another rear chin lock as they returned (why are Schism getting three segments?). Hudson responded with a backbody drop and both Chase and Reed tagged in. Chase hit both men with inverted atomic drops, then went at Reed in the corner with punch after punch. He then kicked Fowler and hit a double DDT-flatliner combo to both men. Chase kicked off Fowler from the apron, then caught Reed with a swinging neckbreaker. He went to the middle rope for a moonsault outside to Fowler, then back to the top for a crossbody on Reed, but Fowler broke up the pin.

The two legal men traded punches from their knees, then their feet. Chase got the better and took out Fowler again, then unleashed on Reed before a side Russian leg sweep. Chase then signaled for and hit his Chase U kicks, kind of, since he saw Ava start making her way to Hail. Chase tagged in Hudson and he hit his leaping German suplex, but ate a throat chop from a now legal Fowler. they hit a dual double knee facebuster for the victory. Hail was clutching the Chase U bullhorn. After the match, Hudson yelled at Chase that Hail has to grow up and that he needs to let her grow up. He asked if it was a university or a charity before walking off. Hail was screaming it’s not her fault.

WINNER: The Dyad at 12:36 televised (dual double knee facebuster)

-Another earlier today video showed Mr. Stone asking Von Wagner if he’s ready. Wagner said he’s here to kick ass and take names. “Original, very original, I’ve never heard that before.” Tony D’Angelo and Stacks walked in and Wagner tried to crack a joke. Stone recommended Wagner to decline the challenge, so he did. Stacks questioned Wagner’s masculinity, so of course he said yes to Stone’s chagrin. Stacks said “easy” and Wagner told Stone to shut up.

-McKenzie Mitchell was in the back and asked Drew Gulak why he turned on his friend Hank Walker. Gulak said they weren’t friends and Walker is just some guy who thinks he can be something because he wants it to be that way. He said Walker is a nice guy, but you can’t be afraid to rip limb from limb or tear their ligaments to get what you want. He said that doesn’t describe Walker, but it describes Charlie Dempsey.

-Jacy Jayne’s music hit for what I believe is her first singles match since sending Gigi Dolin into the Ding Dong Hello door. [c]

-Another vignette played for Sol Ruca who said waves are unpredictable, which she loves. She equated waves to the women’s division and said it’s challenging, but fun. They showed her practicing some TikTok things using her skill and athleticism and the many takes before she lands the trick. In this case, it was handstanding on a skateboard and then landing a kickflip (fistflip?) with it and said she’ll beat Zoey Stark.

-Hartwell’s music was already playing as they hit ringside, but she made her full entrance. The graphic displayed three minutes before the top of the hour.

(3) JACY JAYNE vs. INDI HARTWELL – Singles match

They locked up and Hartwell immediately took the left. Jayne hit a gut kick, saying hell no to the technical stuff, then kept at it with the physical attacks. However, Hartwell landed a few short-arm clotheslines. Jayne reversed one into a neckbreaker and then two sentons for a two-count. Hartwell fought back with some gut shots, but Jayne dodged an apron attack and snapped Hartwell’s neck across the top rope. She then hit a gut knee and a back PK, then a mule kick basically for a two-count. An “Indy wrestling” chant began as Jayne applied a rear chinlock, then a sleeper to drive Hartwell back to the mat. She wrenched, but the hold was not applied well (lots of light where the elbow should be applying pressure to the neck). She jumped back on hartwell, but Hartwell drove her into the corner and threw her off.


Hartwell landed a few rights and a kick, then some stiff straights to Jayne. She landed a spinebuster for a two-count using a modified matchbook cover. Hartwell hit an uppercut and kick, then lifted Jayne to her shoulders. Jayne slid out and threw Hartwell into the post shoulder-first. She hit a corner cannonball and some corner stomps as the ref admonished her to listen. She then set Hartwell up and landed a running kick to the head as Joseph mentioned he’s seen that move before (Zack Ryder!?). The camera closeups made it obvious what was next as Dolin made her return to unleash on Jayne. The match ended with a DQ, but Dolin fought Jayne to the back, well, I guess a no contest.

WINNER: No contest at 5:05

-Back to Satomura and Perez, Satomura basically shut down Perez and said they don’t talk, they train. Satomura just put Perez through the ringer, then had Perez try the same to her. It was no contest: Satomura was the better, but she was seeking to draw out a more physical side from Perez. She told Perez to win, it comes from here (heart) and not here (muscle).

-Gallus boys on top were making their way, complete with a cake to celebrate their reign. [c]

(Hazelwood’s Take: They should really stop with their camera work in these spots. “Oh, we can’t let them see what’s coming!” except it’s happened so much we know what’s coming when the camera zooms in like that. It also wasn’t a great match and, like the first two, dragged at times. Still, the crowd was hot for Dolin’s return.)

-Mitchell was in the back with Stark as they returned. She cut off Mitchell and said she doesn’t give a damn about Ruca. She said she’s done with Ruca and then asked why the hell Satomura gets a title match (rhetorically). Mitchell said it’s because Satomura is a living legend and one of the most respected people in the business. Stark said it’s her match and they’re all just kissing Satomura’s ass for respect. She said she’ll show who the real Final Boss is when Satomura step into the ring with her.

(4) GALLUS (c) (Mark Coffey & Wolfgang) vs. EDRIS ENOFE & MALIK BLADE – Non-title tag team match

Enofe & Blade were already in the ring when they returned. Coffey and Blade began the match with Coffey using his power to get the better, playing the heel. Blade cartwheeled away from a backbody drop, but missed a dropkick and was tossed. Wolfgang entered and beat away with uppercuts and strikes, but Blade caught an uppercut. Both men jockeyed for position. Blade flipped over, but ate a running uppercut. Coffey tagged in and methodically beat on Blade in their corner. Blade fought back with punches, but ate a half-nelson front suplex. He hit a arm wrench shoulder tackle as the cake was brought out. It seems like Gallus didn’t realize they were behind them in the back before commercial. The distraction allowed Blade to tag in Enofe.

Enofe took it to Coffey and hit a dropkick to Wolfgang to send him outside. He messed up a rope thing, but recovered. He hit a dive to Wolfgang on the outside and a top rope elbow drop to Coffey for a two-count. Blade tagged in as they hit basically an assisted End of Heartache. Wolfgang took out Enofe and Coffey Blade, then tagged in Wolfgang. They hit their sliding forearm-Oklahoma slam combo for the win.

WINNER: Gallus at 3:42 (sliding forearm-Oklahoma slam combo)

-The cake bearers are not Pretty Deadly, though they’re dressed like flamboyantly like them. In the ring, the two said on behalf of Pretty Deadly, they wanted to congratulate them on their two-year anniversary of losing to Pretty Deadly. Gallus shoved them into the cake and tossed them out. As they posed, PD appeared behind them with Elton Prince in orange and Kit Wilson in green, hitting them with chairs and then on the outside, throwing them into the steps, then throwing Wolfgang into Coffey into the steps. They removed the top layer and set the bottom layer, and hit an assisted spinebuster on Wolfgang right onto the steps. They held up the men’s Tag Team Championship over their foes.

-A vignette aired from Dabba-Kato saying that for eight months, Apollo Crews spent eight months thinking about his future that he forgot about his past. He reminded that he helped Crews win the Intercontinental Championship at WrestleMania over Big E, then said without him, Crews has no future. He said Crews may have brought him into this world, but he’ll be the one to take Crews out of it as it ended.

-D’Angelo and Stacks made their entrance for the “The Don’s” match. [c]

(Hazelwood’s Take: I don’t know what it is about tonight, but tonight more than any other in recent memory is where the “developmental” aspect is shown at full force.)

-They returned with Joseph and Booker T at the announce table as they hyped Stand & Deliver. Stevie Turner’s stream started suddenly in the middle of their discussion. She said she wanted to debut her Stevie Randomizer, which landed on Lyra Valkyria. She asked for questions on Valkyria. She went over Valkyria’s character and the inspiration behind her character. She brought up questions about the feathers, which ties to battles she’s won. Another questions how far Valkyria will go and Turner said she’s no match for Turner. She cutoff Joseph before he could ask a questions.

-Wagner made his entrance with a reluctant Stone; they bickered on the way to the ring.

(5) TONY D’ANGELO (w/Channing “Stacks” Lorenzo) vs. VON WAGNER (w/Mr. Stone) – Singles match

This is probably the match you show Kelly if you want to torture him. They locked with D’Angelo (in his Seahawks colored pants) getting the better until Wagner used his strength to force “The Don” into the corner. D’Angelo dodged a vertical, but ate that high running knee he probably learned from watching Triple H video. D’Angelo ducked a short-arm clothesline and hit a takedown, but Wagner kept using his power, landing a big boot. Stone took a seat in a char and said he was waiting on Wagner, to “figure it out.” Wagner hit a lariat as Stone was nonplussed. Wagner then hit some strikes, but nothing looks believable with him. He hit a bodyslam and falling elbow for a two-count.

Wagner hit some knees in the corner, then sent D’Angelo across and hit a running clothesline. He did so again, but on the third, D’Angelo moved. D’Angelo then hit some clotheslines, a belly-to-belly side suplex, and a spinebuster. D’Angelo set and hit a belly-to-back slam for the clean pin. Well, huh. Wagner and Stone argued at ringside.

WINNER: Tony D’Angelo at 4:01 (belly-to-back slam)

-Kelly Kincaid entered the ring and asked D’Angelo about Dijak. D’Angelo turned it to talk about Stacks and loyalty. He said Stacks proved loyalty last week instead of going for the open challenge. He then turned to Dijak and said they put this to an end. She asked how they end it and he said in the ring, one last time at Roadblock in a jailhouse street fight (so, a no DQ match). He said when it’s all said and done, he’s putting Dijak in solitary confinement, and he has seven days to answer.

-Mitchell was in the back with Nikkita Lyons as she said fans are excited to see her on the road to recovery (WHO?!). She asked about the attack and Lyons said it was from behind. She said she’ll be out close to a year. Tiffany Stratton came in and said why is anyone talking about Lyons, wasting this TV time on Lyons. Lyons said Stratton is so “suss” right now. Stratton said if she did attack her, she’d be out for good.

-They showed Tatum Paxley in the back and Ivy Nile approached. Paxley said they still don’t know who attacked Lyons. She wasn’t going to join Nile for her match with Alba Fyre, but Nile told her they’re a team and not to let Isla Dawn get to them. Paxley repeated they were a team and looked at the Diamond Mine flag before going to join Nile. [c]

(Hazelwood’s Take: I forgot who said it last week, but maybe Paxley did attack Lyons in which case, Paxley is about to be the biggest babyface on the brand. Lyons was, as usual, not good and Stratton saved that segment, nay, show.)

-They returned with Williams in the trainer’s area as Carmelo Hayes came up and said he’s proud of him (he tossed a water bottle straight into Williams’ hand). Bate approached, apologized for interrupting, and said Williams’ journey will have many peaks and valleys. He said the stronger the storm, the stronger the trees, implying stronger trees are built in strong winds. Hayes interrupted and said he knows who Bate is and how he himself his because “I am him.” They left with Bate looking on.

-Fyre and Dawn made their entrance. Nile was already in the ring.

(6) ALBA FYRE (w/Isla Dawn) vs. IVY NILE (w/Tatum Paxley) – Singles match

Fyre took it to Nile early, then slapped her. This enraged Nile, who took it to Fyre in the corner with a flurry of strikes. Fyre used her veteran experience to toss Nile into the ropes neck-first, then hit a gourdbuster (WE WANT MORE GOURDBUSTER). A PK after resulted in a two-count. Fyre then began to slow it down, working the back, then applied a hammerlock. Nile responded with a counter, then some not so great looking punches. Nile came off of a rope run with a head scissors and then her running corner kick. She went for a bodyslam, but Fyre caught her in the Gory. Nile rolled through for a two-count. Dawn hit the apron as Nile hit the Dragon Slayer, distracting the ref. Paxley hit the opposite apron, but Nile was forced into her to send her outside. Fyre then hit what Joseph called the Alba Bomb (why not Fyre Bomb?).

WINNER: Alba Fyre at 3:02 (Alba Bomb)

-A vignette played on Breakker with lots of highlights. He said NXT is his life and as long as he’s breathing, the championship will be his. [c]

-They returned in James’ office as Gi said “Fall-On is here.” Henley entered and remarked on the new office. Henley said she knows she ruined the Valentine’s date and said James could have just told her. James said she wanted Henley to trust her. James accepted her apology and said jealousy is a human emotion. Henley said she’s not jealous, but happy for them.

-Mitchell was with Wes Lee, who was still working out some kinks in his neck. She asked what’s next for him. He said she always comes with the hard hitting questions. He said people love the open challenge, so he’s going to do it again next week and sounded like he would start the show. She said it puts you at a disadvantage so why would you keep doing it? He said that’s just who he is.

-Joseph went over next week’s card, including Satomura vs. Stark and Hayes vs. Bate.

-The “Modern Day Maharaja” made his entrance with Indus Sher flanking him in (of course) exquisite suits. Joseph mentioned Mahal being in the inaugural NXT Championship match against Seth Rollins over a decade ago. Breakker then made his entrance. Ring introductions were given inside the ring with referee Tom Castor getting the assignment.

(7) BRON BREAKKER (c) vs. JINDER MAHAL (w/Indus Sher) – Men’s NXT Championship match

Jinder immediately slammed Breakker and hit a big shoulder tackle, mocking Breakker. He told Breakker this is a WWE Champion. Mahal used veteran savvy in the early parts to keep landing big shots and taunt Breakker, the notorious hothead. He used that to lure in Breakker and land some more shots, but Breakker leaped over a backbody drop and landed his own shoulder tackles, then his catching slam. He went for the Steiner Recliner early, but Mahal slid out. Breakker then hit a big tope con hilo to take out all three men on the outside. Breakker snapped Mahal’s neck on the top rope, but then the two men hit simultaneous lariats. Indus Sher rose to the apron, but The Creed Brothers ran down and fought them to the back. [c]

Breakker was in control as they returned, hitting an overhead suplex for only a one-count, though. Mahal grabbed the mouth and forced Breakker into the ropes, then kicked him to the outside and slammed his face into the announce table once, twice, and then into the steps shoulder-first.


Mahal broke the count and then threw Breakker into the steps one more time before rolling him into the ring for a two-count. Mahal slowed the pace, setting for a vertical suplex. Breakker blocked, so Mahal attacked the back of the neck with elbows. He set for the vertical again, but Breakker blocked and hit his own instead. They traded punches, Breakker to the face and Mahal to the body then the face. They went head-to-head and then Breakker hit a German suplex, held on for a second, then an ugly spinebuster, almost Alabama slam style. He dropped the straps for the spear, but Mahal rolled outside. Breakker followed and slammed Mahal onto the table this time.

Back in the ring, Breakker ran right into a high knee from Mahal, then he finally hit his vertical suplex for a two-count where he head scissored on the pin. Mahal hit a double knee gutbuster for a two-count. He then slapped Breakker in the back of the head and face. Breakker took it to Mahal, then ran up for a Frankensteiner. Breakker hit his own version of an X-plex for a two-count. He then went to the second rope, but leaped right into a kick from Mahal. He called for the Khallas, but Breakker countered and hit a sudden spear where there was no run up.

WINNER: Bron Breakker at 10:50 (spear) to retain the men’s NXT Championship

-After the match, Hayes appeared on the concourse. Breakker finally noticed Hayes and all of the sudden, it looked like someone was choosing a different stream. It was Grayson Waller in the truck calling out Shawn Michaels. He called himself Mr. Stand & Deliver to Michaels’ Mr. WrestleMania. He said they should talk about it at Roadblock on a special edition of The Grayson Waller Effect.

(Hazelwood’s Take: Not a bad match, but like the others tonight, there were definite plodding moments and times where you could see the inexperience on display. Mahal looked to be calling the entire main event match and you could see Breakker visibly trying to remember the next spot in the sequence, particularly early. Mahal served his purpose here in giving Breakker a solid, clean win over a foe with a pedigree that one would think would endear some good will.)

FINAL THOUGHTS: I guess my biggest takeaway from tonight is that tonight’s show was very, very developmental from the standpoint of the matches and the early promo segments. A lot of kinks need to be worked out, but that’s what developmental is for, right? However, I think the question is should some of this developmental stuff be happening on a national broadcast? Wouldn’t some of these be better served on the Coconut Loop?

Regardless, tune into PWT Talks NXT for more detailed thoughts.

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