Tonight’s “A Very Gargano Christmas” edition of NXT opens live from the Capitol Wrestling Center in Orlando, Florida as Vic Joseph welcomes us. He’s joined at ringside by Wade Barrett and remotely by WWE Hall of Famer Beth Phoenix.
Street Fight for the NXT Tag Team Titles: Killian Dain and Drake Maverick vs. Oney Lorcan and Danny Burch
We go right to the ring and out come NXT Tag Team Champions Oney Lorcan and Danny Burch for this Street Fight. They’re suddenly attacked on the entrance by Killian Dain and Drake Maverick.
Dain and Maverick destroy the champs around ringside. Drake starts filling the ring with chairs after dropping Burch. Dain drops Lorcan and stands up a table at ringside, and another table next to it. Lorcan decks Drake and Burch fights Dain. Lorcan hits Dain from behind and they double team him now. They launch Dain into the barrier. They go on and bring Dain into the ring now, for more double teaming in the corner.
Drake comes in and helps Dain. Dain ends up back-dropping Burch over two chairs standing next to each other. Dain and Drake double team Burch now. Dain drops a big senton, then scoop slams him. Dain then scoops Drake and slams him on top of Burch. Dain picks Drake back up and swings his leg into Lorcan to drop him again. Dain whips Lorcan into the corner and tags Drake in. More double teaming to Lorcan in the corner as they keep charging in on him. The challengers hit double kicks to Lorcan at the same time in the corner. Drake covers for a 2 count but Lorcan’s boots are on the bottom rope.
Burch with uppercuts to Drake. Dain takes Lorcan into the ringside barrier. Burch levels Drake with a big clothesline in the middle of the ring. Lorcan turns it around on Dain at ringside and hits a big Blockbuster. All four Superstars are down now as the crowd rallies. Burch stands a chair up in the ring. He drop toe holds Drake into it face-first. Burch rolls out and they double team Dain again. The champs lean a table up against the barrier but Dain attacks them and fights them off. Burch gets tossed over the barrier into the crowd. Dain tries to send Lorcan into the table but it’s reversed and Dain hits hard face-first. Lorcan looks to suplex Dain into the leaning table but it’s blocked. Lorcan with chops now. Dain pump kicks Lorcan into the table. Dain charges but Lorcan moves and Dain crashes into the table, breaking it. We go to commercial with the champs in control.
Back from the break and Drake is alone in the ring, crawling as Lorcan uses Drake’s own belt on him. Lorcan whips Drake around some more as fans boo. Burch tags in and takes the belt, talking trash as he continue to punish Drake. Lorcan tags in for the double team, launching Drake into the corner. The champs waste some time and show off, taunting Dain and Drake. The double team continues but Dain returns to the apron and tags in. Dain unloads on both opponents. Dain launches both opponents across the ring with suplexes. Dain then hits multiple running splashes in the corners, then one big double splash to both champions.
Dain with a big powerbomb to Burch, then a diving elbow to the chest. Dain tags Drake in. Dain scoops Burch on the apron but Lorcan pulls him off. The champs then shove Dain from the apron to the two tables at ringside, but they don’t break as Dain falls to the floor. The champs taunt Drake now while he’s down. Lorcan with more belt shots as Drake screams out. Drake suddenly nails a low blow to Lorcan, then a low blow back kick to Burch.
Drake with belt shots to Burch now, then Lorcan. Drake unloads with belt shots to the champs as fans rally for him. Drake unloads with belt shots to Burch while he’s down. Drake with a belt shot to Lorcan’s face in the corner, putting him back down. Lorcan hits a low blow to Drake to bring him down.
Burch comes in with a cricket bat and hits Drake in the ribs while Lorcan holds him. They hit the double team assisted DDT to Drake in the middle of the ring for the pin to retain.
Winners: Oney Lorcan and Danny Burch
After the match, Lorcan and Burch stand tall as their music hits. Drake is laid out in the middle of the ring and Dain is still down at ringside. The champs talk some trash into the camera and then exit the ring, stopping to yell at Dain, who is still under one of the tables at ringside. We go to replays. Dain pulls Drake out of the ring.
– We go to our first “A Very Gargano Christmas” segment at the home of The Garganos. The Way (NXT North American Champion Johnny Gargano, Candice LeRae, Indi Hartwell, Austin Theory) is celebrating Christmas and opening gifts while Johnny films. Indi is impressed that they put this together and Candice says they never would’ve let them down on their first family Christmas together. It’s Theory’s turn to open a present now. It’s protein powder, apparently Johnny’s own recipe that will make Theory strong and dominant in the ring like Gargano. But it’s just some other brand with Gargano’s logo wrapped around it and Gargano is a bit annoyed.
– Still to come, Finn Balor and Kyle O’Reilly will revisit their “Takeover: 31” main event. We go to commercial.
– Back from the break and we get a video package with Kyle O’Reilly and NXT Champion Finn Balor looking back at their “Takeover: 31” main event and looking ahead to their New Year’s Evil rematch.
– McKenzie Mitchell is backstage with Tyler Rust and Malcolm Bivens. She congratulates him on last week’s debut loss against Tommaso Ciampa. Bivens interrupts and says Rust had one of the best NXT debuts in history as he took Tommaso Ciampa to the limit like no other. Bivens says with him at Rust’s side, Rust will show that he’s not just some rookie, he’s a diamond in the rough. Bivens says let’s go make some money. They fist bump and walk off together.
Isaiah “Swerve” Scott vs. Jake Atlas
We go back to the ring and Jake Atlas waits in the ring as Isaiah “Swerve” Scott makes his way out for this rematch from two weeks ago, which Atlas won and Swerve showed some disrespect over.
The bell rings and they go at it, back and forth to start. Atlas shoves Swerve and they have some words. They tangle and Atlas connects with a strike to the face. Swerve doesn’t like that. He takes Atlas to the corner and unloads, beating him down and stomping as the referee warns him. Atlas comes out of the corner with big boots to back Swerve off. Swerve takes Atlas down and works him over on the mat.
More back and forth on their feet. Atlas with a Dragonscrew leg whip. Swerve lands on his neck and rolls out for a breather, but comes right back after baiting Atlas, taking him down. Atlas ends up springboarding with a big kick from the corner, sending Swerve back to the floor. Swerve is upset but he tries to refocus and regroup as Atlas talks trash from the ring. The referee counts as Swerve looks on from ringside. Back to commercial.
Back from the break and Swerve has Atlas down on the mat, mounting him with strikes. They fight back up and Swerve catches a kick, delivering more strikes. Atlas with a big Destroyer out of nowhere for a close 2 count. Atlas goes to the top for the cartwheel DDT off the top rope but Swerve superkicks him in the jaw and he lands on the floor. Swerve with a big pump kick from the apron to the jaw. Swerve brings it back in the ring and nails a big tilt-a-whirl slam. Swerve then powers Atlas up from the mat with a suplex for another close 2 count.
Swerve shows some frustration now. He kicks Atlas around in the head while they’re both on the mat. Fans rally for Atlas as Swerve shows more disrespect. Swerve sends Atlas face-first into the turnbuckle. Swerve takes Atlas to the top and climbs up from behind as the referee warns him. Atlas resists the move from the top, nailing back elbows. Atlas jumps to the apron and hits a big boot while Swerve is still on the top. Atlas climbs back up and launches Swerve to the mat with a scissors but Swerve somehow lands on his feet, smiling behind Atlas.
Atlas with a big kick to the head. Swerve with a big kick to the head. Atlas nails and misses a roundhouse. Swerve drops Atlas and rolls him for a 2 count. They tangle on the mat and get back up. Swerve with a back headbutt as they tangle on their feet some more. Swerve hits the Confidence Boost for the pin to win.
Winner: Isaiah “Swerve” Scott
After the match, the music hits as Swerve celebrates. He disrespects Atlas some more and Phoenix says he has no class for the way he’s acting. Atlas sits up and watches from the corner. Swerve offers a handshake but Atlas wants no part of the disrespect, rolling to the floor and making his exit as the trash talking continues.
– McKenzie is backstage with Adam Cole and Roderick Strong. They talk about Kyle O’Reilly challenging NXT Champion Finn Balor again on January 6. Cole says O’Reilly has changed a lot since the match at “Takeover: 31” and this time the result will also be a lot different. Strong agrees and says if it wasn’t clear already, O’Reilly made it clear last week when he beat Pete Dunne. Cole goes on about how O’Reilly will win at New Year’s Evil but here comes The Velveteen Dream to interrupt, making his return. He says the mighty have fallen here in NXT. He goes on about Cole being the leader of The Undisputed Era, but now he’s nothing more than a cheerleader. Cole interrupts with a jab to the mouth to drop Dream. Cole says there has never been a leader of The Undisputed Era and he will take care of Dream tonight. Cole calls Dream a “friggin’ moron” and walks off as Dream recovers.
– We see Rhea Ripley and Dakota Kai walking backstage. Back to commercial.
— We are back and Timothy Thatcher appreciates Tommaso Ciampa wanting to fight him and coming to his face. You tried to take my ear while I tried to take your neck. I came to the ring to ask you for a fight and you walked away. I get dragged out of the arena with no respect. You don’t like people who talk with their mouths and are tough guys. I will take liberties with Leon Ruff and if you are the man you say you are, you will come down and stop me. I want a fight with you.
Dakota Kai vs. Rhea Ripley
They lock up and Rhea backs Kai into the corner and Rhea with a clean break but she swings and misses. Kai kicks Ripley in the leg and Ripley misses a few punches but Kai goes for the legs and Rhea stays on her feet and she picks up Kai and swings her around and drops her to the mat. Ripley with a forearm and hard Irish whip. Kai goes to the floor and then tries to kick Ripley from the apron but Ripley blocks it and gets Kai on her shoulders but Kai lands on her feet on the apron. Kai kicks Ripley in the shoulder and sends Ripley into the ring post.
Kai kicks Ripley when she returns to the ring. Kai with a double wrist lock. Kai pulls Ripley to the mat by the hair and gets a near fall. Kai with a hammer lock and she sends Ripley shoulder first into the turnbuckles. Kai chokes Ripley. Ripley with punches and Kai with forearms to the back followed by an arm wringer to send Ripley to the mat. Kai gets a near fall. Ripley kicks Kai away but Kai with a kick to the shoulder. Kai with an axe kick. Ripley with a rollup for a near fall.
Kai with a clothesline for a near fall. Kai returns to the arm and Ripley tries to block it. Kai with a short arm scissors. Ripley is able to escape but Kai with a cross arm breaker. Ripley gets a near fall and then she picks up Kai for a one arm power bomb. Ripley with clotheslines and knees to the head. Ripley with a snap mare and drop kick to the back. Kai misses a bicycle kick and Ripley with a drop kick followed by a back heel kick and face plant from an atomic drop set up. Ripley gets a near fall.
Kai and Ripley exchange punches. Kai with a head butt and Ripley with an elbow. Kai with a scorpion kick that sends Ripley into the turnbuckles. Kai misses a Yakuza Kick and Ripley with an electric chair facebuster for a near fall. Kai with a drop toe hold to send Ripley into the turnbuckles and Kai with a running boot into the corner. Kai goes for a victory bomb but Ripley blocks it and applies the inverted cloverleaf.
Raquel Gonzalez shows up on the stage as Ripley looks at Gonzalez and she tells Gonzalez to come down if she wants some. Kai gets to the ropes and Ripley finally releases the hold. Ripley with a forearm to the back and she puts Kai on the turnbuckles and punches Kai. Ripley sets for a superplex. Kai with forearms to block and Ripley sent to the mat. Kai kicks Ripley and hits the KAIropractor for a near fall.
Kai with Kawada kicks to Ripley. Ripley blocks a kick and tries for RipTide but Kai counters into a guillotine. Ripley with RipTide for the three count.
Winner: Rhea Ripley
After the match, Raquel Gonzalez makes her way to the ring and officials try to stop her but you know that won’t work. Raquel gets into the ring and she yells at the referee and tells him to stay in the corner. Rhea and Raquel circle each other in the ring. They have words for each other and then they throw punches and the referee lumberjacks enter the ring to separate them. Ripley escapes and goes after Raquel. Producers come out to help the referees try their best to separate these ladies and Rhea gets free and goes after Raquel. They are finally separated.
— We return to the Garganos for more with the Griswolds/Garganos. Indi opens her present and it is a PS5. She says she cannot wait to play. Indi shakes the box and there is nothing in there. Johnny says the box was for dramatic effect and he tells Indi that she has done so well that she gets the family nickname. She is now Indi Wrestling. Indi says that is so much better than a PS5. Candice says she supports her and they support Indi Wrestling.
— McKenzie is backstage with Toni Storm, asking what’s next. She says she called her shot with Rhea Ripley last week and was on the winning team at WarGames. So what’s next? She’s going to take the NXT Women’s Title from Io Shirai. Storm says there’s a good reason why Shirai is terrified every time she mentions the title, because Shirai knows Storm is the one woman on the roster she can’t beat. Storm goes on and says the title isn’t Shirai’s only problem. She has a second problem now and her name is Toni Storm.
We go to commercial.
– Back from the break and we get another dark training vignette with Xia Li and Boa, with their ShiFu master directing things. This time Li is delivering more strikes to Boa but he wants more. She keeps attacking him and they both love it now. We then see Li rise up from a water tank as the ShiFu master looks on. Flashes of the mystery woman and the master are also shown to end the segment. Barrett says Li and Boa are turning into warriors.
Bronson Reed vs. Ashante “Thee” Adonis
We go back to the ring and out comes Bronson Reed making his return as Alicia Taylor does the introductions. Ashante “Thee” Adonis is already waiting in the ring.
Adonis looks to show Reed up early on but Reed capitalizes. Adonis with strikes coming out of the corner but Reed levels him with a big splash out of nowhere. Reed stomps and kicks Adonis in the head, then drops a big senton. Reed goes to the top and hits the big Tsunami Splash for the pin to get the squash win.
Winner: Bronson Reed
After the match, Reed stands tall and has his arm raised as the music hits. We go to replays. Reed yells out that everyone should be afraid.
– McKenzie Mitchell catches up with NXT Women’s Champion Io Shirai in the back, asking if she heard what Toni Storm had to say earlier. Shirai says she did hear what Storm had to say… she keeps walking and tells a crew member to hit her music. Shirai marches right to the ring, without her title, and she’s all business.
Shirai grabs a steel chair and brings it into the ring. She takes a seat and tells Storm to come out. Shirai drops the mic and kicks her feet up, waiting for Storm. Storm’s music hits but instead, Shirai is attacked behind by a returning Mercedes Martinez. Martinez takes Shirai to the floor and manhandles her, driving her into the lighting rig and the barrier. The boos get louder as Martinez keeps the punishment coming.
Martinez tries to bring the brawl back into the ring but Shirai kicks her in the face. Shirai comes back to the floor but Martinez decks her, then launches her into the bottom of the announce table. Martinez stands tall over Shirai at ringside and raises her arms as the boos continue. We go to commercial.
— We are back for Garganos Part 3. It is time for Candice to get her gift from Johnny. Candice opens the present and it is a wheel and Johnny says everyone knows he hates wheels but he spent 17 hours to find a remnant of Shotzi’s tank. Johnny says there is only one way to end this. They take a photo in front of the tree.
Timothy Thatcher vs. Leon Ruff
Thatcher with a chop to the back. Ruff goes for the leg but Thatcher blocks it and Thatcher with a rear chin lock and he rakes the face. Thatcher with a European uppercut. Thatcher with a chop to Ruff but Ruff with a side head lock. Ruff returns to the side head lock. Ruff lands on his feet on a belly-to-back suplex attempt. Ruff with a side head lock but Thatcher with a clothesline and a front fack lock suplex. Thatcher with a half nelson and he covers Ruff’s mouth and nose. Thatcher gets a near fall.
Thatcher with knees to Ruff’s ribs. Thatcher with a belly-to-belly suplex and then Thatcher goes to the floor and he gets a steel chair and sets it up for Ciampa to sit on. Ruff with an inside cradle for a near fall followwed by drops kicks. Ruff with a rebound clothesline and then he comes off the turnbuckles and is met with a European uppercut. Thatcher with a butterfly suplex followed by a kick to the back. Thatcher with a knee bar and Ruff with an inside cradle for the shocking three count.
Winner: Leon Ruff
After the match, Thatcher hits Ruff from behind and sends him into the ringside barrier. Thatcher kicks Ruff. Ruff gets thrown back into the ring and Ciampa comes to the ring and hits WIllow’s Bell. Ciampa tells Thatcher he will see him in the Fight Pit.
— Damian Priest says he sent a simple message but you blindsided me. Where is this badass people talk about. I am still standing. You need to ask yourself if you are not as bad as you think you are. You will get that answer when I punk you out in front of the world at New Year’s Evil. We go to commercial.
— We are back with Dexter Lumis doing his drawings for New Year’s Evil and this one is Rhea Ripley and Raquel Gonzalez and it will be a Last Woman Standing Match.
Ariya Daivari vs. Tyler Rust
We go back to the ring and WWE 205 Live Superstar Ariya Daivari waits in the ring. Out next comes Tyler Rust with Malcolm Bivens.
The bell rings and they lock up, going at it. Rust counters and takes control, taking Daivari to the mat and grounding him. They get back up and Rust keeps control. Bivens goes to the announcers and brags on his client and how impressive he is. They lock up again and Rust keeps focusing on Daivari’s arm.
Rust has Daivari on his back now, swinging him around before dropping him into the mat. Daivari catches a kick but Rust quickly takes him down and goes for the arm bar. Daivari fights it and gets his foot on the bottom rope. Rust with more offense in the corner now, working on the arm. Rust misses a running knee in the corner. Daivari looks to mount some offense now. He hits a draping neckbreaker from the second rope. Daivari then dropkicks Rust off the apron to the floor. Daivari brings it back in the ring and mounts Rust with right hands as Bivens looks on. Daivari talks some trash to Rust and the referee.
Bivens yells at Daivari. Daivari disrespects Rust and yells at him, but Rust pulls him down into a triangle choke. It’s broken as Daivari gets the bottom rope. They get up and Daivari is dazed. Rust with an uppercut, then kicks while Daivari is on his knees.
More back and forth now. Rust with more big kicks to the arm, an uppercut, and another kick to the upper arm. Rust takes Daivari back down and applies another arm submission. Daivari finally taps out.
Winner: Tyler Rust
– McKenzie catches Leon Ruff coming out of the office of NXT General Manager William Regal. He’s thrilled with tonight’s win, but Regal just gave him a better gift – a rematch against NXT North American Champion Johnny Gargano for next Wednesday. Ruff puts on a Santa hat and walks off.
– We see Adam Cole and Roderick Strong walking backstage. We also see The Velveteen Dream walking. Back to commercial.
— We are back with a pre-recorded video of Karrion Kross. Kross says that Damian Priest likes to be the life of the party. You have dug a hole you cannot get out of. You make jokes at my expense and you talk that way to Scarlett. It is inevitable that I will take back what I never lost, but you are something I cannot take my eyes off. The bell will toll for you. Scarlett says Doomsday is coming… Tick Tock!
Velveteen Dream vs. Adam Cole
The bell rings and Dream stalls some. They lock up and Cole applies a headlock. They hit the ropes but Cole takes Dream down with the headlock. Dream tries fighting out but Cole keeps him locked in, and takes him back down in the middle of the ring as fans rally. Cole takes it to the corner and backs off. Dream tries for a slap but Cole rocks him. Dream ends up trying again and connecting. Dream beats Cole around the ring now, showing off to some boos. Cole kicks Dream in the head, then clotheslines him.
Cole with more strikes in the middle of the ring. Dream begs him from his knees but Cole rocks him. Cole whips Dream into the corner but runs into a boot. Cole counters a move and nails a jumping neckbreaker. Cole scoops Dream on his shoulders but Dream escapes to the apron. Cole with a pump kick to send Dream to the floor. Cole brings it back into the ring but Dream scoops him. Cole counters and they collide head-to-head out of the corner, both going down.
Pete Dunne suddenly runs down and attacks Strong at ringside as fans boo. Dunne unloads and slams Strong into the edge of the apron with a Bitter End. Dream take advantage and levels Cole but Cole kicks out at 2. We go to a picture-in-picture commercial.
Dream clothelsines Cole with his shirt and Dream gets a near fall. Dream chokes Cole and kicks him. Dream kicks Cole in the corner and follows with forearms to the lower back. Cole with a forearm and Irish whip as Dream bounces off the turnbuckles. Dream with a shot to the eyes and he chokes Cole in the ropes. Dream with a splash to the back against the ropes. Cole kicks Dream away from the mat. Cole with forearms to Dream but Dream with a shot to the throat.
Cole with a punch but Dream with a knee and slam. Dream goes up top for an elbow drop but misses when Cole rolls out of the way. Cole with a forearm and Dream with a punch. Dream and Cole with punches. Dream with an Irish whip but Cole with clotheslines and a kick followed by an Ushigoroshi for a near fall. Cole with a waist lock and Dream gets to the ropes. Dream with a standing switch but Cole with an enzuigiri and German suplex for a near fall.
Dream with a neck breaker for a near fall. Cole gets Dream up but Dream gets back to his feet. Dream with punches to Cole in the corner. The referee warns Dream and Dream with an elbow but Cole super kicks the leg when Dream goes to the turnbuckles. Dream kicks Cole shoulder first into the ring post. Dream goes to the turnbuckles and tries for a move to the floor but Cole with a super kick to Dream. Cole gets back into the ring since he is having trouble getting Dream into the ring.
Dream gets back into the ring and Cole with a super kick and a figure four leg lock. Dream is able to get to the ropes to force the break. Cole goes for a super kick but Dream moves and Cole almost kicks teh referee. Dream with a rollup for a near fall. Dream with a swinging reverse DDT and then he hits the elbow drop from the top for a near fall.
Cole with a shoulder breaker and he goes to the turnbuckles for a Panama Sunrise but Dream with a super kick and Dream comes off the top and is met with a super kick. Cole with the Last Shot for the three count.
Winner: Adam Cole
After the match, Cole celebrates as his music hits. He tells the camera that the NXT Title is coming back to The Undisputed Era at New Year’s Evil. We see Dream down on the mat as we go to replays. Cole stands tall and represents The Undisputed Era as NXT goes off the air with Vic wishing a Happy Holidays to everyone.
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