We open with a video that shows the teasers for NYE that have been airing all week, followed by a quick catch-up on all the buildup to tonight's matches. Afterwards, Wade Barrett and Vic Joseph welcome us to New Year's Evil as a boistrous crowd rings in the first episode of NXT 2.0
We cut to the back and watch as Carmelo Hayes and Roddy Strong get ready for their match. We waste no time getting to it.
Hayes is out first and wears a Roderick Strong shirt, presumably to both mock his opponent and give him $20 for a shirt. Hayes poses in the ring with a pretty hot crowd that's mixed both for and against him. Out next is the Diamond Mine to nothing but boos and a weak Roddy chant. Strong's 104-day reign is one of the longer Cruiserweight reigns in recent history. The fans warm up to Strong as the official announcements are made. The crowd is hot, as usual, which is great. The ref calls for the bell and both men lock up, shoving each other around the ring. The animosity between the two is evident in the violent way they struggle around the ring. Finally the ref forces the break when Strong's pinned back to the ropes. Both men take a moment to compose themselves and lock up. The fans start up a very loud dueling chant for our Superstars.
Hayes and Strong engage in a sequence that sees Strong use an arm lock to attempt to weaken Hayes, only for Hayes' agility to help him escape. Both men, so far, seem very equally matched. They lock up again and Hayes immediately applies a side headlock. Hayes uses the headlock to take Strong down. Both engage in another quick sequence, this time exchanging arm drags that culminates with Hayes dropping Strong. Hayes again turns to a side headlock to wear down Strong. Strong shoves Hayes off; Hayes hits the brakes and scrambles right back to Strong and right into a wicked chop! Strong proceeds to chop Hayes to the outside and then around the ring until Hayes counters, slamming Strong's face into the apron. They take it back inside. The fans fire up again as both men quickly exchange control often. Hayes hits a beautiful spot involving a springboard leg drop on a rope-hung Strong. Strong and Hayes lock up and, again, they engage in a sequence of move and counter-move, each attempting an arm drag and backing up to the ropes. Hayes takes Strong down at the apron with an Apron DDT! Hayes ascends the ropes and looks for a big spot on Strong but Strong counters. Quick pin attempt for a two before the break. We head to commercials.
During the break, the trend of exchanging leads continues. Both men slow the pace, conserving energy and attempting to wear down each other with working holds. Hayes attempts a pin but there's no joy. Hayes eventually turns his offense to Strong's left arm, working the shoulder and elbow in various locks. When we return from the break, Hayes has Strong once again in an arm lock. Both men rise as Strong escapes the lock and drops Hayes with a lariat. Strong takes Hayes down with multiple, consecutive backbreakers! The crowd is hot for Roddy now. Strong goes for a fourth backbreaker but Hayes floats over. Hayes takes Strong down. Hayes covers, but Strong kicks out. Hayes locks in a submission but Strong escapes. Strong counters, looking for the Strong Hold. Hayes counters, locking in the Boston Crab! Strong counters, escaping and applying the Strong Hold! The most vicious back submission since the original Lion Tamer.
Strong continues to focus his attack on Hayes' back. Strong again drops Hayes with a backbreaker and covers for a close two. The two begin exchanging fists from their knees, continuing as they both reach a vertical base. Roddy runs off the ropes and slugs Hayes multiple times before hitting a high-angle slam! Strong covers for another close two! The crowd is going wild for this match. Hayes takes control back with a unique rolling cutter that catches Strong off guard. Hayes covers for a near-three. Hayes with an inside cradle. Strong with a strike and attempts a suplex but Hayes floats through and takes Strong down with a Superkick!
Hayes climbs the turnbuckles but Roddy's up too fast and catches him with a corner Enziguri. The crowd again rips off another hot chant for Roddy. Strong executes an X-Plex off the top rope and both men hit the canvas hard! Hayes is up first and climbs the top. Hayes dives high and catches Strong with a diving Leg Drop as Strong rose. Hayes covers and picks up the win, becoming the new unified champ.
Your Winner and NEW Unified North American/Cruiserweight Champion, Carmelo Hayes!
We get a video hyping this year's Dusty Classic, which returns with the Women's tournament beginning in February and the Men's starting in two weeks.
Styles makes his way out to the ring. Styles soaks up a lengthy AJ Styles chant, telling the crowd he never gets tired of hearing it (which makes them chant louder). After several long moments, he thanks them for it. "I've won a lot of championships, too...and I thank you for being amazing, amazing fans. But I'd be lying to you guys if I didn't tell you I have some regrets. When I first started in WWE, I wasn't down in NXT....My debut was at the Royal Rumble. I was on Raw, I was on SmackDown, within months I was on WrestleMania. But there's something special about this place, there's something special about NXT." The crowd cheers, sensing what's coming, and rips off a loud NXT chant. Styles praises the crowd's passion. "It's the passion that you fans have for the Superstars here, it's the passion that you Superstars have for the fans. I don't care if it's 1.0 or 2.0, it's passion that makes NXT go 'round." Another huge chant. "And I'll be damned if I'm gonna let someone take that passion away from you guys. And if you haven't figured it out, I'm talking about Grayson Waller." Huge boos. "There's always going to be one person who thinks they're bigger and better than the place that they should respect the most and it's Grayson Waller." Grayson Waller makes his way out!
The entire time that Waller talks, the crowd loudly chants "asshole" amongst other harsh things. Waller mocks Styles for getting crushed by Omos last night. The crowd chants "you can't wrestle" at Waller. Waller mocks a random dude in the crowd, criticizing him for not being in a gym. He then enters the ring, telling Styles that he's living in his head rent-free. Styles tells the crowd that Waller's right, stating "I'm hurt, I'm beat up, I'm not at 100%. So uh, hey Waller, why don't you take advantage of the situation. See, I've never had a one-on-one match here at NXT. I've got my gear on and everything, so all we need is a ref and we can do this thing right here!" The crowd pops and Waller tries to decline. Styles tells him to grow a sack and get in the ring and do something about it.
Waller removes his jacket and enters the ring as the crowd chants "where's your ball sack?" haha. Waller then refuses to fight Styles now, but challenges him to the main event next week on NXT. Waller states it'll be the biggest victory of his career and Styles tells him, essentially, it'll be the biggest ass-whooping of his career. The two then come to physical blows. Waller gets the upper hand early but Styles staggers the youngster with a Pele Kick! Styles looks for a Phenomenal Forearm but Waller cowardly flees the ring, crawling back up the ramp. Waller vs Styles is our main event next week!
We see the three women backstage talking about their New Year's resolutions. KC2 want to win the NXT Women's Tag Team titles. Indi Hartwell and Persia Pirotta walk up and tell KC2 that they're going to win the titles. Persia challenges the trio to a match. They ask Tiffany Stratton to join them (Hartwell & Pirotta, that is) but she declines. Behind her is a woman in what appears to be pajamas, sleeping behind a box. Wendy Choo(fka Tian Sha's Mei Ying, the indies' Karen Q) is then introduced and will be their partner for the six-woman match.
Imperium, led by WALTER, make their way out first. We have a brief break ahead of this match. Their opponents are out next, with MSK joined by their Sham-Bro, Riddle to a hot crowd for NXT 1.0's Matt Riddle's homecoming. We start the match with Nash Carter and Marcel Barthel. Aichner uses his technical skills to quickly ground the high-octane Carter. Fabian Aichner comes in and controls Nash for a bit. Finally Riddle takes the tag and the crowd pops as he enters his first NXT match in two years. WALTER is tagged in and the two come to blows. Riddle fires off kicks and strikes, and WALTER seemingly absorbs them before clobbering Riddle. WALTER with a few strong strikes before tagging in Aichner. Aichner looks for a headlock. Both sides make tags with WALTER coming in and dominating Nash Carter as we head to break. Throughout the break, and the bulk of the match, Imperium maintain control through quick tags. WALTER comes in sparingly but when he does, the big man easily overpowers his victim. WALTER looks for a massive Powerbomb but Carter counters with a modified Hurricanrana.
Riddle gets the hot tag and pummels WALTER with kicks. Riddle executes his modified multiple face-wash move before tossing WALTER with a beautiful suplex! Riddle hits a Senton on WALTER and sets up both Aichner & Barthel for Spike DDT's but WALTER makes the save. Riddle takes WALTER to the outside with MSK's help as the ref loses control. MSK hit stereo suicide dives while Riddle simultaneously hits a moonsault, wiping out all of Imperium! Riddle takes WALTER back into the ring and uses a bridging German Suplex to get a close pin attempt. Wes Lee isn't in the match too long, but when he is he flies like always, using the ropes to help defy gravity seemingly. WALTER takes control and goes for another huge Powerbomb. The bomb is executed a little...funny. Regardless, Riddle kicks out at two and WALTER is livid. The crowd is hot throughout the entirety of this match. Aichner and Barthel use quick tags to double-team Riddle, dropping the Sham-Bro with a suplex. MSK hits the ring to make the save on the pin attempt. The ref gains some semblance of control and Aichner tags in Barthel as they set Riddle up for their double-team finisher. Riddle escapes and takes down all of Imperium! Riddle drops WALTER with another big German Suplex! MSK fire up with Riddle and the trio use quick tags of their own to take control until Riddle hits an RKO on Barthel to pick up the win! The crowd flips their lid.
Your Winners, MSK & Riddle!
Rose makes her entrance in style, being flown in by helicopter. We head to break with our Women's triple-threat match up next!
Long segment short: next week, Xyon Quinn takes on Santos Escobar. The winner leaves with Lopez and the love triangle feud ends.
Cora Jade is out first to a big pop as the youngster streaks around the ring and takes it all in. Raquel arrives next, once again on a motorcycle, to an equally big pop. Out last is our champ, as attractive and toxic as ever. Mandy Rose makes her way down to the ring wearing a black angel get-up with wings. Very unique design, check it out. We skip any introduction and get straight to it. Rose sends Gonzalez out of the ring with a rising knee. Rose whips Jade into the corner but Jade uses a headscissors takedown to send Rose out of the ring. Gonzalez enters and counters a headscissors, looking for a swinging slam. Jade slips free and grabs the top rope, ducking down as Gonzalez charges--sending the former champ spilling tot he outside. Jade looks for a suicide dive but Mandy Rose trips her up on the opposite side of the ring, dragging her out and clubbing her. Gonzalez takes Rose down with a running strike from the blindside. Cora Jade then takes Raquel Gonzalez down with an apron cannonball. Rose, recovered, kicks Jade's foot out from under her and sends the rookie into the ring. The crowd is mostly behind Jade, but actively cheer for all three women throughout the match. Rose slips outside the ring to wipe out Gonzalez before turning her attention back to Jade. Jade attempts a roll-up but Gonzalez makes the save. Gonzalez positions Cora Jade on the top turnbuckle then picks up Mandy Rose in a Samoan carry. She then picks up Cora Jade, too, and hits a double Samoan Drop! Impressive! We head to break!
During the break, the chaos ensues as each woman attempts to establish control. At one point, Cora Jade threatens Raquel with a kendo stick. Rose takes down both women from behind and again attempts to pin Jade. Rose taunts the youngster, kicking her in the face and yelling at her. Rose kicks Gonzalez off the apron to prevent her interference then retrieves the kendo. Rose drops Jade and covers for a close two. Rose transitions into a thigh/waist submission. Jade struggles in it and Rose eases the tension long enough to club Jade's chest before extending her body and cinching it in tighter. Jade again attempts to power out. With no success, Jade changes strategy and pivots her body to push the champ's shoulders back to the canvas. Rose breaks the hold and kicks out as we return from break!
Raquel takes a turn being in control, dropping the champ with a scoop slam before whipping her into Jade in the corner. Jade takes down Raquel with a headscissors off the top, then takes Rose down with a springboard headscissors. Jade sets Raquel up and threatens a cutter but the former champ powers up, dropping Jade with a big slam. Gonzalez hoists Jade up, carries her to the ropes and throws her out the ring at Mandy Rose. Rose side-steps and Jade goes splat on the floor mat. Rose has words with Gonzalez then attempts to flee, running up the ramp. Gonzalez gives pursuit and grabs Mandy, running her back to the ring. Gonzalez stands over Mandy as she crawls back in the ring, begging for mercy. Raquel with a rope-assisted slingshot slam. Gonzalez pounds Mandy with big, powerful blows. Rose attempts to flee the ring again but Gonzalez sends her back in. Rose catches Raquel entering with a double-knee face breaker, driving her head into the mat and attempting a pin, garnering two.
Gonzalez and Rose continue in the ring as the crowd rips off a lengthy chant for Cora Jade. Raquel with a Chingona Bomb but Jade dives in off the top and wipes out both women. Raquel angrily takes Jade to the corner and attempts a Superplex. Jade slides under her legs and shoves Gonzalez out of the ring. Raquel crashes hard and rolls away from the ring. Jade looks to roll-up Mandy Rose but Rose hangs on to the ropes, blocking it. Rose then drops down, pinning Jade's shoulders beneath her knees and picking up the win!
Your Winner and STILL NXT Women's Champion, Mandy Rose!
MSK send off Riddle with sentiments of love after Riddle expresses belief in their ability to win the Dusty Cup and earn a shot at Imperium. The Creed Brothers show up and mock MSK, stating the win is theirs. We're reminded no tag team has ever won the Dusty Cup twice.
Chase makes his way out first to a very polarized reaction from the crowd. Chase tells us that last week was...a teachable moment! He states that last week, he was in trouble and one of his students risked life and limb to protect him. We see the Chase University students in the crowd cheering him on. The whole crowd rips off a Chase U. chant. Chase states he's grateful that Harland didn't follow through and throw his student off the roof last week, because that would have been bad for enrollment. Chase wants to recognize the student and he celebrates in the stands. The crowd with a loud "you deserve it" chant for the rookie. Chase goes on to praise him, and makes him the recipient of the first-ever Andre Chase University full scholarship. He has the student come down but they're interrupted by Von Wagner.
"Enough with the bullshit. Now let the real star of NXT say something." Wagner enters the ring--sporting a beard, which totally hints at his upcoming caveman turn--and tells us to all tune in to the "Von Wagner watch party" to see who he "tunes out next." He insults the crowd, stating they're not important and their opinion doesn't matter. He tells the crowd he's everything they're not, and tells Chase the same thing. Chase attempts to talk to Von about teachable moments and, instead, Von Wagner takes him down with a slam as the crowd heckles him. Wagner overpowers Chase then exits the ring, approaching the star student and ripping a banner from his hands. Wagner then grabs the student and whips him over the barricade, slamming him. Wagner begins to attack the audience, multiple members, until security and refs force him to the back.
We're told that Von is being escorted from the building and, to prove Vic Joseph doesn't fib, we cut to the back where we see Von being escorted out of the building.
Grimes declares that in 2022, he'll stop chasing money--and start chasing gold.
We're informed tonight's main event will be commercial free. We head to our final break of the night, then, ahead of the main event. Bron Breakker comes out with a big X in the classic black and gold NXT design in front of him. He destroys it before making his way down to the ring in new black tights, woofing the entire way. Out next is our champ and the NXT crowd show Daddy some big-time love as Ciampa makes his way to the ring in style with that snazzy jacket. Ciampa looks at the ruins of the X prop before holding his title up and entering the ring. Our champ is fired up and gets in Bron's face. The ref has to struggle to keep both men apart as they exchange heated words. It's time for our main event! We get the official announcements and the bell with ten minutes to go in our program--expect an overrun.
The crowd welcomes both men with dueling chants of "psycho killer/woof woof woof." Both men lock up and Bron pushes Tommaso back against the ropes, causing the ref to force the break. Again they lock up and this time, Ciampa forces Breakker into the corner. The ref forces the break. Bron disrespects the champ by slapping his face. Ciampa responds by dropping Bron with a running clothesline. Beautiful sequence in which Breakker dodges a Ciampa charge, dives down to grab Ciampa's body and gut-wrench him up into a stalling suplex. Hard to explain, worth watching. Very impressive offense from Rick Steiner's son. Ciampa rolls to the outside to take a moment to compose himself. When he enters the ring, Breakker again hits a suplex. Breakker pulls the champ up and shoves him against the ropes, striking his lower back as he performs the move a second time. Breaker goes tot eh well one time too many and Ciampa comes out chopping. Bron fires back with a right; Ciampa fires off a kick before scraping Breakker's face along the ropes as the ref warns him.
Ciampa takes Breakker into the corner and begins the vintage ten-punch count with the crowd. Ciampa connects with the first nine strikes but Breakker tosses him off before he can complete the sequence. Both men run off the ropes and Ciampa drops Breakker with a textbook dropkick. Ciampa bows to the crowd before stomping Breakker on the mat. Ciampa pulls the youngster up and pounds him with right forearms. Ciampa whips Breakker into the ropes and ducks under an attempted shoulder dive. Breakker splats on the mat. Ciampa sends Breakker to the outside with a running knee strike and hits a modified tope corkscrew to wipe out Breakker! The fans stay active all throughout the match, constantly chanting for both men. Ciampa uses a headlock to control Breakker for a few moments. Bron uses the corner to attempt to shrug off Ciampa but fails. Breakker walks them into the middle of the ring and whips himself back fast and hard, smashing Ciampa into the canvas.
Both men are slow to rise but when they do, they take turns throwing a variety of strikes at each other. Bron takes control and sends Ciampa into the corner. Ciampa attempts a modified Lou Thesz or Hurricanrana but Breakker interrupts the move with a huge shoulder, driving the champion into the mat. Breakker takes Ciampa up top but the vet drops down and cuts the legs out from Breakker, crotching him on the top. Breakker falls back into a Tree of Woe and Ciampa begins to stomp away at his face as the ref warns him. Ciampa with a running basement dropkick to Breakker's face!
Ciampa sets up the Fairy Tale Ending but Breakker puts on the brakes. Breakker hits a huge Spinebuster, catching Ciampa off the ropes and using his momentum against him. Breakker then executes a standing Moonsault for a close cover! Breakker climbs up and perches on the top turnbuckle. Ciampa is too quick, however, and sends Bron crashing to the floor. Ciampa attacks the challenger outside the ring. The champ is busted open, bleeding from his right eye/eyebrow. Ciampa screams in rage and looks for a running strike--but Bron nearly cuts the champ in half with a brutal spear out of nowhere! Both men are slow to rise and, again, exchange slow, alternating rights. Ciampa picks up the pace, rapid-firing fists at the challenger. Ciampa looks for a running knee but Breakker counters with a Franken-Steiner! Breakker covers for a close two.
Our Superstars pick up the pace as we're in overrun territory. Breakker looks for another press slam but Ciampa counters it with a Widow's Bell! Ciampa covers for an insanely-close two. Ciampa goes to his old playbook, dragging a section of the mat padding before the announcer's table back and exposing the cement. Ciampa looks for a DDT but Breakker counters with an Alabama Slam through the announcer's table! The crowd flips out and rips off a lengthy "holy shit" chant! Breakker takes the champ into the ring and Ciampa's on the ropes. Breakker with the press powerslam! Breakker covers and the ref counts--but Ciampa grabs the nearby rope at three! Breakker is in disbelief! The crowd begs the two Superstars to "fight forever!"
Ciampa catches Breakker on the ropes as he attempts to exit the ring. Ciampa connects with a running apron knee to Breakker's jaw. Ciampa with another running knee to Breakker's face! And a third! Ciampa rapidly pulls Breakker in and hits the Fairy Tale Ending to retain the...-no! Breakker kicks out! "Woof"'s fill the arena as both men rise. Our fans are on their feet as Ciampa positions Breakker on the top rope. Ciampa ascends and both men struggle at the top. Breakker shoves Ciampa off, and the champ crashes down. Breakker awaits for Ciampa to rise then dives off, connecting with a Bulldog! Breakker pulls down the straps and locks in the Steiner Recliner. Ciampa hangs in there as long as he can but eventually taps!
Your Winner and NEW NXT Champion, Bron Breakker!
We get recaps as Breakker celebrates for a few minutes and Vic Joseph praises Breakker as the new face of NXT. We fade to black.
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