NXT Notes January 02, 2019

NXT Notes January 02, 2019

It’s a special two-hour show to start the year, or to round off last year. This week’s show is all about the NXT Year-End Award nominations. We’re also promised a review of the year, and a rematch between Kassius Ohno and Matt Riddle. I’m sure there will some other surprises as well, but this could be a short review.

This show was dedicated to the memory of ‘Mean’ Gene Okerlund who died today.


Matt Riddle def. Kassius Ohno


Commentary handed over to Cathy Kelley to host the recaps and award nominees, starting with extended highlights of the six-man ladder match for the North American Championship. After bringing us up to date with Ricochet taking the title from Adam Cole

Breakout Star of 2018 – Nominees

Breakout star of the year nominees
Photo credits: wwe.com
  • Ricochet
  • Dakota Kai
  • Lars Sullivan
  • Rhea Ripley
  • Lacey Evans
  • Bianca Belair
  • War Raiders
  • EC3

We took a trip through the feud between Johnny Gargano and Tommaso Ciampa, and the title change from Andrade ‘Cien’ Almas to Aleister Black then Black to Ciampa. They tied that back into the attack on Aleister Black and the subsequent reveal of Johnny Gargano as the perpetrator.

Commentary narrated the interactions between Matt Riddle and Kassius Ohno ahead of their match on the show and introduced the next award nominees list.

Tag Team of the Year – Nominees

Tag team of the year award nominees
  • Lorcan and Burch
  • Street Profits
  • Heavy Machinery
  • Moustache Mountain
  • War Raiders
  • Undisputed ERA

The next extended highlights segment was for Undisputed ERA vs Oney Lorcan and Danny Burch. There really have been some incredible matches on NXT TakeOvers this year.

Rivalry of the Year – Nominees

NXT Rivalry of the year award nominees
  • Johnny Gargano vs. Andrade “Cien” Almas
  • Moustache Mountain vs. Undisputed ERA
  • Ember Moon vs. Shayna Baszler
  • Johnny Gargano vs. Tommaso Ciampa
  • Ricochet vs. Velveteen Dream
  • Kairi Sane vs. Shayna Baszler
  • Aleister Black/Johnny Gargano/Tommaso Ciampa/Nikki Cross

Future Star of the Year – Nominees

Future superstar of the year award nominees
  • Matt Riddle
  • Mia Yim
  • Keith Lee
  • Forgotten Sons
  • Candice LeRae
  • Marina Shafir and Jessamyn Duke
  • Kona Reeves
  • Dominik Dijakovic
  • Io Shirai

Match of the Year – Nominees

NXT Match of the year award nominees
  • WarGames Match (TakeOver: WarGames)
  • Johnny Gargano vs. Andrade “Cien” Almas (NXT Championship Match, TakeOver: Philadelphia)
  • Moustache Mountain vs. Undisputed ERA (NXT Tag Team Championship Match, NXT TV, July 11, 2018)
  • Johnny Gargano vs. Tommaso Ciampa (Unsanctioned Match, TakeOver: New Orleans)
  • NXT North American Championship Ladder Match (TakeOver: New Orleans)
  • Kairi Sane vs. Shayna Baszler (NXT Women’s Championship Match, TakeOver: Brooklyn IV)
  • Ricochet vs. Velveteen Dream (TakeOver: Chicago)
  • Aleister Black vs. Tommaso Ciampa (NXT Championship Match, NXT TV, July 25)
  • Pete Dunne vs. Zack Gibson (WWE U.K. Championship Match, NXT TV, Aug. 22)
  • Aleister Black vs. Adam Cole (Extreme Rules Match, TakeOver: Philadelphia)
  • Dunne vs. Kyle O’Reilly (WWE U.K. Championship Match, NXT TV, June 13)
  • Danny Burch & Oney Lorcan vs. Undisputed ERA (TakeOver: Chicago)
  • Nikki Cross vs. Bianca Belair (NXT TV, Sept. 12)
  • Ricochet vs. Pete Dunne (NXT North American Champion vs. WWE U.K. Champion Match, NXT TV, Sept. 19)
  • Ricochet vs. Pete Dunne vs. Adam Cole (NXT North American Championship Triple Threat Match, NXT TV, Oct. 10)

They’re hyping up Bianca Belair versus Shayna Baszler now, as they should be with three weeks to go. As a nod to that, we got to see Belair versus Deonna Purrazzo from August.

Was it really such a Johnny Gargano heavy year? I guess it was because the next highlights package was for Gargano vs Aleister Black. We got highlights of their TakeOver match and their cage match with the impromptu DIY double team ending.

Male Competitor of the Year – Nominees

Male superstar of the year award nominees
  • Adam Cole
  • Pete Dunne
  • Andrade “Cien” Almas
  • Ricochet
  • Velveteen Dream
  • Johnny Gargano
  • Aleister Black
  • Tommaso Ciampa

Female Competitor of the Year – Nominees

Female Superstar of the year award nominees
  • Ember Moon
  • Nikki Cross
  • Kairi Sane
  • Bianca Belair
  • Shayna Baszler

Overall Competitor of the Year – Nominees

NXT Overall superstar of the year award nominees
  • Tommaso Ciampa
  • Nikki Cross
  • Johnny Gargano
  • Ricochet
  • Shayna Baszler
  • Aleister Black
  • Kairi Sane
  • Velveteen Dream
  • Andrade “Cien” Almas
  • Ember Moon
  • Adam Cole
  • Pete Dunne
  • Bianca Belair

NXT TakeOver of the Year – Nominees

TakeOver of the year award nominees
  • Philadelphia
  • New Orleans
  • Chicago II
  • Brooklyn IV
  • WarGames

Kassius Ohno vs Matt Riddle

The one and only match on a two-hour show, so it’s good it was an entertaining one. Unsurprisingly, they both looked to end the match as quickly as the last one, but they were both expecting it.

Riddle took the early momentum, but it didn’t last long. A huge suplex put Oho in control and a series of vicious knees left Matt Riddle slumped in the corner. Ohno was a bit overconfident, he took his time between offensive moves like there was no rush and Riddle was just going to stay down. Riddle did take a lot of punishment, but he reacted to a chop from Ohno with a few of his own and bridging German suplex for a two count.

Matt Riddle delivers a senton to Kassius Ohno

Ohno caught Riddle’s foot as he tried to kick him in the face, bent his toes back, then almost got the pin from a couple of kicks of his own. A head kick and two sentons might have got him the pin if he’d covered but he went for a third and ended up in the Bromission.

Ohno tried to fight it off but Riddle had it locked in tight and he had to tap. Kassius Ohno looked distraught as he started to leave. Matt Riddle reached out of the ring to offer him the fistbump but Ohno turned away.

After a few moments, Ohno came back to the ring and got down on one knee to offer the fistbump to Riddle. Riddle went for it, Ohno grabbed his arm, fired him into the ringpost, then absolutely destroyed him at ringside. After he’d flung Riddle into the steps Ohno grabbed his wrist and made him fistbump him. The crowd chanted ‘you tapped out’ as Ohno walked away.

Kassius Oho fistbumps a decimated Riddle

Final word

It’s only when you go through one of these ‘year in review’ shows that you realise how consistently good NXT has been.

Year-End Awards are a bit of fun, but they’re important too. At a time when the McMahon family is at least paying lip service to listening to fans, it’s a good plan to make sure your favourites get your votes. Details of how to vote can be found here. It’s a tweet to vote deal, full instructions are on the WWE website, and voting closes on January 25th.

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