No. 1 CONTENDERS BATTLE ROYAL
Rhea Ripley and Raquel González dominated much of the Battle Royal, showcasing their impressive strength as they both racked up eliminations left and right. But when they finally faced off, they ended up eliminating each other and had to be separated by officials afterward.
Elsewhere, Kacy Catanzaro used her impressive athleticism to narrowly avoid elimination in creative fashion on several occasions, helping her survive as one of the final four remaining competitors before being taken out by Dakota Kai. Shotzi Blackheart dumped Kai, pitting her against Candice LeRae as the final two competitors.
The Poison Pixie and Blackheart fought their way to the steel steps where LeRae launched Blackheart with her feet to claim victory and a date with NXT Women’s Champion Io Shirai at NXT TakeOver 31.
Winner: Candice LeRae
Match Review: 3.25/5. One of the better women battle royal I’ve seen in recent times. Candice LeRae was unexpected but I am glad this happened. Rhea Ripley and Raquel Gonzalez are the future for women’s wrestling. Strong showing by them both.
Damian Priest says his Takeover match is huge, he says as good as Johnny is, his reign isn’t coming to an end anytime soon. He says tonight, Austin Theory is a guy whose record isn’t relevant to his talent. However, it sucks to be him because he is going to continue his dominance.
TOMMASO CIAMPA vs JAKE ATLAS
The two men lock up straight away, but it doesn’t take long for Jake Atlas to start throwing hands against his rival. However, Tommaso Ciampa responds with a huge forearm smash and the two men then begin brawling on the outside, with Atlas getting the best of the situation.
He looks to do what Ciampa previously did to him under the ring, but he runs into the ring and then nails Atlas with a clothesline. He launches Atlas into the turnbuckle but he bounces back and hits a forearm as he continues to fight back against the former NXT Champion.
Atlas nails an up-kick to Ciampa in the corner and he follows it with a kick to the face and then a moonsault to the outside to takeout Ciampa again. Inside the ring, Atlas goes to the top rope and nails the blockbuster but Ciampa kicks out.
Ciampa quickly turns things around though by nailing the Willows Bell, and he goes for the pin but then pulls away. He talks trash to Atlas and then nails the Fairytale Ending and this time he goes for the pin to win.
Winner: Tommaso Ciampa
Match Review: 3.5/5. Ciampa is back at his best. Atlas blockbuster looked brutal. Ciampa winning was the right call.
RODERICK STRONG and DANNY BURCH vs FABIAN AICHNER and RAUL MENDOZA
Fandango’s bizarre brainchild for determining the No. 1 Contenders to the NXT Tag Team Championship came to life in this bout, as members of different tag teams joined forces with the winners’ teams to meet in a future bout for a title opportunity. The Undisputed ERA will clash with The Brit-Am Connection after Danny Burch pinned Raul Mendoza following an elevated neckbreaker.
Winners: Danny Burch & Roderick Strong
Match Review: 3.25/5. Good match. Unusual Tag team is brewing in NXT. I am happy they’re building new teams. Roderick Strong is money.
DAMIAN PRIEST vs AUSTIN THEORY
The up-and-coming Austin Theory showed his promise against the North American Champion, holding his own as they went toe-to-toe. But Damian Priest claimed victory after hitting a Razor’s Edge on the apron, followed by the Reckoning.
Afterward, though, Johnny Gargano ambushed Priest, taking him down and mocking The Archer of Infamy’s signature pose ahead of their TakeOver clash next month.
Winner: Damian Priest
Match Review: 2.5/5. Quick Match. Johnny Gargano Vs Damian Priest will be interesting. Finally we know the matches for next take over.
RIDGE HOLLAND vs DA LUCA
Ridge Holland dominates in a pretty simple squash match. He utilises his power and strength throughout the match, nailing some massive headbutts before hitting Northern Grit for the win.
Winner: Ridge Holland
Match Review: 0.5/5. Basic Squash.Northern Grit is an impressive finisher.
GAUNTLET ELIMINATOR MATCH
Kyle O’Reilly passed the biggest test of his career as a singles competitor, and now he has an even greater challenge ahead of him: facing The Prince.
O’Reilly went the distance, starting off the bout opposite Kushida before they were joined by Bronson Reed, who imposed his will on the smaller competition. The Velveteen Dream played a key role, interfering to spike Kushida with a Dream Valley Driver, teeing him up to be eliminated after Reed’s Tsunami Splash from the top rope.
But The Aus-zilla was later eliminated by O’Reilly, who also took out Timothy Thatcher with a crafty pin, leaving only he and Cameron Grimes. O’Reilly just beat a three-count after eating the Cave-In, barely getting his boot on the bottom rope. He later dodged a second Cave-In attempt and forced The Technical Savage to tap to a leg lock.
Winner: Kyle O’Reilly
Match Review: 4.25/5. The best gauntlet match in NXT. This exceeded my expectation. That was a great main event with non-stop action. Kyle was the GOAT of the match.
WWE NXT 23rd September 2020 Rating: 8.25/10
Three stars of the show
- Kyle O’Reilly
- Tommaso Ciampa