Date: May 3, 2022
Location: Capitol Wrestling Center, Orlando, Florida
Commentators: Wade Barrett, Vic Joseph
It’s Spring Breakin, which is somehow a name that has never been used before. It’s one of those big time shows that has a pair of title matches included, capped off by Joe Gacy challenging Bron Breakker for the NXT Title. The show is looking stacked enough to be good so let’s get to it.
Pretty Deadly is by the pool to welcome us to the show, while admiring their Tag Team Titles. After running down the card, they jump into the pool and we’re ready to go.
North American Title: Cameron Grimes vs. Solo Sikoa vs. Carmelo Hayes
Grimes is defending and Trick Williams is here with Hayes. Sikoa and Grimes take turns chopping Hayes and a heck of a backdrop sends Hayes bailing to the floor. Back in and Hayes is hiptossed into Sikoa but pulls him in for a hurricanrana. Hayes hits a springboard clothesline on Sikoa but Grimes takes him down, setting up a high crossbody to Sikoa for two of his own. Back up and Hayes takes both of them down as we go to a break.
We come back with Sikoa headbutting Hayes down but the backsplash hits raised knees. Hayes goes up but Sikoa catches him, only to have Grimes charge at both of them. The Tower of Doom gives us a HOLY CENSORED (at least some of the time) chant before switching to the more family friendly THIS IS AWESOME. It’s time for the three way forearm off with Sikoa getting the better of things, setting up a double running Umaga Attack in the same corner. Grimes gets powerbombed onto Hayes but the Superfly Splash is broken up.
Grimes hurricanranas both of them at the same time and hits a poisonrana for two on Hayes. The Cave In is countered into something like a Codebreaker to give Hayes two of his own but Sikoa superkicks Hayes out of the air. Sikoa hits the Superfly Splash on Grimes for a VERY close near fall, which looked like three as Hayes might have been a split second late with the save. With that not working, Sikoa loads up the Samoan drop on Hayes but Grimes comes in off the middle rope with the Cave In for the retaining pin on Sikoa at 14:09.
Rating: B. That near fall was crazy close and they might have let it be close enough for it to be a pin. They were rolling near the end of this though and I was way into the thing, which isn’t something you get to say very often in NXT. It was also something of a coming out party for Sikoa and he has a future around here. Great match and they started very hot this week.
Mandy Rose went tanning earlier today but Wendy Choo runs in (wearing full costume of course) to sabotage things. The rest of Toxic Attraction shows up and finds her completely burned, but they’re going to go to the beach without her. Rose screams at the sight of herself in the mirror.
Nathan Frazer can’t believe he’s here and it’s like every birthday and Christmas rolled into one.
Roderick Strong gives the Creed Brothers a pep talk at Diamond Mine practice. He also makes it clear that he’s in charge of the team, which doesn’t sit well with the Creeds.
Indi Hartwell is sad that….well she doesn’t say, but she is touching her empty ring finger. Here is Duke Hudson to tease kissing her, but they both snap backwards, with Hartwell saying “oh h*** no” and Hudson saying “you wish”. Ok then, though it’s not like they have anything else for these two to do.
Nathan Frazer vs. Grayson Waller
Feeling out process to start with Frazer grabbing a headlock but Waller fights up. A dropkick sends him to the floor though, only to run up the aisle before Frazer can dive. They slug it out in the aisle before heading back to the ring for more slugging. Waller breaks up Frazer’s dive and hits a slide underneath the ropes for a right hand on the floor. A beach ball is added, which Waller tears apart to become my (and Cesaro’s) new favorite as we take a break.
Back with Frazer making the comeback and knocking Waller off the apron. The suicide dive drops Waller again and a superkick cuts off the rolling Stunner. A superkick gives Frazer two but Waller punches him down into the corner. Frazer goes up but gets knocked down so Waller heads up as well. Cue Andre Chase (who has been seen in the crowd throughout the match) with an air horn for a distraction to knock Waller off the top. Frazer’s Phoenix splash finishes Waller off at 12:38.
Rating: C+. Waller looked better here, as he feels like someone who knows how to be a villain. On the other hand, you have Frazer, who did look good, but felt like someone who is a more polished version of someone we’ve seen a dozen times. Frazer feels like a very modern wrestler while Waller felt like someone with some upward potential. Neither looked bad, but Waller was better.
Fallon Henley is in the Breakout Tournament and loves horses, including her own, Luna. These vignettes are good as they tell you a little something about the women to give you an introduction. The fact that Henley has been around for months makes it a little late, but I’ll take what I can get.
We get the sitdown meeting between Legado del Fantasma and Tony D’Angelo and company. Santos Escobar respects him but not as a businessman. They both want the same things, but argue over who controls the NXT pie. Eventually they agree to peace though and share a toast. The mafia leaves and Escobar says start the car, which seems to have some hidden meaning. This is one of those things fans are probably going to love or hate without much in between ground.
The Viking Raiders are ready to hurt the Creed Brothers…but Pretty deadly interrupts to say they want to see the Raiders smash the Creeds. Just remember though: the Creeds are damaged goods. The Raiders warn them over the interruption and threaten to change their focus, which gets Pretty Deadly to back off.
Joe Gacy warns us of what happens if he doesn’t win the NXT Title tonight. He is change.
Nikkita Lyons/Cora Jade vs. Natalya/Lash Legend
Legend throws Jade into the corner to start but misses a charge so Jade can slug away. Natalya comes in and trades some rollups with Jade for two each. Lyons comes in and gets headlocked to the mat but Natalya is right back up. The wristlock doesn’t work well for Lyons and it’s off to Legend to take over. Legend hits a Cactus Clothesline on Lyons and the partners are outside to check on both of them as we take a break.
Back with Natalya dropping Jade for two more and a snap suplex gets the same. The chinlock doesn’t last long so Legend comes in for some shouts to the ribs in the corner. Jade fights up (as Natalya very clearly told her to on camera) and gets over for the tag to Lyons. House is cleaned, including the running Blockbuster for two on Natalya. Legend comes back in to take Lyons down for some knees to the ribs but Natalya kicks her down by mistake. Lyons gets over to Jade, who comes in with a top rope backsplash for the pin at 13:24.
Rating: C. That’s on a bit of a sliding scale as Legend is not ready for anything complicated yet, but this was a mostly watchable match with Natalya being the glue to hold it together. Other than that, you have Jade bouncing around and Lyons adding some charisma. It’s not great or even very good, but this felt like it could have been a disaster and was completely watchable.
Tatum Paxley likes powerlifting, and presumably winning the Breakout Tournament.
Toxic Attraction goes to the beach, where Wendy Choo and Roxanne Perez steal their shoes and car. To recap, Choo has injured Mandy Rose and then stole a car. I’m supposed to cheer for her because….reasons?
Creed Brothers vs. Viking Raiders
The Raiders start fast and take both Creeds down, setting up the Viking Experience for two on Julius. Brutus fights back up and hits a release gutwrench suplex on Erik. That doesn’t last long as Ivar takes both of them down and we go to a break. Back with Brutus suplexing his way out of a headlock and bringing in Julius to slam Erik. An exchange of suplexes gives Ivar two and he drops Erik onto Brutus to make it worse.
Ivar’s middle rope splash gives Erik two because the Creeds like to kick out of a lot of stuff. Ivar goes up again but Julius runs the corner for a top rope superplex. Erik is back up for the belly to back suplex/top rope legdrop combination. Brutus and Ivar fall to the floor, leaving Roderick Strong to run in for a cheap shot on Erik (Julius didn’t see him). The basement lariat finishes for Julius at 12:52.
Rating: C. I’m getting a bit over the Creeds being able to kick out of everything, but the ending seems like a way for them to break away from Strong and end the Diamond Mine for good. The Creeds are all but guaranteed to win the titles soon and them crushing Pretty Deadly should be good. As usual, the main roster contingent did their jobs well here, with a win over the Raiders feeling like an accomplishment for the Creeds.
Post match the Creeds see the replay and aren’t happy with Strong.
Santos Escobar and AJ Galante meet in the parking lot. Then Escobar jumps him and the rest of Legado kidnaps him, because that’s what you do in the NXT parking lot.
Alba Fyre likes fire.
Earlier this week, Brooks Jensen is told that normally his injury recovery time is about 10-12 weeks, but since the muscles in his hand are so strong (ahem), it will be 6-8 weeks.
Bron Breakker throws a comically large on/off switch to start his music.
NXT Title: Joe Gacy vs. Bron Breakker
Breakker, in apparently the same singlet that Rick Steiner wore to the first Raw (ignore that it is a different color and design), is defending. Gacy gets powered to the floor to start but comes back in with a cheap shot. The chinlock goes on for a bit before another shot knocks Breakker to the floor.
We take a break and come back with Breakker getting pulled off the middle rope, allowing Gacy to flip himself upside down in the corner (as Bray Wyatt rolls his eyes somewhere). An armbar doesn’t last long as Breakker is back up and drops him onto the top. Some shoulders set up a running clothesline but the overhead belly to belly is blocked. Gacy hits a reverse DDT for two but Breakker is right back with a Steiner Bulldog for two.
Breakker misses a charge into the corner but stops himself (in a nice call back to the Dolph Ziggler feud), setting up a Frankensteiner. A not great looking belly to belly gives Breakker two but he misses a charge, allowing Gacy to hit an Alabama Slam. Gacy’s sitout powerbomb gets two more but the handspring lariat misses. Breakker spears him down to retain the title at 11:02.
Rating: D+. Yeah this missed and it missed pretty hard. Gacy never felt like a threat and they were on different pages at times. I’m still not sure why Gacy is seen as some kind of a major player in NXT as he is turning into more and more of a Bray Wyatt knockoff every day. This whole feud has felt like a major waste of time for Breakker and now he needs to move on to almost anyone else.
Post match Breakker poses but two masked men pop up on the apron behind him….and that’s the show, with Breakker not seeing them.
Overall Rating: C. This show started off well and then hit a hard wall, mainly around the time they started focusing on the goofy stuff. That’s what drives me crazy about NXT: they have the talent and the ability to put on a good show, but then you get around to the stuff they seem to enjoy doing and it all falls apart. You have Perez and Choo as criminals, plus a turf war between the mob and Legado. That stuff is so goofy that it could be fun, but they can’t even get that stuff to work right. The first hour was good enough to carry the show, but it was just barely enough to make up for the bad.
Cameron Grimes b. Solo Sikoa and Carmelo Hayes – Middle rope Cave In to Sikoa
Nathan Frazer b. Grayson Waller – Phoenix splash
Cora Jade/Nikkita Lyons b. Natalya/Lash Legend – Top rope backsplash to Legend
Creed Brothers b. Viking Raiders – Sliding lariat to Erik
Bron Breakker b. Joe Gacy – Spear
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