Thursday, June 17, 2021

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Raquel Gonzalez pins Io Shirai to win WarGames for Team Candice

In what was an absolute brutal field of war, Team Candice was successful in this year’s WarGames match. Raquel Gonzalez won the match for her team after delivering a chokeslam to the NXT Women’s Champion, Io Shirai, through a ladder propped up between the two rings.

Much like last year’s WarGames match, the champion of the brand was pinned. Last year, Rhea Ripley pinned then-NXT Women’s Champion Shayna Baszler. Ripley would shortly become champion afterward. Could this be a bit of foreshadowing for Gonzalez and Shirai?

The WarGames match didn’t disappoint as there were eight reasons why NXT is arguably the best division in wrestling. Team Shotzi headed into the cage with an advantage as Shotzi Blackheart beat Gonzalez in a ladder match on last week’s NXT. This meant that they would benefit from the handicap advantage by having two against one. Blackheart also unveiled her new tank that she has been constructing for weeks since LeRae destroyed her former one.

The match started with Dakota Kai and Ember Moon before Shotzi Blackheart came in to capitalize on the advantage. The remaining entrants came in as follows – Raquel Gonzalez, Rhea Ripley, Toni Storm, Io Shirai, and Candice LeRae.

Many moments were a highlight throughout. We saw a revisit of the battle between Gonzalez and Ripley as they proved that we need to see them one-on-one again.

Gonzalez didn’t stop her domination there as she would end up being quite the bouncer at the cage door preventing Shirai from entering the match. With the help of Storm, Gonzalez kept Shirai out of the ring for the entire three minute window before LeRae became the last woman to leave her shark cage. This essentially took any advantage away from Team Shotzi being one woman up on Team Candice.

The wildcard, Indi Hartwell, then turned up to help keep Shirai out of the match. She ends up locking the cage door with a chain which meant that the match still hadn’t officially stated because all eight women had not entered. Shirai would finally enter in her own unique way. From the top of the cage, Shirai placed herself in a trash can and then launched herself into the match crashing down on all of the competitors.

We also can’t move away from this match without talking about Moon’s massive Eclipse. With Kai tied up on two chairs, Moon made sure to deliver her finisher from the turnbuckle to the woman who has plagued her since returning to the black and gold brand.

Team captain Shotzi also made sure to do her own high-risk maneuver as she jumped off a ladder onto the very woman who destroyed her tank. LeRae was sandwiched between two steel chairs, so she definitely felt the pain.

With Gonzalez picking up the huge victory for her team and arguably the biggest win of her career, where does this leave her? Will she be the next in line for the NXT Women’s Title and do you think she could dethrone Shirai? What did you think of the WarGames match?

Leave your thoughts on all of this in the comment section below.

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