Last week it was announced that the Women’s Tag Team Championship would be defended on this week’s NXT. We knew at that time the challengers were Tegan Nox and Shotzi Blackheart, but we had to wait until after Backlash to see if Sasha Banks and Bayley would still be champions. They were able to successfully defend their titles at that event against The IIconics and Nikki Cross & Alexa Bliss.
Before we get into that match, let’s first go over the shock of the century. The first women’s match of the night was Aliyah facing her constant rival Xia Li. Originally when I saw this match set for the thirteenth time I thought to myself – why?
As Aliyah made her way to the ring, she spotted Robert Stone off to the side of the stage disheveled and not reeking of awesomeness. Stone lost the only member of his brand with Chelsea Green weeks ago, and he hasn’t been able to find any new clients.
Rhea Ripley rejected him last week, and he had his eye on Aliyah in the past but nothing panned out. Aliyah picked him up from his drunken doldrums and took him to ringside. The match itself wasn’t very long as Stone would perch himself on the apron and then throw up all over the ring. This was what it took in order for Li to be distracted. Aliyah would stack up Li and it wasn’t the prettiest as Li got the shoulders up. She would then stay on her and try again and the Curt Hawkins losing streak is over. Aliyah WINS! She would then carry Stone up the ramp with her celebrating her win.
Prior to the next match, after a confrontation in the ring between Keith Lee and Johnny Gargano (also involving Adam Cole and Finn Balor), Candice LeRae confronts Lee backstage. Lee spouted some derogatory remarks against LeRae in the ring to Gargano when he said he helped LeRae up last week from when he landed on her. He stated that LeRae had a tear fall from her eye and exclaimed that that was the most action she has had recently. As she confronts him backstage, Mia Yim approaches her from behind. The two brawl backstage.
For the second women’s match of the night, Dakota Kai faces Kayden Carter. Last week, Kai took down Kacy Catanzaro and that didn’t sit too well with her tag team partner Carter. Carter started the match quick trying to perhaps pick up a quick victory. She takes down Kai and delivers the right hands and a leaping crossbody.
She uses the bottom rope as a springboard and delivers a basement dropkick that drives Kai out of the ring. Carter starts arguing with Raquel Gonzalez on the outside which allows Kai to gain control of the match. The two end up battling back and forth with their forearms. Carter hits a wheelbarrow into a victory roll into a lateral press to try and get a pin. She is unable to get a three count.
Carter continues to impress with her athleticism as she drives Kai’s face into the mat. Gonzalez then hops up on the ring apron for a distraction and once she gets back down, Catanzaro hits a crossbody and is flung to the floor by Gonzalez. Kai tries to capitalize on the distraction but only gets a roll-up two count. She then locks in a submission which causes Carter to tap out.
Next, we see Scarlett briefly as she is seen backstage approaching the broken hourglass that she delivered to Adam Cole last week.
Lastly, we get to the main event which features the much-anticipated Women’s Tag Team Championship match. Banks and Nox start things off. Each woman gets a quick two count with Banks getting a near fall off a jackknife and Nox gets one from a backslide. After Bayley enters the match, she takes control of Nox, that is until Nox headbutts her causing both of them to collapse. They both are able to tag in their partners.
Blackheart is able to hit a bulldog and then a forearm into a belly to back suplex for a two count. After Blackheart misses a wrecking ball and went through the ropes, Banks then hits a huge running meteora off of the apron on the outside onto her.
Bayley and Banks attempt to double team Blackheart in the corner. Banks misses as Blackheart moves out of the way. Tegan and Shotzi hit follow up with cannonballs in opposite corners where both Sasha and Bayley laid. Bayley on the outside, Nox hits a chokeslam to Banks onto Bayley. Blackheart then gets an assist from her tag team partner as she leaps over the top rope to deliver a crossbody to the champs on the outside. Once they are back in the ring, Blackheart hits an assisted Shiranui for a near fall that Banks breaks up. Banks is then able to lock in the Bank Statement only to have Blackheart counter it into a Cattle Mutilation submission hold.
Bayley then brings in a chair into the ring. Nox takes the chair from her which catches the official’s eye. This was enough for Bayley to flip over Blackheart back into the Bank Statement for Banks. Blackheart would tap out making Bayley and Banks retaining the Women’s Tag Team Championships.
Banks and Bayley will now have to face The IIconics next week on RAW.
After the match, NXT Women’s Champion Io Shirai arrives and attacks both Banks and Bayley stopping their celebration. The two retreat up the ramp as Shirai raises her title high showing her dominance in an NXT ring.
We also received a promo for Mercedes Martinez. Looking forward to seeing her back in the ring.
That was a lot to unpack, let’s get into this week’s Winners & Losers;
I mean, come on. She finally won a singles match and I believe it was also her first televised win. The finish was definitely rocky, but it was a win nonetheless. At first, I was like, are we still trying to make Aliyah vs. Xia Li happen, but I was happy with the result. Hopefully, this is just the start for her finally getting a push even if it is a little one picking up some wins. She definitely needs a new feud, let’s move on from her facing Xia.
WINNER: Kayden Carter
She may have lost her match tonight, but Kayden has it and is going places. If she is put in the right feud, she can do wonders. Her athleticism is amazing and even when she loses she still looks like a star in my opinion. I do like that they are finally showing her partnership with Kacy Catanzaro. Finally, we are getting tag team development.
LOSER: Xia Li
She definitely needs a new road to take. She has no real direction and is just used for random short matches. I do enjoy her in the ring, but having the same feud picked up randomly after several weeks of not being shown isn’t it for her.
LOSER: Tegan Nox
Personally I think Shotzi showed out way more in the tag team match. Overall I really enjoyed the match, however, the team seems one-sided. They had some cute tag team spots where they worked well together, but I think overall Shotzi had the eyes on her. Tegan was great with Dakota, but I think I may just need to give it more time. Maybe it is just me?
Lastly, I am not quite sure they know where to go next with Io Shirai. Her coming in at the end to drive Sasha and Bayley out didn’t make much sense. She isn’t going to be feuding with them so what was the point? I know it was to claim her territory, but the tag champs can go from brand to brand.
What did you think of this week’s NXT? Who were your Winners & Losers? Let us know in the comment section below.