Date: December 7, 2021
Location: Capitol Wrestling Center, Orlando, Florida
Commentators: Vic Joseph, Wade Barrett
We’re done with WarGames and all signs would seem to point to Bron Breakker getting the rematch for the NXT Title at New Year’s Evil. That should be the big title change, but there is still some time to fill on the way there. We’ll start with this week’s show, which will include the reveal of MSK’s Shaman. Let’s get to it.
We open with a long recap of WarGames.
Von Wagner vs. Kyle O’Reilly
In a cage after Wagner attacked him after their loss at WarGames. O’Reilly jumps him in the aisle to start and Wagner is in trouble in the corner early on. A running boot in the corner rocks Wagner again and O’Reilly starts working on the arm. Some forearms to the back of the head keep Wagner down and some running knees put him down again. Back up and Wagner knocks him silly with a single shot to take over.
Wagner stomps away against the cage but O’Reilly grabs the leg for a kneebar. Since that doesn’t work, Wagner is back with a running headbutt go the ribs for two. We hit the waistlock to hold O’Reilly in place as the fans get behind him anyway. O’Reilly fights up with some kicks until a clothesline takes him down again. A powerbomb against the cage is broken up with a DDT though and we take a break.
Back with O’Reilly kicking away and hitting some running strikes to drive Wagner into the cage. The guillotine choke is broken up with straight power and they fight to the top with O’Reilly sending him into the cage for the knockdown. There’s the top rope knee for two on Wagner, who is back up with a low blow. The double underhook swinging slam finishes O’Reilly at 14:18.
Rating: C+. There’s a good chance that this is it for O’Reilly and I can’t say I blame him. It is pretty clear that he is not going to get to do much on his own, as he was put into this lame team as a way to get Wagner over. That isn’t exactly interesting, but if O’Reilly wants out, it’s hard to argue against him. The match itself was a good showcase for O’Reilly, even if Wagner shrugged a lot of his offense off and won anyway.
Post match Wagner ties him in the Tree of Woe, with O’Reilly’s face hanging out of the door. A few door slams onto the face should send O’Reilly off to greener pastures in AEW.
We see Johnny Gargano’s post-WarGames promo, where he promised to tell us his future this week.
Joe Gacy is working to change the name of a show that promotes exclusivity. For now though, he is ready for Harland to debut next week.
Here is Bron Breakker to talk about how 2.0 and Black & Gold went to war at WarGames. Black & Gold is tough as nails but he pinned NXT Champion Tommaso Ciampa. That makes them 1-1 against each other, so let’s do this one more time for the title. Cue the Diamond Mine, with Malcolm Bivens calling him LeBron Breakker.
Bivens talks about how the team was successful at WarGames and now the weight limit is gone from Roderick Strong’s title. That means he can face the top talent, including Breakker himself. Breakker is ready to fight right now but Strong is going to wait for next week. Breakker accepts because he’ll face anyone to get to Ciampa again. Putting Breakker in the ring with talented people like Strong makes perfect sense and is the smart thing to do with him.
Creed Brothers vs. Brooks Jensen/Josh Briggs
The Grizzled Young Veterans are on commentary and here is Imperium as soon as the bell rings. Jensen takes Julius down to start and chops away in the corner, setting up an elbow to the back for two. Briggs gets in his own elbow but it’s off to Brutus in a hurry, with a release side slam putting him down in a hurry.
A double right hand drops Brutus again but he sends Jensen into the corner to take over. Jensen is tossed outside for a cheap shot….and the Veterans steal a tag rope. Back in and Julius grabs a stretch muffler on Jensen, who kicks his way to freedom. There’s no tag rope though and Briggs can’t tag in, which matters for all of two seconds as Jensen grabs a rollup for the pin at 5:46.
Rating: C-. The tag rope thing was different, though I’m not sure how much of a good thing that is. This Veterans are thieves thing is getting annoying in a hurry, if nothing else because I could go for seeing them be their usual awesome selves instead of whatever this stuff is. Jensen and Briggs getting a push works too, but just let them do their thing instead of all these shenanigans.
Von Wagner doesn’t care about Kyle O’Reilly because his WarGames are just beginning. Wagner leaves as Robert Stone arrives.
Xyon Quinn is ready for Santos Escobar.
Here is Duke Hudson, now with a blond wig. Hudson talks about how everyone was wrong about his hair cut, because he took care of things and now has a full head of hair. Cue Cameron Grimes, so Hudson immediately puts on some head gear. Hudson accuses Grimes of cheating by pulling the trunks, with Grimes talking about how they do things a little different where he’s from. The challenge is issued for one more match with no holds barred. Hudson is in but bails from the threat of a Cave In.
Jacket Time comes in to see Brooks Jensen and Josh Briggs. The Grizzled Young Veterans pop up to say Briggs and Jensen only won because of them, but here are Kayden Carter and Kacy Catanzaro, offering concert tickets. Jensen and Briggs leave with them so the Veterans and Jacket Time brawl. Referees break it up and sleepy Mei Ying pops up with a pillow and fountain drink.
Grayson Waller hits on a woman outside, but she’s already going out with LA Knight tonight. Waller swears revenge.
Carmelo Hayes vs. Dexter Lumis
Non-title. Lumis takes Hayes, with his bad ribs, into the corner to start and fires off some knees. There’s a slam to stay on the ribs but Trick Williams offers a distraction, allowing Hayes to…get punched in the face (with the broken hand that was supposed to keep Lumis out for a month).
Back in and Hayes hits a springboard clothesline before working on the bad hand. That doesn’t work so well but Lumis goes after Williams, allowing Hayes to kick him in the face to take over. Back from a break with Hayes working on the hand again, with Lumis bothering to sell it this time. The chinlock goes on for a bit but Hayes spends too much time talking, allowing Lumis to reverse a suplex. The clothesline comeback sets up the Silencer but Williams breaks it up for the DQ at 12:43.
Rating: C-. The stuff with Lumis’ hand brought this way down, as there is only so much you can do when the injury is mostly ignored. Hayes tried to work on it some but Lumis just blankly staring and then doing his usual stuff didn’t help. Lumis is likely going to get a title shot now, but firs the needs to torture Williams a bit first, as that tends to be more of Lumis’ nature.
MSK has found the Shaman and it’s…..Riddle (in a reveal that makes all the sense in the world but still caught me by surprise). They sit down in front of some candles and talk about their history, including how fast they had success. Riddle talks about the Broserweights (and pays tribute to the still alive Stallion Pete). He’s willing to be there with them on their way back to success, but now it’s time to open the bag. More on that later.
Toxic Attraction talks about how they are ready to deal with things on their own, like real women. Now stop drooling.
Persia Pirotta is glad that Indi Hartwell can have her mind back on the team. Hartwell says she is committed to the team but here is Dexter Lumis, with Hartwell jumping into his arms. Johnny Gargano pops up and is glad to have the family back together.
Toxic Attraction vs. Yulisa Leon/Valentina Feroz
Non-title. Dolin beats on Leon to start and a cheap shot from the apron makes it worse. There’s a Cannonball in the corner and Jayne grabs a chinlock. That’s countered into a running Samoan drop to rock Jayne though and the hot tag brings in Feroz for two off a high crossbody, plus a lot of shouting. Back up and Jayne kicks Feroz in the face for the fast pin at 3:44.
Rating: C-. They kept this short and to the point, as Toxic Attraction gets a win to regain momentum after Sunday. They’re still not exactly smooth in the ring but they have enough heat on them to keep them moving through a match. Leon and Feroz are not too bad as a low level team and their dancing entrance suits them well.
Post match Toxic Attraction throws out the challenge to anyone, so here is Cora Jade, with her arm in a sling. She talks about pinning Mandy Rose a few weeks back and wants another shot, but Toxic Attraction has the numbers advantage. Cue Raquel Gonzalez to clear the ring with a chair.
Tiffany Stratton talks about her time on the United States gymnastics team. A gold medal is nice, but the Women’s Title is better.
Tony D’Angelo is proud of getting Pete Dunne’s mouthpiece at WarGames. Andre Chase comes in to say D’Angelo should have followed his game plan but D’Angelo doesn’t want to hear it. The challenge is made and Chase is cut off in mid-response.
Raquel Gonzalez and Cora Fade are ready for Toxic Attraction. Cue Kay Lee Ray to say she has their backs, along with a bat.
Santos Escobar vs. Xyon Quinn
Quinn chokes him down to start but stoops to look at Elektra Lopez. The distraction lets Escobar fight up, only to charge into some elbows to the throat. Quinn is dropped face first onto the top turnbuckle and some more shots keep Escobar in trouble. Something from the apron is broken up by a Legado del Fantasma distraction though and Escobar gets in a cheap shot. That doesn’t work either though as Quinn knocks him away as we take a break
Back with Quinn having to fight out of a neck crank and armbar with straight power. Quinn sends him into the corner for a running shoulder but Escobar reverses and hits the running DDT. The Phantom Driver is countered though and Quinn powers him into the corner. They fight on top and Escobar hits a super hurricane for the big knockdown. In the crash, Lopez slips Quinn some brass knuckles, but he throws them to Joaquin Wilde. The distraction lets Escobar hit the Phantom Driver for the pin at 10:37.
Rating: C+. Aside from the super hurricane taking a good bit too long to set up, this was a pretty nice back and forth match. I’m not sure I would have had Escobar beat Quin, but at least there was a bit of a distraction finish and the Lopez/Quin stuff can continue. Quin is still one of the brighter spots around here and I could see WWE taking a shot with him in a hurry.
Diamond Mine runs into Carmelo Hayes and Trick Williams in the back. Hayes wants Roderick Strong so Bivens issues the challenge. Hayes says Strong isn’t the A Champion and leaves, with Bivens not being happy.
Boa doesn’t like Edris Enofe so they’ll fight next week.
Here is a rather sad looking Johnny Gargano for a chat. Gargano talks about how “Heartbreak” told him he could have as long as he wants and London Has Fallen is on next anyway. Gargano: “I was always a La Femme Nikita guy myself.” He talks about how he has never had the best promos or skills but the fans have always been here for him. Back in 2015, he showed up at a tryout and was told he would never be in NXT.
William Regal saw something in him though and he got a dark match against Apollo Crews. The fans cheered him so hard that they kept bringing him back, and now here he is. The fans chant for Gargano, who talks about every single person in the back who has helped him, including listing off a bunch of coaches.
Change can be scary, but sometimes it needs to happen. Gargano isn’t sure what is next, but he’s starting a new job as a dad in February. His son is going to watch this back one day and thank you all….and here is Grayson Waller to jump him with a chair. The beatdown is on and Gargano is sent into various things, setting up a hard powerbomb through the announcers’ table. I’m guessing it’s paternity leave and then the big comeback match with Waller.
Overall Rating: C+. This was a show where the good stuff was enough to carry the show over the weaker parts. There are still a lot of things that need to be adjusted, but you can also see a bunch of things starting to come together around here. I’m curious to see how they all go, but this show is about as week to week as you can get these days. For this one though, not bad and that’s nice to see for a change.
Von Wagner b. Kyle O’Reilly – Double underhook spinning slam
Brooks Jensen/Josh Briggs b. Creed Brothers – Rollup to Julius
Dexter Lumis b. Carmelo Hayes via DQ when Trick Williams interfered
Toxic Attraction b. Yulisa Leon/Valentina Feroz – Kick to Feroz
Santos Escobar b. Xyon Quinn – Phantom Driver
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