WWE NXT Report – 5/23

May 23, 2023 - by Staff

– The Battleground go-home edition of WWE NXT opens up with quick promos from Tiffany Stratton, Roxanne Perez, Cora Jade and Lyra Valkyria to promote tonight’s tournament matches. We’re now live from the WWE Performance Center in Orlando, Florida as Vic Joseph welcomes us. He’s joined at ringside by WWE Hall of Famer Booker T.

NXT Women’s Title Tournament Semifinals: Cora Jade vs. Lyra Valkyria

We go right to the ring and out first comes Lyra Valkyria. Cora Jade is out next as Alicia Taylor does the introductions. The winner of this will make it to the finals at Battleground.

The bell rings and Jade strikes first and taunts some but Lyra fights her off. Lyra unloads for a close 2 count, and another. Jade traps Lyra in the ropes to work her over, then hit a running dropkick.

More back and forth on the mat now. Jade with a 2 count. Jade with a running double stomp to the back for another close 2 count. Jade grounds Lyra by her arm now as fans rally. Lyra fights up and out, dropping Jade with a right. Jade fights back but Lyra nails a second rope dropkick. Lyra goes on and hits a Northern Lights suplex for 2. Lyra fights off a submission attempt, then hits a big suplex for 2.

Lyra suddenly connects with a roundhouse kick from out of nowhere, then covers for the pin to win and advance.

Winner: Lyra Valkyria

– After the match, Lyra stands tall as the music hits. We go to replays. Jade comes from behind and takes Lyra’s knee out now. Jade then smacks the knee with a kendo stick as officials try to back her away.

– We see Axiom and Dabba-Kato walking backstage. Vic shows us a Tale of The Tape as we go to commercial.

– Back from the break and Ilja Dragunov is attacking Dijak backstage. Officials rush over as Ilja goes to shut the garage door on Dijak. Vic has a document for the two to sign tonight for their Last Man Standing bout at Battleground.

Axiom vs. Dabba-Kato

We go back to the ring and out comes Axiom. Dabba-Kato is out next.

The bell hits and they face off in the middle of the ring. Kato attacks but Axiom uses his speed to evade. Kato gets the upperhand and works Axiom over at ringside, pressing him back into the ring.

Axiom with strikes and a springboard kick to bring Kato to his knees. Axiom with big kicks now. He charges again but Kato nails a big lariat, then the sitdown powerbomb in the middle of the ring for the quick win.

Winner: Dabba-Kato

– After the match, Kato stands tall as the music hits and we go to commercial. Kato attacks Axiom again and puts him down. Scrypts suddenly flies into the ring to attack Kato, sending him to the floor. Officials hold Kato back. Scrypts helps Axiom up but Axiom hesitates as fans chant “hug it out!” now.

– We see footage of Tony D’Angelo in the police interrogation room this week. A detective says Tony’s name keeps coming up in investigations, but he insists he’s an honest man. Tony is accused of bribery. The detective has footage from an informant, which shows Tony but Tony says there’s no way that is him. Another detective walks in and tells the other that there is new footage to look at. They leave and we see Tony trying to listen to what they are saying. Back to commercial.

– Back from the break and we get a video package for the NXT Battleground main event, focusing on the challenger Bron Breakker.

– We go back to the ring and Gallus is out – Joe Coffey, NXT Tag Team Champions Mark Coffey and Wolfgang. They talk about how Battleground is stacked. They thought Tony D’Angelo and Channing “Stacks” Lorenzo would challenge them, but Tony is tied up. They indicate they are behind Tony’s issues with the police. They also thought The Creed Brothers would step up. The music interrupts and out comes Julius Creed and Brutus Creed, who issue a challenge for Battleground. The two teams have words and Joe decks Julius out of nowhere to kick off a brawl. Stacks runs out and helps The Creeds now. Stacks and The Creeds clear the ring and Gallus yells at them from ringside.

– McKenzie Mitchell is backstage with NXT North American Champion Wes Lee now, asking about Tyler Bate and Joe Gacy. Lee says he just knew he could trust Bate, but now he’s not sure. McKenzie brings Bate over but Lee isn’t interested in his apology. Lee walks off. Bate has nothing but respect for Lee, while Gacy is a different story, but for tonight he has to worry about Eddy Thorpe.

Eddy Thorpe vs. Tyler Bate

We go back to the ring and out comes Eddy Thorpe. Back to commercial.

Back from the break and Tyler Bate is out. NXT North American Champion Wes Lee is on commentary. Bate and Thorpe lock up and trade holds and pin attempts to start.

Thorpe flies at Bate for a big takedown. Thorpe keeps control with a huge chop, then he grounds Bate in the middle of the ring. Bate tries to fight up and out but Thorpe grounds him. Fans rally as Thorpe applies an abdominal stretch in the middle of the ring. Bate fights out and connects with uppercuts and kicks.

Bate kicks Thorpe and nails a middle rope flying elbow. Bate slams Thorpe and hits the standing Shooting Star Press for 2. Thorpe blocks the Tyler Driver 97 and they go at it. Thorpe counters Bate’s signature offense again but Bate nails a lariat, then the Tyler Driver 97 in the middle of the ring for the pin to win.

Winner: Tyler Bate

– After the match, Bate stands tall as the music hits. We go to replays. Joe Gacy suddenly rushes the ring to attack Bate. Lee rushes in but Gacy side-steps and also takes Lee out. Gacy raises the title in the air, standing over Lee and Bate, while Ava applauds from ringside.

– McKenzie Mitchell is in the trainer’s room with Lyra Valkyria. She says the swelling in her knee has to go down before they can look at it, but she feels no tears or ligament damage. Lyra says she will be fine, she will do rehab all week and she will be ready. McKenzie asks who she wants in the finals. Lyra wants to face Roxanne Perez because she sees Perez as the best in NXT.

– We see NXT Heritage Cup Champion Noam Dar and Nathan Frazer walking backstage. Back to commercial.

– Back from the break and we see how Wes Lee tried to help Tyler Bate during the commercial but they argued and faced off.

NXT Heritage Cup Champion Noam Dar vs. Nathan Frazer

We go back to the ring and NXT Heritage Cup Champion Noam Dar is out for a non-title match. Nathan Frazer is also out.

The bell rings and they go at it. Frazer with a submission but Dar turns it around. Frazer grounds Dar with a headlock in the middle of the ring. Dar fights back out but Frazer hits a big headlock takedown.

Dar fights back up and looks to mount some offense but Frazer unloads and sends Dar out to the floor. Dar crawls to his Heritage Cup and pulls himself up for a breather as we go back to commercial.

Back from the break and fans rally as Frazer fights up and out of a hold. Dar rocks Frazer in the corner, then kicks him as he tries to springboard. Dar kicks Frazer and focuses on the arm now. Dar shows some frustration while focusing on Frazer’s limbs now.

Dar poses on the middle rope to boos. Frazer fights back and nails the middle rope moonsault into the inverted DDT. More back and forth now. Frazer mounts more offense and slams Dar with another DDT. Fans rally as Frazer goes to the top for the corkscrew 450 but he has to roll through as Dar moves.

Dar slams Frazer face-first and goes into the ankle lock. They tangle some more and Dar gets the arm bar locked in. Frazer kicks out at 2, then falls into a close pin after a big superkick to drop Dar. Fans chant “NXT!” while both are down now. They fight up to their feet and trade big strikes. Dar blocks a kick and levels Frazer with a back elbow.

Dragon Lee comes out and takes a look at the Heritage Cup on display as fans chant his name. Dar shoves Lee, then turns around to a big suicide dive by Frazer. Frazer goes back to the top and hits the Phoenix Splash for the pin to win.

Winner: Nathan Frazer

– After the match, Frazer stands tall as the music hits. We go to replays. Dragon stands with the Heritage Cup now, clutching it while Frazer celebrates with him. Dar seethes from the ring.

– Ilja Dragunov is backstage with McKenzie Mitchell. She has the Hold Harmless Agreement that he and Dijak are to sign tonight. Dijak says he will sign it tonight but on Sunday, Dijak will know what Dragunov means when he says he is unbreaka… Dijak comes busting into the locker room, then he attacks Dragunov. They brawl while other wrestlers try to hold them back.

– Back from the break and we get another hype video for the NXT Battleground main event, this time focusing on hometown star and NXT Champion Carmelo Hayes. We see Hayes doing local media and making other appearances in Boston.

Hank Walker vs. Tank Ledger

We go back to the ring and out comes Hank Walker and Tank Ledger at the same time. They are fired up and ready to fight each other.

The bell rings and they go at it. They collide and try again but just smash into each other. Tank takes it to the corner and unloads. Hank turns it around with shoulder thrusts now.

Hank rocks Tank and scoops him but Tank sends him into the turnbuckles. Tank mounts offense and nails a diving headbutt for a close 2 count. Hank and Tank trade big strikes in the middle of the ring again. Hank with a scoop slam and a corner splash. They run the ropes and collide in mid-air with big crossbody attempts. They both lay there for a minute or so, until Hank covers for the pin to win.

Winner: Hank Walker

– After the match, Hank stands tall as the music hits. We go to replays. Hank is there to help his partner up but Bron Breakker suddenly attacks from out of nowhere. Breakker delivers a Spear to Hank, then Tank. Bron says he will see Carmelo Hayes on Sunday.

– We go backstage to Ivy Nile, The Creed Brothers and Channing “Stacks” Lorenzo. The Creeds appreciate Stacks having their backs earlier, even though they haven’t always seen eye-to-eye in the past. The Creeds go on and mention how they will get their NXT Tag Team Titles back at Battleground. Stacks says they will be even more outnumbered on Sunday, so maybe they could work something out with The Don. The Creeds say they have been burnt too many times but when Tony gets out, he and Stacks can have the first shot at their titles. Back to commercial.

– Back from the break and out comes Gigi Dolin.

Dolin isn’t shy about the broken home she grew up in, or her addict parents. She allowed Jacy Jayne in, only so Jayne could tear it all down. Dolin would’ve done anything for Jayne but now she will do anything to end Jayne. Dolin goes on until Jayne interrupts from the lounge above the crowd, saying enough of all this emo talk. Jayne says it all started up here, but that was the best run of Dolin’s career. Jayne rants about how she was ready for bigger and better things. Dolin says Jayne just doesn’t want to be remembered as the third wheel.

Jayne mentions beating Dolin in front of her pathetic brother. Dolin says they’re at 1-1 so let’s end this now. Jayne goes on ripping Dolin and her fans. Jayne can’t wait to be done with Dolin for good. Jayne issues a challenge for a Steel Cage match next week. Dolin goes on about being as real as it gets while Jayne is a fake ass bitch. Dolin accepts the challenge but says let’s make it a Weaponized Cage. Jayne says she’s on.

– We go to attorney Luca Crusifino outside of a local court house. He says it’s time for Von Wagner to face legal consequences. He’s tried explaining Von’s situation to Mr. Stone in recent weeks, but they weren’t listening, so tonight things will be settled in the ring. Luca says after tonight, Von will regret that he didn’t settle this outside of court. Back to commercial.

– Back from the break and we get a video package on the NXT Heritage Cup. The NXT Anonymous account shows Noam Dar backstage begging Oro Mensah to be in his corner this weekend because Dragon Lee will have Nathan Frazer in his corner. Dar tells Mensah to strap himself to Dar’s rocket and they will blast off. Mensah says absolutely… not. He walks off as Dar begs. Jakara Jackson and Lash Legend walk up and taunt Dar over possibly losing his Cup.

Luca Crusifino vs. Von Wagner

We go back to the ring and attorney Luca Crusifino is out. Von Wagner is out next with Mr. Stone as we see recent happenings that led to this match.

Luca has words for Von to start but Von attacks and unloads in the corner, beating him down. Von with a running corner splash, then a big boot. Luca goes out for a breather but Von brings him back in to “Wagner!” chants.

Von misses in the corner, then Luca unloads and stomps away. Luca turns it back around and hits a neckbreaker for a close 2 count. Luca with more shots in the corner now. Von fights out of the corner, then beats Luca back down. Von charges but hits the floor when Luca ducks.

Luca goes in Stone’s pockets now, pulling out the photo of a young Von with scars on his head, which we’ve seen in recent weeks. Luca calls Von a freak. Von attacks from behind and brings Luca back in, unloading on him with big punches. Von keeps pounding until the referee calls the match via disqualification.

Winner by DQ: Luca Crusifino

– After the bell, Von beats Luca up at ringside. Fans chant for Von to put Luca through the table but Stone calms him down. Von comes right back over and powerbombs Luca on top of the announce table for a big pop.

– We see more footage of Tony D’Angelo in the police interrogation room. Tony thinks he’s getting ready to leave to go help his mother but instead they place him under arrest and in handcuffs.

NXT Women’s Title Tournament Semifinals: Tiffany Stratton vs. Roxanne Perez

We go back to the ring for tonight’s main event and out comes Tiffany Stratton for the last semifinals bout. Back to commercial.

Back from the break and out comes Tiffany Stratton. The winner will face Lyra Valkyria at Battleground for the vacant NXT Women’s Title. The bell rings and they lock up, trading holds. They go back and forth for the fist few minutes.

Stratton takes control and works on Perez’s arm now. Perez counters and sends Stratton to the floor. Perez flies out and keeps control, bringing it back in. Perez goes to the top but Stratton rocks her, sending her back out to the floor. Stratton follows as we go to commercial.

Back from the break and they’re going at it. Perez with a suicide dive. Stratton catches her but sends her into the apron. Perez gets knocked back to the floor. Stratton capitalizes with strikes and brings it back over for a 2 count. Stratton chokes Perez on the ropes for another pin attempt. Stratton with more offense. She slams Perez down by her hair, then hits a double stomp to the back for a 2 count.

More back and forth now. Stratton with a big sit-out powerbomb for 2. Stratton takes it to the top but Perez fights back and hits a big hurricanrana for a close 2 count. Perez unloads with punches now. Stratton blocks the leg sweep, and slams Perez face-first. They trade more close calls and Perez rocks Stratton for a close 2 count. Perez shows some frustration now.

Perez tells Stratton to get up as fans rally for her. Stratton blocks Pop Rocks and slams Perez over the top rope throat-first. Stratton lays Perez out with the rolling senton, and then hits the Prettiest Moonsault Ever for the pin to win and advance to the finals.

Winner: Tiffany Stratton

– After the match, Stratton stands tall as the music hits and we go to replays. The announcers also hype Battleground as Stratton vs. Lyra Valkyria is confirmed for the tournament finals on Sunday. Stratton and Valkyria are arguing over the NXT Women’s Title belt on display now. Off to the side, we see officials helping Perez to the back when the mystery hooded woman attacks and beats her up. The mystery woman runs off as officials and Lyra tend to Perez.

– The music of Dijak hits and out he comes to sign the Hold Harmless Agreement with Ilja Dragunov for Battleground.

Dragunov immediately attacks and a brawl breaks out at ringside. Dragunov with a big enziguri on the floor. Dragunov charges but Dijak sends him into the steel ring steps. Dijak then launches Dragunov into the front row area. Dijak signs the Hold Harmless Agreement, then goes back to work on Dragunov. Dragunov fights him off and unloads with chops against the barrier, knocking him over it. Dragunov signs the agreement now, then goes back to punishing Dijak. They both take turns putting each other down.

Dragunov puts Dijak back down with a shot to the head using half of the steel ring steps. Dragunov with a Moscow Torpedo to keep Dijak down. Officials rush over to keep Dijak back as Dragunov stands on half of the steps, flexing and yelling at Dijak. We cut to a video package on NXT Battleground as tonight’s go-home episode goes off the air.

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