We have a four-match card on tonight’s show.
War Raiders, The Viking Experience, The Viking Raiders have a non-title match against Street Profits. Candice LeRae and an unnamed partner take on Vanessa Borne and Aliyah. Humberto Carrillo faces Jaxson Ryker. And the main event is Johnny Gargano versus Roderick Strong.
Humberto Carrillo vs Jaxson Ryker – No Contest
Candice LeRae & Kacy Catanzaro def. Vanessa Borne & Aliyah
The Viking Raiders def. Street Profits
Johnny Gargano def. Roderick Strong
Jaxson Ryker vs Humberto Carrillo
Ryker tried to utilise his power advantage at the start. It worked for him. If you can keep Carrillo grounded you take away his strongest offence.
Carrillo rolled out of the ring after taking a powerbomb but Ryker rolled out with him and continued beating him on the outside, encouraged by Blake and Cutler.
After throwing him into the barricades and slamming him into the apron, Ryker flung Carrillo over the barricade and into the crowd. When Ryker threw him into a barricade out there as well, the referee rang the bell. Ryker didn’t stop the beating until Oney Lorcan and Danny Burch arrived. They kept Forgotten Sons away with chairs but there was a long stand-off, with Blake and Cutler holding Ryker back.
Adam Cole was asked, mid-photo shoot, for his thoughts on Roderick Strong’s match against Johnny Gargano. He said he thought Gargano was going to be man enough to want to face the leader of Undisputed ERA, but Clearly he’s afraid. And as for Roderick Strong, he’s going to do the same thing Cole would have done and beat Gargano to a pulp.
Cole turned to someone out of shot and asked what they were doing there and what they were smiling at. It was Matt Riddle, he was just waiting for his turn to get his picture taken. He told Cole he’d never seen someone so jealous as Cole was that Strong was facing Gargano. They got in each other’s faces and Riddle asked what Cole was going to do about it. Cole said he’s got bigger things to worry about and walked away. Riddle waited until Cole had left to say, ‘We’ll see about that’.
Vanessa Borne & Aliyah vs Candice LeRae & Kacy Catanzaro
Candice LeRae picked Kacy Catanzaro for her partner. Good choice. They’re a very tiny tag team with a lot of talent. I like it.
Catanzaro got caught in the opposition corner and Borne and Aliyah did a great job of keeping her there and keeping her from bouncing.
When LeRae finally got in it was with a missile dropkick on Borne and a basement slide on Aliyah. With Aliyah down and out it was a quick and simple lead up to the springboard moonsault that put Borne down for the pin.
After a flashback to the end of Kairi Sane’s final title shot, Io Shirai was interviewed. She said what Shayna did was terrible. Then she got attacked by Baszler, Duke, and Shafir. Duke and Shafir put her down and held her still while Baszler kicked her.
Kushida makes his NXT debut next week. William Regal talked about how happy he is about it and described it as one of the most exciting things that’s ever happened in NXT. Kassius Ohno appeared and they made small talk about how well Ohno is doing on NXT UK. Ohno congratulated Regal on Kushida and asked Regal who on the roster knows that style better than he does. Regal said no one because Ohno is a genius. Ohno agreed and asked for the match. Regal said he’d think about it. After Oho had left, William Regal made it official. Kushida’s debut will be against Kassius Ohno.
Street Profits vs The Viking Raiders
The Viking Experience were still Rowe and Hanson, War Raiders, due to NXT taping schedules. They’d only got three-quarters of the way down the ramp when Montez Ford flew over the top rope onto them. The chaos almost resulted in a speedy Street Profits victory, but Rowe kicked out.
With Hanson still outside the ring, Street Profits tried for a second double team finisher, but Rowe got free and tagged out. Hanson slowed things down and War Raiders took control for a while.
Can we just take a moment to appreciate Montez Ford? After putting Hanson on one knee with a standing dropkick, he picked Hanson up and held him for a few seconds before suplexing him, then delivered a standing moonsault. It was beautiful. It didn’t lead to a pin, but it looked great.
Ford also provided the laugh of the night, with an audible scream as Rowe dumped Hanson on him in the corner. Sadly, his next involvement in the match was being on the receiving end of Thor’s Hammer and getting pinned.
Mia Yim was interviewed about Shayna Baszler. She said Baszler is unstoppable and gave Sane, Shirai and Belair as examples. But she learned a lot in her match with Baszler and thinks she deserves another chance.
Johnny Gargano vs Roderick Strong
Roderick Strong came to the ring alone, not that that really means anything.
They wanted to outwrestle each other rather than outfight each other, to start with anyway. Strong slamming Gargano’s back into the apron may have changed that.
Strong took control of the match but got increasingly frustrated with his inability to keep Gargano down no matter how much punishment he inflicted. When Gargano started to come back at him, Strong tried to take him out at ringside and got sent into the steps by Gargano’s counter. A slingshot spear got Gargano a two count and Johnny Gargano was back in the match.
A kick from Gargano sent Strong out of the ring and some switching about later a cannonball off the apron put him on the floor. A superkick put Strong down for two.
Gargano spent a little too long chopping Strong in the corner for the crowd’s amusement and found himself having to kick out after a backbreaker.
They traded shots, trying to find the difference-maker, until Gargano locked in the Gargano Escape. Before Strong could tap, Adam Cole appeared and Gargano broke the hold. Strong’s attack, while Gargano was distracted, didn’t pay off, but Cole trash-talked from outside the ring as Bobby Fish and Kyle O’Reilly made their way to ringside.
Matt Riddle charged out, put Fish and O’Reilly down on the ramp, grabbed Adam Cole, who punched him. Roderick Strong put his hand on Cole’s head, Cole apparently thought it was Gargano because he kicked him in the face. The ref was stood right there but didn’t see it.
Gargano landed a suicide dive on Adam Cole and a slingshot DDT on Roderick Strong for the win.
After the match, Gargano thanked Riddle with a fist bump, meanwhile Strong and Cole were arguing in the ring.
Street Profits are fast becoming one of my favourite teams. I have very high hopes this is going to be their year, it should be. The inevitable breakdown of Undisputed ERA will be a gloriously entertaining thing. I’m looking forward to watching that unfold. It should be an interesting few weeks for NXT.