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WWE NXT live results: Two title matches, Finn Balor returns

Two of the top stars in NXT will face off for the NXT Women's Championship tonight.

NXT Women's Champion Io Shirai defends her title against Rhea Ripley on tonight's episode of NXT. Shirai issued the challenge to Ripley two weeks ago, saying Ripley is the one challenge she must face to show that this is her NXT. Ripley accepted and vowed to end this year as champion.

Ripley lost the NXT Women's Championship to Charlotte Flair at WrestleMania 36. Shirai then became champion by defeating Ripley and Charlotte in a triple threat match at NXT TakeOver: In Your House this June.

After last week's shocking title change, Johnny Gargano will get his rematch for the NXT North American Championship against Leon Ruff. Gargano tried to break his title defense curse by facing Ruff last week, but Ruff won the North American Championship after Gargano was distracted by Damian Priest.

NXT Champion Finn Balor will appear for the first time since undergoing surgery for a broken jaw last month. Balor will give an update on the future of the NXT Championship.

Plus, Dexter Lumis vs. Cameron Grimes in a blindfold match and Ember Moon & Toni Storm vs. Dakota Kai & Raquel Gonzalez are set for tonight.

Our live coverage begins at 8 p.m. Eastern time.

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The show opened with new NXT North American Champiob Leon Ruff and a recap of his title win. Ruff came out with the belt before a video package began to tell the story of his journey. Johnny Gargano interrupted Ruff, and Gargano cut a promo on him. He then hit Ruff with a cheap shot before the bell rang to start their title match.

NXT North American Champion Leon Ruff defeated Johnny Gargano via disqualification to retain his title

Ruff retained after interference by Damian Priest led to a DQ. 

Gargano got heat on Ruff from the start, but Ruff fought back. He fired up on Gargano. That led to Ruff doing a flip dive over the ropes. Gargano cut him off, and then he twice threw Ruff like a lawn dart into a corner.

Gargano was measuring Ruff for an attack when Damian Priest entered the scene. His presence distracted Gargano, and Ruff rolled him up for a near fall. Ruff missed a senton bomb, and he ate a superkick from Gargano. 

Gargano delivered the One Final Beat, and he covered Ruff. Priest came down to ringside, and he pulled Ruff out of the ring to break the count. Priest apologized to Ruff before knocking him out with a forearm smash. Priest striking Ruff led to Gargano being DQ'd, so Ruff retains the title. Gargano was not happy to say the least.

Cameron Grimes was cut a cocky promo ahead of his match tonight.

Dexter Lumis vs. Cameron Grimes in a blindfold match had no finish

Grimes punched the referee, but it was by mistake. So that could be a DQ, or maybe not. Nothing was announced as being official. Your guess is as good as mine.

They put the blindfolds on, which were more like sacks over their heads than a typical blindfold. Grimes was freaking out as he ran into things while bumping around the ring. Lumis just stood like a statue.

Grimes ran into the referee, and he thought it was Lumis. So Grimes decked him, and then he began stomping on the ref. The official was also the zombie Grimes had been terrified of in recent weeks.

Grimes took off his blindfold, and saw it was the referee that he knocked out. He tried for a sneak attack on Lumis, but Lumis sidestepped him. Lumis peppered him with punches, and Lumis also took his blindfold off.

Lumis stalked Grimes when he tried to flee. Lumis threw Grimes into the barricades. Grimes hopped a chainlink fence, and he fled the scene. 

Damian Priest was backstage being scolded by William Regal, and Priest said he was just joking around. Leon Ruff interrupted to confront Priest. He asked Priest to his face if Priest thought he was a joke. Priest tried to apologize, but Ruff slapped him across the face. Ruff then stormed off, and Regal told Priest that he deserved the slap.

A video aired announcing NXT TakeOver: WarGames for Sunday, December 6. Shotzi Blackheart and Candice LeRae will captain teams against each other.

Candice LeRae & Indi Hartwell defeated Kayden Carter & Kacy Catanzaro

LeRae pinned Carter to a win a showcase match for the new heel team.

Heat on Catanzaro until Carter tagged in to clean house on the heels. LeRae eventually got the better of Carter, and then LeRae executed the Wicked Step Sister to score a pinfall.

A vignette hyped the return of Arturo Ruas ahead of his match up next.

Kushida defeated Arturo Ruas

Kushida pinned Ruas in the best match so far. Although that is a low bar, this was still good while it lasted. They grappled and exchanged strikes in a believable manner.

Ruas went for a leg takedown, but Kushida countered by falling backwards and bridging into a pinning combination for a three count. They hyped up Ruas' return, and then beat him clean. Interesting strategy for getting him over.

Ember Moon & Toni Storm defeated Dakota Kai & Raquel Gonzalez

Storm pinned Kai to wn the match for her team. The babyfaces were attacked after the match by LeRae & Hartwell.

Storm was getting worked over at the start, but she made a comeback on Kai. Moon tagged in, and the babyface team cleared the ring before a commercial break. The heels turned the tide during the break, and Storm was getting worked over again when the show returned from commercial.

Moon ran wild after a hot tag, she nailed Gonzalez with a superkick. Moon then leapt off the second rope to hit a flying codebreaker. Moon went for a cover, but Kai broke up the count. Moments later, Gonzalez mowed down Moon with a high kick. 

Heels got heat on Moon until a hot tag brought Storm back into the match. Storm delivered a series of German suplexes, and then a fisherman's buster for a two count broken up by Gonzalez. Moon came back in to take out Gonzalez. Storm and Kai collided with a double clotheslines, leading to a double down.

Kai and Storm exchanged strikes. The referee became distracted, and Gonzalez posted Storm. Moon saw it happen, and she leapt through the ropes for a tope on Gonzalez. Kai went to drag Storm to the center of the ring, but Storm with a counter that trapped Kai in an inside cradle for the pinfall.

LeRae & Hartwell after the match attacked Moon & Storm. They rolled the babyfaces back into the ring so Kai & Gonzalez could lay them out. This looks to be leading to the women's War Games match.

Timothy Thatcher defeated August Grey

Thatcher submitted Grey in a short match. Tommaso Ciampa confronted Thatcher after the match.

Grey got in some brief offense at the start, and then Thatcher picked him apart. Thatcher stretched Grey until Grey made a brief comeback. He tired a rope walk into a springboard, but Thatcher cut him down with an uppercut. Thatcher went on to lock in a front facelock, and Grey tapped out.

Thatcher reapplied the submission hold after the bell. Cue Ciampa's music, and Ciampa came to the ring to confront Thatcher. He had a staredown with Thatcher, who told Ciampa he had no problem with him. Thatcher then backed down, and he left the ring.

In a later interview, Ciampa said he wanted to fight Thatcher.

Gargano Attacks Priest; Ruff Stands Tall

Damian Priest came to the ring for a match, and Johnny Gargano attacked him from behind during Priest's entrance. They brawled in the ring and around ringside. Leon Ruff ran in, and he seemingly by mistake (in storyline) hit Priest with a dropkick. A tilt-a-whirl headscissors from Ruff then sent Gargano crashing into Priest. Ruff superkicked Gargano. 

An angry Priest went after Ruff, but he sidestepped Priest. Ruff dropkicked into each other, and Ruff backdropped Gargano over the ropes on to Priest. Ruff stood tall and held his title belt high overhead. Priest and Grargano both rushed the ring, but Ruff slipped past them. 

During a commercial break, Ruff told Regal he would face both Gargano and Priest in a match.

Wade Barrett announced he won't be doing commentary on next week's episode. Replacing him for next Wednesday is Kevin Owens on guest commentary.

Boa had not reported to the PC since last week, so William Regal went to Boa's home to check on him. Through the dark circles around his eyes, Boa warned Regal "she's coming." 

NXT Women's Champion Io Shirai defeated Rhea Ripley to retain her title

Shirai pinned Ripley to retain. This was a helluva stiff match, and it was pretty good too.

Ripley was in control at the start. She dominated with her power. Ripley dropped Shirai on the apron, and Shirai took a hard shot. During the picture-in-picture commercial break, Ripley stalled while medical staff checked on Shirai.

Like the NWO arriving to Nirto in the middle of the show, Finn Balor supposedly arrived to the building during this match. 

Shirai made a comeback and she fired up on Ripley. Somehow Ripley suffered a cut, and she bled from the ear. Ripley ate a stiff shotgun dropkick, yet she still managed to escape a crossface.

They fought on, and Shirai targeted an arm. Shirai went to work on the arm, including a shoulde breaker spot on the apron. The match went through another picture-and-picture commercial break. 

The show returned from the break with Ripley giving Shirai a superplex as the momentum had shifted in the match. Ripley kept selling her shoulder, but she was still in control. Ripley applied her inverted cloverleaf submission hold, and she turned it into a giant swing. Shirai managed to reach the bottom rope to break the hold.

Shirai countered the Rip Tide, and Shirai locked in a cross armbreaker. Ripley got a rope break. Shirai with a Tiger Feint Kick, and then she delivered a missile dropkick for a near fall.

Barrett on commentary said "this entire audience is on the their feet." Well, the live crowd has no seats. So they sort of have to remain standing during the show. [Insert Toru Yano shrug.]

Shirai missed a moonsault, and Ripley hit her with a lariat for another near fall. Shirai again countered the Rip Tide, and she spiked Ripley with a DDT. 

Ripley was on the apron when Shirai went for a sunset flip powerbomb. Ripley tried to block it to no avail. Shirai powerbombed Ripley through an announce desk. Ripley teased a countout, but she managed to break the count.

Soon as Ripley got back into the ring, Shirai came off the top rope with a moonsault. Shriai then covered Ripley for a pinfall to retain the title.

Finn Balor Speaks; Undisputed Era Returns

NXT Champion Finn Balor entered the ring for a promo. He congratulated Shirai on her win, as she has just left the ring. Balor said he broke his jaw in two places. Now he has three plates in his jaw that say he is a "bad son of a..." Before Balor could finish his curse word, Pat McAfee and company interrupted him. 

McAfee said Balor is in their house now, and McAfee continued to brag about all of the people in NXT they took out since Balor was away. McAfee and his heel faction surrounded Balor, and McAfee told Balor to hand over the title.

Balor said when the cat is away the mice will play. The cat is back, and look what he dragged in...

Undisputed Era made a surprise return, and they were in full force. Adam Cole was back alongside Kyle O'Reilly, Bobby Fish & Roderick Strong. They rushed the ring for a melee with McAfee, Pete Dunne, Oney Lorcan & Danny Burch.

Cole laid out McAfee with a kick at ringside. The brawling continued as the show went off the air. Looks like they'll settle this in War Games.