Gable Steveson to train Eddy Thorpe for first Raw Underground match in NXT
RAW Underground is coming to WWE NXT, and Gable Steveson is involved. This week’s NXT episode saw Damon Kemp, who is Gable’s brother, approach Eddy Thorpe about their third match, revealing that they will face off in the 20×20 no-ropes RAW Underground ring during the July 4 NXT show. The only way to win the match is by TKO or submission.
A later backstage segment saw Thorpe talking to others in the locker room about how he has less than two weeks to get a training camp going for Kemp in RAW Underground. Steveson then entered the room to make his NXT debut appearance. Steveson said he heard Thorpe needs a training partner and if anyone knows about Kemp, it’s him. Steveson told Thorpe to let him know if he needs anything, and they shook hands to end the segment.
The RAW Underground concept was first introduced on the August 3, 2020 RAW, and was led/hosted by Shane McMahon. The segments featured WWE Superstars and enhancement talents compete in worked shoot-style matches that took place in a standard WWE ring with no ropes. RAW Underground used somewhat of a cinematic style of filming, with competitors and spectators surrounding the ring and filling up the background of a warehouse or backroom setting. The COVID-19 era concept was nixed before too long as the last segment aired during the September 21, 2020 RAW.
The NXT debut of RAW Underground will be the third TV match between Thorpe and Kemp as Thorpe picked up wins on the May 9 and June 6 NXT episodes. The June 6 bout ended when the referee didn’t see Kemp get his foot on the rope when he was pinned. Kemp has ranted about the finish and taunted Thorpe since then, which led to Thorpe agreeing for another match with a stipulation of Kemp’s choosing. Steveson has made a few special WWE TV appearances, and was even sent to RAW in the 2021 WWE Draft, but they never did anything with it as he was focused on other things, while still training for WWE. Steveson recently said he is using his final year of NCAA eligibility to go for another college wrestling championship, and he’s focused on making the 2024 Olympics in Paris. It will be interesting to see if he now works as a regular in NXT. Kemp has been wrestling on WWE 205 Live, NXT UK, NXT and NXT Level Up since December 2021. He also lost to Shelton Benjamin on the February 2 edition of WWE Main Event.