After weeks of hype and buildup, the epic champion vs. champion match between Ricochet and Pete Dunne took place on this show. That match was saved for the main event and was definitely the highlight of the program this week, but quite a few other noteworthy tidbits came out of NXT. The investigation over who attacked Aleister Black continues, an in-ring debut took place, and yes, Otis Dozovic is receiving a non-title match against NXT Champion Tommaso Ciampa soon. Some action from the women’s division kicked off the show this week.
Aliyah & Lacey Evans vs. Dakota Kai & Deonna Purrazzo –
Purrazzo is going strong in the Mae Young Classic this year, but the recently-signed NXT star appeared on the show this week for a tag team match that was set up last week when these four women were seen arguing in the halls of Full Sail University.
Deonna started the match off with Evans. Lacey took down Purrazzo right at the start and began to wear her down. Aliyah came in next to kick Purrazzo, but the new NXT Superstar grabbed her by the leg, gave her a boot and made the tag over to Dakota Kai.
From there, Kai dragged Aliyah over to her corner of the ring and tagged in Purrazzo again. Deonna got back into the match until Aliyah countered and sent her flying into the her corner of the ring. Evans was then able to tag herself in and begin kicking Deonna around. Deonna tried to go for a Fujiwara armbar at one point, but Evans fought her off and delivered a forearm punch to her back before dishing out a few more punches for her trouble.
Aliyah gets tagged back in and she hits some punches of her own on Purrazzo. Lacey comes back in while Aliyah takes advantage by grabbing Purrazzo’s hair and pulling on it from outside of the ring. Lacey runs over to the corner and administers a Bronco Buster. Aliyah applied a wristlock and almost got the pin on her for a moment, but Kai ran in and broke up the fall. Evans hit a knee across the arm of Deonna Purrazzo, and then Aliyah came back in to inflict even more damage.
Eventually, Purrazzo was able to get the strength to make the tag again to Dakota Kai who ran wild in the ring with punches and kicks to Aliyah. With Aliyah now propped up in the corner, Kai darted towards her twice with running boots and seemed to have the match won for herself and Purrazzo. She went for a pin, but it was ultimately broken up by Lacey Evans. Evans then made a blind tag and was able to connect the Woman’s Right in order to score a victory.
Winners: Aliyah & Lacey Evans
The Velveteen Dream was being interviewed by several different reporters backstage and he bragged for a bit about defeating Johnny Gargano (or “Johnny Failure”) on NXT a few weeks back. Once Dream is asked about the Aleister Black attack, he curiously does not provide an exact answer and exits the interview out of frustration that the questions are not about himself or his match Gargano.
Montez Ford & Angelo Dawkins of The Street Profits took part in a fan’s interview after a game of basketball. They were eventually asked about their chains, but Ford made it clear that they were not just chains, but rather a symbol of the struggles and desires for success that they have had to work for so far.
Following up last week’s inconclusive outcome to Bianca Belair vs. Nikki Cross, Belair was asked about the match backstage and admitted that Nikki is a crazy opponent who brought out the best in her. She said that she took her to another level in their match and that she will give it her all if they step back into the ring again in the near future. Despite the outcome suggesting that neither woman won, Belair does not accept it as a decisive loss and she says that she is still undefeated.
Humberto Carillo vs. Jaxon Ryker –
The wrestler formerly known as Gunner in TNA made his televised in-ring debut on NXT this week. The other members of The Forgotten Sons stable, Wesley Blake and Steve Culter, competed on NXT a few weeks ago while Ryker watched from ringside. Ryker himself came down to the ring this week all by himself to take on the much smaller Humberto Carillo.
Ryker instantly took him down to the canvas and then hit some boots on him while he was down near one of the posts in the corner of the ring. Ryker did more damage by driving Humberto’s face into the canvas. Humberto showed signs of life very briefly and went up to hit a springboard maneuver of some sort, but Jaxson caught him and punched him right back down. He grabbed Carillo and executed a slingshot powerbomb before putting him away in what was a very short and dominant first match for Jaxon Ryker.
Winner: Jaxon Ryker
NXT General Manager William Regal spoke with Candice LeRae backstage about the attack on Aleister Black. She pointed out that the attacker acted cowardly and ruined another man’s life, and that those traits sounded familiar to her. Despite the insinuation, Regal says that he has already spoken with Tommaso Ciampa and has determined that he is not responsible for the attack. Regal then inquires about where LeRae’s husband, Johnny Gargano, was on the night in question. LeRae swears that they were in the locker room together that night and told her to sit tight before later driving back home together. Regal thanks LeRae for her time and dismisses her.
A video package for the champion vs. champion match was aired. It showed the original meeting between Pete Dunne and Ricochet as they teamed up to face The Undisputed Era, Ricochet accidentally diving onto Dunne and costing them that match, and the fallout from that point.
Another video package for Keith Lee was shown. The NXT star talked about what being “Limitless” truly was. In a speech seemingly straight out of a sports movie, Lee said that being limitless is about breaking barriers and overcoming all of the obstacles that have stood in his way. Lee said that his future in NXT is limitless and that fans will be left with no choice but to bask in his glory.
After a reminder that EC3 was attacked by Lars Sullivan a few weeks ago after he suggested that Sullivan may be responsible for injuring Aleister Black, the NXT announcers informed fans that Lars will be back in action on NXT next week.
It’s happening! After last week’s confrontation, none other than Otis Dozovic of Heavy Machinery will be facing Tommaso Ciampa on NXT next week. Ciampa’s NXT Championship will not be on the line in that match, but talk about a dream match.
Ricochet vs. Pete Dunne for the North American & United Kingdom Championships –
On the subject of dream matches, the time finally came for Pete Dunne and Ricochet to put both of their titles on the line for an instant NXT classic. It all started off simply with the two of them attempting to go after each other, but they were able to counter each other and came to a stalemate early on. The Full Sail fans were equally behind both men throughout the entirety of this match. Both men tied up until Dunne got the upper hand and stepped on Ricochet’s foot. He began to bend his arm back next before going right for the fingers of “The One and Only.”
Ricochet was able to apply a rear chinlock on the United Kingdom Champion before transitioning that into a leglock. Pete was able to get out of that and turn it into a leglock of his own. As Ricochet tried to make his way over to the ropes, Dunne grabbed his legs and bent them all the way back and pulled Ricochet’s arms back to stretch out and punish the North American Champion. Ricochet did turn the tables on Dunne and went for a flash pin, but Dunne powered out at one.
Dunne goes back to working the arm now as Ricochet screams out in agony. Back on his feet now, Ricochet executed a knee drop across the shoulder of Pete Dunne. Dunne fought back with a forearm before Ricochet retaliated with a series of flips as he dodged every single move that Pete came after him with. He dropkicked him and sent him out of the ring while he had the chance to recover and shake off the pain in his hand. Ricochet then runs and does a dive outside of the ring, sending Pete Dunne crashing into the stage ramp.
Eager to take Dunne off of his feet now, Ricochet wrapped his legs around the head of Pete Dunne, but Dunne caught his foot and kicked him right down. Dunne once again goes for the legs and tries twisting it in various different ways. He bent Ricochet’s fingers back one by one as he screamed out in great deal of pain. Dunne also hit a boot to the upper back before kicking him in the corner of the ring. Ricochet takes control again when he lands a forearm to the chest, but Dunne kicked him back down.
As each man tried to out perform each other and went back and fourth, Ricochet goes for Dunne but the UK Champion again tries to bend the fingers back until they do not work anymore. Dunne did miss a knee drop, causing Ricochet to take advantage and pounce on him. Ricochet hits an uppercut and a forearm in the corner on Pete. With not time to waste, Ricochet runs after him again and hits a springboard uppercut, but this was still not enough to get him the win.
Pete Dunne comes back to life and hits a step-up enzuigiri. Ricochet then retorts with an exploder and a standing Shooting Star Press. Ricochet again went for a dive onto Dunne, but “The Bruiserweight” moved out of the way and sent Ricochet crashing back down. Dunne caught him and locked him in an armbar while continuing to bend his fingers once more. Ricochet turned it into a close pinfall. Ricochet isn’t able to hit a moonsault after that, causing Pete to stomp on Ricochet’s fingers for a change. A knee to the UK Champion’s face also helped him gain some momentum.
Up next was a springboard attempt from Ricochet, but he was once again struck by Dunne. The long-reigning champion was then able to hit an exploder on Ricochet. Fans were convinced that the match was over and that Dunne would become a dual-champion, but nope! He kicks out at two. Pete then goes for his Bitter End finisher, but Ricochet powers out in time and lands right back on his feet. A few kicks from Dunne were not enough to keep Ricochet down and the NA Champion sent him out of the ring. Much like earlier in the match, Ricochet tried to hit the dive outside once again, but Dunne stopped him and was able to drop him right down onto the ring apron.
Ricochet is back up now and was almost able to put Dunne away and become the new United Kingdom Champion, but it was another shocking two-count. Stomp to the fingers from Pete Dunne before delivering a wicked clothesline. He ran after Ricochet a second time but was met with a handspring DDT this time.
The NXT UK star was down now, which allowed Ricochet to try to go up to the top of one of the ring posts in the corner. Before Ricochet could hit the 630 finisher, Dunne recovers and actually joined him up there. He grabbed Ricochet’s hand and manipulated the fingers until Ricochet could take no more and gave him an impressive Avalanche Frankensteiner. Somehow, someway, Pete Dunne was still alive and kicked out of a pin attempt from Ricochet.
Both men were spent at this stage in the match, but Ricochet had a few more tricks up his sleeve. He tried to hit a springboard maneuver of some kind on Dunne, but UK Champion captured Ricochet on his way down and locked him into a triangle submission. He lifted Dunne into the air and powerbombed him down, but Dunne held on and went for the fingers yet again. Ricochet was on the verge of submitting now and his one good hand was just seconds away tapping out. With what was likely his last ounce of strength, Ricochet displayed great power by lifting Dunne back up again and hitting a brainbuster.
This match was so even for both competitors that the fans chants of “fight forever” probably would have become a reality as neither man was willing to lose their respective titles or give up the chance to win an additional one. The match did come to an end however, but there sadly never was a clear winner, because it was right around this time when Ricochet and Dunne hit some punches back and fourth in the middle of the ring until The Undisputed Era ran down and attacked them both, causing the referee to call off the match.
Winners: No Contest
Adam Cole, Roderick Strong, and Kyle O’Reilly each got some shots in on both Dunne and Ricochet until Hanson & Rowe came down to the ring and helped chase off the group. The War Raiders sent all of the Undisputed Era members running to the back before they decided to follow them back there. Once the ring was cleared, Ricochet and Dunne were given their respective titles. The two of them both received a standing ovation from the crowd in attendance as they each stared at each other from across the ring until the show faded to black and concluded.
Although neither man became a dual-champion, Ricochet and Dunne both delivered in their match, but did anyone believe that they wouldn’t. Ricochet will continue to wear the North American Championship while Dunne will still be the United Kingdom Champion heading into the launch of NXT UK. For those who thought that this main event was excellent, just wait until next week’s match between Tommaso Ciampa and Otis Dozovic. Do not forget that a win for Otis could end up deciding Ciampa’s next challenger for the NXT Championship. Hey, I can dream can’t I? I’ll see you NXT time!