Welcome to NXT: New Year’s Evil! Dexter Lumis performs the ceremonial switch on and is announced as your host.
Damian Priest vs Karrion Kross (w/ Scarlett)
Both lock up and roll outside in the lock-up. Each man slams the other into barriers. Strike fest, Kross lifts and slams Priest, injuring the ribs, and takes advantage. Kross slams Priest ribs first into ring steps. Body shots to the ribs. Priest ducks a right hand and nails a flat liner. Priest with a Broken Arrow for two. Kross goes shoulder-first into the corner, Priest targets that arm with kicks, knees, and a single-arm DDT. Priest locks in a submission, but Kross attacks the ribs to break. Kross avoids Priest in the corner and blasts him with a lariat. Kross ties Priest in the Tree of Woe pulls the knee pads down and hits a running knee to the ribs. Priest avoids the Saito Suplex from the top rope and manages to hit a Razor’s Edge but as it took so much effort he couldn’t pin immediately and only gets a two count. Priest takes Kross down with a spinning heel kick from the top, then nails the South of Heaven for a near fall. Kross counters The Reckoning with a release Northern Lights Suplex. Kross drops Priest on his neck with a release powerbomb. Kross slams Priest ribs first into the steel pillar at ringside, before power slamming him on the ring steps. Priest defiantly shouts “I’m still standing” only to take a head kick, Saito Suplex, and a forearm to the back of the head. Kross gets the victory.
Backstage we find out Undisputed Era (Strong and Cole) will face Breezango in round one of the Dusty Rhodes Tag Team Classic next week. Cole claims Undisputed Era will fulfil the Golden Prophecy by winning the Dusty Rhodes Tag Team Classic after O’Reilly starts by winning the NXT Championship tonight.
Santos Escobar vs Gran Metalik: Cruiserweight Championship
Vic Joseph references the history of Escobar and Metalik as a tag team, with this being their first match against each other. Metalik lands a couple of hurricanrana’s early on. Metalik on the apron leaps to the top rope to avoid a baseball slide and smoothly throws a moonsault onto Escobar on the outside. Springboard senton atomico on Escobar for a two count. Metalik tries a hurricanrana from the apron, but Escobar holds on and slams Metalik into the barriers. Escobar drops Metalik ribs first on the turnbuckle. Escobar locks in a surfboard, but Metalik shifts to pin his shoulders down for a two count. Metalik fires back with a reverse sling blade and a second rope dropkick. Metalik hits an inside-second-rope springboard somersault plancha to the outside, and a springboard splash for a near fall. Escobar counters a springboard attack with a leaping knee. Escobar with a tope suicida with Metalik hitting the guard rail hard. Metalik almost loses his mask in a struggle on the top rope. Lince Dorado manages to stop Legado del Fantasma from getting involved allowing Metalik to hit a hurricanrana from the top. Metalik climbs to the top rope but is blocked, and Escobar hits Legado then the Phantom Driver to retain the championship.
A video package airs from Mercedes Martinez, who is “waiting on” Io Shirai and wants the NXT Women’s Championship.
Xia Li vs Katrina Cortez
What an impressive entrance from Li and Boa, with a mysterious figure sitting on a throne watching on. Xia rocks Cortez with a spinning hook kick. Cortez manages to land a punch to the stomach, but Li walks through it, blocks a few shots, and nails Katrina with a knee to the jaw. Xia Li drops Cortez with a spinning roundhouse kick for an easy victory.
Update from William Regal. Timothy Thatcher is injured and can’t compete in the fight pit.
Bronson Reed puts the whole place on notice as 2021 will see Bronson unleashing his inner savage. Reed then puts his money on Rhea Ripley.
Rhea Ripley vs Raquel Gonzalez: Last Woman Standing
Ripley with an early dropkick and attack in the corner. Gonzalez gets the upper hand with a lariat and a trio of fall away slams for the first count – Ripley gets up at four. Outside the ring, Ripley grabs a Kendo Stick. Gonzalez eats three strikes, but blocks the third and shows Ripley away. Rhea attempts a running dropkick off the steps, but Gonzalez counters with a chair shot in mid-air then slams Ripley into the barricade. Gonzalez breaks the Kendo stick on Ripley’s back. Rhea handcuffs Raquel to the barricade, but Gonzalez kicks her away and rips out a section of the chain-link fence. Ripley tries to use the hammer for the ring bell, but Gonzalez blocks it and slams Rhea face-first into the bell. Ripley back to her feet at six. Gonzalez backdrops Ripley onto the edge of the announce desk – which doesn’t break instantly – then piles desk debris and chairs on to Rhea. Ripley gets up at eight.
Gonzalez tries to hit Ripley with the ring steps, but Rhea kicks them out of her hand, and DDT’s Raquel on to them. Both get to their feet at the same time, and Gonzalez manages to hit Ripley with the steps twice. A running boot to the face sends Ripley off the side of the stage. Ripley tackles Gonzalez through a glass door – both women back up at eight. Ripley lays Gonzalez on a table and climbs some technical cabinets, leaping off with a senton atomico to put Raquel through the table. The referee gets to eight, and Dakota Kai appears from the back, attacking Ripley with a Kendo stick. Kai checks on Gonzalez, allowing Ripley to get up and attack both women. Ripley slams a locker door into Kai’s face, before putting her in a locker and locking her in! Gonzalez attacks Rhea with a chair. Ripley locks in an inverted cloverleaf and uses a chair to pull back on Gonzalez’s face. Ripley hits a Death Valley Driver into the LED board on the ramp, Gonzalez up at eight. Gonzalez trips Ripley face-first onto the ring steps, then slams her THROUGH the stage! Raquel gets to her feet at nine, Ripley doesn’t beat the count. Raquel Gonzalez is the Last Woman Standing in an absolute war.
The Way arrives at the building with a convoy escort to celebrate Gargano “breaking the curse”. Gargano claims to be only cursed with being the next, the most handsome, and the greatest dancer. Candice hands Gargano a plaque. Austin Theory says Gargano is a real-life superhero, but they never get anything so Theory and Hartwell unveil a picture of The Way as The Avengers. Gargano announces he and Theory will be in the Dusty Rhodes Tag Team Classic. Outcomes Shotzi Blackheart! Theory goes out to confront Shotzi, who shoots him in the groin from the tank! Blackheart hits the ring and clears out Hartwell and LeRae. Gargano gets on the apron and squares off against Blackheart, and Kushida hits the ring instead.
Dexter Lumis rings the bell and points to the screen. We see drawings of Gargano, LeRae, Kushida, and Blackheart… We have a match!
Johnny Gargano & Candice LeRae vs Kushida & Shotzi Blackheart
Candice and Shotzi start. Blackheart hits a running enzuigiri, landing Candice on the ropes. Shotzi hits a senton on the ropes for a two count. Candice takes control, but Blackheart escapes a reverse chin lock with a backpack jawbreaker. Blackheart tags out and Gargano and Kushida come in. Kushida nails a hip toss followed by a low dropkick. Gargano goes for the rolling kick out of the corner, but Kushida avoids it. Kushida and Gargano trade submission attempts. Strikes are traded, with Kushida hitting a straight right. Kushida aims for Gargano in the corner but Candice steps in his way. Kushida assists Blackheart in hitting a Sliced Bread. Kushida and Blackheart hit stereo arm breakers and arm kicks. Both hit dives to the outside taking out the Gargano’s. Hartwell and Theory stop Kushida and Blackheart from getting back in the ring. Kushida brings Theory in and sits him in the corner, before catching Gargano with a drop toe hold, sending him face-first into Austin’s groin. Kushida rolls up Gargano for the win.
NXT Takeover is announced for February 14. Imagine it’ll be a St Valentines Day Massacre?
Ever-Rise vs Grizzled Young Veterans is announced as a first-round match in the Dusty Rhodes Tag Team Classic next week.
William Regal announces a forthcoming NXT Women’s Dusty Rhodes Tag Team Classic!
Kyle O’Reilly vs Finn Bálor: NXT Championship
Commentary reminds us Bálor has not competed in three months since the last match between the two. Bálor and O’Reilly lock up, O’Reilly knocks Bálor down with a shoulder block. They trade holds, with O’Reilly using his legs to squeeze Bálor’s neck and jaw. As they stand, O’Reilly throws a kick towards Bálor’s jaw, but Bálor gets his arm up to block. O’Reilly immediately switches to focus on the arm. Bálor attempts an abdominal stretch, but O’Reilly counters with a hip toss and an arm lock. Bálor fights out and gets the abdominal stretch, but O’Reilly gets to the ropes with his mouth – only for Bálor to kick the rope while Kyle’s jaw was still clenched. Bálor works on Kyle’s neck and head, but O’Reilly fights back with a kick to the arm. O’Reilly hits a pair of dragon screw-style arm breakers in the ropes. Bálor retaliates with a pair of chin locks in the ropes, before stomping on the side of Kyle’s face, focusing on the jaw. Bálor hits a dropkick for a two count.
O’Reilly hits a belly to back suplex, but Finn holds on and applies a crossface only for O’Reilly to make it to the ropes to break. Bálor repeatedly uses his forearm to push and rub O’Reilly’s jaw. Kyle comes back with multiple knees. O’Reilly attempts a Kimura but eats a series of knees to the head to break. Kyle hits a kick on Bálor, but his momentum takes him out of the ring. O’Reilly attempts multiple submissions, but Bálor escapes a guillotine choke, a triangle, and a heel hook all with strikes to the jaw. Bálor hits 1916, transitioning into a crossface. O’Reilly breaks by hitting the injured arm of Bálor. Bálor hits the sling blade, standing double stomp and shotgun dropkick. Finn goes to the top rope but O’Reilly cuts him off with a superplex. Bálor holds and tries the pin, but O’Reilly rolls out and delivers a brainbuster. Bálor blocks an armbar with his good arm, so O’Reilly transitions to the other arm but Finn gets to the ropes. Finn blocks an attack in the corner with a kick to the liver. Bálor locks in an abdominal stretch and punches the liver. Bálor sits out with the hold still in place, then adds a crossface, pulling on the injured jaw. O’Reilly has no escape.
Finn Bálor wins by submission to retain the NXT Championship. Bullet Club rules AEW & NXT