Date: August 9, 2022
Location: Capitol Wrestling Center, Orlando, Florida
Commentators: Vic Joseph, Wade Barrett
We’re a week away from Heatwave and that means we need to get in the final push towards the show. In this case that means a few grudge matches, plus One Final Accord between Santos Escobar and Tony D’Angelo. Other than that, we have a bit of a twist with a rounds match between Wes Lee and Trick Williams. Let’s get to it.
We open with a recap of Kayden Carter/Katana Chance winning the Women’s Tag Team Titles last week.
We get some rapid fire interviews from people wrestling tonight, including Trick Williams, Wes Lee, Cora Jade, Zoey Stark and Tony D’Angelo.
Nikkita Lyons vs. Kiana James
Before the bell, we get a quick promo from Lyons and Zoey Stark, who are ready to win the WWE Women’s Tag Team Titles. James fights out of an early suplex attempt and cranks on the arm. That’s switched to the knee, which is crushed in the corner before James takes her to the floor for a whip into the steps. Lyons fights back up with a German suplex and most of a nip up but James gets to the ropes. Back up and Lyons kicks her in the face, setting up the splits splash for the pin at 4:02.
Rating: C-. Nothing much to see here as Lyons gets a win to keep her on TV in a quick feud. James has a unique enough character but she still needs a win or two to make her seem important. That might be a little bit in the future, but at least she is getting in the ring on TV a bit more.
James jumps Lyons post match, because this feud is continuing for whatever reason.
Roderick Strong doesn’t like Apollo Crews watching film with the rest of Diamond Mine. A match seems to be made for tonight.
Lash Legend cuts off Malik Blade and talks about how amazing she was last week. This goes on so long that we just cut back to the arena.
Wes Lee vs. Trick Williams
Carmelo Hayes is here with Williams. This is a Rounds Match, meaning there are three six minute rounds with the first to two falls winning. You win by pinfall, submission or countout but a knockout or DQ instantly ends the match (it’s Heritage Cup rules if you watch NXT UK). They’re also both in boxing gloves, even though this isn’t a boxing match.
Round one begins with a lot of circling and then flailing but Williams hits a good shot. Lee slugs away in the corner and the round ends with Williams going down. They take the gloves off to start the second round and Lee grabs some armdrags. A slingshot dive to the floor connects for Lee but Hayes offers a distraction, allowing Williams to drop Lee for the first fall at 57 seconds of the round and 4:12 overall.
Round three begins during the break and we come back with the start of round four, with Williams still up 1-0 and wearing a boxing glove on his left hand. Lee grabs a rollup for the second fall to tie it up at 1:14 of the round and 9:32 overall, even with Williams’ feet on the ropes during the pin.
Williams blasts him with a left hand in between rounds and gets two at the start of the fifth round. Another shot to the face gives Williams two, followed by a suplex for the same. Lee fights back with some knees and a bulldog but stops to grab a boxing glove and knock Williams silly for the pin at 2:54 of the round and 12:44 overall.
Rating: C-. I usually like the rounds/Heritage Cup stuff but this was too wacky with the boxing being added. Just wrestle the gimmick match as is without adding in something else, as that’s too much for a match that fans aren’t likely to be used to in the first place. Lee winning was a bit of a surprise, though he could use the boost.
We go to Chase U where Andre Chase is talking to a woman we can’t see. Thea Hail comes and finds out that she has hurt Arianna Grace’s face. She and Bodie Hayward were doing something on the university’s campus and a ball hit Grace in the eye. Grace wants revenge so Chase makes a match for later. Actually she was thinking more along the lines of a lawsuit, which sends Chase into a rant about how this university solves things in the ring. Hail is excited for her first match and falls over something on the way out.
Carmelo Hayes is still in the ring to complain about Nathan Frazer interrupting the open challenge last week. Giovanni Vinci interrupts and says he’ll take that title shot right now. They’ll do it at Heatwave instead but the fight starts now, with neither being able to hit anything until referees break it up.
Video on Bron Breakker vs. JD McDonagh, with McDonagh playing more mind games and promising to wreck Breakker’s arm. Breakker is ready to hurt him but McDonagh says to never bet against an ace.
Lash Legend is still telling Blade about her match last week, with Edris Enofe now there too.
Thea Hail vs. Arianna Grace
The rest of Chase U is here with Hail. Grace takes her down and starts unloading with forearms but only hits Hail’s raised hands. Hail fights out of a chinlock and hits some elbows to the face, setting up a standing moonsault for two. Grace backs off while favoring her eye, only to sucker punch Hail. Wasteland (Barrett approves) finishes Hail at 3:50.
Rating: C-. Maybe it’s me not being a fan of the gimmick but I’m not getting into Grace whatsoever. The beauty queen thing isn’t clicking and feels like something that has been done better before. Hail losing is a bit depressing as well as she has done so well with the Chase U stuff. Not exactly a great match either, but Hail’s energy helped it a lot.
Apollo Crews is on his way to the ring and we seem to look into his mind’s eye, where a green video shows Diamond Mine down in a ring.
We look at Solo Sikoa beating Von Wagner in last week’s falls count anywhere match.
Sikoa has a PCL injury and he’s out 4-6 weeks. Cameron Grimes comes up to say congratulations. Sikoa says he’s coming for the North American Title next week but Grimes doesn’t seem to like being compared to him.
Apollo Crews vs. Roderick Strong
No Diamond Mine with Strong. They go with the grappling to start with Crews wrestling him down before crews drives him into the corner. Back up and Strong grabs his first backbreaker before dropping him onto his back again. Crews knocks him back and goes up, only to give into a dropkick to cut him down in a hurry.
Back with Strong working on a reverse chinlock before kneeing away at the ribs. A missed charge in the corner lets Crews make the clothesline comeback. The middle rope Blockbuster and a wheelbarrow suplex give Crews two but Strong suplexes him onto the apron. Another backbreaker is shrugged off and Crews muscles him into a fireman’s carry gutbuster. The spinebuster finishes for Crews at 15:23.
Rating: B-. Commentary was calling this a match of the year candidate for NXT and while that might be a bit much, it was certainly good. Crews is someone who can go move for move with just about anyone and Strong isn’t going to have a bad match most of the time. The problem is that everything else Strong does is about as uninteresting as you can get around here and it was hard to bring myself to get into anything he was doing.
Lash Legend is still talking until Malik Blade finally cuts her off to say she lost. Legend is offended by the interruption but Pretty Deadly comes in to defend her honor. A match is made.
Sanga is trying to give Yulisa Leon and Valentina Feroz advice but Katana Chance and Kayden Carter come in to offer them a title match. Feroz and Leon aren’t sure about this but Sanga offers to help them find inner peace.
The Diamond Mine are doing another film story on Apollo Crews’ suggestion. They see something that they don’t like but Roderick Strong comes in to yell at them for not being out there. Julius Creed yells about someone getting involved in the big tag match last week and is going to deal with it next week. Strong doesn’t want to hear about that and breaks Damon Kemp’s laptop.
We have one final accord between Santos Escobar and Tony D’Angelo. The meet outside the building and….sit down at a table to talk. They have the same argument they have had over and over about which family is better and how neither of them have accomplished anything. Escobar offers one final match between the two of them: if D’Angelo wins, Escobar is gone, but D’Angelo gets to keep the rest of Legado del Fantasma. If Escobar wins though, Legado is free. The match is on, and it’s a street fight. This was a long segment that could have been set up in a much faster segment.
Tiffany Stratton goes into her locker room where Wendy Choo (dang it) is waiting. Choo has night vision goggles on and turns the lights out, allowing her to beat up Stratton. Choo says this isn’t over, making me wonder WHY THE HECK IS THIS NOT OVER. There is NO reason for this to keep going, and stop acting like Choo is the heroine in any of this with her one “prank” and sneak attack after another.
Malik Blade/Edris Enofe vs. Pretty Deadly
Prince gets caught in the wrong corner for some early double teaming to start but a toss into an elbow cuts Blade down. Pretty Deadly goes to pose on the floor but here are Josh Briggs, Brooks Jensen and Fallon Henley to chase them back inside. The hot tag brings in Enofe to clean house as everything breaks down. A quick Spilled Milk finishes for Prince at 4:32.
Rating: C. Pretty Deadly winning is fine enough, though it would be nice to have Blade and Enofe win a match every now and then. The good thing is that they are continuously on TV and not getting squashed, so they are being at least somewhat protected. I could go for another of these on a bigger stage, or at least without the interference in the middle.
Cameron Grimes doesn’t like being mocked for being knocked down during last week’s main event. The Schism comes up to offer their condolences and Grimes might be a bit more interested.
Nikkita Lyons gives Zoey Stark a pep talk before her match.
Video on Toxic Attraction, with Jacy Jayne liking rock music and Gigi Dolin playing by her own rules.
Apollo Crews is happy with his win but Grayson Waller comes in to ask why Crews is here. A match seems likely.
Zoey Stark vs. Cora Jade
Mandy Rose is on commentary. Stark armdrags her down to start and fires off some knees to the ribs. Jade gets in a few shots of her own, including a knee to the face for a needed breather. We take a break and come back with Jade cranking on the neck but missing a shot with her stick. Stark grabs a German suplex to get out of trouble before they slug it out.
Jade tries to jump over her in the corner but gets superkicked down for two, with Rose wanting Jade to make a comeback. A hammerlock DDT gives Jade two and something like Sliced Bread connects for the same. Jade goes for the stick but Roxanne Perez pops up to take it away. Stark hits another superkick and flips Jade into a knee to the face for the pin at 11:04.
Rating: C+. I liked that finisher from Stark and Jade is already finding her rhythm as a heel. The good thing is that they are continuing to figure out what they are doing with this women’s division and it feels like there are multiple directions they could go on any given week. That’s more than most women’s divisions can say so well done.
Post match Perez chases Jade off and Rose gets laid out by Stark’s flipping knee (with Rose going DOWN on contact) to end the show.
Overall Rating: C. This one wasn’t working for me so well as a lot of the first half was pretty lame. Things got better later on in the show but I’m only kind of interested in what they have on tap for Heatwave. NXT tends to do well with the big shows though so there is a good chance they make it work. Not a great show this week, but next week is the one that matters.
Nikkita Lyons b. Kiana James – Splits splash
Wes Lee b. Trick Williams 2-1
Arianna Grace b. Thea Hail – Wasteland
Apollo Crews b. Roderick Strong – Spinebuster
Pretty Deadly b. Malik Blade/Edris Enofe – Spilled Milk to Enofe
Zoey Stark b. Cora Jade – Flipping knee to the face
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