NXT – April 18, 2023: Get Ready For Breakin
Date: April 18, 2023
Location: Capitol Wrestling Center, Orlando, Florida
Commentators: Vic Joseph, Booker T.
Things got a little more interesting last week as Grayson Waller became the new #1 contender to the NXT Title and Bron Breakker seemed to target Chase U. Those are both new directions and I’m curious to see where they go from here. Other than that, the Women’s Title situation could get more complicated so let’s get to it.
Here are last week’s results if you need a recap.
Opening recap….is broken up by a three way brawl between the Dyad, the Creeds and Gallus, who are scheduled to face off for the Tag Team Titles. That’s a new one and I got a bit confused by what they were doing (in a good way).
Tag Team Titles: Gallus vs. Dyad vs. Creed Brothers
Gallus is defending, the rest of the groups are here too and it’s a brawl to start with the Dyad taking over. That doesn’t last long as Gallus is right back, only to have Julius snap off some suplex. Julius moonsaults onto Reid and manages a heck of a powerbomb but a string of shots to the face gives Reid two. Mark sends Julius flying for two and we take a break.
Back with a three way knockdown and a triple tag bringing in Brutus, Fowler and Wolfgang, with Brutus getting to clean house. The Dyad breaks up a double team from Gallus and we get a Dyad vs. Creed showdown. Something like Aussie Open’s Coriolis hits Brutus but Ava offers a distraction. Reid is knocked off the top into Ivy Nile as the Brutus Bomb hits Fowler. With that broken up, Gallus’ running boot/flapjack combination retains the titles at 13:09.
Rating: B-. It was a hot start to the show and that is the right way to go. I liked the whole interrupting the normal video to start, just to add in some rarely used flavor. Other than that, the match was pretty much nonstop action and that is how you get a show going. Gallus is running through the division though and I’m not sure who is supposed to take the belts from them at the moment.
Dijak is mad about Ilja Dragunov and runs into Apollo Crews, setting up a match tonight.
Nathan Frazer has a new talk show segment called Hard Hitting Home Truths, where he talks about how talented the roster is around here. Frazer talks about how he is going to keep going fast to keep from getting down because unhappiness can’t catch you. This was an odd choice but sure why not.
Myles Borne vs. Noam Dar
Dar’s Heritage Cup isn’t on the line. Dar kicks the leg out to start but Borne drives him into the corner to hammer away. Borne gets hung over the ropes and kicked in the face but he fights up with some dropkicks. Dar hits a spinning elbow to the face though and the Nova Roller (running kick to the face) finishes Borne at 2:45.
Roxanne Perez is ready to go through Zoey Stark tonight on her way back to the Women’s Title.
Kiana James isn’t willing to help Josh Briggs after everything that has happened. Briggs still wants help talking to Brooks Jensen, who comes in, looking like he’s auditioning for Pretty Deadly. He doesn’t want to talk to Briggs because Jensen is a man instead of a boy. Jensen tells him to leave.
Odyssey Jones comes out for a match but gets jumped by Bron Breakker. After getting rid of Jones, Breakker talks about how he had to take out Chase U last week but here is Duke Hudson to say not so fast. Breakker isn’t going to badmouth Chase U and get away with it so they can fight at Spring Breakin. Hudson cuts him off to say Breakker is going to face the beating heart of Chase U. Breakker promises to wreck all of Chase U.
Cora Jade gets cut off by Gigi Dolin, who thinks Jade is channeling her anger. A match is made for later.
Pretty Deadly is happy with attacking Tony D’Angelo and Stacks and an anything goes match seems likely for next week.
Roxanne Perez vs. Zoey Stark
Stark works on the arm to start but Perez slips out and we have a standoff. Perez takes her into an armbar and cranks away, setting up a headlock for a change of pace. A headlock takeover out of the corner has Stark even more annoyed but she slips out and kicks Perez in the ribs. Back up and Perez is sent outside, where she cuts off a dive and drops Perez on the apron.
We take a break and come back with Perez being catapulted into the corner, setting up the cravate. Another catapult is countered into a middle rope Thesz press but Stark rolls through a high crossbody for two. Pop Rox is blocked and a half and half suplex drops Perez for two more. The Z360 is countered though and Pop Rox out of the corner gives Perez the pin at 11:08.
Rating: C+. This is where Perez shines, as she fought from behind and came back to win in a nice match. Perez is small enough to be the plucky underdog and she pulled it off well here. On the other hand you have Stark, who is great as a villain to be slayed and it worked out for both of them as a result. Good match here, with Perez getting closer to her title rematch.
Post match here is Indi Hartwell to say she’s a fighting champion so next week, Perez can have her title shot. Perez is of course game but here is Tiffany Stratton to be all annoyed. Stratton says another beatable opponent is getting a title shot but Perez brings up beating her in the Breakout Tournament. Hartwell is up for a triple threat.
Grayson Waller says he’s here because the Johnny Gargano match was unsanctioned and didn’t count. Now for the NXT Title!
Von Wagner convinces Mr. Stone to stick around because he’s the son of a Beverly Brother and ready to go. Why does WWE insist on trying over and over with Wagner? Am I missing something?
Dani Palmer will be here soon.
Cora Jade vs. Gigi Dolin
Cora works on a wristlock to start but gets kicked in the arm to cut her off. A running hip attack drops Dolin for two but she knees Jade in the face. Jade’s running knee is cut off but here is Jacy Jayne for a distraction. Dolin isn’t having that and sends Jayne into the steps, as well as Booker T., with the distraction letting Jade hit a DDT for the pin at 3:49.
Rating: C. This didn’t have time to go anywhere and was more about Jayne vs. Dolin than anything else. The feud is likely continuing and I wouldn’t be surprised to see a rematch in the next week or two. Dolin feels like someone who NXT wants to push but won’t pull the trigger on, though that might have been more due to Jayne’s injury.
Post match Lyra Valkyria comes out to say she’s facing Jade next week.
Eddy Thorpe is ready to succeed and overcome the Native American stereotypes. Damon Kemp comes in and doesn’t seem impressed.
Fallon Henley and Josh Briggs aren’t cool with Kiana James and Brooks Jensen, who come in to interrupt. Briggs wants to make amends but the challenge for a mixed tag is thrown out. Henley is absolutely in.
Dijak vs. Apollo Crews
Dijak grabs a headlock to start as Booker says time is running out on Crews’ chances. Crews’ headlock goes on before he picks up the pace, setting up a nice dropkick. Dijak manages to send him to the apron though and a hard shot knocks Crews into the announcers’ table as we take a break. Back with Crews hitting a top rope shot to the head but the discus boot gives Dijak two. Crews kicks him down but the standing moonsault is countered into Hard Justice for….two in a nice finish. Feast Your Eyes finishes Crews at 9:52.
Rating: B-. It’s nice to see Dijak getting a nice win as he is starting to feel a bit more like his old self. Dijak felt like someone who should have been a bigger deal in the new NXT but hasn’t quite hit that same level, or really even approached it. Maybe this is a nice step forward, but the lack of consistency gives me pause.
Post match Dijak goes after Crews again but Ilja Dragunov makes the save. The two have to be held apart.
Jacy Jayne can’t stand Gigi Dolin and talks about how Dolin left her seven year old brother to deal with their abusive mother.
North American Title: Charlie Dempsey vs. Wes Lee
Dempsey, with Drew Gulak, is defending and Gulak gets in a cheap shot before the bell. Dempsey gets in a fast two and rolls Lee up for two more. Lee is fine enough to send him outside for the big flip dive and we take a break. Back with Dempsey working on an armbar but Lee gets up for the slugout.
A dropkick to the back of the head sends Dempsey into the corner but he comes out with a dragon screw legwhip. Dempsey’s bridging German suplex gets two, only to have Lee kick his way out of trouble. After kicking Gulak off the apron, Lee hits the Cardiac Kick to retain at 8:35.
Rating: C+. The break didn’t do this any favors but I can go with more of Dempsey getting to torture someone. That is something that works no matter what era of wrestling you’re in and that was true again here. At the same time you have Lee, who is on the roll of a career at this point and we could be in for even more awesome title defenses going forward.
Tony D’Angelo and Stacks are ready for Pretty Deadly and they’ll make it a trunk match.
Oba Femi is coming and can throw stuff, like furniture.
Here’s what’s coming next week, including Bron Breakker vs. Andre Chase instead of Duke Hudson.
It’s time for the Grayson Waller Effect with Waller promising to win the NXT Title next week. That brings him to his guests: NXT Champion Carmelo Hayes, with Trick Williams. Waller talks about what a star he has been without a title, so imagine what he’ll be with one. We get a viewer question asking what the “him” thing means for Hayes. Williams doesn’t like it but Hayes says they keep chanting his name, so what does that tell you?
Waller suggests that Hayes is nothing without Williams but Hayes isn’t going to fall for it. They insult each other for how horrible they would be on the main roster until Waller promises to win the title. The staredown ends the show. This wasn’t great, but it isn’t meant to be some kind of major title showdown. Instead, it’s about Hayes getting his first title defense out of the way and Waller is just dangerous enough to feel like a threat.
Overall Rating: B-. Another solid show from NXT and the best thing is that they have been building up towards the important show next week. Granted a lot of the card was built up in the span of one night, but at least they did get it together. Spring Breakin is not going to be the biggest card ever, but it is going to feel bigger than a regular show. For now though, they’re coming in to the show on something of a roll so there is a lot of potential next week.
Gallus b. Dyad and Creed Brothers – Running boot/flapjack combination to Brutus
Noam Dar b. Myles Borne – Nova Roller
Roxanne Perez b. Zoey Stark – Pop Rox
Cora Jade b. Gigi Dolin – DDT
Wes Lee b. Charlie Dempsey – Cardiac Kick
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