It’s been a wild week hasn’t it? We had a RAW where nothing happened. We had a SmackDown that was the best episode of SmackDown in recent years all due to flight delays and we had an NXT that saw some big things go down. Oh, and Crown Jewel happened but I’ve talked about that elsewhere. If you want to see me gush over the Fiend you can see it elsewhere. For now, let’s get into this mess of before and after Crown Jewel shows. I should probably address the new time slot. It turns out weekend writing sucks and now with these going up the same day as RAW, it’ll work as a “last time on Dragonball Z” style thing only with wrestling… and three shows… you know what, let’s not dwell on this and just get into it.
– Asuka and Kairi Sane were in the ring with Paige. Their former manager was talking about how proud she was of the pair but they didn’t care. They took the mic from her and Asuka sprayed mist in her face. The Kabuki Warriors don’t need Paige and Kairi Sane has a terrifying anime villain voice. Becky Lynch who has a match with Kairi scheduled and comes out to fight. She starts off dominating and manages to survive the numbers. Once the match begins, Becky avoids the heelish interference from Asuka and wins by Disarm-Her. Lynch has bested Sane but still has to avenge Asuka’s actions.
– Randy Orton interrupts a match between Ricochet and Drew McIntyre because of Team Flair vs Team Hogan. He hits a couple of RKO’s and Team Flair get to look all big and bad.
– Charlotte Flair and Natalya have a nothing match against the IIconics. This must be the first time WWE have remembered that the IIconics exist in forever. They tap to the Sharpshooter.
– R Truth and Buddy Murphy have a match for no reason. Murphy wins with the Kamigoye because R Truth is too distracted by 24/7 Shenanigans.
– Sin Cara and Andrade have another cool match. This week both men have women with them as Cara has his own version of Zelina Vega in Carolina. Carolina comes to Cara’s aid when Vega tries to interfere. She takes out Vega but Cara is distracted and Andrade wins with a roll up.
– Seth Rollins takes on Rowan in a falls count anywhere match that literally goes everywhere. It is fought all over the arena with Seth paying homage to the empty arena match between Mankind and the Rock by getting the pin with a forklift.
– AJ Styles and Humberto Carrillo have their first match. Carrillo rocks Styles but taps to the Calf Crusher. He is beaten down by the OC after AJ pretends to offer respect. Then the Street Profits make the save trying to find “the smoke.”
– We get more of that god-awful Bobby Lashley/Lana/Rusev angle I refuse to talk about.
– Brock Lesnar quits SmackDown. The Beast was pissed off and decided the best thing to do was to leave SmackDown. He doesn’t want to be contractually obligated to FOX and wants to kill Rey Mysterio who is on RAW. The Beast is coming for him.
– As the NXT Invasion starts, Sami Zayn spouts his mouth about it being bad news if an NXT star steps to him. He is approached by Matt Riddle and Keith Lee who end up using him as a crash test dummy. We see the Bro-Derick and a Moonsault from Lee.
– Bayley defeats Nikki Cross with Sasha interference but is not allowed to celebrate as the Queen of Spades, Shayna Baszler comes out and takes her out. Shayna is merciless against both Sasha and Bayley killing both of them without breaking a sweat.
– Tomasso Ciampa crashes Miz TV. As Miz is starting his segment, the heart rate monitor sounds and the Blackheart made his appearance known. Ciampa came to give Miz a reality a check and called him everything wrong with RAW and SmackDown. Miz criticises Ciampa’s lack of originality and challenges him to a match. Miz gives Ciampa a tough time in ring but loses to the Fairy Tale Ending.
– Rhea Ripley and Tegan Nox make light work of Fire and Desire. The pair throw Sonya and Mandy around before they finish Mandy off with the Shiniest Wizard and Ripley’s Inverted Cloverleaf.
– The main event is an NXT Title match between Adam Cole and Daniel Bryan. It is every bit as good as you hope it would be and more. The pair go for a long time and fight in front of HHH and Shawn Michaels. It’s an in-ring masterpiece. I will say no more, it needs to be seen.
– The show ends with HHH declaring war on behalf of NXT. They’ve been added to Survivor Series and now they’re ready to show what they’re made of. HHH has an army and they fired the first shot.
– Poppy opened the show with a duo of songs. After playing “I Disagree,” she leads into “Scary Mask” and sings Io Shirai to the ring. Io has a rematch with Candice LeRae as a way to try and finish the blood feud. They have a furious match with a lot of hard-hitting strikes before Candice KO’s herself on a chair. Io attacks post-match but Rhea Ripley, who has her own issues with Io makes the save, scaring off the Joshi Judas.
– Finn Balor is in Full Sail tonight to explain why oh why he attacked Gargano. This was preceded by a clip show of media interest where he claims NXT is like Broadway, there is nowhere to hide. Finn talks about taking his mask off, he’s once again the hottest thing in NXT. He claims too many of the wrestlers are now fans and not wrestlers. They watch the business instead of participating. He takes another shot at Gargano threatening to send him back to the hospital as Johnny who watches wrestling.
– Shane Thorne is up next taking on another NXT breakout, Bronson Reed. Thorne tries to take Reed out instantly but Ozzilla isn’t going to be beaten so easily. The pair get into a long chop battle with neither man relenting until Reed stops it with a Forearm. It keeps going in a stiff and ugly manner until Reed wins with a massive Splash. Reed has a big win now and should be able to establish himself more on NXT’s league table.
– It’s Team Kick taking on The Kabuki Warriors in the first ever NXT based Women’s Tag Titles bout. They earned their shot by beating the Horsewomen of MMA last week and seemed nervous but ready to take on the villainous champs. I really wish the Kabuki Warriors had a proper entrance theme, the mash-up doesn’t work. Both teams were being cheered so the crowd were clearly into it. The Kabuki Warriors do not take Team Kick seriously at first, throwing in excessive amounts of taunting with their offense. However once Team Kick tap into their aggressive side, the match becomes more even. As you would expect, The Kabuki Warriors started going after the previously injured limbs of Team Kick. Kai’s knees were locked in more holds than you could count as the Warriors were merciless in their targeting. After what felt like forever, Kai finally got the hot tag to Tegan Nox. Her momentum doesn’t last though as Asuka reverses the Shiniest Wizard into a Knee Bar. Everything gets chaotic and the match ends with Kai getting the Green Mist and an Insane Elbow to the back.
– After Team Kick’s loss, Shayna and the Horsewomen come out to gloat and more. Nox attacks Baszler but succumbs to the numbers. Just before things can get ugly, Rhea Ripley makes her second save of the night. Except Io Shirai is back for vengeance then Bianca Belair and the rest of the women’s division come out to swarm the ring. Rhea and Shayna are the only ones left standing for a time. It’s not long before they’re all fighting again. Willian Regal has seen enough though, he gets the women pulled apart and makes a special announcement. There will be a female War Games match at TakeOver.
– Tyler Bate returns to an NXT ring to take on Cameron Grimes following their altercation last week. They have an excellent bout mixing technical styles, hard strikes and some amazing flippy sh*t to put together one fun little show. Bate loses to the Cave In following a distraction from Killian Dain. He attacks Bate as a way of sending a message to Pete Dunne.
– Keith Lee and Matt Riddle team up to take out some aggression on the Undisputed Era whilst also potentially scoring the NXT Tag Team Titles. Undisputed Era start quick and try to single out Lee but the newly formed team survive and drive the Era into the ground. It goes back and forth for a while with both teams excelling at points before Riddle is targeted. Lee is then brought in as the nuclear hot tag, destroying both Era members. As to be expected the rest of the Era interferes costing the unlikely team the match. They beat down the pair after the match just to be dicks. Ciampa comes out with his crutch and starts breaking it over people. This has to be the big men’s War Games tease as Keith Lee, Matt Riddle and Ciampa all have a common enemy in the UE. Well that and Ciampa’s parting words, “Goldie you’ll have to wait. Daddy is going to war.”