A new NXT Champion will be crowned on NXT Super Tuesday II tonight.
After last week's Iron Man match for the vacant title ended in a tie, Finn Balor and Adam Cole will face off in a one-fall-to-a-finish singles match for the NXT Championship tonight. Their match will open tonight's episode.
Balor, Cole, Johnny Gargano, and Tommaso Ciampa all went into the final stretch of last week's Iron Man match having won a fall. Ciampa hit a super Air Raid Crash on Gargano, but Balor flew in with a Coup de Grace and took the lead with less than 20 seconds left. It appeared that Balor had the match won, but Cole gave him a Last Shot and pinned him just before time expired.
Tonight's show will be headlined by a steel cage grudge match between Rhea Ripley and Mercedes Martinez. Ripley issued the challenge to Martinez last week and Martinez accepted.
Plus, Bronson Reed vs. Austin Theory and Killian Dain vs. Roderick Strong are set for tonight.
Our coverage begins at 8 p.m. Eastern time.
The show is opening with the title match for the vacant NXT Championship.
Finn Balor defeated Adam Cole to win the NXT Championship
Balor won the title after pinning Cole in a really great match.
They began the match with grappling as they slowly built to a faster pace later on. The early minutes was each trying to keep the other grounded with headlocks, armbars, headscissors, and such. The pace quickened just before a commercial break as Cole delivered an ushigoroshi. Cole covered Balor for the first close near fall, and then the show went to picture-in-picture during the commercials.
Cole was working over Balor, but Balor soon fired up on Cole before the show returned from break. Balor was in control after the break as he grounded Cole on the mat. Cole after a few minutes regained the momentum after a slugfest. Cole dropped Balor with a kick, and a moments later hit another kick followed by a backstabber. Balor kicked out at two.
Balor missed a double stomp, but he connected on a sling blade. Cole answered back with a shining wizard for a near fall. Cole then pulled his kneepad down looking for The Last Shot, but Balor cut him off to deliver a double stomp.
Balor flew through the ropes with a flying dropkick to the outside. Balor went to follow up, but Cole dropped him with a superkick. That led into a commercial break and a double down on the floor. They teased a double countout during the picture-in-picture commercial break.
They slugged it out during the break. Cole with another ushigoroshi for another near fall. Balor, as the show returned from break, missed the Coup de Grace. Cole targeted a leg and applied the figure four. Balor got a rope break, but he continued to sell his knee afterwards.
Cole fired up on Cole and went for another Coup de Grace. He hit his finisher this time, but stopped to sell his knee before making a cover. Cole with the delay was able to kick out, and then he again trapped Balor in a figure four leglock.
Balor with an inside cradle for two, only for Cole to drop him with a superkick a moment later. Cole delivered a Last Shot, but Balor kicked out. Cole went for a Panama Sunrise, and Balor blocked it. Balor kept selling his knee even though he executed a reverse DDT on Cole.
They fought on the top rope, and Balor came off the top to execute an avalanche 1916 DDT. Balor then covered Cole for the pinfall to win the title.
Rhea Ripley cut a promo on Mercedes Martinez ahead of their cage match later tonight. Ripley vowed to show Martinez why she a nightmare.
Balor wearing the championship belt was backstage talking with William Regal and Triple H, and Cole was also there congratulating Balor. Cole said Balor was the better man on this night, and they exchanged a too sweet.
Balor cut a quick promo saying everyone asked why he returned to NXT. Balor pointed to the title belt, and he said that is why he returned to NXT.
Robert Stone was being interviewed backstage when he approached the mini tank that ran him over. He raised a bat over his head as if he was going to batter the tank. Shotzi Blackheart popped up out of nowhere, and Stone started to beg off. She dropped him with a forearm strike. Ailyah made a save for Stone as she jumped Shotzi in a sneak attack.
They fought through a partition with curtains, and in the process they knocked down NXT Women's Champion Io Shirai. Aliyah was apologetic as pleaded with Shirai was was sorry. An angry Shirai chased her to the ring as Aliyah was screaming for her life.
Aliyah ended up in the ring where both Shirai and Blackheart took turns hitting her with a strikes. Shirai lifted Aliyah with a double underhook suplex to deliver a backbreaker. Stone tried to make a save, but he got beat up too. Shirai with a moonsault on Aliyah, and Blackheart with a senton bomb. They cleared the ring, and then had a staredown between them when Blackheart picked up Shirai's title belt.
Candice LeRae was with Johnny Gargano at their home getting ready their dinner guest. Gargano agreed to to behave. Tegan Nox arrived at the front door, and Gargano led her in. She was wearing a Bull Nakano t-shirt, which is pretty dang cool.
Gargano was cracking jokes trying to overly nice. In the background was a framed picture of Dok Hendrix (Michael Hayes) hanging on the wall. That cracks me up every time. They sat down at the dining table to have talk it out as the show cut to commercial.
Timothy Thatcher was having another seminar. Instead of stretching people, this time it was film study. He was studying NXT North American Champion Damian Priest.
Velveteen Dream defeated Ashanti Thee Adonis
Dream pinned Adonis in a very short match. Kushida returned to NXT after the macth to attack Dream.
Adonis got to shine at the outset. He almost superkicked the ref, but he stopped short. Dream then thumbed him the eye, and Dream exectued a DVD to score the pinfall.
Kushida ran in after the match to attack Dream. Referees poured into the ring to break up the melee. Dream tried to grab Kushida when he on the outside, but Kushida posted him shoulder first. Kushida posted him again, and he applied on armbar with Dream hanging in the ropes.
A video package built up a tag title match for next with Breezango defending their newly won NXT Tag Team Championship against former champions Imperium.
Back at the Gargano/LeRae house. Things were awkward. Gargano excused himself from the table. Nox and LeRae started to debate who was at fault for ending their friendship. They began to hash things out.
Bronson Reed defeated Austin Theory
Reed pinned Theory after a splash off the top rope.
Theory sold big for Reed as he bumped around the ring. Reed with a flying shoulder tackle off the apron to the floor before the show cut to commercial. Reed continued to ragdoll Theory as he threw him around the ring.
During the break the tide turned when Theory sent Reed into a turnbuckle woth drop toe hold. Theory was in control until the show returned from the break, and Reed made a comeback.
Theory with a side suplex on Reed, but Theory sold like he threw out his back. He still managed to execute a blockbuster a moment later for a two count on Reed. Theory lifted Reed with a fireman's carry, but he crumbled under the weight as Reed fell on top of him.
Reed with senton followed by a big splash off the top to score the pinfall.
Adam Cole in a backstage interview was a babyface as he put over Balor being a better man on this night. Cole did conclude by saying the outcome will be different if he gets another match against Balor.
Roderick Strong (with Bobby Fish) defeated Killian Dain
Strong pinned Dain with help from Fish.
Remember that scene in Talladega Nights: The Ballad of Ricky Bobby when the little kid said he would jump on someone like a spider monkey? That was pretty much Strong's strategy, with mixed results. Dain ragdolled him, but Strong fought back.
Bobby Fish interfererd to cause a distraction, and Strong hit Dain with a jumping knee strike. That led to Strong scoring the pinfall.
Strong and Fish attacked Dain after the bell. They were putting the boots to him when Drake Maverick ran in to make a save. Maverick was swinging a pipe, but he still got his butt kicked by Strong and Fish. Dain got the pipe and chased them away.
Maverick offered a handshake, but Dain decked him with a punch instead. I guess this means they're having a match soon.
Back to the Gargano/LeRae house where Nox and LeRae were toasting to their rekindled friendship. LeRae then said Nox had her chance to defeat Shirai for the title, but Nox lost. So LeRae said if anyone is going to beat Shirai it would be LeRae herself. Nox said LeRae has never beaten Shirai either. That angered LeRae so she threw a salad at Nox, and Nox retaliated by throwing a drink in LeRae's face.
They were about to start fighting when Gargano came in to separate. Gargano berated Nox, so she cursed at him before dumping a bowl of spaghetti on his head. LeRae threw an object at Nox, but she ducked. The object smashed the TV, and Nox ran out of the house. LeRae ran after her. And scene.
NXT North American Champion Damian Priest cut a promo on Timothy Thatcher. Their title match was made official for next week on NXT.
Another title match announced for next week is for the NXT Tag Team Championship with Breezango defending against Imperium. Also announced for the next episode is NXT Women's Champion Io Shirai against Shotzi Blackheart in a non-title match.
Rhea Ripley defeated Mercedes Martinez (with Robert Stone) in a cage macth
Ripley pinned Martinez after putting her through a table.
Martinez brought a kendo stick to the ring. Before the match she was looking underneath the ring for something, presumably searching for plunder. She was pulling out a table when Ripley attacked her. Ripley went on to several times slam the cage door on Martinez.
Ripley put the table in the ring along with a couple chairs and the kendo stick. Martinez jumped Ripley as Ripley entered the cage, and the bell sounded for the match to officially begin.
Ripley soon fired up, and she threw Martinez into the cage. Martinez soon cut her off, and she gave Ripley a fisherman's buster suplex. The show cut to commercial, and Martinez pummeled Ripley throughout the break. She hit Ripley with the kendo stick and chair shots.
Ripley made a comeback during the break. As the show returned from commercial, they both were perched on a turnbuckle. Martinez with an avalanche belly-to-back suplex sent Ripley crashing to the mat off the top.
Martinez remained on the top rope, and Ripley threw a chair at her. Ripley followed a few moments later with a dropkick. Martinez got her head wedged between an opening in the cage where two sides met.
Ripley climbed the ropes, and she executed a superlex for a near fall. Martinez fought back to cut off Ripley, and she gave Ripley a spinebuster. Ripley soon thereafter fired up again.
Ripley applied her signature standing leglock, but Martinez was able to grab a kendo stick. She hit Ripley with the stick to break the hold. Ripley got the kendo stick as Robert Stone was climbing the cage.
Ripley hit Stone with the kendo stick as he was almsot to the top of the cage. Ripley went to suplex Stone off the cage, but Martinez made a save by hitting Ripley with the kendo stick. Martinez with an avalanche neckbreaker off the top rope. That led to a double down, and a near fall where Ripley kicked out.
Martinez set up the table. Meanwhile, Stone was hanging over the top of the cage like a dead carcass. Ripley blocked a suplex, and she delivered an avalanche Rip Tide to put Martinez through the table. Ripley then covered her for the pinfall.