Two title matches are set for tonight's episode of NXT.
The NXT Women's Championship will be on the line as Raquel Gonzalez defends against Mercedes Martinez tonight. This will be Gonzalez's first title defense since winning the NXT Women's Championship from Io Shirai at TakeOver: Stand & Deliver last month.
The NXT Cruiserweight Championship will also be up for grabs as Kushida defends against Santos Escobar in a two-out-of-three falls match. Four weeks ago, Kushida answered Escobar's open challenge and defeated him to win the Cruiserweight title. Legado del Fantasma (Escobar, Raul Mendoza & Joaquin Wilde) then defeated Kushida & NXT Tag Team Champions MSK in a six-man tag match on NXT two weeks ago.
MSK will face Breezango in a non-title match on tonight's show. Kyle O'Reilly vs. Oney Lorcan has also been announced for tonight.
Plus, NXT Champion Karrion Kross will be in action against Austin Theory in a non-title match. That match will open tonight's episode.
Our live coverage begins at 8 p.m. Eastern time.
The show opened with a champion of the brand in a non-title bout.
NXT Champion Karrion Kross (with Scarlett) defeated Austin Theory (with NXT North American Champion Johnny Gargano) in a non-title match
Kross won via referee stoppage after annihilating Theory. Finn Balor confronted Kross after the match. Gargano interfered during the match, and Gargano is now set for a title defense next week after an announcement made while this match was still underway.
Kross was dominate from the start as he methodically controlled the pace. Kross slowly pummeled Theory until Gargano caused a distraction by jumping on the apron. Theory raked the Kross' eyes, temporarily blinding him. Theory capitalized and he began to target Kross.
Theory delivered a fallaway slam on Kross, and Kross hulked up. Kross exploded into a volley of two Saito suplex, and his Doomsday forearm strike. Theory was already out when Kross locked in a choke. The ref then stepped in to stop the match.
During the match, a title bout was announced for next week with Bronson Reed challeneging Johnny Gargano for he North American title. Not sure why they had to announce a mostly unrelated match in the middle of another match that was ongoing, but that's what they did. There was also a teaser for Kross' next title defense.
Finn Balor after the match appeared behind Kross. They went face-to-face, and Balor said he doesn't wait in lines. He wanted a title shot, and Kross said he wanted the match much like Balor does. Looks like these to are headed for a return match.
Earlier in the day, Leon Ruff and William Regal got into a heated argument in Regal's office. Ruff wanted to comepte tonight, but Regal would not clear him to wrestle. Ruff yelled at Regal, and Regal yelled back.
NXT Tag Team Champions MSK (Wes Lee & Nash Carter) defeated Breezango (Tyler Breeze & Fandango) in a non-title match
Carter pinned Breeze in a fun babyface match.
The great stuff began earlier on. Just before a commercial break, they did a spot that involved the referee doing a drop down and a leapfrog. This match was so fun. Lee was doing flips after the show returned from the break. Fandango cut him, and Fandango used a Falcon Arrow for a near fall. Carter jumped in to break up the pin.
MSK with a series of double teams moves for a two count on Breeze. Fandango with a spear broke up the pin. A brawl erupted, and the champs were rocked by superkicks. Carter went on to springboard out of the ring with a moonsault to the outside.
The champ execute their Hart Attack/Blockbuster combo, and Carter covered Breeze for a pinfall. Breezango shook hands with MSK after the match in a show of sportsmanship.
Johnny Gargano did a comedy skit where he barged into William Regal's office. The bit ended with Gargano breaking Regal's pencil.
Todd Pettengill will host NXT TakeOver: In Your House on June 13th streaming live on Peacock.
Ever-Rise made a cameo plugging their talk show.
Leon Ruff attacks Pete Dunne
Dunne first cut a promo in the ring. He called out Karrion Kross for ducking him. Dunne vowed to become the champion, and he issued an open challenge for anyone to prove him wrong. Leon Ruff out of nowhere stormed the ring to attack Dunne.
Wade Barrett on commentary noted Ruff was not medically cleared, but Vic Jospeh claimed Regal could not stop Ruff from answering an open challenge. What? So, Ruff is not cleared to wrestle, but he can wrestle in an open challenge. Whatever.
Pete Dunne defeated Leon Ruff
Dunne won via ref stoppage, which was the second time such finish was used on the show. Much like the other bout, the winner was dominate throughout much of the match.
Dunne targeted the joints, and he was dominating Ruff when Ruff struck with a hurricanrana. Dunne quickly shut down the hope spot, and Dunne went back to joint manipulation.
Ruff fired up into a comeback. He hit Dunne with a missile dropkick, and he soon went flying again. This time Dunne cut him down with a forearm. Dunne with a triangle, and he rained down elbows on Ruff until the ref stopped the match.
Dunne after the bell again attacked Ruff, and Dunne snapped Ruff's fingers.
El Legado del Fantasma cut a promo on Kushida agead of the cruiserweight title match tonight. Kushida defends the NXT Cruiserweight title against Santos Escobar later on.
The "world premiere" of Franky Monet is in two weeks time on NXT. The announcers plugged it as a debut, but Monet has already debuted. Maybe this is a debut in the actual CWC arena. Presley the Pomeranian will also be there. He's a good boy.
NXT Women's Champion Raquel Gonzalez (with Dakota Kai) defeated Mercedes Martinez to retain her title
Gonzalez pinned Martinez clean to retain the championship. Hard-hitting match.
The brawled at the start, and the fight quickly spilled outside. The brawling continued as the show went to a picture-in-picture commercial break. Not long after the break, Martinez had Gonzalez trapped in the ropes. Martinez with a draping and twisting neckbreaker on Gonzalez. Mercedes followed that with a spear on the apron.
The champion was reeling, but she still kicked out at two. They traded strikes. A powerbomb into a hotshot that cut off Martinez, but Martinez also kicked out at two. They traded more strikes amd near falls.
Martinez countered Gonzalez when Gonzalez went for her finisher. Martinez then delivered a running knee strike, and a suplex for another two count. Gonzalez fired up with a boot to the face, and Gonzalez with her signature powerbomb on Martinez. Gonzalez went on to cover Martinez for a three count.
Johnny Gargano and Austin Theory apparently attacked Bronson Reed backstage at the CWC. Security ordered The Way to leave the building.
Isaiah "Swerve" Scott arrived with his new faction. Scott was flanked by AJ Francis, Ashante "Thee" Adonis and B Fab. The name of the new crew is Hit Row. They all seem to have a musical background. Francis even freestyled during his part of the promo. Great introdcution for Hit Row.
Cameron Grimes in a skit arrived at an auction for a house. Grimes wondered why the auctioneer talked so fast. Grimes is outbid by Ted DiBiase, and Grimes is very upset. He rants and raves about DiBiase. Grimes calls out DiBiase, he tells Grimes everybody has a price for the Million Dollar Man. But DiBiase said Grimes is no Million Dollar Man.
Zoey Stark and Toni Storm cut promos on each other in a vignette. They meet in a rematch next week on NXT. Stark won their prior encounter in an upset.
Kyle O'Reilly defeated Oney Lorcan (with Pete Dunne)
O'Reilly pinned Lorcan in a fun match while it lasted. This match was set up after an angle earlier in the day involving a fight in the parking lot. Bobby Fish made a surprise return to make a save after the match.
Great grappling in the early moments. The grappling soon gave way to strikes. Dunne at ringside distracted O'Reilly, which allowed Lorcan to hit O'Reilly with a sneak attack. The show went to a commercial break with O'Reilly down selling the sneak attack.
O'Reilly after the break soon made a comeback, and dropped Lorcan with a brainbuster. O'Reilly finished the match with a Bobby Eaton flying knee drop, and O'Reilly covered Lorcan for a pinfall.
Bobby Fish returned to NXT while making a save after the match. Lorcan and Dunne attacked O'Reilly after the bell. Fish ran down to even the odds. The former tag partners reunited to clean house one more time.
O'Reilly told Fish it was good to see him back, but O'Reilly told Fish he was doing his own thing. Fish said he understood that, and Fish went on to say he was his own scores to settle. Fish says he will see him when he sees him. They left on friendly terms.
A wacky video package showed The Way as superheroes. Cut to a serious promo from Bronson Reed, and Reed announces that he will challenge Gargano for the NXT North Amercian title in a cage match next week on NXT.
NXT Cruiserweight Champion Kushida defeated Santos Escobar in a two-out-of-three falls match to retain the title
Kushida won after winning two straight falls. He dropped the first fall, but came back to win the next two. Great match to close the show.
Early on there was brawling at ringside whe Legado del Fantasma tried to interfere. MSK ran down to counter the interference, and the referee ejected both teams from ringside. Meanwhile, Kushida leapt off the top turnnuckle into a flip dive on Escobar.
Escobar was in control when the show returned from the break, after Kushida had wiped out on another dive. Escobar targeted Kushida's back with a single leg crab and La Tapatia. Kushida fought back, but Escobar continued to work him over.
An avalanche into a sunset flip allowed for Kushida to get a two count. That led into Kushida making a comeback with a handspring back elbow and a cartwheel dropkick. Escobar quickly cut him off, and Escobar executed the Phantom Driver. Escobar then covered Kushida to win the first fall.
The second fall lasted seconds. Kushida locked in a cross armbreaker, and Escobar tapped out to end the second fall. The falls were even as the show went to a picture-in-picture commercial break.
The fighting spilled outside the ring as the show returned from the break. Kushida kept targeting an arm, but Escobar snapped Kushida on the top rope. Escobar followed with a torpedo tope suicida through the ropes.
Kushida fought back to drop a flying knee on Escobar, which targeted the already injured arm from earlier. Kushida dropped Escobar with a shoulder breaker on the floor. Back in the ring, Escobar countered an attempted armbar by using a small package to get a two count.
They traded near falls until a double down. They got up and ended up fighting on the top turnbuckle. Kushida flipped off with a Spanish Fly into the Hoverboard Lock. Escobar was able to reach the bottom rope to break the hold.
Kushida suplexed Escobar into the turnbuckles, and Kushdia went to suplex him again. Kushida did so, but this time he trapped both of Escobar's arms. Kushida then bridged into a cover for a three count to win the deciding fall. Kushida retained after winning two straight falls.