The NXT Champion and his next challenger will face off in tag team action to kick off tonight's NXT.
In the opening match of tonight's show, Bron Breakker will team with Tommaso Ciampa against Dolph Ziggler & Robert Roode. With Roode's help, Ziggler defeated Ciampa last week to become the number one contender to Breakker's NXT Championship.
The NXT North American Championship will be on the line in tonight's main event. Carmelo Hayes puts his title on the line against Pete Dunne.
Gunther will be in action as he faces Solo Sikoa tonight, Andre Chase battles Von Wagner, and Draco Anthony takes on Harland.
Plus, the first round of the 2022 women's Dusty Rhodes Tag Team Classic will conclude tonight. Raquel Gonzalez & Cora Jade are facing Yulisa Leon & Valentina Feroz, while Wendy Choo & Dakota Kai are set to take on Indi Hartwell & Persia Pirotta. The winning teams will advance to face each other in the semifinals.
Our live coverage begins at 8 p.m. Eastern time.
The show opens with the entrance of Bron Breakker and Tommaso Ciampa as a tag team. They enter to Breakker's theme song, and Ciampa is wearing a singlet to match Breakker's gear.
Ciampa is basically playing a Steiner, although the Steiner name is of course never mentioned. He and Bron would soon even bark together.
Robert Roode enters as his "Glorious" theme rings out, and then out comes Dolph Ziggler. The entrances soon came to a screeching halt.
Breakker and Ciampa jump the heels during the heel's entrance. The fight is on, and the guys in singlets ran wild. They then barked like Rick Steiner, and the crowd joined in unison. The match then officially begins.
NXT Champion Bron Breakker & Tommaso Ciampa defeat Dolph Ziggler & Robert Roode
Ciampa pins Ziggler to win a really good tag match. It was great fun while it lasted.
The babyfaces were kicking butt until the heels cause a distraction. Roode distracts Breakker, and Ziggler is able to deliver a Zig Zag. Breakker kicks out at two, but he begins to get worked over soon thereafter.
The veteran heels cut the ring in half, keeping Breakker from making a tag. Breakker eventually tags out to Ciampa, who comes in like a house of fire. Down come the singlet straps. He means business.
Ciampa is cut off just before the show cuts to a commercial break. The heels with the advantage as the show returns from the break, but the tide quickly shifts.
Ziggler is catapulted out of the ring by Ciampa. Ciampa crawls to make a tag. Just as he about to tag out, Roode pulls Breakker off the ring apron. Roode then sends Breakker over the barricade into the first row of fans.
Ciampa is unable to tag, and he is alone in the ring against two heels. Double teams moves, but Ciampa still has fight in him. He kicks out.
Roode begins playing to the crowd. He pays for it when Ciampa hits a jumping knee strike out of nowhere. Ziggler is able to tag in, but he unable to keep Ciampa from tagging his fresh partner.
Hot tag to Breakker, and he explodes into a ring. Overhead suplexes toss the heels around like cord wood. Breakker spears Ziggler plum near out of his boots.
They tease a Steiner Brothers finish. Ciampa leaps off the top rope with a flying bulldog on Ziggler, who was being held in an electric chair by Breakkers. Ciampa covers Zigglers, but Roode breaks up the pin at the last second. Great save.
Ziggler almost catches Ciampa with a roll-up. Ciampa delivers a Fairy Tale Ending on Ziggler, and Ciampa covers Ziggler for a clean pinfall. That was a really fun match to watch.
LA Knight is backstage on his way to cut a promo, but first he cuts a promo to tease the upcoming promo. '
Gunther in a vignette threatens Solo Sikoa ahead of their match later tonight.
Last man standing match set for next week
LA Knight is in the ring for a monologue. He is really trying to get over his "yeeeah" catchphrase. For what it is worth, that is working with the crowd there on the soundstage.
Knight begins to run down the recent history between him and Grayson Waller. Knight is soon interrupted when Waller interrupts him. Waller, flanked by Sanga, insults Knight from a perch overlooking the ring.
They trade barbs. Knight challenges Waller to a last man standing match. Waller accepts the challenge, and Waller agrees to face Knight in a last man standing match next Tuesday on NXT.
Indi Hartwell and Persia Pirotta were in a locker room getting ready for their match. Pirotta is texting with Duke Hudson, and Hartwell wants to know is she is focused on their match. Pirotta says she is of course focused, but she runs back to her locker to get her phone. She had to text Hudson one more time. They then head to the ring for a tournament match.
Dakota Kai & Wendy Choo defeat Indi Hartwell & Persia Pirotta to advance in the Dusty Rhodes Tag Team Classic
Kai pins Pirotta to win the match. Kai & Choo now advance out of the first round into the semifinals.
The tease of dissension continues between Hartwell & Pirotta. A split seems near.
Much like the skit before it, the match itself involves comedy. Lots of gaga, but the tone somewhat shifts after Choo is cut off.
Hot tag because WWE only has one style of tag matches. Kai proceeds to clean house after the hot tag. Pirotta cuts her off, and she gets a near fall. Choo jumps in to make a save.
Pirotta is isolated by tandem offense. Choo with a Vader bomb off the top rope on Pirotta. Kai follows up by leaping off the top with a double foot stomp on Pirotta. Kai then pins Pirotta.
USA Network cuts to a commercial break right in the middle of Vic Joseph on commentary throwing to something.
A video package highlights the feud between Imperium and The Creed Brothers. The up-and-comers next Tuesday challenge Imperium for the NXT Tag Team Championship.
Besides the title match, made official for next week on NXT is a last man standing match with LA Knight against Grayson Waller.
Lash Legend defeats Amari Miller
Legend pins Miller after some sort of fireman's carry slam. It did not look good. This match had no business being on live television. It does no one any favors. Miller was reportedly stretchered out of the ring after the match.
Legend is clearly getting a push, and she was put over strong in this match.
Miller and Legend split as teammates last week after losing a tournament match. A bad skit aired before the match, which showed their breakup from last week.
Solo Sikoa cut a good promo ahead of his match that is up next. But first, another bad skit.
Briggs & Jensen get into a brief argument backstage with Elektra Lopez. Briggs & Jensen were made to look like redneck goofs. Cringe.
Gunther defeats Solo Sikoa
Gunther pins Sikoa clean in their grudge match.
Gunther is not only adapting into a new name, he has a newer style in the ring that fits more with WWE television programming. Not that is is bad, it just is not WALTER.
Gunther works over Sikoa. They did trade some hard chops throughout the match. Sikoa makes a comeback, and Sikoa leaps off the apron into a flying body press on the floor. Sikoa missed a Superfly splash into the ring, and it cost him the match.
Gunther locks in a sleeper, and he transitions into delivering two powerbombs. Gunther goes on to cover Sikoa for a pinfall.
McKenzie Mitchell was interviewing Dolph Ziggler when Tommaso Ciampa storms in to argue with Ziggler. NXT Champion Bron Breakker enters the scene, and he says he could kick both of their asses. This seems to set up a triple threat title match. The match is soon made official for next Tuesday on NXT, making next week a loaded line-up so far.
More backstage drama as Indi Hartwell and Persia Pirotta are upset over their tournament loss. Duke Hudson consoles Pirotta, and things get a bit awkward for Hartwell.
Harland (with Joe Gacy) defeats Draco Anthony
Harland pins Anthony in a glorified squash match. Anthony put up a fight, but Harland is a monster. The character remains mostly one dimensional.
Gacy smiles at Harland after the match, as if to give him permission. So Harland hugs Anthony. Making amends I guess.
NXT North American Champion Carmelo Anthony & Trick Williams cut a good promo ahead of the title match later on tonight.
Raquel Gonzalez & Cora Jade vs. Yulisa Leon & Valentina Feroz in Dusty Classic first round match
Gonzalez & Jade win to advance in the tournament. Gonzalez & Jade now move on to the semifinals. Short tag match, but it was fun to watch.
Leon & Feroz got to shine with some big dives to the outside. They isolate Jade, keeping from making a tag. That leads to a hot tag, because like as noted previously, WWE basically has one style of tag match.
Gonzalez cleans house after a hot tag. Gonzalez delivers her signature one arm powerbomb. Gonzalez slams Jade on Leon, and Jade scores a pinfall.
Gonzalez & Jade advance to the semifinals where they meet Dakota Kai & Wendy Choo. The other semifinal match has Io Shirai & Kay Lee Ray against Kacy Catanzaro & Kayden Carter. The winners of those matches meet in the tournament final.
Tiffany Stratton assaults Sarray backstage. Lame skit, but it seems to set up a match between Stratton and Sarray.
Tony D'Angelo in a pre-taped promo says he will became a "made man" at Stand & Deliver. His opponent will "sleep with the fishes."
Von Wagner (with Robert Stone) defeats Andre Chase (with Bodhi Hayward)
Wagner pins Chase. Most lame finish on the show by far. Wagner sort of looked strong in winning, but who did he really beat? Especially considering Chase is made to look like such a geek.
Chase seems to be the babyface in this match, but his character is very annoying. His character is also pretty dumb for a university professor.
Hayward is arguing at ringside with Robert Stone. Chase is seemingly winning the match when he leaves the ring to put himself in the middle of the argument. A scuffle soon develops, where Hayward is struck in the eye by Wagner.
Hayward sells big, and Chase is concerned with his student. Hayward tells him to finish the match. Chase slides back into the ring, and he is mowed down and pinned by Wagner.
Nikkita Lyons challenges Lash Legend to what is basically a face-to-face talking segment.
Announced for next Tuesday, which is being billed as "NXT Roadblock":
- NXT Champion Bron Breakker defends his title in a triple threat match against Dolph Ziggler and Bron Breakker
- NXT Tag Team Champions Imperium defend against challengers The Creed Brothers
- Last Man Standing: LA Knight vs. Grayson Waller
NXT North American Champion Carmelo Hayes (with Trick Williams) defeats Pete Dunne to retain his title
Hayes pins Dunne to retain. Great bout that could have been even better if given a little more time.
They trade strikes and lariats in the opening minutes. Hayes takes a awkward-looking X-plex. The match was just beginning to really heat up when the show cut to a split-screen commercial break.
Back-and-forth action continues after the commercial break, but the match also intensifies.
Hulking himself up, Dunne lights a fire within. He explodes with strikes. Hayes goes for a springboard, but Dunne knocks him out of the air for a near fall.
Dunne applies on ankle lock, which signals the beginning of the end. They go into a series of counters. Dunne executes The Bitter End, yet Hayes manages to roll away to avoid a pinning attempt.
Dunne goes for a triangle, and it backfires. Maneuvered into the ropes (which of course should have been a rope break), Dunne is slingshotted into the ropes.
Hayes launches into La Mistica, yet Dunne is able to use joint locks to break Hayes' grip.
They fight with both perched on the turnbuckles. Trick Williams interferes, and Dunne snaps Williams' fingers. Dunne shoved off the ropes, and his is hit by a guillotine legdrop by Hayes. Three count later, and Hayes retains the title.
Hayes after the match announces he will defend his title in a ladder match at Stand & Deliver in Dallas.