Submitted by Jason Sitek
No Way Jose defeated Riddick Moss
Both guys are pretty green, but this was a prelim house show match. Jose got some solid chanting, and has a Latin baseball player’s walk-up music. Lots of dancing and then he won the match with a baseball pitching wind-up punch.
Elias Samson defeated John Skyler
As soon as Samson’s music hit, the place starts booing. He cut a promo and sang a song but the sound at floor level was not great, so you could not really make anything out. Skyler is from Concord but fans were more focused on booing Samson. Lots of “drift away” and “you can’t wrestle” chants.
Alex Riley defeated Blake
No Murphy or Alexa with Blake who is pretty dead without them. Lots of “Where’s Alexa?” chants. Alex Riley smiled at the “young Triple H!” chants, commenting on his look, but that’s about the only good thing to say about this. Riley won the match, but I’m not sure anyone was the better for it.
Eva Marie defeated Carmella
Carmella out first to a huge pop. Eva came out to tremendous heat and boos, but you can tell the crowd loves booing her and she loves getting that reaction. Lot of knee-in-the-back rest holds from Eva to Carmella. Carmella got her comeback, but Eva got the win by keeping her feet on the bottom rope. Carmella left, but came back and hit her finisher on Eva to pop the crowd.
NXT Tag Team Champions American Alpha defeated The Revival
Gable is great, but I was most impressed by Jordan, Dash, and Dawson. Revival got lots of heat on Gable and were bantering back and forth with the crowd. They were sarcastic and heelish, and it was great. Jordan got his babyface comeback and took off the shoulder straps, then later in the match emphatically put them back on and immediately got fired up and took them back off — to the roar of the crowd.
Spot of the night was a new one for this match-up (from what I can tell) where Gable was in the corner and one member of Revival tries to schoolboy him, but Gable has his arms around the other Revival member and suplexes him. Alpha wins, but no signature finisher.
– Short promo from Tom Phillips and Dasha Fuentes about merch & and then intermission.
Austin Aries defeated Manny Andrade
Manny out to generic Latin music and very little reaction — but that would change by the end of the match. Most people, including NXT fans, may not know who Manny is/was and how good he is. Very quiet during the first half of the match, but some of the best wrestling of the night. Aries had the crowd support at first but credit to him for getting Manny over. By the time this match was done, Manny was the star leaving the ring. Aries pinned him but helped up him and pointed at Manny in a way that let the fans know the former La Sombra is the real deal.
NXT Women’s Champion Asuka defeated Peyton Royce
Peyton Royce out with new heel music, attire, and heel mannerisms. She has a small flower she carries with her and smells from time to time. Asuka was out but had no belt. Eva Marie came out before the match got underway, carrying the “belt” underneath a blanket, challenging Asuka to a match for the title at NXT Columbia the next night.
The crowd loved Asuka, and was really one of the best on this show tonight. Peyton got a lot of offense in, but Asuka tapped her out to the Asuka Lock. Asuka then asked for a mic and in confident English said “Eva, I’m going to kick your ass.”
NXT Champion Finn Balor/Shinsuke Nakamura defeated Tye Dillinger/Baron Corbin
Wildly entertaining man event. Dillinger out first and the “10” gimmick is over. He cut a promo about how this crowd/show is a 4 but since he’s a 10, he’ll give them a perfect match and perfect victory. Corbin out next and the banter was excellent. Nakamura out third and the crowd made known who they came to see. The entire arena could not have been more excited to see him live. Finn Balor still wildly popular as NXT champ and cheered but not as big as Nakamura. Corbin worked the match with his shirt on and bantered with the crowd, rubbing his fingers together to show the only way he’d take it off would be for money.
Finn was up first and the crowd erupted when he tagged in Nakamura. Tye and Baron tagged in and out to delay eventually facing him. Lots of the usual Nakamura spots like the vibrating stomp, knees and kicks, but you don’t even care if you’ve seen it before because it’s so great live. His facial features sell it even further.
Since Concord is just outside of Charlotte, the Flair chops were used heavily. Finn hit Tye with chops and then went FULL-Flair and started strutting and WOO!-ing. He sold it like he had dreamed of working the Carolinas as Flair as a kid. The Flair spots culminated in a perfect Flair-flop from Dillinger and the crowd laughed uproariously and applauded. Nothing bad but nothing memorable from Corbin. After some grappling, Nakamura hit Tye with a knee strike from the top rope and tagged Finn who hit the Bloody Sunday for the pin.
Finn and Nakamura celebrated, and then Balor grabbed the mic and cut a promo. He was very passionate and said that after ‘Mania there were a lot of tired, sore, and even some homesick wrestlers, but crowds like tonight make them want to go out and not let anyone down. The crowd appreciated the candor. He then handed the mic to Shinsuke who said he only had one thing to say: “YEAOH!” — and the entire crowd did it with him.
Fun moment after the match: Finn grabbed a fan’s sign and held it up to all sides of the ring. The sign read “WHERE ARE DOC AND KARL?”