Date: June 6, 2018
Location: Full Sail University, Winter Park, Florida
Commentators: Nigel McGuinness, Mauro Ranallo, Percy Watson
It’s rubber match night as we have the unlikely third match between Lacey Evans and Kairi Sane. Evans has come out of almost nowhere with a gimmick that makes you want to see someone take her head off while Sane has gone from what looked like a very fun woman full of potential to just another name on the roster. Let’s get to it.
Here’s Shayna Baszler, who has her belt back. With the fans chanting QUEEN OF SPADES, Baszler talks about forcing Dakota Kai to face reality. It doesn’t matter who stands up to her because she’s tougher, she’s stronger and she’s better. The strong will always beat the weak, but there’s always one. There’s always someone who thinks the rules don’t apply to them and in this case it’s Nikki Cross.
Cue Nikki, who is almost shaking at ringside. She gets in so Shayna calls what Nikki did last week a joke. The only place where Nikki is better is in her whacked out little brain and Shayna can put her to sleep in a heartbeat. She throws the mic and Nikki, who lets it hit the ground, only to pick it up and shout DO IT over and over. Nikki growls at her to make Shayna drop the belt and the fight is on.
Shayna covers up in the corner but gets in a right hand when Nikki goes for the belt. Nikki is right back up and knocks Shayna to the floor, drawing some blood from the mouth. This was a heck of a segment as Shayna is a great cocky heel and Nikki is as crazy as I’ve seen in a long time. I want to see them fight now and that’s exactly the point of this. Well done indeed.
TM61 vs. Mike Hughley/Robbie Grand
Miller chops Hughley to start and it’s off to Thorn with a boot on the back of the head. An awesome looking dropkick takes Grand’s head off as the fans are split between the jobbers and the Aussies. Back up and Miller throws Grand into a HARD forearm to the back of the head for the pin at 2:16.
Post match TM61 lists off the teams they’ve defeated (all two of them) and says they can beat any team around here.
We look back at Lars Sullivan beating up Aleister Black last week.
Earlier this week, Sullivan was training at the Performance Center by beating up some rookies. TM61 can be seen walking in, seeing what Sullivan is doing, shaking their heads and leaving.
Roderick Strong vs. Danny Burch
They hit the mat to start with Burch spinning out of some hammerlocks and tossing a frustrated Strong into the ropes. Strong knees him in the face a few times and scores with some backbreakers but misses a running knee in the corner. It turns into a slugout and you just don’t do that against a British wrestler. Burch takes over so here’s the Undisputed Era for a distraction. That’s quickly cut off by Pete Dunne and Oney Lorcan so Burch can slap on a Crossface. Adam Cole adds another distraction though and Strong hits another backbreaker for the pin at 5:47.
Rating: C. I’m kind of surprised that the challenger lost so close to a title match but at least it wasn’t a clean pin. Burch and Lorcan aren’t likely to win the titles but they’re fine for some one off challengers. It’s very impressive that NXT can keep building these teams up in short order like this and they’ve done it again with Lorcan and Burch.
Post match Strong poses but gets punched down by Dunne until Kyle O’Reilly hits Dunne in the knee with a title.
Kassius Ohno is at a photo shoot when EC3 comes in. Insults are thrown and Ohno promises to knock him 99% unconscious next week. The challenge is accepted.
Video on Aleister Black, who is ready for Sullivan.
Ricochet talks about being known only for his flips for fifteen years and now it’s time to be more than that. He’s risen to the top of every place he’s been and he’ll do it here too. Velveteen Dream says sure Ricochet can flip all over the place but he can’t make people feel it like the Dream can.
Ricochet wants to see Dream prove it, because the only setback he’s had is being eliminated from a reality show (Dream: “The Dream has no memory of that.”) and getting a contract anyway. Dream talks about Ricochet being the king because he’d rather be the prince. The king may have been good once, but the prince knows that a greatest crown awaits. Again, this should be a lot of fun.
Kairi Sane vs. Lacey Evans
Lacey’s hand actually has Sane’s name on it. Sane ducks some early swings and headscissors Lacey down before stomping on the hand. Smart move indeed. Instead it’s a knee to the face and a slingshot elbow for two on Sane, followed by just driving the hand into Kairi’s face. It’s off to a cobra clutch with Lacey swinging her around in a circle for good measure.
Lacey even does pushups during a cover but Sane avoids a moonsault. Three straight spears and a top rope forearm set up a cross armbreaker but Lacey stacks her up for the break. Not that it matters as an Alabama Slam (Mauro: “From Japan!”) and the Insane Elbow end Evans at 6:27.
Rating: C+. Fine match to blow off the feud and Evans has already gotten a lot as out of this. Sane winning is the right idea as she could be a good next challenger for Baszler, especially given their history. If nothing else it’s nice to see Sane get some fire inside her again as it’s been lacking in recent months, if not since all the way back at the Mae Young Classic finals.
Here’s Tommaso Ciampa to be booed out of the building all over again. A few PSYCHO KILLER chants are drowned out by the YOU TAPPED OUT chants until Ciampa says the fans gave up on him way before he gave up on them. Ciampa tells the fans that he’s going to talk no matter what they chant. Fans: “YOU STILL SUCK!” Ciampa: “That’s awesome.” They switch to JOHNNY WRESTLING so Ciampa tells them to save the Psycho Killer chants before going on about how Johnny always makes it about himself.
Last week Johnny just had to make a big presentation about how he signed a contract because a week before that, he nearly killed his wife. On June 16 in Chicago, it would be better if Gargano didn’t show up. The fairy tale is coming to an end and it won’t be a happy ending because Ciampa is winning.
Cue Gargano and the fight is on with a suicide dive knocking Ciampa into the crowd. Ciampa knees him in the ribs with the brace but Johnny dives off the bleachers to stay on him with more left hands. They get back in the ring and Ciampa gets in a few shots, setting up the Gargano Escape. Referees break it up and Gargano beats him up on the stage, setting up the real Gargano Escape to make Ciampa tap to end the show.
Overall Rating: A. Some good action and all five Takeover matches getting attention, including some outstanding showdown segments. This was a great hype show for the big event next week and I want to see more than one match a lot more than I did coming into this week’s TV. That’s an awesome usage of an hour and that’s what NXT does best. There’s no “building momentum” or whatever WWE loves to say. This was a bunch of people getting ready to have their big matches and making the fans want to see those matches. That’s using wrestling TV properly and NXT does it to near perfection.
TM61 b. Mike Hughley/Robbie Grand – Forearm to the back of Grand’s head
Roderick Strong b. Danny Burch – Backbreaker
Kairi Sane b. Lacey Evans – Insane Elbow
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