Welcome back to Sports Obsessive! This is our NXT Review: May 20th edition.
This weeks NXT opened with a tribute to former WWE Superstar Shad Gaspard, who tragically passed away a number of days ago. My condolences go out the Gaspard family during this time.
This weeks show started off with Karrion Kross and Scarlett, making their incredible entrance to the NXT ring once again. I’m never going to get sick of seeing these two. It is incredible that they are now a part of NXT.
Karrion Kross with Scarlett vs Liam Grey
The ring was full of fog that lingered from Kross’ entrance. Kross made quick work of his opponent, Liam Grey, throwing him around with ease before ending the match with his finisher move, the Kross-Jacket.
Winner: Karrion Kross
After the match, Tomasso Ciampa walked out to the stage, to officially introduce himself to Kross and Scarlett to make them aware that NXT is his home. Ciampa went on to say that he respects and is impressed by Kross and Scarlett. However, Ciampa wasted no time in challenging Kross to a match at NXT TakeOver: In Your House on June 7th.
Mia Yim vs Santana Garrett
Mia Yim faced off against Santana Garrett on this weeks episode of NXT. Mia Yim brought the fight Garrett straight away, with both competitors proving that they were of equal talent very early into the match. Garrett and Yim exhibited their athletic abilities throughout this short match, before Mia Yim would pick up a prompt victory.
Winner: Mia Yim
After the victory, Johnny Gargano and his wife, Candice LaRae interjected themselves into Yim’s business once again. As I mentioned in last weeks NXT review, during ‘Dinner with the Garganos’, LaRae and Gargano targeted Yim in their rant claiming that Yim did not deserve her recent NXT Womens Championship against Charlotte Flair. LaRae mocked Yim for losing to Charlotte by pandering to the fans. Gargano over-confidentiality interrupted LaRae to say that if LaRae was given the same opportunity, that she would not squander it, and would take advantage and be victorious.
Gargano continued by telling LaRae ”lets show (Yim) what happens to people who get things that they don’t deserve’. Gargano and LaRae darted to the ring, Gargano pulled down on the bottom rope that Yim was leaning against and caused a disadvantage. LaRae then brutally attacked Yim. The battlefield was evened out when Mia Yim’s fiance and current NXT North American Champion, Keith Lee, stormed to the ring, and Gargano’s cowardly legs moved as quick as they ever did to get out of harms way. Keith Lee is not done with Johnny Gargano.
Roderick Strong vs Dexter Lumis
Accompanied by Adam Cole and Bobby Fish, Roderick Strong made his way to the ring as the designated member of Undisputed Era to face off against the eerie, Dexter Lumis. Lumis was lurking at Strong across the ring, clearly intimidating Strong in the process. Lumis got under Strong’s skin very quickly, Strong tried to take down Lumis, but Lumis’ size and strength was too much for Strong to overpower. Lumis’ creepy demeanour was taking it toll on Strong as he could not seem to get in any offence on Lumis.
The fact that Lumis’ facial expression never changed during this match with strong, gave Lumis the psychological edge in this match. Once you get in the mind of your opponent, that can potentially be half the battle won. Strong attempted to target the right arm of Lumis, in hopes to cause enough damage to pick up the victory. Every time Strong got knocked down, he always got up and hit back twice as hard. You cannon deny Strong’s resiliency. However, Strong was met with powerful spine-buster, in which we would assume Lumis would pick up the victory with, Surprisingly, Strong rolled up Lumis for a quick, One-Two-Three! pin fall victory.
Winner: Roderick Strong
Lumis quickly slithered out of the ring after strong, immediately locking in a choke-hold around Strong’s neck. Undisputed Era members, Adam Cole and Bobby Fish came to Strong’s rescue, looking to fight off Lumis. Undisputed Era were then met by Velveteen Dream, who fought them off and seemed to form an unlikely alliance with Dexter Lumis.
Oney Lorcan and Danny Burch vs Ever-Rise
Next up, we had some Tag-Team action on this weeks show. Danny Burch started off the match against one half of Ever-Rise. Burch brutally attacked his opponent, living up to his smash mouth persona. This ended up being a tough, hard hitting but incredibly short match. The match ended with Burch locking in a single leg boston crab submission move to pick up the victory.
Winners: Oney Lorcan and Danny Burch
Io Shirai vs Rhea Ripley
Rhea Ripley returned to official in ring competition on NXT this week, for the first time since WrestleMania. Ripley has made it very clear that she is not done in her quest of defeating Charlotte Flair and giving her the boot from NXT. Ripley has also said that she needs the NXT Womens Championship back after losing it to Charlotte at WrestleMania.
Ripley had a lot of pent up frustration that was taken out on Shirai. As mentioned above, this was Ripley’s first NXT match after losing the NXT Womens Championship so it was clear that Ripley was out to make a statement. Shirai also seemed to feel that she deserved anther opportunity at Charlotte, now these two woman had to power through each other. When NXT returned from commercial, Shirai had Ripley in a submission in the middle of the ring, which was quickly reversed by Ripley, who use her strength to lift Shirai and escape from the submission. Ripley soon propped Shirai on top of the turnbuckle in the corner of the ring and performed a super-plex, slamming Shirai into the mat and potentiality injuring herself at the same time. Something then lit a fire under Shirai’s ass as she got a second wind and hit Ripley with a 619 finishing move followed by a suicide dive to the outside onto Rhea Ripley who had fallen to the outside. Charlotte Flair then slowly and confidently walked to the ring. The two competitors made their ways back to the ring, Shirai quickly brought the attack to to Ripley who fell back out of the ring knocking Charlotte in the process.
Charlotte intimidate lost her patience. She ran into ring, kicking Shirai ring in the face delivering a devastating Big-Boot. Charlotte then focused her attention to the former NXT Womens Champion, Rhea Ripley and hit Ripley with a spear in what seemed to be a split second. Charlotte Flair closed off this weeks NXT as the last woman standing.
How will Shirai and Ripley respond next week?
Overall, I felt that this weeks NXT gave us a lot to process. An inevitable mixed Tag-Team match between Mia Yim and Keith Lee vs Johnny Gargano and Candice LaRae is now in the cards. The first official match for NXT TakeOver: In Your House has been made as Tomasso Ciampa will take on Karrion Kross (with Scarlett). Lastly, we have an exiting story going into next weeks NXT, between Io Shirai, Rhea Ripley and the NXT Womens Champion, Charlotte Flair.
How will this all unfold?
As always, I’d love to hear your take on everything NXT at the moment, so feel free to reach out, and we’ll have a discussion!
Thank you for joining us here at Sports Obsessive. Stay safe and we will see you next week.