NXT TV RESULTS (8/22): Hazelwood’s live report on Heatwave with Hayes-Lee, Mysterio/Ripley-Lee/Valkyria, Dragunov-Williams, Stratton appears, more



AUGUST 22, 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” to break down the show with calls and emails.

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-The show began with a special Heatwave video with Tony D’Angelo and Stacks on the phone with each other about a situation needing to be handled. Stacks leaped into the pool and splashed it all over The Don. The Don then called five heavies to jump into and at Stacks. The two then lounged in the pool and went over the the card for tonight. Comedy bits abounded in the video.

-The camera panned the crowd and Ilja Dragunov’s music hit. “Trick Willy” Trick Williams made his way next for this opener sporting new, smooth music for the crowd to chant “whoop that trick.:

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

They rushed immediately and Dragunov kicked the face, then chopped and went to work with forearm shots and another stiff, loud chop to the chest. Williams fought back with forearms, fought off a German with elbows, then ate an enziguri. Dragunov went to back control again, but broke to deliver a big forearm to the back of the neck. He hit a spinning chop to the neck, basically, then a kick to the face, a disrespectful kick I might add. He hit another chop and another face kick.Trick caught the next kick and then they traded forearms until Williams floored Dragunov. Dragunov responded with another chop only to eat a big dropkick to the face. Dragunov went for Constantin Special, but Williams popped him up and lightly landed a punch. They fought on the outside and Dragunov hit a German. He rolled Williams back into the ring. Dragunov surveyed his prey as they went to break. [c]

Dragunov was eyeing Williams in a corner as they returned and hit his machine gun chops. Williams responded with a slap to the chest that ignited Dragunov, who hit more chops to send Williams to the mat. Williams then caught the spinning chop, said motherf****r a couple of times, then beat on Dragunov a bit before being hit with an enziguri and then hitting a capoeira or b-boy kick to the face. Both men were floored as the crowd cheered. The traditional trading of blows began in the center until Williams took over. He then ducked a chop and landed a flurry of punches to drop Dragunov. He then kicked Dragunov in the head over and over, just drawing smiles and taunts to give him more. Williams stepped on Dragunov, then Williams hit an up kick counter and a flapjack. He then hit a running Tiger Knee like Sagat for only a two-count. Dragunov then countered Williams with a DDT and then hit one more for a near-fall. Dragunov set Williams for a superplex, but Williams fought him off and looked for and hit a second rope uranage for a two-count that Dragunov just kicked out of in time.

Williams set for his discus kick, but Williams caught the kick and hit a German, then kicked Williams in the back of the head, I mean, he really landed it. He then hit a powerbomb after some difficulties, jackknife style, then his falling Superman forearm for a two to the roar of the crowd. Dragunov climbed to the second rope and hit the flying forearm to the mouth for the victory. Williams slowly rose to a knee after the match as Dragunov looked on and nodded his approval.

WINNER: Ilja Dragunov at 12:47 (second rope falling Superman forearm)

-Tyler Bate was in the locker room doing Tai Chi as Nathan Frazer approached with the Heritage Cup and then the two had a pep talk about the match tonight. Frazer asked for a second and Bate said he had his back. Frazer said he’s aware that this is two favors and after he defeats Noam Dar, Bate gets first shot.

-Ivy Nile made her entrance for her match with Ava, which is actually happening? [c]

(Hazelwood’s Take: Good match except for two obvious sloppy spots – the popup punch that missed and the botched powerbomb attempt – but nonetheless was a fun opener and hard-hitting as expected. Dragunov had visible bruises on his neck area from the battle, and Williams looked pissed after getting kicked in the back of the head. Props to Williams for continuing even after that. What do you do with Dragunov now, though? He’s already lost to Hayes so unless Lee wins, he’s stuck.)

-They returned with “Mami” and “Dirty” Dominik Mysterio in the locker room. Mustafa Ali walked in after they talked about how Rhea Ripley likes to dish out “punishment.” Ali wished them luck and actually wished for Mysterio to break a leg. Mysterio said he doesn’t care about NXT; he only cares about Mami. Ripley threatened Ali to leave their locker room, then made a quip about Mysterio being quick in bed before leaving.

-Schism’s music hit as the four made their way followed by a gaggle of their followers.

(2) IVY NILE vs. AVA (w/Schism) – Singles match

They circled and Nile was distracted by Joe Gacy, allowing Ava to take the advantage. She rammed Nile into the corner and hit a few bodyslams, each with some snap to them. She actually whipped Nile into the corner and hit a running splash. Ava lifted and hit a backbreaker for a two-count. However, Nile dodged a corner splash and went to work with strikes to the body, leg, and head. Ava responded by hitting a scorpion kick that hit well just as Nile came off of a rope run. Ava smiled and just methodically attacked Nile, nearly being disqualified for the ref for the five count. She lifted for a powerslam, but Nile slithered out and locked in the Dragon Slayer to get the tap.

After the match, the follower lined the apron and Nile went to work on them with strikes and spulexes. She grabbed Ava, but she was saved by The Creed Br- I mean the followers.

WINNER: Ivy Nile at 2:12 (Dragon Slayer)

-Dragunov entered the locker room as Wes Lee was on the phone. Dragunov then said nothing stands in his way to the Men’s NXT Championship, Lee then argued with him about who will be the next champion, countering Dragunov’s talk of destiny with his of not being destined. He then called out The Mad Dragon – as the Men’s NXT Champion.

-Meta-Four made their entrance. Frazer entered next

(3) NATHAN FRAZER (c) (w/Tyler Bate) vs. Noam Dar (w/Meta-Four) – NXT Heritage Cup match

Round 1 began with both men locking up and Dar taking the left. Frazer was taken down as Dar continued to work the left arm. Back on the feet, he wrenched the arm over his shoulder. Frazer then flipped out and reversed position on Dar. Dar forced a break and taunted Frazer, who didn’t bite. They locked hands and then engaged in more of working the left arm by Dar. Frazer found an opportune moment to counter and put on a side headlock and then took Dar to the mat, holding on the move. Dar fought to his feet and the two hit shoulder tackles to no budge. Dar hit a leg kick, but Frazer took the side headlock again. Frazer and Dar engaged in some mutual misdirection spots and some chain wrestling and subs with counters. Dar then missed a move and slapped Frazer. Frazer exploded and just beat on Dar like an MMA fight until the bell rung, holding his punch just a bit too early. They cut to break. [c]

They returned with medics checking on Bate on ringside as they showed Dabba-Kato chokeslamming Bate onto the apron, allowing Dar to pin Frazer to go up 1-0.

Round 3 began with Dar rushing Frazer as Bate was led to the back. Frazer hit a roll through into a STF that was not a John Cena one, but a proper one more like William Regal. Dar reached the bottom rope to break the hold. From the apron, Frazer went for a springboard, but Dar kicked his leg out and caused him to fall across the rope. He then just kicked him instead of doing the rope hung DDT for a two-count. Dar, knowing he could take his time, slowly took it to Frazer with strong strikes. He hit a snap mare and the stomped the left arm. Frazer fought back, but Dar turned with him on an enziguri and cinched in an ankle lock. Frazer sent him outside and hit a quick tope. He hit the moonsault DDT and a running shooting star, but Dar kicked out at six seconds and then the round ran out. The bell rung and Dar hit a big spinning elbow saying he didn’t hear. Vic Joseph yelled it should be a DQ.

Round 4 began with Frazer dodging a strike and landing his own. He hit a quick World’s Strongest Slam for a two-count. He climbed for the phoenix splash, rolled through, and hit a pin for a two-count, but ate the spinning elbow for a two-count. Dar climbed, but Frazer ran up and hit a quick superplex into a final cut instead of the falcon arrow to get the pin and tie it at 1-1 heading into the final two rounds. [c]

There were 25 seconds when they returned in Round 5 as Frazer leaped from the top to the outside to take out Frazer and Dar. Lash Legend held onto his leg for a good ten seconds, but Dar kicked out just before the bell rung as well. Round 6 began with with both men glaring at each other and then the trade of strikes in the middle of the ring. Dar started getting the better, so Frazer responded and floored Dar. Dar kicked out the knee and then kicked away at the left arm. He called for the Novaroller, feinted, then got caught by Frazer, but he responded. Frazer then hit a superkick and went for the moonsault DDT again, but Dar rolled through into a kneebar with 90 seconds. Frazer rolled over and punched away at Dar to break the hold. Frazer rose first and hit a superkick, then climbed for the phoenix splash. He kicked off Mensah into Jakara Jackson and Legend, but missed the phoenix splash. Dar hit the Novaroller to win.

WINNER: Noam Dar at 19:38 elapsed time (Novaroller) to become the NEW NXT Heritage Cup Champion

-Ava was in the back with those two followers and said she was safe because of them. She called out Nile for trying to “end her career” and called her and The Creed Brothers (and all of Diamond Mine) failures. She told Nile to come and find her.

-They showed Tiffany Stratton making her way. [c]

(Hazelwood’s Take: Another fun Heritage Cup match that I only saw half of because of the online player. With Meta-Four out there and Bate being removed, you knew they were going to play an integral role in the match finish and that they did. First, it was Legend and then it was Mensah. Does Frazer get a rematch or does Bate challenge Dar even with Dabba-Kato looming? The Heritage Cup has been pretty much contained with four or five wrestlers, so I wonder if they add a new person to the mix.)


-They returned with Stratton in the ring.


She said the “Summer of Tiff Tiff” is coming to an end and it was a hot one. She went over winning the Women’s NXT Championship at Battleground, then her winning streak and beating Thea Hail twice. She said the “Fall of Tiff Tiff” is right around the corner (wordplay, maybe?), she said she’s basically a perfect champion. Stratton said “perfect” may scare people, but when you’re Tiffany Stratton, perfect is easy. She said she is going to go down as one of the best Women’s NXT Champions of all time. She said she’ll be better than Bayley, Asuka, Becky Lynch, and Charlotte Flair, saying the list can go on and on and that for now, she’s going to remain at the Tiffy top.

Gigi Dolin interrupted and told her to shut the hell up. She said she gets the whole “Summer of Tiffany” thing, but wants to see the “Fall of Tiffany.” Stratton interrupted and said she’s officially shooting Dolin’s shot down and she doesn’t deserve a shot. Dolin said the audacity since Stratton tapped out and doesn’t deserve to stand there as champion. Kiana James interrupted and called Dolin delusional for thinking she deserves a title match. James held her victories against Dolin over her head and then called out Stratton. Strattong called her rude before they were interrupted by Blair Davenport. She said they could argue all night long over who has the fanciest material possessions, daddy issues, or social media followers, but she doesn’t care about that crap. She said she deserves to be next in line. Dolin said Davenport has to go through the division first and then mocked her for her convenience store fight with Roxanne Perez. Davenport called Dolin cute and said if she thought the kick from Jacy Jayne was hard, she’s going to beat her so much her own brother won’t recognize her.

Roxanne Perez’s music hit to a big pop and she called out Davenport since Perez won at The Great American Bash. Perez entered the ring, walked by Davenport, and right up to Stratton. She just punched her in the face and a fracas transpired. Stratton slid out of the ring and laughed at everything.

-They showed Drew Gulak coaching a session with Damon Kemp and Charlie Dempsey. Myles Bourne came up and said he wasn’t tired, then was attacked from behind by Dempsey in a rear naked choke. He kept tapping, but Gulak told him not to tap.

-Judgment Day’s music hit for the mixed tag team match. Mysterio and Ripley walked out with their titles, utter confidence on their faces. Ripley whispered a little secret to Mysterio. [c]

-Nile confronted Nile in the back. Ava told them to get her, but they unmasked to be The Creed Brothers. Nile dragged Nile away as The Creed Brothers called out Schism. They said a steel cage match next week with The Dyad if they want to see Ava again and if they win, they’re reinstated.

-Meta-Four were celebrating with champagne in the back, pouring it into the Cup. Someone came in and served him papers from “the Heritage Cup committee.” Mensah began reading until Dar took it and read that there would be a Global Heritage Cup tournament, eight men to determine the contender at No Mercy. They celebrated he doesn’t have to defend for five weeks and then gloated about scouring the globe to find an opponent for him.

-Dragon Lee’s music hit. Lyra Valkyria’s was next.


Mysterio and Lee began the match. Mysterio missed a slap on the break and ate one to the chest himself. They began the seated bridging pin spots and then my stream froze, damn USA player. After refreshing, the two women were in the match and it sounded like Ripley trusted or respected Valkyria until their recent dealings. Valkyria hit a hip toss, but another was blocked. Ripley countered with a wheelbarrow that Valkyria slid out of, but ate a shoulder tackle instead. Ripley then had to dodge the spin kick thrice before retreating into the ropes. She then just slapped the hell out of Valkyria, dropping her to her knees. Ripley caught Valkyria’s attempt and hit two short-arm clotheslines. Her suplex was blocked and Valkyria slapped her as a receipt. Valkyria then landed a series of palm strikes and kicks, but Ripley caught her into a hold. Ripley made the tag and Ripley slid out of the ring. Lee came in and just superkicked Mysterio. Valkyria hit a springboard splash onto Mysterio, then hit her running kick to Ripley while Lee hit a tope to Mysterio. [c]

Ripley had Valkyria in a body scissors as they returned. Ripley turned it into a back mount and taunted Valkyria, who responded with two headbutts. Ripley maintained the body scissors, but Valkyria finally reversed position into full guard and got out. Ripley hit a big knee to the chest, then a Marco Ruas foot stomp, then set for the cradle powerbomb, no, into a vertical suplex for a two-count. Ripley took her time beating on Valkyria and even told Lee to suck it, crotch chop and all. Ripley then just pounded on the back of Valkyria with forearms. She went for the cradle powerbomb suplex again, but Valkyria turned it into a DDT. Ripley grabbed the foot to prevent the tag, but Valkyria kicked away. She leaped, but Ripley grabbed the foot again. Valkyria ducked and hit the spin kick.

The men tagged in and Lee quickly went at Mysterio. He hit the dragon screw in the ropes, then laid Mysterio across the top rope. He climbed and hit the double stomp for a two-count. Lee went for a small package, but Mysterio rolled through. He hit a drop toehold and set for the 619, but Lee ducked and hit the sit-out powerbomb, but Ripley broke up the pin. Valkyria sent Ripley outside, but Ripley caught her and swung her into the barricade. Raquel Rodriguez came down to take out Ripley and the ref didn’t see any of this I guess. Lee hit a running inverted shiranui (basically inverted DDT) to get the victory. He then put one foot on the chest of Mysterio and taunted him.

WINNER: Dragon Lee & Lyra Valkyria at 14:01

-Carmelo Hayes was in the locker room as Williams came in and Williams said not to worry, he’s going to put the work in. Williams said it’s the first title match without him at Hayes’ side and Hayes brought up the finish to the Dragunov match at the last PLE. Williams asked if Hayes was blaming him and Hayes said it’s all about silencing the doubters. He handed Hayes hit title as Hayes left.

-McKenzie Mitchell was in the back and was cut off by Stratton who said her mentions were blowing up: Lynch was never champion in NXT. Stratton said she’s the one that actually matters, though. She said as champion she has the inside scoop that the four women from earlier will face off in a fatal four-way match next to face her. Mitchell repeated that and Stratton said good enough before walking away. [c]

(Hazelwood’s Take: I haven’t seen or read a recap of Raw yet because of work, but I take it Rodriguez and Ripley had a thing last night that led to this tonight. It was a fun match for what it was and Mysterio definitely still has some timing issues. Valkyria and Lee looked great and Ripley was Ripley, as expected. I guess this means Lee will face Mysterio, as I’ve been predicting for weeks now.)

-They returned with a replay of Hail losing to Jayne last week because Chase tried to intervene. They then showed Hail begging the ref to overturn the decision because it was “Mr. Chase’s” fault. Jayne then approached and complimented her on her growth from a year ago. Jayne said if it makes her feel any better, they’ve all been let down by people around here and that she’ll get through it because “people like us” always get through it.

-Von Wagner made his entrance only to be attacked by Baron Corbin. He threw him into the steps and hit a clothesline from the apron. He has on like Bam Bam Bigelow flames on his trunks that Joseph said was Harlem Heat. Wagner fought back on the outside, preventing a steel post hit, then sent Corbin into the post. Corbin fought back and slammed Wagner’s head into the steps. They fought toward the announce desk, then Wagner tossed Corbin into the steps on that side. Wagner, who likes to “table” people, began clearing the announce table before Corbin came and hit a belly-to-back on the outside. He grabbed Stone, but Wagner made the save and then hit a big boot. Oh, Corbin’s tights say “BURN” on them. Suddenly, Bron Breakker came from nowhere and speared Wagner while wearing tank top that said “BEST SPEAR IN THE BUSINESS” (but he ain’t no Tank Top Master).

-Schism called out The Creed Brothers for abducting Ava for “one more chance to save their floundering careers” and mocked the cage match stip. They said to be more concerned with who they’ll be locked in with rather than keeping people out.

-(Wes) Lee made his way from the back, then Hayes as they prepared for the main event. [c]

-They returned with a replay of Lee winning against Dijak last week thanks to Eddy Thorpe’s interference. Dijak sat at his table or whatever in whatever dark corner and called out Thorpe. He said this time, not only will Thorpe’s body be broken, but so will his spirit.

-They showed Lynch tweeted about not being Women’s NXT Champion…yet. Joseph then went over next week’s card including the women’s fatal four-way and steel cage matches.

-Lee’s music hit first to what I think was the loudest pop of the night. The crowd chanted “Wes” as he entered. Hayes entered with a beat to show the jersey of Lee on the Tron being burned, much to Lee’s chagrin. The waters then washed it away to reveal “HIM” and his usual music. Alicia Taylor gave formal ring introductions.

(5) CARMELO HAYES (c) vs. WES LEE – Men’s NXT Championship match

Joseph said this is the first time two Black men will face each other in a main event for the Men’s NXT Championship, and ref Dallas Irvin/D.A. Brewer made it a historic trio. They spent the first part of the match countering each other’s moves and hitting simultaneous dropkicks and kip ups. Hayes tried to break up the pattern, but ate a dropkick. They reset while glaring at and taunting each other. They traded forearms and then pump kicks, kip ups at the same time, then Lee with a sudden Spanish fly. [c]

Hayes rushed Lee into a corner to break a front face lock as they returned. Hayes and Lee just seemed to be having a 50/50 match, which makes sense considering their familiarity and history with each other. Hayes was able to hit some kicks to set up and hit the Fadeaway leg drop on Lee. This gave Hayes some recovery time and then he forearmed Lee, asking for a return. They traded blows, Hayes egging on Lee for more, but Hayes hit a big combo and big chop. He hit a trio more and then a clothesline, inverted atomic drop, Irish whip, corner lariat, superkick for a two-count. What a little flurry there from the champion.


After a brief respite, Hayes went for Lee as Lee blocked what appeared to be a suplex attempt. Le hit a knee to prevent another attempt and then hit the damndest running meteroa to a standing opponent I’ve ever seen for a two-count. Hayes went for his version of the codebreaker, but ate a superkick. Lee hit what I think was a cradle shock and then hit a spiral tap, but only for a two-count. Ah, I love me a spiral tap. This time, Hayes blocked a suplex attempt, then Lee blocked another one and hit an enziguri in the corner. He went for the Cardiac Kick, but Hayes caught him and then turned it into a vertical cutter. He hit the codebreaker, the First 48, but Lee kicked out. Hayes just dumped Lee outside and followed right in front of the announcers. Lee was on the table. Hayes went for and hit a springboard trust fall DDT through the table. He rolled Lee back in and climbed for Nothing but Net, but Le rolled through and hit the Cardiac Kick. Hayes rolled outside as Lee yelled in frustration. Lee then eyed Hayes and missed a lope through the corner as Hayes dodged and Lee’s head hit the bottom of the barricade. Hayes looked on and knew this was his chance so he went back in as the ref counted. Hayes shook his head at Lee which gave Lee the momentum to roll in only to be hit with Nothing but Net. They faded to black pretty quick after that.

WINNER: Carmelo Hayes at 11:38 (Nothing but Net) to retain the Men’s NXT Championship

(Hazelwood’s Take: A damn good match and another example of Lee’s ability to sell. The story was them knowing each other so well that they needed to capitalize on the moments where a mistake happened, and capitalize in a big way. Both men took a good amount of offense and it really became a battle of attrition. I like the subtle bit at the end where Hayes was basically shaking his head to tell Lee to just take the count out so as not to take more punishment, but Lee was too proud to take a loss like that and instead went the “honorable” route instead. Dragunov has clearly set his sights back on Lee, but is that something we’re ready to see again? Don’t get me wrong, the match will be good, but I don’t know if I’d be that invested. How about Lee and Dragunov pair off while Hayes pairs off with someone else? Who he pairs off with is the big question though. You could go the Stratton route and have a multi-person match or tournament…but they’re already doing one of each. Having Hayes off TV or doing vignettes for him also isn’t the worst idea; it’s better than just having him listlessly.)

FINAL THOUGHTS: Some bits were so very NXT, but overall, the in-ring product was solid tonight capped off by a great main event. NXT keeps excelling in setting up and continuing stories for the next show – even if some go too long like this whole Schism-The Creed Brothers angle – but sometimes it can get a bit wacky…like with this whole Schism-The Creed Brothers angle. Maybe they should just scrap that one already, yeah? At this point, I’m also going to assume we get Mysterio-Dragon Lee for the North American Championship and another Ripley-Valkyria match for Ripley’s Women’s World Heavyweight Championship at No Mercy. Lee will win, Valkyria will lose (again), and that’s how it should be and will also probably signal the end of Judgment Day on NXT unless they make the asinine decision to have Damian Priest cash in on Hayes or whomever. I want to say Davenport wins next week, but Perez received the biggest reaction and may very well be set as Stratton is still firmly a heel. It’s then possible Davenport and Dolin pair off and feed on their interactions tonight and in next week’s match to build to that feud, potentially having a match at No Mercy.

Nate Lindberg and I will discuss the show in further detail in about 20 minutes!

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