This week on NXT, one thing was made perfectly clear: Shayna Baszler is ready to wreak havoc.
The Mae Young Classic finalist made quite the impression even before stepping in the ring, tormenting NXT recruits at the WWE Performance Center over the past couple of weeks. Then came her highly-anticipated in-ring debut against Dakota Kai.
Early on, it became increasingly apparent that the New Zealander was no match for the former UFC fighter. Baszler targeted Kai’s left shoulder and arm, with the final blow being a vicious stomp that bent the limb gruesomely. The referee then ruled that Kai was unable to continue, stopping the match.
Even after being declared the victor, the Queen of Spades wasn’t finished. As the NXT medical staff tended to her opponent, Baszler locked her in the Kirifuda Clutch for good measure. NXT Women’s Champion Ember Moon rushed to the ring, but the damage had been done.
Needless to say, the entire women’s division has been put on notice.
In the main event, Bobby Fish and Kyle O’Reilly were set to defend their NXT Tag Team Championships against Sanity. But the champs and Adam Cole laid waste to their challengers backstage beforehand. They then made their way to the ring to brag about what they had done.
General Manager William Regal had seen enough, saying that Fish and O’Reilly would still be defending their titles. This allowed Roderick Strong and Aleister Black to form a makeshift tag team and get some revenge on the Undisputed Era.
It was a fast-paced and hard-hitting affair, with each team getting their fair share of shots in. Just when it looked like the challengers were ready to strike, Cole took a cheap shot at Black. The Panama City Playboy retreated up the bleachers in the arena, with the Dutch Destroyer giving chase.
But this left Strong at the mercy of the champs, who were able to hit Total Elimination and retain the titles. Black stormed back into the ring, but the numbers advantage caught up to him. The Undisputed Era beat him down, with Cole finishing the job by sending him crashing through a steel chair.
Just when they thought they were in the clear, Regal made his presence felt again. He announced that not only would Cole face Black at NXT Takeover: Philadelphia, but it would be an Extreme Rules match.
There was more action where that came from, starting with Kassius Ohno taking on Raul Mendoza. Aware of the obvious size difference, Mendoza used his high-flying ability to try and get Ohno off his feet. It worked for a little while, but eventually the Knockout Artist was able to catch up with his opponent.
A thunderous big boot stopped Mendoza in his tracks, and Ohno’s signature elbow strike finally put him away for good.
Looking to continue his path of destruction, Lars Sullivan faced the upstart Lio Rush. The NXT newcomer used his quickness to stay out of the monster’s grasp, and at first it was an effective strategy.
But once Sullivan got a hold of him, it was game over. The destruction was swift and effective, ending in a devastating Freak Accident. Once the match was over, Sullivan grabbed a microphone and vowed to destroy his recent rival Killian Dain.
He then grabbed Rush and delivered a Freak Accident from the second rope, sending the Beast of Belfast a dangerously clear message.