Tonight three women will step into the ring and jostle for the NXT Championship. It’s going to be an elimination match pitting Ruby Riot and Nikki Cross against the reigning champion, Asuka.
Match 1: Drew McIntyre vs. Rob Ryzin
I wonder if Rob Ryzin is related to that Terra Ryzing guy from WCW in the mid-90s. Anyway Rob Ryzin starts the match by going for holds, but Drew McIntyre just chucks him around. Ryzin shoves McIntyre, which pisses him off so Drew punches him in the face and throws him across the ring with a belly to belly suplex.
Rob Ryzin kicks McIntyre in the knee and then drops him with a superkick that gets a one count. Drew McIntyre is super annoyed and he suplexes Rob Ryzin and then his a couple clotheslines.
Rob Ryzin then slaps Drew McIntrye. This was a goddamn mistake. Drew beats down Rob Ryzin and then set him up on the top turnbuckle just so he can knock him off the top ropes, out of the ring to the floor dangerously close to the steel steps.
Drew picks up Rob Ryzin’s corpse and rolls him back into the ring so he can kill him with the Claymore and pick up the win.
Winner: Drew McIntyre
Just a squash match. Sure, watching Drew McIntyre murder dudes is fun, second only perhaps to watching Aleister Black murder dudes, but I want to see him feud with someone already. [*⅔]
Meanwhile Two Weeks Ago…
We get a replay of the segment from a couple weeks back where Ember Moon got cleared to wrestle and interrupted Peyton Royce and Billie Kay filming something. They replayed the entire thing and then announced that next week Ember Moon will take on Peyton Royce.
Aleister Black isn’t good or evil. He kicks many dudes in the head. This is awesome.
Match 2: The Authors of Pain vs. Anthony Dominguez & Wilmer Freyday
Akam wrestled the entire match by himself and started by pulling in the jobber on the apron so it was basically a handicap match. As he wrecked shit in the ring, Ellering stood on the outside with Rezar writing something in a book.
Akam threw one dude over the top of the rope straight out to the ramp and then nailed the other dude with the pump handle Death Valley Driver for the win.
After the match Rezar chucks the guy on the ramp back in the ring and then gets in so he and Akam can hit the Super Collider. Ellering then gets on the mic and says that Heavy Machinery are as foolish as they are large since the Authors have been undefeated for a year. He runs down a list of teams they’d beaten: American Alpha, TM-61, The Revival, DIY. He says that the Authors are going to write the first chapter in their Book of Dominance and that Heavy Machinery would barely be a footnote.
Heavy Machinery are very serious about proper scholastic citation and come out after hearing about footnotes. The get in the ring and go nose to nose with the Authors. Ellering holds back the Authors and they leave without incident as Heavy Machinery’s music plays.
Winners: The Authors of Pain
This was a pretty cool twist on an otherwise generic squash match. Dominating win for the Authors. Post match set up for a Colossal Jostle at a later date was solid too. [*]
Highlights for Children!
We are shown highlights of Roode being a did to Roderick Strong last week and then see a tweet that Roderick Strong made about the situation.
Sonya Deville is a badass MMA lady. She just wants to fight and fuck people up. She has incredible eyebrows and says stuff like, “Put your hair up and square up.” I don’t like that as a catchphrase, but would never tell her that if I happened to meet her because I do not doubt that she could legit wreck my shit.
Match 3: The Velveteen Dream vs. Raul Mendoza
Mendoza was last seen during the Cruiserweight Classic where he lost to The Brian Kendrick in one of the better first round matches. I guess he’s got the Sean Maluta deal now.
Dream fucks around with Mendoza in the early going of the match, shouldering him down after they lock up, but after Mendoza rolls him up for one, he starts to take things more seriously. They do some lucha passes which looked really good. Lots of leapfrogs and dives and stuff as they ran the ropes but that comes to an end whe Mendoza gets kicked in the face after going for a springboard.
Dream beats Mendoza down in the corner and hits a belly to back suplex. He continues to slap Mendoza about until Mendoza counters and gets in control. He hits Dream with a high kick and chops before picking up the pace.
Mendoza ends up running into a flapjack and the Dream hits him with a cartwheel Death Valley Driver. Dream goes up top and hits the elbow drop to pick up the win. Nigel calls him, “The Velvedeen Tream,” at one point.
Winner: The Velveteen Dream
I still kind of think this gimmick is stupid, but Patrick Clark really owns it and his in ring work has generally been pretty good in the matches he’s had thus far so I can’t complain too much. Plus this gimmick has lead to Tom Phillips making sly references to Prince songs throughout Velveteen Dream matches which is hilarious.
Mendoza looked pretty decent in defeat and hope that they keep him around. [**]
After we see highlights of Hideo Itami attempt to murder Oney Lorcan last week and Kassius Ohno make the save we get an Ohno interview. Ohno says he doesn’t know where his friendship with Itami stands but he shouldn’t have shoved Itami last week. Itami’s just under a lot of pressure and the Itami we saw last week isn’t the real Itami. Ohno says he’s going to lead by example instead of stooping to Itami’s level so he’s talked to William Regal and next week will face Aleister Black in a match. Oh fuck!
We get a video package featuring Ember Moon. She’ll be back in action next week.
Match 4: Asuka vs. Nikki Cross vs. Ruby Riot
Nikki crawls into the ring without any sort of entrance music or her posse or anything. She just shows up. I don’t know if they’re leading to her leaving Sanity or what. Ruby Riot is out next and then Asuka comes out. Nikki Cross tries to attack while Asuka does her entrance stuff, but the ref holds her back.
Asuka apparently has a win-loss record of 174-0 now and has surpassed Goldberg’s streak. They do the ring introductions and the match gets underway with a frenetic start in which we see Cross run Riot and Asuka together.
All three brawl for awhile. Cross hits Riot with a missile dropkick and then Asuka hits Cross with a missile dropkick of her own. Asuka seems pissed off and yells at Cross and Riot, so they team up and send Asuka to the floor. Riot and Cross brawl in the ring while Asuka is out on the floor. Riot nails Cross with a superkick and we head to commercial. TAPE MACHINES ARE ROLLING!
We come back from break and Asuka is back in the ring with Riot. She hits Riot with an ass attack, but Riot comes back with a hurricanrana. Cross goes after Riot and goes for a pin, but Asuka breaks up the pin, but gets cut off by Riot with chops. Asuka takes out Riot with a kick and covers her for two.
Cross pulls Asuka to the floor, but Riot hits a dropkick off the apron that takes them both out. They head back in and Ruby Riot goes up to the top rope and leaps over Cross with a shotgun dropkick. She goes back up but Asuka shoves her off to the floor. Cross then hits a fisherman’s neck breaker on Asuka but Asuka just rolls to the floor.
Riot nails Cross with a Saito Suplex, but neither woman can get to her feet. Asuka comes back in but Riot takes her out with a kick. Cross then gets Riot with a draping neck breaker and pins Ruby Riot to eliminate her. TAPE MACHINES ARE ROLLING!
We come back from break to find Asuka and Cross trading strikes. Asuka hits some kicks and then ruins Nikki Cross’ shit with a dead lift German suplex. She goes for a cover but Nikki Cross kicks out at two.
Asuka hits some more kicks. The ref attempts to separate them and Nikki Cross rakes Asuka’s eyes. Cross goes for a hanging swinging neckbreaker. They battle onto the apron and Nikki Cross gets sent to the floor. Asuka takes her out with a flying ass attack from the apron.
They then brawl up toward the stage and after slamming each other into the guardrail and stuff for awhile they head backstage. The ref, rushes back to the ring and calls for the timekeeper to ring the damn bell. This match has been declared a no contest because of reasons…
The crowd is not happy about this, but we quickly cut to action out in the parking lot where Asuka and Nikki Cross are still fighting. Cross gets whipped into some sort of random chunk of fence than she either cracks or knocks over, since it’s at an angle when she gets up.
Cross slams Asuka into a metal shutter door and officials appear to half-assedly attempt to separate them. Asuka gets Cross and repeatedly slams her into the door and they then fight back into the backstage area of the arena.
Cross attempts to drown Asuka in a cooler of ice water and then suffocate her by pinning her nose and putting her hand over Asuka’s mouth. Referees and other officials again attempt to stop them by asking them nicely to stop attempting to murder one another. They do not stop.
They fight back into the arena, brawling over by the announce table. Someone in the crowd yells for them to use the table, but they just slam each other’s head into it before moving on to the production area. They brawl here for awhile before getting up on to a table and brawling some more.
The camera angle makes it look like they were up in the Eagle’s Nest in the ECW Arena. Nikki Cross leaps at Asuka, sending them both crashing down to some tables that happened to be position below the the production area. Both women are dead.
This would have been a fine ending point, but they showed some replays. That’s cool too. It’s a big spot, you want to get your money’s worth, I get it. They show a replay from a different angle that reveals that the production area was only a few feet off the ground. Asuka and Cross probably fell like two or 3 feet before hitting the tables below them which decreased the awesomeness of the spot by like 13%.
Winner: No Contest
This was a good match that was kind of ruined by poor sequencing. The in-ring portion was pretty fine, though not as good as the match these three had at TakeOver. It was a perfectly cromulent TV match. The backstage brawling part was great since NXT matches rarely leave the ring area, so seeing them fight in the back was unique. The table spot was something I honestly don’t think I’d seen before in NXT either so it was kind of shocking. Ending the match in a no contest after Ruby Riot got pinned was also fine since it is a decent way to continue the feud but move it into a one on one thing between Asuka and Nikki Cross.
What was stupid though was having the ref throw the match out the second they went backstage. There was a big table spot planned at the end of the brawl that resulted in both women having to be carted off by the medics. You could have just as easily (and more logically) thrown the match out at that point to end up at the same place, but without pissing off the audience. Literally like two minutes before they went backstage Tom Phillips said something like, “Triple Threat rules are still in effect…that means no count outs and no disqualifications,” so having the match get tossed after like a minute of them fighting on the ramp was kind of lame. Other than that it was a pretty good match. [***]
The main event was pretty good but everything else was just recaps and squash matches. I guess the Velveteen Dream match was a solid enough TV match, but nothing all that great. Check out the main event if you’re interested, but you can probably pass on everything else.