WWE NXT Report – 8/31/2021

Aug 31, 2021 - by Marc Middleton

– Tonight’s WWE NXT episode opens up live on a tape delay from the Capitol Wrestling Center at the WWE Performance Center in Orlando, Florida as Vic Joseph welcomes us. He’s joined at ringside by Wade Barrett and WWE Hall of Famer Beth Phoenix.

Mandy Rose vs. Sarray

We go right to the ring as Mandy Rose makes her way out with Gigi Dolin and Jacy Jayne. Alicia Taylor does the ring introductions. This is Rose’s first match since returning to NXT from RAW earlier this summer. Out next comes Sarray to a pop.

The bell rings and Rose isn’t interested in a handshake. Fans do dueling chants as Rose plays the heel and Sarray plays to the crowd. They lock up and Rose takes it to the corner as the referee counts. Rose backs off and taunts Sarray, then dodges a clothesline. Rose plays some games and stalls. Sarray grabs from behind but gets elbowed and then slammed to the mat. Rose taunts Sarray and rubs her face into the mat.

Rose does push-ups on Sarray’s back as fans boo. Sarray rocks Rose and ends up nailing a dropkick. Rose blocks a Fisherman’s suplex. Sarray keeps trying and hits it this time for a close 2 count. Sarray ducks a clothesline and hits a spin kick for a 2 count. Sarray goes to the top for a crossbody but Rose moves and she lands hard. Rose mounts Sarray with lefts and rights now as fans boo.

Dolin and Jayne look on as Rose works Sarray over in the corner, going from corner to corner. Rose stomps away now to keep Sarray down. Rose drops Sarray with another kick in the corner. Rose with a suplex for a 2 count in the middle of the ring. Rose grounds Sarray with a knee to the back of the neck now.

Sarray fights up and out but Rose catches her with a fall-away slam for boos from the crowd. Rose shows off some to boos from the crowd. Rose grounds Sarray with another submission as fans do dueling chants. Sarray tries to counter and finally turns it around with a submission of her own. Rose breaks the hold with a thumb to the eye and the referee doesn’t catch it. Sarray drops Rose with a forearm. Sarray with more big strikes now, dropping Rose. Rose comes back but Sarray dropkicks her. Sarray delivers another big dropkick to send a stunned Rose to the floor through the ropes.

Dolin and Jayne check on Rose now, screaming and tending to her. They grab a towel and cover Rose’s face with it, yelling back at Sarray and the referee. They escort Rose to the ramp while keeping her face covered with the towel. The referee calls the match via count out.

Winner by Count Out: Sarray

– After the match, Rose’s face is still covered as the music hits. We go to replays with Sarray celebrating.

– Tommaso Ciampa is backstage in his chair. Timothy Thatcher’s empty chair is next to him. Ciampa will face Ridge Holland tonight. He addresses Holland, Pete Dunne, Oney Lorcan and Danny Burch. Ciampa says Holland did what he was expected to do last week, and he won’t cry over spilled milk, but putting Thatcher on the shelf doesn’t sit well with him. He says they are trying to run through NXT but he is NXT, and tonight he fights for his home, and his family, and he dedicates this ass whooping to Toothless Timmy. He goes on and says they picked a fight with the wrong man. Ciampa warns that a motivated Ciampa is a scary Ciampa. He storms off and sends his chair flying.

– Still to come, Duke Hudson vs. Kyle O’Reilly. Back to commercial.

Duke Hudson vs. Kyle O’Reilly

Back from the break and out first comes Duke Hudson. Kyle O’Reilly is out next.

The bell rings and they go at it. Hudson takes it to the corner but O’Reilly unloads and turns it around with lefts and rights for a pop. Hudson easily drops Kyle with a single right hand. Kyle dodges a big boot. Hudson rocks Kyle but Kyle jumps on his back with a Sleeper hold. Hudson slams Kyle to the mat with ease.

Kyle grabs Hudson with a Heel Hook submission but Hudson fights and breaks free, then launches Kyle into the turnbuckles. Hudson with a shot to the ribs. Kyle keeps trying to fight but Hudson overpowers. More back and forth now. They fight up from the mat and tangle for an abdominal stretch. Hudson ends up getting the upperhand and launches Kyle chest-first into the turnbuckles. Hudson stomps Kyle while he’s down. Kyle keeps fighting but Hudson keeps control. Kyle with a knee to the gut. He charges again but Hudson catches him with a big knee to the ribs. Kyle goes down hard and fans boo as Hudson stands tall. We go to a picture-in-picture break.

Back from the break and Hudson has Kyle grounded in the middle of the ring. We see how Hudson delivered a big backbreaker during the break. Hudson keeps control now. Kyle looks to mount some offense on a comeback but Hudson rocks him with a stiff elbow. Kyle lands on his feet off a counter. Kyle unloads with kicks and a sweep now. Kyle with more focus on the leg, including a Dragonscrew Leg Whip as Hudson yells out.

More back and forth now. Hudson runs into boots in the corner. Kyle counters and catches Hudson in a Guillotine, bringing him down to one knee in the middle of the ring. Fans pop for O’Reilly as he brings Hudson down to the mat. Hudson powers up out of nowhere, then rams Kyle into the turnbuckles to break free. Hudson goes on and levels Kyle in the corner with a clothesline, then delivers an overhead belly-to-belly suplex. Hudson covers for a close 2 count.

Hudson sells a hurt knee but keeps control, dropping Kyle on the apron with a big right hand. Hudson misses a running big boot. They go on and Kyle ends up nailing the flying top rope knee drop to the back of Hudson’s knee. Kyle applies the Heel Hook submission for the win.

Winner: Kyle O’Reilly

– After the match, O’Reilly stands tall as the music hits. We go to replays.

– We see Ilja Dragunov walking backstage. Back to commercial.

– Back from the break and Alicia introduces the new NXT UK Champion Ilja Dragunov. Out he comes as the announcers talk about the recent Takeover 36 win over WALTER. Dragunov is limping around the ring as he plays to the crowd for a pop.

The music stops and a “you deserve it!” chant starts up. Dragunov says before he goes back home he wanted us to see he’s still alive. Fans chant “please don’t go!” now. Dragunov says he’s not just alive, he feels more alive than he’s ever felt before. He feels like a man who just survived the biggest, most intense battle of his life.

Dragunov says he likes it here, he really does, and we will see him again soon, but now he has to show the world what it takes to be the NXT UK Champion – the will, the passion, the soul, the struggle. Who is willing to go through all of that to take this away from me? Dragunov raises the title to a pop. Dragunov says we all saw that The Ring General has fallen. Long live the Czar! The music starts back up as Dragunov plays to the crowd.

– We go to Arash Markazi, who is sitting down with Kay Lee Ray, asking about her appearance at Takeover 36 when she confronted NXT Women’s Champion Raquel Gonzalez. KLR says she makes an impact wherever she goes, she thrives in the biggest moments, so she chose one of the biggest moments to let everyone know she is here in the United States. She says the NXT women’s division needs a new top player, someone to inject life into it, which is why NXT General Manager William Regal phoned her… KLR is interrupted and asked about some of the many NXT Superstars in the women’s division. KLR runs them down and says she is here because Mr. Regal knows exactly what she is capable of – anything she wants. She touts her historic title reign in NXT UK, and says now she will dominate in the USA. We go to commercial.

– Back from the break and McKenzie Mitchell is backstage with 2021 Breakout Tournament winner Carmelo Hayes. Hayes says he has the golden ticket and can go against any champion he wants. He talks about possibly going against NXT Cruiserweight Champion Kushida, NXT North American Champion Isaiah “Swerve” Scott or even NXT Champion Samoa Joe. Elektra Lopez interrupts and says the North American Title is for Santos Escobar to win, not Carmelo. Hayes says he earned this but… Legado del Fantasma interrupts – Escobar, Raul Mendoza and Joaquin Wilde. Santos says the North American Title is his but since Hayes is new, he will give him a pass, so he can walk into his title match. Escobar warns Hayes to stay out of his business. Legado del Fantasma walks off and Hayes wonders if he was just threatened.

Imperium vs. Drake Maverick and Grayson Waller

We go back to the ring and out comes Imperium – Marcel Barthel and Fabian Aichner. Drake Maverick and Grayson Waller are waiting in the ring. We get a pre-recorded video from Drake and Waller. Waller doesn’t want to talk about the match, he’s more amped up about making his debut tonight. He also cracks a joke on Imperium being upset because they have to carry WALTER’s bags.

The bell rings and Waller starts off with Aichner. Waller mounts some offense but gets leveled with a clothesline. Aichner takes it to the corner and tags in Barthel for some double teaming. Barthel with a big chop to the chest and a double underhook suplex from the corner. Waller ducks some moves but gets kicked to the mat, then hit with a punt kick to the face.

Barthel decks Waller to keep him down, then delivers another punt kick. Waller finally tags out and in comes Drake, running wild on Aichner. Drake with two low dropkicks, then a jumping kick to Barthel as he runs in. Drake sends Barthel to the floor. Aichner grabs Drake from behind but Drake keeps control.

Waller tags himself in and Drake isn’t happy with this. They have a few words, allowing Aichner to nail a running big boot on Waller. Barthel pulls Drake out of the ring, then sends him into the lighting rig at ringside. Imperium ends up hitting the double team European Bomb on Waller out of the corner. Barthel covers for the pin to win.

Winners: Imperium

– After the match, Aichner and Barthel stand tall as the music hits. We go to replays. Imperium stands tall to end the segment.

– Indi Hartwell is backstage with Johnny Gargano. She asks him to give Dexter Lumis a chance and he says he will think about it. Gargano is spooked as Lumis suddenly appears. Gargano tells Lumis to stop doing that, and to act normal. They walk off behind Gargano, and will be in his corner tonight.

– Back from the break and we get backstage promos by Pete Dunne, Ridge Holland, Oney Lorcan and Danny Burch. Dunne gets Holland hyped up for tonight’s match with Tommaso Ciampa. Holland says if Ciampa wants to dedicate the match to Timothy Thatcher, he will put Ciampa in the hospital next to him.

– We see a backstage segment that happened just moments ago. Gigi Dolin and Jacy Jayne are shown walking out of Sarray’s locker room after getting payback for what happened earlier to Mandy Rose. Sarray is laid out on the floor.

Johnny Gargano vs. LA Knight

We go back to the ring and out comes Johnny Gargano with InDex – Indi Hartwell and Dexter Lumis. There’s some awkward comedy attempts before the match. Out next comes LA Knight.

The bell rings and fans chant for Knight. They lock up and Knight slams Gargano in the middle of the ring. Knight talks some trash as fans chant for InDex now. Gargano takes Knight down and they tangle on the mat. Fans chant for Gargano now. Knight overpowers and tosses Gargano. Knight levels Gargano with a shoulder as fans chant “you suck!” now. Gargano runs the ropes and goes right into a GargaNo Escape but Knight gets the bottom rope to break it.

Knight kicks Gargano around and rocks him with a right hand to the mouth. Gargano ducks a clothesline and spikes Knight with the hurricanrana, then an inverted Atomic Drop. Gargano with another takedown and a roll-over for a 2 count. They get right back up and Gargano nails a dropkick. Another “Johnny Wrestling!” chant starts up. Gargano with a big chop in the corner.

Gargano keeps control in the corner with more big chops. Gargano focuses on Knight’s arm now in the middle of the ring. Knight grabs Gargano by the hair and levels him with an elbow. Gargano sends Knight to the floor and follows up with a suicide dive. Gargano struts at ringside and shows off now. Gargano with a big chop against the barrier. Gargano brings it back into the ring and follows. Knight drops an elbow but Gargano dodges it. Knight with a big right hand to the mouth now. Knight drops Gargano over the top rope. Knight with a suplex and some trash talking.

Knight levels Gargano from the apron, right in front of Hartwell and Lumis. Knight launches himself back into the ring from the apron, taking Gargano back down. We go to commercial with Knight in control.

Back from the break and they trade offense. Knight with a leaping neckbreaker in the middle of the ring for a close 2 count. Knight with shoulder thrusts in the corner now as fans boo. Knight charges into the corner but Gargano moves. Gargano goes for a back-drop but Knight slams him. Gargano keeps control now, charging into the corner with a forearm. Gargano with a swinging Flatliner from the middle rope. Knight goes to the floor for a breather. Gargano charges with a suicide dive but Knight meets him at the ropes with a leaping forearm. They go on and Gargano ends up hitting the slingshot Spear from the apron. Knight kicks out at 2.

Gargano mounts Knight in the corner now and unloads with right hands as fans count along and InDex looks on from down below. Knight comes out of the corner but Gargano rolls him for 2. Knight counters again and drives Gargano into the mat with a modified Air Raid for another close 2 count. Fans do dueling chants now. Gargano blocks the BFT and they trade moves. Gargano drops Knight and applies the GargaNo Escape but it’s blocked for a 2 count. Gargano gets sent to the apron but he nails an enziguri. Gargano goes for the One Final Beat but he’s knocked to the floor but Lumis catches him and saves him.

Gargano has words for Lumis. Knight runs over to attack but stops in Lumis’ face and they stare each other down as Knight talks trash. Gargano superkicks Knight from the side. Gargano brings it back into the ring but he distracts himself with Lumis and Indi, reaching out to Lumis on the floor to touch hands. Knight takes advantage and hits the BFT for the pin to win.

Winner: LA Knight

– After the match, Knight stands tall and poses in the corner as his music hits. Indi and Dexter look worried at ringside as the referee checks on Gargano. Knight heads to the stage as we go to replays.

– NXT Tag Team Champions MSK bring a camera man into the office of NXT General Manager William Regal. They want to give a title shot to Oney Lorcan and Danny Burch because they’re fighting champions plus Burch and Lorcan were dealt a bad hand before. Regal mentions wanting to do Burch and Lorcan vs. Tommaso Ciampa and Timothy Thatcher next week, but if MSK wants the title defense, they’ve got it. We go to commercial.

– Back from the break and we get a brief Tian Sha vignette. Mei Ying will be in action next week.

NXT Women’s Champion Raquel Gonzalez vs. Jessi Kamea

We go back to the ring and out comes Jessi Kamea with Franky Monet and Robert Stone. NXT Women’s Champion Raquel Gonzalez is out next for this non-title match.

The bell rings and they go at it. Gonzalez takes control early on and works Kamea over in the corner. Kamea counters a suplex and lands on her feet but Gonzalez stays on her. Gonzalez scoops Kamea upside down and rams her into the turnbuckles. Gonzalez with anther big slam and offense for a 2 count. Gonzalez ends up going for a running big boot but Kamea blocks it and chops her down from the apron.

They bring it back in and Kamea takes the leg out again. Kamea continues to focus on Raquel’s leg now. Gonzalez kicks her away and nails a dropkick. Gonzalez with a scoop slam. Gonzalez lifts Kamea up and drops her back neck-first over the top rope.

Gonzalez grabs Kamea but Kamea stomps on her feet. Gonzalez comes back with a big clothesline. Gonzalez follows up with the one-arm powerbomb for the pin to win.

Winner: Raquel Gonzalez

– After the match, Gonzalez stands tall as the music hits. Monet and Stone enter the ring to check on Kamea. Gonzalez and Monet stare at each other.

– Ember Moon is in the back with McKenzie Mitchell now. She was backstage trying to enjoy her birthday tonight when she heard Kay Lee Ray put her name in her mouth. Moon says she knows KLR is trying to make a name off her but she won’t have that. Moon goes on and challenges KLR to a match on next week’s show.

– Still to come, Samoa Joe is here. Back to commercial.

– Back from the break and Wade Barrett is sitting down with NXT Champion Samoa Joe for an interview. Joe says his expectations are unexpected, but he’s all about redefining what it means to be NXT Champion. He talks about how he had this laid out and planned before he won the title at Takeover 36, and how a precedent needs to be re-established. Joe mentions how he wasn’t 100% going into the Takeover match as he was in Las Vegas during SummerSlam Week for the tryouts, trying to secure the next Superstars of NXT. Joe flew back and was jet-lagged but the precedent demanded that he focus on the title match. He had to win the title because the precedent needs to be set. His third reign with the NXT Title has taught him that legacy is important and needs to be upheld, and the precedent needs to be maintained, whether it’s in the media or with the fans. Joe goes on and wonders who will step up to challenge him, who will seize their own destiny. Joe is more than happy to help them find the answers.

Roderick Strong vs. Ikemen Jiro

We go back to the ring and out comes The Diamond Mine – Roderick Strong with Malcolm Bivens, Hachiman and the new additions, The Creed Brothers, Julius Creed and Brutus Creed. Ikemen Jiro is waiting in the ring after answering The Diamond Mine’s Open Challenge earlier this week.

The bell rings and Strong goes to work. Jiro comes back with an early arm drag and a hurricanrana to send Strong flying. Strong goes to the floor to regroup. Jiro launches himself over but lands on his feet as Strong moves. Jiro approaches Strong but Strong sends him flying into the edge of the steel ring steps with a hip toss. The referee issues a warning as The Diamond Mine stands over Jiro at ringside. Strong breaks the count and rings Jiro back into the ring, stomping away.

Strong dominates Jiro some more and tells him he made a mistake. Strong with a backbreaker for a 2 count. Fans try to rally for Jiro as Strong grounds him and talks more trash. Strong continues to dominate Jiro as we see Bivens talking to The Creed Brothers at ringside.

Jiro fights back but Strong kicks him in the gut. Strong runs into kicks and a big chop. Strong charges but Jiro side-steps and sends him into the turnbuckles. Jiro drops Strong out of the corner. Jiro with a big right hand and more offense to drop Strong. Strong misses in the corner and Jiro trips him. Jiro with a springboard moonsault for a close 2 count.

More back and forth now. Jiro with a roll-up for 2. Strong turns it back around with a jumping knee after Hachiman yells at him. Strong with a unique backbreaker and more trash talking to send a message to NXT Cruiserweight Champion Kushida. Strong with a second backbreaker for the pin to win.

Winner: Roderick Strong

– After the match, Strong stands tall as the music hits. We go to replays. The Diamond Mine stands tall int he ring as Strong yells out about how Kushida’s title belongs to him. Strong says no one is stronger than The Diamond Mine and he is the uncrowned Cruiserweight Champion.

– McKenzie is backstage with NXT Women’s Tag Team Champions Io Shirai and Zoey Stark, and Kacy Catanzaro and Kayden Carter. There will be a title match next week. Kacy and Kayden talk about how they are really friends and this isn’t forced like Shirai and Stark. Stark talks about how she would now take a bullet for Shirai. Shirai interrupts and says she doesn’t like Carter, Catanzaro or Stark, but since Stark is on her team, they will win. She walks off.

– We see Ridge Holland and his crew walking backstage. Back to commercial.

– Back from the break and McKenzie is with Cameron Grimes. He says WWE Hall of Famer Ted DiBiase taught him there’s just one Million Dollar Champion, and just one Cameron Grimes, so he’s going to take that and go… The Grizzled Young Veterans interrupt and mock Grimes, and taunt him with a replica of the Million Dollar Title. Grimes takes the belt and goes on about how great it looks, how good WWE Shop did with this one. He ends up dropping the belt on Zack Gibson’s toe, then leaves as he sells the injury.

Ridge Holland vs. Tommaso Ciampa

We go back to the ring and out first comes Tommaso Ciampa for tonight’s main event. Ridge Holland is out next with Pete Dunne, Oney Lorcan and Danny Burch.

They lock up and go at it. Ciampa with the first takedown. They tangle on the mat and get back up as Holland rams Ciampa into the corner. Holland and Ciampa trade strikes. Holland with a big belly-to-belly suplex across the ring. Ciampa kicks from the corner but Holland drops him. Holland with a stiff kick to the back while Ciampa is down.

Ciampa turns it around in the corner and delivers a running knee to keep Holland down as Dunne and the others look on. They pull Holland to safety to regroup. Ciampa follows and Holland grabs him but Ciampa rams him into the Plexiglas barrier. More back and forth at ringside as the referee counts. Ciampa breaks the count and goes back to work on Holland. Ciampa places Holland face-down on the announce table and delivers a running knee lift, stopping right in Dunne’s face. Ciampa shows off some for a big pop.

Ciampa brings it back in and goes for Willow’s Bell but it’s blocked. Ciampa keeps control but Lorcan and Burch try to interfere from ringside. This allows Holland to slam Ciampa face-first into the mat and turn it back around as we go to commercial.

Back from the break and Holland remains in control. They trade big strikes in the middle of the ring now. Holland levels Ciampa again and grounds him as Dunne and the others watch from ringside. Holland with a forearm to the back. Holland sends Ciampa into the corner and charges in with an elbow. Ciampa makes a comeback now as fans cheer him on. Ciampa with a jumping knee to the jaw. Ciampa with a corner clothesline, and another.

Ciampa unloads with big clothesline strikes in the corner now as fans count along. Ciampa knocks Holland down with another running clothesline in the middle of the ring. Holland kicks out at 2. Ciampa goes for the Fairy Tale Ending but Holland powers up into an Alabama Slam in the middle of the ring. The referee checks on Ciampa as Holland regroups in the corner.

Ciampa waves the referee off as fans rally. More back and forth between the two now. Holland with more forearms to the lower back. Ciampa with a big right hand. Holland fights back as they trade more punches in the middle of the ring. Ciampa unloads with punches and kicks now, dropping Holland for a big pop. Holland decks Ciampa with a right hand. Ciampa fires one back. We’re at 10:05pm unfortunately. Ciampa scoops Holland for the Air Raid Crash but Holland kicks out just in time.

Holland knocks Ciampa off the apron to the floor with a headbutt. Holland follows and scoops Ciampa, running him into the Plexiglas barrier. Ciampa falls to the floor. Holland grabs his truncheon baton from the apron and tries to use it but can’t. Ciampa unloads with big chops on the apron now. Holland scoops Ciampa on the apron to send him to the floor but Ciampa slides of his shoulders into the ring. Ciampa with a bunch of knee strikes now. Ciampa with Willow’s Bell for the pin to win.

Winner: Tommaso Ciampa

– After the match, Ciampa stands tall but Dunne immediately rushes the ring and drops him to boos. The heels go to team up on Ciampa but here come NXT Tag Team Champions MSK. They brawl with Lorcan and Burch at ringside, and get the best of them. MSK storms the ring to assist Ciampa now as the heels retreat. MSK and Ciampa stand tall together as Ciampa’s music starts back up. The heels look on from the stage as NXT finally goes off the air.

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