WWE NXT Report – 3/17/2021

Mar 17, 2021 - by Marc Middleton

– Tonight’s WWE NXT episode opens up on the USA Network with a video package of highlights from last week. We’re live from the Capitol Wrestling Center at the WWE Performance Center in Orlando, Florida as Vic Joseph welcomes us. Fans cheer from the crowd. Vic is joined at ringside by Wade Barrett and WWE Hall of Famer Beth Phoenix.

– We go right to the ring and NXT Champion Finn Balor is wrapping up his entrance. He says it’s St. Patrick’s Day 2021 and he’s still the champion. He names some of his recent victims and says there’s only one left – Karrion Kross. Balor has been waiting for this one and at NXT “Takeover: Stand and Deliver” his time is up. The match has been confirmed for Takeover. The music interrupts and out comes Kross with Scarlett.

Kross and Scarlett march right to the ring. Kross says this entire situation was never going to happen until they settled their separate affairs, and now it’s them two, one-on-one, no one else involved. Otherwise this confrontation is meaningless because here in NXT, the fans need to know who the real champion is around here. Kross says he and Balor need to know it, the entire world needs to know it. Balor says everyone wants to be champion until the real champ shows up. He says Kross looks and talks like a champion but the problem is, Balor is the real champion and Kross doesn’t have what it takes to beat him in the main event. Kross promises Balor will know exactly what it feels like when he squeezes the oxygen out of his skull and chokes him out. Balor steps closer and says Kross will know what it feels like to choke in the main event of Takeover.

They stare each other down in the middle of the ring now. Scarlett says she’s already seen this, in the Tarot cards. This right here… two champions, both draped in gold, the world in awe, it all happens for a reason, she says while looking at both of them.

NXT Tag Team Champions Oney Lorcan and Danny Burch interrupt from the stage, walking down the ramp now. They go on about how Balor should be facing the best technical wrestler ever, Pete Dunne. Fans boo. They know Dunne can beat Balor, and they know he can beat Kross too. They say sooner or later, Dunne will become NXT Champion. Scarlett says there are moments in time, like this, that lead us to an inevitable future, moments like this where Lorcan and Burch put their titles on the line against Kross and Balor. Fans cheer this idea. Scarlett exits the ring now, approaching Lorcan and Burch. She rubs them over and gets closer, enticing them and teasing them to hype them up with confidence. She says they wouldn’t stand the word coward being associated with them. Burch says she’s right, they’re the champs and tonight they will defend against Kross and Balor. Kross looks on while Balor smiles. Burch and Lorcan back up the ramp to the back as a “NXT!” chant breaks out. Scarlett says this is like she said, every moment happens for a reason and you can’t change fate. Kross joins her at ringside as Balor looks on. Kross’ music starts back up as he heads to the back with Scarlett.

– We go to the announcers to hype tonight’s show.

Dexter Lumis vs. Austin Theory

We go right back to the ring and out first comes Dexter Lumis as Alicia Taylor does the introductions. We see Austin Theory backstage now, talking to NXT North American Champion Johnny Gargano and Candice LeRae, who are at home. Indi Hartwell appears to be with them. Gargano sent Theory some ring gear for tonight and says it’s time for him to face his fears alone. They talk Theory up and he says he’s got this. We go back to the ring and out comes Theory as Lumis looks on. Fans boo. Theory is wearing ring gear similar to Gargano’s recent X-Men-inspired attire.

The bell rings and they go at it to start. Theory tosses Lumis out to the floor in front of the announcers, slamming his face into the table several times. We go to a picture-in-picture commercial break as Lumis fights back and sends Theory into the ring.

Theory fought back during the break and turned it around, hitting a big suplex in the middle of the ring. We come back and Theory hits a big fall-away slam for a close 2 count. Lumis kicks out and goes right into his Silence submission but Theory kicks away. Theory scoops Lumis and slams him in the middle of the ring. Theory kneels down and talks some trash, then drops a big elbow for a 2 count.

The announcers confirm Kross and Balor vs. Lorcan and Burch for the NXT Tag Team Titles tonight. Lumis counters a move and they tangle. Lumis catches Theory with a big Spinebuster in mid-air. Fans chant for Lumis as he makes a comeback. Lumis with a big uppercut and corner clothesline, then a bulldog. Lumis ducks a shot and slams Theory again. Lumis kips up and drops another big elbow for a 2 count. Theory counters a suplex and rolls Lumis for 2. Lumis with a big uppercut in mid-air. Lumis with a slingshot suplex using the top rope. Lumis goes to the top but has to roll through as Theory moves.

Lumis crawls to Theory but Theory isn’t afraid as he rocks Lumis. Theory with a Ushigoroshi for another close 2 count. Fans chant “Lumis!” now. Theory looks to capitalize but Lumis powers out. They trade strikes. Lumis with a big clothesline in the middle of the ring. Fans rally for Lumis again. He offers his hand to help Theory up but Theory isn’t sure of it, bringing up how Lumis said bad things about him. He lets Lumis help him to his feet anyway.

Theory stares at Lumis and then hugs him. Theory knew Lumis never said those things. Lumis turns and goes for Silence but Theory fights him off. Theory says Gargano was right, Lumis is not The Way. Lumis counters the ATL and drops Theory with the sideslam. Lumis applies the Silence submission now and Theory fades out for the win.

Winner: Dexter Lumis

– After the match, Lumis sits up and stares out as the music hits.

– McKenzie Mitchell is backstage waiting for NXT General Manager William Regal for words on tonight’s big tag team main event. Tommaso Ciampa approaches and says Timothy Thatcher isn’t here yet because he figures Imperium didn’t like his answer last week. Ciampa asks Mitchell to go find Marcel Barthel and Fabian Aichner, ask them if they’ve seen Alexander Wolfe lately. He bets they will say no. He wants her to then tell them that later tonight when the bell rings, only one will be left standing and they will know they messed up. Ciampa walks off.

– We see Adam Cole walking backstage. Back to commercial.

– Back from the break and Adam Cole is in the ring. He says Kyle O’Reilly made the biggest mistake of his life by costing him the NXT Title last week. He says before last week he wasn’t really mad at Kyle and didn’t really need him. Cole goes on about how O’Reilly is jealous of him because he will never be as successful as Cole. He congratulates O’Reilly on signing his own death warrant. Fans continue to boo. Cole doesn’t give a damn if O’Reilly is medically cleared or not because he’s not leaving until he comes out so they can finish this once and for all.

NXT General Manager William Regal comes out and says because of last week’s altercation, O’Reilly further damaged his neck and will be out for even longer. Regal promises Kyle isn’t here tonight because he’s been banned from the building. O’Reilly interrupts on the big screen. He will be back soon. He finds it funny how upset Cole is over losing the title match last week. Kyle is a patient guy but when it comes to Cole, he can’t wait. He will not rest until he ends Cole like Cole tried to end his career. Kyle goes on about how they were friends for 11 years. Kyle knows where Cole lives, hangs out and buys his video games, but he’s not sure what he will have to do, but he’s willing to do it. That sounds like a threat because it is. Kyle disappears on the big screen. Cole tells Regal to listen him. He’s upset about Kyle’s threat. Cole says O’Reilly won’t hurt him if he finds him first. Cole storms off to the back as fans boo.

– We get a video package on showing what happened with the new NXT Women’s Tag Team Titles last week. Champions Ember Moon and Shotzi Blackheart are with McKenzie in the back now. They talk about how big the win was for them until The Robert Stone Brand interrupts – Stone, Jessi Kamea and Aliyah. They talk some trash and issue a challenge for next week. The champs accept the challenge and knock Stone for how his suit looks.

– A red Mustang pulls up in the back parking lot and out hops NXT Cruiserweight Champion Jordan Devlin from NXT UK. We go to commercial.

Legado del Fantasma vs. Breezango

Back from the break and out comes Legado del Fantasma – Joaquin Wilde and Raul Mendoza with NXT Cruiserweight Champion Santos Escobar. Fans boo them as they head to the ring. Out next comes Breezango’s Tyler Breeze and Fandango.

Fandango starts off with Mendoza and works him over, chopping away. Mendoza fights back but gets dropped on his face. Wilde runs in but gets dropped by Fandango. Fandango drops Mendoza over the top rope and in comes Breeze for a double team attack for a 2 count. Breeze woks on Mendoza now. Mendoza nails a big kick to the face and in comes Wilde off a tag. Wilde takes control of Breeze and hits a low crossbody for a 2 count.

Wilde runs into boots in the corner and goes down. Breeze pulls Wilde to the ring post but he scrambles away. Breeze takes Wilde to the corner and tags in Fandango for a dropkick. Wilde kicks out at 2. Wilde with a jawbreaker to get an opening. Wilde works Fandango over and talks some trash now. Wilde mocks Fandango and grounds him to boos now. Wilde takes it to the corner and in comes Mendoza. Mendoza goes to work on Fandango as Escobar watches. Fandango whips Mendoza hard and goes to the top but Mendoza cuts him off. Fandango sends Mendoza to the mat. Wilde distracts from the apron, allowing Mendoza to kick him from the top to the floor at ringside. Mendoza tags Wilde back in as we go to commercial.

Back from the break and Fandango is going at it with Mendoza. Wilde and Breeze tag in at the same time. Breeze unloads and also knocks Mendoza to the floor. Breeze dropkicks Wilde and decks him in the corner. Breeze with more offense and another dropkick as Escobar looks on. Breeze clotheslines Mendoza to the floor now as he approaches. Breeze turns around and drops Wilde for a single-leg Crab.

Wilde finally gets closer to the bottom rope to break the hold but Breeze pulls him back to the middle of the ring. The hold is countered but Breeze ends Wilde over the top rope to the floor. Fandango leaps off the apron to nail Mendoza at ringside but he lands bad. Mendoza immediately stops Breezango from pinning Wilde in the ring. Fans rally as Breeze grabs Wilde for the Unprettier but it’s blocked. Breeze doesn’t see the tag as Mendoza comes in and they double team him. Mendoza covers for the pin to win right as Fandango made it back into the ring.

Winners: Legado del Fantasma

– After the match, the music hits as Wilde and Mendoza celebrate. Escobar takes a headset from the announcers and says NXT belongs to Legado del Fantasma. He goes on wondering where Jordan Devlin is, saying he is the true NXT Cruiserweight Champion. The music hits and out comes Devlin with his NXT Cruiserweight Title belt. He raises it in the air for a pop.

Devlin enters the ring and stares Legado del Fantasma down. Escobar is standing on the announce table now while Wilde and Mendoza stand guard. Devlin says Escobar has been running around for a year saying he’s this and that, but he wants him to look into the ring at what a real champion looks like. Devlin says he didn’t need to sneak attack,he told the whole world he was coming to call Escobar out, and he didn’t need two stooges. Wilde and Mendoza approach the ring apron but Escobar tells them to stop because he’s got this. Escobar heads into the ring now. Devlin warns him that The Ace is back in town, and he can put his little replica title in the trash because the guy he was filling in for is back. Escobar says he has re-defined what it means to be a cruiserweight. Fans boo. Escobar says Devlin is history. He doesn’t like the idea of filling in for Devlin. He goes on about making history time and time again.

Escobar says Devlin still has that title because everyone forgot about it. He tells Devlin to wrap up his business in the UK and come back to face him, on the one stage big enough for The Emperor of Lucha Libre – the “Takeover: Stand and Deliver” event. Escobar says they will settle this once and for all. They face off and Devlin stuns Escobar with a big headbutt. Devlin then drops Escobar on his head and retreats to the stage as Wilde and Mendoza rush in to help Escobar, who is bleeding from the mouth. Devlin raises the title on the stage and heads to the back as Escobar seethes in the ring.

– McKenzie stops Adam Cole backstage and asks him about Kyle O’Reilly’s earlier comments. An angry Cole says he’s going to end O’Reilly and that is not undisputed, that is a promise. Cole storms off.

– Still to come, Zoey Stark vs. Dakota Kai. Back to commercial.

– Back from the break and we get a “coming soon” vignette for Sarray. This is the top Japanese talent formerly known as Sareee.

Zoey Stark vs. Dakota Kai

We go back to the ring and out first comes Zoey Stark. Dakota Kai is out next with Raquel Gonzalez.

The bell rings and they size each other up. They lock up and Stark takes it to the corner, then back out and they go to the mat. They stay locked up on the mat, going back to their feet as fans rally. The lengthy lock up continues until they trade arm holds. Kai works on the arm now but Stark turns it right around.

They tangle some more and Stark grounds Kai as fans do dueling chants. Kai finally fights up and out, rocking Stark. Stark comes back with a big clothesline for a 2 count. Kai fights back and drops Stark for a pin attempt. Kai mounts Stark now with right hands and a 2 count. Kai whips Stark hard into the corner and she goes down. Kai with a running boot to the face as fans boo. Kai covers for 2.

Kai grounds Stark again with a body scissors, talking trash and trying to pin her. Stark ends up fighting back and sending Kai to the floor with a high risk move. Stark stands tall and yells out on the apron as Gonzalez checks on Kai at ringside. Fans chant “NXT!” as we go back to commercial.

Back from the break and Kai slams Stark on her head, mounting her with more offense for another 2 count. Stark mounts offense for a comeback now, unloading on Kai as fans cheer her on. Kai side-steps a big kick but Stark comes right back with a half and half suplex. Stark charges with a big knee to the jaw but Kai kicks out at 2. Kai goes to the floor and leaves Stark draping over the edge of the apron, face-down.

Kai delivers a big kick to the head. Stark looks knocked out but she fights back on the apron. Kai avoids a German suplex on the apron. They tangle and Kai gets sent back in the ring. Stark flies in but Kai superkicks her in the jaw. Kai with a running kick in the corner for another close 2 count. They trade several pin attempts. More back and forth now. Kai ends up hitting a big Scorpion Kick for the pin to win.

Winner: Dakota Kai

– After the match, the music hits as Kai stands tall and Gonzalez joins her. Fans boo and we go to replays. Stark sits up in the corner as Kai taunts her. The music interrupts and out comes NXT Women’s Champion Io Shirai to a big pop. Shirai enters the ring and briefly stares at Kai before walking right past her. She steps to Gonzalez and says she wants Gonzalez. She shoves a contract in Raquel’s chest and then leaves, stopping to help Stark out of the ring. Kai and Gonzalez look on.

– McKenzie stops William Regal backstage for his comments on Jordan Devlin and Santos Escobar but a crew member runs up and says something has happened to Adam Cole. They rush out to the parking lot as we go to commercial break.

– Back from the break and we get a DQ-sponsored video on MSK. The Grizzled Young Veterans are backstage now. They send a warning to MSK over last week’s stunt and say they will not let this go. Zack Gibson sells a hand injury. They go on with threats to MSK and say they are soon to be NXT’s #1 tag team.

Marcel Barthel vs. Tommaso Ciampa

We go back to the ring and out comes Imperium – Marcel Barthel with Fabian Aichner. Tommaso Ciampa suddenly smacks Barthel with a big steel chair shot out of nowhere as he’s entering the ring. He then takes out Aichner with the chair.

The bell rings as Ciampa enters. They go at it to start as fans are cheering Ciampa on. Alexander Wolfe is nowhere to be seen, same with Timothy Thatcher. Ciampa and Barthel continue to trade holds. Ciampa with big chops now. Barthel takes it to the ropes and the referee backs them off. Barthel grounds Ciampa with a headlock now as fans boo and rally. More back and forth now. Ciampa lands stiff shots. Barthel unloads on Ciampa but gets rocked in mid-air coming off the turnbuckles.

Ciampa clotheslines Barthel to the apron. Ciampa goes for the Willow’s Bell draping DDT but Aichner grabs Barthel’s leg to save him. Ciampa swings at Aichner but misses. This allows Barthel to turn it back around. Barthel dropkicks Ciampa as Aichner looks on. Barthel uses the middle rope on Ciampa, talking trash into the camera as fans boo. It sounds like he was telling Ciampa or maybe Thatcher to step in line. Ciampa fights back with big strikes in the middle of the ring now.

Ciampa with two stiff clotheslines. Ciampa knocks Aichner off the apron with a running knee, then hits a German on Barthel. Ciampa hits Willow’s Bell on Barthel for the pin to win.

Winner: Tommaso Ciampa

– After the match, Ciampa recovers and stands tall as his music hits. The Imperium music hits and the leader, NXT UK Champion WALTER, is on the stage now. WALTER marches to the ring as Ciampa looks on. WALTER hits the apron and Ciampa invites him in. Ciampa suddenly turns around to fight Aichner and Barthel off but they beat him down as fans boo. WALTER enters the ring and levels Ciampa with a big powerbomb as the boos pick up. WALTER, Aichner and Barthel stand tall over Ciampa and pose as their music starts back up.

– The camera cuts backstage to police with Adam Cole in handcuffs. William Regal approaches and Cole is yelling about Kyle O’Reilly trying to run him off the road. O’Reilly is handcuffed in the back of a second police cruiser. Cole is ranting at O’Reilly and threatening him as Regal talks to police officers.

– We briefly go to the announcers and then backstage to LA Knight. He cuts a quick promo to hype up his debut and then walks off. Back to commercial.

LA Knight vs. August Grey

Back from the break and out comes LA Knight to make his in-ring debut. August Grey is already in the ring.

The bell rings and Knight goes to work on Grey. Grey eats a big back elbow and goes down. Fans chant for Knight and he uses the middle rope on Grey. Knight with a running knee to the head on the apron. Knight launches himself in from the apron with a flying shoulder. Knight scoops Grey but Grey counters. Knight misses a clothesline but then catches Grey in mid-air for a big powerslam.

Knight stands tall and shows off some. He stops when he sees Bronson Reed come to the stage with the blue jacket he wore last week. Reed tries to put the jacket on but it doesn’t fit so he rips it trying to wear it. Grey rolls a distracted Knight from behind for a 2 count. They trade big strikes now with Grey rocking Knight.

Grey with a jawbreaker and a swinging neckbreaker. Grey goes to the top and leaps with a big crossbody but Knight moves and he lands hard. Knight mounts Grey with aggressive right hands. Knight with kicks and a modified Facebuster for the pin to win.

Winner: LA Knight

– After the match, Knight makes his exit as his music hits, refusing to let the referee raise his arm. We go to replays. Knight picks up his damaged jacket on the stage and throws it back down. He seethes and walks off.

– McKenzie is backstage with Raquel Gonzalez, who has her contract for the match with NXT Women’s Champion Io Shirai. Dakota Kai walks in and congratulates her. She says they need to finish what they’ve started so William Regal has granted them a tag team match with Shirai and Zoey Stark for next week. Raquel wonders why she would do that when she can have Shirai in a title match any time she wants. Kai goes on about how they need to keep showing the NXT women’s tag team division that they are here to take charge. Gonzalez agrees and they are on the same page for next week.

– We see Karrion Kross and Finn Balor walking separately backstage for the main event. Back to commercial.

– Back from the break and we get a promo for tomorrow’s NXT UK episode on the WWE Network.

– We get a new vignette for Tian Sha – Xia Li, Boa and Mei Ling. Li speaks in Japanese and says resistance will not be tolerated, obstacles will be removed. That ends the promo. It looks like Ling may have been missing this week.

– William Regal is stopped by a camera man out in the parking lot. He’s furious over Kyle O’Reilly and Adam Cole. He hopes the police will drop their charges and if they do, he’s going to call them both to the Capitol Wrestling Center next week. Regal says he will have a solution to their situation. He walks off.

NXT Tag Team Titles Match: Karrion Kross and Finn Balor vs. Oney Lorcan and Danny Burch

We go back to the ring for tonight’s main event and out first comes Karrion Kross with Scarlett. NXT Champion Finn Balor is out next to join them in the ring. NXT Tag Team Champions Danny Burch and Oney Lorcan are already in the ring. We get formal ring introductions from Taylor.

Kross starts off with Lorcan and drops him with a shoulder. Kross with a big overhead throw. Kross growls at Lorcan in the corner. Lorcan is a bit worried. Burch tags in but Kross puts him right down on his face. Burch ducks a clothesline but Kross drops him with a shoulder. Kross runs into an elbow in the corner. Kross comes right back with a clothesline.

Balor applauds Kross. Kross lifts Burch in a bear hug in the middle of the ring now, wearing him down as Scarlett looks on. Kross tightens the hold and man-handles Burch some. Burch tries to fight out but Kross keeps the hold locked in. Burch with right hands to the face now but Kross tightens. Burch finally breaks the hug. Kross goes right back to a scoop slam in the middle of the ring. Kross stares Lorcan down.Kross goes for a suplex on Burch but Lorcan runs in and makes the save. The champs go for a double suplex but Kross reverses it and sends them flying.

Kross stands over Burch as the referee checks on him for a potential arm injury. Balor just stands there on the apron next to Kross. Kross looks down at Burch as we go to a picture-in-picture commercial. Balor tags in and goes at it with Lorcan now.

Back from the break and Lorcan decks Balor and tries to roll him but Balor kicks him in the jaw. Balor takes Lorcan back down by his arm now. Lorcan takes it to the corner and knees Balor in the gut. Lorcan slams Balor’s face into the turnbuckle and fights him off. Lorcan drops Balor off the ropes and works him over in the corner again. Lorcan stomps away while Balor is down in the corner now. Fans boo as Lorcan puts a boot to Balor’s face.

Lorcan with a suplex to Balor for a close 2 count. Lorcan grounds Balor now. We see a medic tending to Burch at ringside now. Lorcan drops Balor and continues to dominate him.

Kross stares Lorcan down as he continues to control Balor and fans boo. Lorcan stands tall while Balor sits on his knees. Balor rocks Lorcan with a big jawbreaker. Lorcan with an uppercut. Balor with an overhead kick for a pop. Balor reaches for a tag but Lorcan rushes and knocks Kross off the apron to the floor. Balor runs from corner to corner on Lorcan now. Balor drops Lorcan and hits a double stomp to the chest as fans cheer him on. Balor clotheslines Lorcan to the floor and follows. Balor with a Slingblade to Lorcan on the floor.

Balor looks over at Kross. Balor with a running dropkick to Lorcan on the floor now, but he knocks Lorcan into Scarlett. She goes down hard. Balor kicks Lorcan and rolls him back in the ring. Balor walks over to check on Scarlett. She’s down but she starts laughing now. Kross recovers and grabs Balor by his throat, ramming him back into the Plexiglas barrier over and over. Kross manhandles Balor and rolls him back in the ring. Lorcan immediately charges and hits the running uppercut on Balor for the pin to retain.

Winners: Oney Lorcan and Danny Burch

– After the bell, Kross comes right in and drops Lorcan with the Doomsday Saito suplex. Kross with a second Doomsday on Lorcan as fans cheer. Kross unloads on Balor in the corner now. Kross launches Balor to the mat with a Doomsday Saito now as fans cheer and boo. Kross grabs Balor and applies the choke from behind, putting him down on the mat in a daze. Scarlett enters the ring and joins Kross. She looks to be helping Balor up now. She stops and stares Balor in the eye as Kross comes from behind and levels him with the running forearm to the back of the head. The crowd goes wild with mixed reactions now.

Scarlett brings the NXT Title belt over and places it on Balor’s chest. She tells him that everything happens for a reason and he can’t escape fate. The music hits and the spotlight shines on Kross and Scarlett as they stand tall together in the middle of the ring, standing over Balor. Kross taunts Balor with a “Tick, Tock…” over and over as NXT goes off the air.

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