WWE NXT 11/22/17 is another “post-TakeOver” show, so we can expect a bunch of “fallout” videos and a few matches taped before last weekend’s TakeOver show. Specifically, we’re getting to see Pete Dunne defend the UK Championship against Johnny Gargano. Also, two of the recent main roster call ups – Ruby Riot and Sonya Deville – will be facing off in what will turn out to be their final match at NXT. Join me for what will likely be a short recap while I mourn the annual gutting of the NXT Women’s Division!
WWE NXT 11/22/17 Recap
WWE. Then. Now. Forever. We open with a TakeOver War Games highlight video package with a brief summary of each match.
Standard NXT opening credits and we’re taped from Houston (originally taped 11/18/17). Mauro welcomes us to the show and Nigel tells us that we’re going to see some War Games footage a bit later.
Tonight’s main event? Pete Dunne defends the WWE UK Championship against Johnny Gargano.
Time for the first of two matches on this week’s show. Ruby Riot (w/ footage of her debuting on SmackDown Live) is out first. Sonya Deville (w/ footage of her debuting on Raw) is out next. It’s this week’s NXT episode – the only place you’ll see Raw and SmackDown’s women’s division face off in a singles match the week after Survivor Series!
Match #1: Ruby Riot vs. Sonya Deville
About what I expected – even before the shocking call ups. The story here was that Sonya injured Ruby’s ankle and they play that up. Sonya spends the early goings trying to strike at the ankle and finally connects. From there, Ruby has to innovate offense to compensate for the injury. Perhaps the best spot she does is a single legged springboard Senton. Sonya eventually gets an arm bar on Ruby, coverts it into an ankle lock and Ruby has to struggle to make the ropes. Sonya argues the rope break with the ref and eats a finishing kick from Ruby. 3 count.
Verdict: Thumbs Up – The “they’re both on Raw and SmackDown now” angle felt shoe-horned into this match in post-production. But, as far it being the blow-off to the Sonya / Ruby mini-feud, it did a good job.
Post-match, Ruby celebrates, but still sells the ankle. Guess it healed up just in time for SmackDown a few days later!
Next, we see clips from the Aleister Black vs. Velveteen Dream match.
After that, we see clips from Kassius Ohno vs. Lars Sullivan.
Next, this interview with Lars Sullivan airs. He has hands. Big hands.
Meanwhile, Gargano is backstage getting ready under a giant, illuminated Houston Rockets logo.
Later tonight? We look at the Fatal Four Way match for the vacant NXT Women’s Championship.
Up next? Highlights from the Drew McIntyre vs. Andrade Cien Almas match.
Back from break, it’s not what they said was up next. It’s the footage from the women’s Fatal Four Way.
This interview with new Women’s Champion Ember Moon airs next.
Next, we get the footage of the NXT Championship match.
After that, this clip of Drew McIntyre airs. Notably, we get no update on his condition.
Up next? War Games footage.
Back from break, “earlier this week” the Street Profits are partying with fans outside of Full Sail by dancing to their theme song on top of a car. Sabbatelli and Moss show up and the typical “we spend more money than you on material goods” argument comes up. Just in time for Black Friday, I suppose!
Next week? Street Profits vs. Moss & Sabbatelli.
Also, next week? Kairi Sane vs. Peyton Royce.
I’m not entirely sure where these matches next week were taped at. The next Full Sail taping is next Wednesday right before the NXT episode would air on the Network. I doubt it is live, so I imagine these are pre-taped from the Texas house show loop?
Up next, we see the highlights from the War Games match.
Meanwhile, Pete Dunne is backstage getting ready for the main event.
Back from break, Gargano is out. Champ enters last. Both guys get nice pops.
Match #2: Pete Dunne (c) vs. Johnny Gargano (WWE UK Championship Match)
Just as good as I suspected it would be. No surprise that Dunne retains – but that is a two-fold outcome. It keeps a light on the UK Division for whenever they decide to do something with it. And, it also furthers the “Johnny chokes in big matches” story line that I imagine will continue until Ciampa is back. Some great “tit for tat” offense in this match and in hindsight, I’d probably have rather seen this open the TakeOver card over Ohno and Lars. Either way, this is a good match – even if it is a bit brief all things considered. The finish comes when Gargano gets the Gargano Escape slapped onto Dunne. Pete spits out his mouth guard and bites Gargano’s fingers to force a break. After a brief exchange, Gargano picks up the mouth guard and realizes it would be a good time to superkick Dunne in the face. That only gets a two count. Gargano attempts a spear Pete through the ropes and eats a Dunne forearm. That allows Dunne to hit the Bitter End and pick up the win.
Verdict: Thumbs Up – As good as it sounded on paper.
Post-match, we go off the air quickly with Dunne celebrating in the ring by letting the UK Title hang out of his mouth.
Well, about what I expected for this week’s show. Two solid matches and a ton of “in case you only watch the weekly NXT episodes and skip the TakeOver shows” footage.