WWE NXT Results: A video kicks off the show highlighting Kyle O’Reilly winning the NXT Gauntlet Eliminator to become the #1 Contender to Finn Bálor’s NXT Championship. Candice LeRae also won a Women’s Battle Royal to become the #1 Contender to Io Shirai’s NXT Women’s Championship.
Shotzi Blackheart vs. Dakota Kai w/ Raquel Gonzalez
They talk trash to each other. Kai kicks her away, but Blackheart fights back. Blackheart applies a waistlock, but Kai takes her down. Kai hits the ropes for a kick, but Blackheart avoids it and rolls her up for a two count. They trade pins for two counts. Blackheart hits an inverted atomic drop before welcoming her to the ball pit and hitting the double leg drop to the midsection. Blackheart takes her down with arm whips and an arm breaker. Blackheart kicks away at her before pinning her for a two count. Kai sends her into the ropes, but Blackheart hangs on and throws Kai down. Blackheart then applies a deathlock. Kai fights out, but Blackheart knocks her back. Kai punches her back and chokes her with her boot. Kai takes her down and continues to dig her boot into Blackheart’s face. Kai hits a suplex for a two count.
Kai attacks her in the corner before placing her into the ropes and digging her knee into her face. Kai charges, but Blackheart hits a drop-toe-hold into the ropes. Blackheart hits the ropes, but Raquel Gonzalez gets on the apron to distract her. Kai quickly hits a distracted Blackheart with a backbreaker for a two count.
We come back from the break to see Blackheart jump over Kai and hit a dropkick into the corner. Blackheart avalanches her and throws her down. Blackheart follows up with a facebuster and lets out a primal yell. Blackheart viciously knees her in the face and hits a spinning forearm. Blackheart takes her down into the ropes with an enzuigiri. Blackheart hits a wild cannonball splash into Kai against the ropes. Blackheart hits a chickenwing back suplex with a bridge for a near fall. Raquel Gonzalez looks worries.
Blackheart charges Kai in the corner, but Kai hits a double stomp out of the corner. Kai hits a sit-out hip toss for a two count. Kai looks frustrated. Kai lifts Blackheart up, but Blackheart slides off. Blackheart puts her on the apron and goes for a shoulder, but Kai moves and kicks her in the face. Blackheart quickly kicks Kai down as well. They’re fighting on the apron before Kai hits a scorpion kick. Blackheart blocks a pump kick and kicks her in the back of the head. Blackheart then hits Shiranui on the apron and spikes herself on her head! Wow!
The referee is checking on both women. Blackheart hit the move and took the worst of it. Replays show she landed directly on her head on the apron… the hardest part of the ring. Blackheart somehow gets in the ring and hits the ropes, but Gonzalez sweeps the feet. Rhea Ripley runs down and tackles Gonzalez. The referees pull Ripley away. In the ring, Blackheart avoids a running big boot in the corner and rolls her up for the win!
Winner by Pinfall: Shotzi Blackheart
Tom Phillips interviews NXT Cruiserweight Champion Santos Escobar and Isaiah “Swerve” Scott, both shown on split screen. Scott says he’s the better competitor because Escobar has had to go into his bag of tricks to beat him. It hasn’t been a fair match. Escobar says when they face on Sunday for the title, it’ll be a fair match. What Scott calls a bag of tricks is a century of tradition he’ll bury Scott in. Scott says he’d like to see him try.
Kyle O’Reilly’s Prime Target will be shown next.
A promo for the mysterious person returning at NXT TakeOver 31 is shown again.
Video: Kyle O’Reilly’s “Prime Target” profile heading into NXT TakeOver 31
Kyle O’Reilly will go face-to-face with NXT Champion Finn Bálor later tonight with Shawn Michaels as the host.
Tegan Nox has suffered a torn ACL, as was announced today.
Sarah Schreiber catches up with Johnny Gargano and Candice LeRae backstage. LeRae says it’s unfortunate that Nox tore her ACL. Gargano says if you break his TV, you get your ACL torn. Tonight, the power couple is teaming up. LeRae says it starts tonight and will finish on Sunday. They send Schreiber off and sarcastically tell her she did a good job.
Cameron Grimes makes his entrance. Grimes says he’s not in a good mood tonight. He had it all going until the Gauntlet Eliminator Match. Who had that idea anyway? It couldn’t be Mr. William Regal. He’ll get himself going and says he’ll make a match called the Cameron Grimes Invitational Stepping Stones to the Moon Match. Grimes has handpicked all his opponents, starting with Joey Pistachio, an NCAA champion in the 85 pound weight class.
Cameron Grimes vs. Joey Pistachio
Pistachio gets in the ring, and Grimes immediately hits him with a Cave In for the win. Grimes pins him with a foot on his chest while posing.
Winner by Pinfall: Cameron Grimes
Grimes says that was tough, so it’s time for Joey Strong. Strong is thrown out onto the stage by Ridge Holland. Holland annihilates Strong and throws him off the stage. Grimes says he thinks Holland is great, but he’s not part of this invitational. Holland gets in the ring and head-butts Grimes down.
Cameron Grimes vs. Ridge Holland
Holland hits a head-and-arm suplex as the bell rings and punches away at Grimes. Holland stomps away at Grimes until the referee disqualifies him.
Winner by Disqualification: Cameron Grimes
Grimes falls out of the ring in a broken heap. Holland wildly looks down at him and walks off.
Sarah Schreiber is backstage with Austin Theory. She asks him about his struggles. Theory says last week’s match against Damian Priest never should have happened. He should have been in the Gauntlet Eliminator Match that Kyle O’Reilly won. That’s why he wanted this interview. O’Reilly waited 15 years for a shot. That’s more than half of Austin Theory’s life. Theory was on WrestleMania at 22. O’Reilly should catch up to him.
Video: Kushida talks about the sacrifices he has made to be great in the ring and get title opportunities. Velveteen Dream took that away from him and will pay on Sunday. Kushida is vicious.
Kushida will be in action, next.
Kushida vs. Tony Nese
The bell rings, and Kushida drops Nese with a big kick. Kushida kicks away at Nese and sends him into the ropes. Nese holds on and elbows him in the throat. Nese talks trash and leaps over the top rope to hit Kushida with a slingshot neck snapper. Nese yells at him at ringside, but Kushida sends him into the ring post. Kushida gets him in the ring and kicks away at the arm. Nese fights back with a pumphandle slam attempt, but Kushida counters into an arm breaker. Kushida grabs the arm and drives the arm and shoulder into the canvas again. Kushida holds the arms and viciously stomps away at Nese’s chest. Kushida applies the Hoverboard Lock for the win.
Winner by Submission: Kushida
Kushida stands in the ring celebrating when the lights go purple. Velveteen Dream appears on the screen. When he shows up on Sunday, the spotlight will be too bright for Kushida. Dream always puts his best performances on in the spotlight. Dream says he’ll see him on Sunday. Kushida looks intense.
Cameron Grimes is backstage holding a towel to his eye and is throwing a temper tantrum. All of a sudden he turns to see Dexter Lumis. Grimes asks if he knows where Mr. Regal is. Lumis says nothing. Grimes calls him a “freak” and walks off.
Adam Cole is in the ring and doesn’t look happy. For three years, the Undisputed ERA has been on NXT. They fulfilled their prophecy and won all the titles. Everyone knew when you messed with the Undisputed ERA, you were done. Now they’ve lost all their titles and people think they can say whatever they want about UE. Nothing has changed. They’re the same team that won the first WarGames match in NXT History. Austin Theory thinks he can talk trash about Kyle O’Reilly. Now he can bring his ass out here.
Austin Theory walks out and won’t come to the ring. Cole says he can bring his stupid face down to the ring and take the beating or he can stand there and the UE can beat him down and make him wish he chose the first option. Theory gets in the ring.
Adam Cole vs. Austin Theory
The bell rings, and Cole viciously attacks Theory and chops the chest. Cole stomps Theory down and kicks him in the chest. Cole boots him in the face and talks some trash. Cole connects with a neckbreaker and stands over him. Cole sends him into the ropes, but Theory hangs on and gets out of the ring. Theory goes to walk off, but Cole grabs him and hits a pump kick that absolutely floors him. Cole gets in the ring to reset the count. Cole then sends Theory into the steel ring steps. Cole gets Theory in the ring. Theory grabs at him, but Cole kicks him in the head. Cole hits a hangman’s neckbreaker for a near fall. Tom Phillips astutely calls it a “Rude Awakening for Theory.” Cole connects with a snap suplex and shouts that Theory picked the wrong guy. Cole puts him in the corner, wraps the knee around the middle rope, and dropkicks him. Theory falls and stretches his knee. Cole applies a chin lock and really cinches it in. Theory fights up and forearms Cole. Theory hits the ropes, but Cole takes him down with a back elbow. Cole knees Theory in the midsection and puts him in the corner. Cole forearms him in the corner, but Theory reverses a whip to the opposite corner. Cole drops him on the apron, but Theory shoulders him back and hits a Rolling Thunder Dropkick for a two count.
We come back from the break to see Theory kicking away at Cole. Theory hits a standing moonsault for a near fall. Cole fights back and hits a clothesline. Cole hits a back elbow followed by a pump kick. Cole grabs a waistlock, but Theory gets out. Cole stuns him with a shot to the head and hits a backstabber for a near fall.
Cole lifts Theory up on his shoulders, but Theory elbows him in the head a few times. Cole hits him with a pump kick and follows up with an ushigoroshi for a near fall. Cole casually goes to the second rope. Theory grabs the ankle, but Cole stomps the hand. Cole goes for a Panama Sunrise, but Theory hits a back body drop. Cole tries to pull him down, but Theory kicks him in the back of the head. Theory hits a Blue Thunder Bomb for a near fall.
They trade punches before Theory hits a back elbow. Theory hits the ropes and jumps, but Cole superkicks him out of midair. Theory is knocked out of the ring. Theory soon grabs Cole and snaps him off the ropes. Theory goes for a Rolling Thunder Dropkick, but Cole superkicks him. Cole hits a brainbuster over the knee and follows up with a Last Shot for the win.
Winner by Pinfall: Adam Cole
Adam Cole looks into the screen and says Kyle O’Reilly was born ready. On Sunday, he’ll shock the world, but not Adam Cole.
NXT North American Champion Damian Priest and NXT Women’s Champion Io Shirai are backstage.
Kayden Carter w/ Kacy Catanzaro vs. Xia Li
Carter quickly rolls Li up at the start of the match. They go back and forth before Li takes her down. Li pulls her down on the apron and slams her on the floor. Li stomps her getting in the ring for a near fall. Li knees away at Carter a few times for two count. Li covers two more times for the same result. Li knocks Carter back, but Carter elbows her in the head. Carter kicks her away and chops the chest. Li reverses a whip to the ropes and takes her down before kicking her in the face for a near fall. Carter ducks a clothesline, but Li comes back with a sunset flip for a two count. Carter finally rolls her up for the win.
Winner by Pinfall: Kayden Carter
Xia Li angrily shoves Carter down after she helps her up.
The face-to-face with NXT Champion Finn Bálor and Kyle O’Reilly is next. Shawn Michaels is hosting it.
Shawn Michaels is in the ring and introduces NXT Champion Finn Bálor and Kyle O’Reilly, the #1 Contender. They shake hands. Bálor says he respects Kyle O’Reilly as a competitor and is looking forward to facing him on Sunday. O’Reilly says the feeling is mutual.
Michaels says we should get to the heart of the matter. This is the best Bálor we’ve ever seen since he returned to NXT. Bálor is facing the best kept secret in all of wrestling in O’Reilly. How do you prepare for that? Bálor says he doesn’t think O’Reilly is a secret. Maybe the fringe fan doesn’t know him, but Bálor knows. The business watches Bálor because he knows the business. O’Reilly has proven himself as a tag team competitor in NXT. More importantly, he’s proven himself all over the world as a singles competitor.
O’Reilly says Bálor is so good at stroking his own ego. Bálor says he really thinks he can beat him. Bálor is a fighting champion defending the title even when it’s absolute certain defeat. Bálor asks if he’s going to show up with Undisputed ERA or like a man by himself. O’Reilly says he’s washing his hands of them. This Sunday isn’t about the Undisputed ERA. This is about Kyle O’Reily and his moment.
Michaels asks about apparent conflict in UE were O’Reilly to win the NXT Championship. O’Reilly says it’s a nonexistent issue. Cameron Grimes said he’s nothing like Adam Cole, and it’s true. He’s got freckles everywhere. Bálor says he’ll slap those freckles off his face. O’Reilly laughs. Bálor says he’s been doing this for 20 years. O’Reilly says it doesn’t matter. He’s been doing this for 15 years. What’s 5 more years? Every match since he’s got to NXT has been the biggest of his career. This one is the biggest of his life. Bálor says he needs to learn the difference between a main event for one night and a life altering main event. This tag team competitor will make it happen. Bálor says O’Reilly would have a shot at winning have a shot if it wasn’t facing him.
NXT North American Champion Damian Priest and NXT Women’s Champion Io Shirai battle Johnny Gargano and Candice LeRae, next.
The commentators run down Sunday’s NXT TakeOver 31 card.
Johnny Gargano and Candice LeRae vs. NXT North American Champion Damian Priest and NXT Women’s Champion Io Shirai
Priest and Shirai run down to the ring during their entrance and brawl with Gargano and LeRae. Gargano and LeRae angrily get out of the ring and accuse them of cheating.
They get in the ring, and the match begins. Gargano will start against Priest. Gargano ducks a lock up and punches Priest. Gargano ducks a spin kick, but Priest throws him to the corner. Gargano quickly jabs away at him, avoids a kick, and hits the ropes. Priest big boots him down and starts unloading on him in the corner with punches. Priest sends him hard into the corner and hits a sidewalk slam. LeRae talks trash to Priest and talks to her husband.
Priest tags Shirai in. LeRae must come in. LeRae talks trash to Shirai and punches her. They throw fists in the middle of the ring before LeRae knees her. LeRae puts her in the corner and charges, but Shirai counters her with a pendulum kick. Shirai goes to the top rope and jumps, but LeRae moves. LeRae rolls her up for a near fall. Shirai comes back with a flapjack and a low dropkick. Shirai goes to attack LeRae in the corner, but Gargano steps in the way. Priest kicks Gargano back and avalanches him with a back elbow. Shirai then hits LeRae with double knees in the corner. Gargano and LeRae get out of the ring to recover. Shirai then stands on Priest’s shoulders and leaps onto The Garganos!
We come back from the break to see LeRae applying a chin lock to Shirai. Shirai fights up, but LeRae clubs her down. During the commercial break, Shirai hit Gargano with a tiger feint kick. Gargano sacrificed himself for his wife. LeRae then hit her with a neckbreaker off the ropes. Back to live action, LeRae is talking trash. Shirai attacks and hits a German Suplex.
Priest tags in, so Gargano has to come in. Priest clotheslines him twice and kicks him in the back of the neck. Priest then hits another clothesline. Priest hits a leaping back elbow in the corner before hitting a Broken Arrow for a near fall. Priest goes for a Crucifix Powerbomb, but Gargano gets out. Gargano boots out and hits a spinning STO. Priest gets up and kicks, but Gargano hits an enzuigiri.
Shirai tags in and hits Gargano with a springboard dropkick. Shirai then attacks LeRae and goes for a tiger driver, but LeRae gets out. Shirai takes her down and applies a crossface. Gargano pulls Shirai off his wife. Priest runs up to him and goes for South of Heaven, but Gargano kicks him. Shirai then knocks Gargano off the apron. LeRae catches her with an inside cradle. LeRae takes her down and hits a senton to the back. LeRae goes for a springboard moonsault, but Shirai moves. Shirai hits a double-arm backbreaker and goes to the top rope. Gargano sends LeRae out of the ring. Priest hits a bell clap on Gargano and kicks him down. Shirai then hits Gargano with her Moonsault.
Priest tags in and goes for the Reckoning, but LeRae low blows him. The referee was dealing with Shirai. Gargano hits Priest with One Final Beat for the win!
Winners by Pinfall: Johnny Gargano and Candice LeRae
After the match, LeRae hits Shirai with a backstabber. The Garganos celebrate the success of the Gargano Way. Gargano grabs the North American Championship and the Women’s Championship. Gargano presents the Women’s Championship to his wife. They hold up the titles as the show comes to an end.