Wrestling Recap: WWE NXT (Episode 22: February 19, 2020)

WWE wrestling NXT

Better late than never…

ORLANDO (Ambush Sports) — NXT returns from Portland, Ore. and the fallout from NXT TakeOver: Portland starts to unravel.

The Undisputed Era comes into the arena to start off the show, with Adam Cole giving his “I told you so” speech, that he would defeat Tommaso Ciampa and still leave as the NXT World Champion. He handed his microphone to Roderick Strong to talk about his match with The Velveteen Dream later in the night but was interrupted by a voiceover promo from Dream as his logo appeared on the big screen. Strong stated that Dream would regret coming back.

The NXT Cruiserweight Championship goes into contention as Jordan Devlin (c) takes on Lio Rush.

Some early crisp lockups to start off, with some quick exchanges for about a minute before cutting to their commercial break, where it appeared Rush had quite an offensive streak, wearing down Devlin in the corner with solid strikes, followed by submission holds on the ground.

Devlin would turn the tables when the match came back from commercial break, having most of the offense in the next part of the match, nailing a turnaround Arabian press onto Rush inside the ring, and even launching Rush across the ring with a half-and-half suplex. He would later land a kitchen sink knee that was deserving of an instant replay.

While the crowd at Full Sail University was loud in support for Rush, Devlin dug into his heel role card, torturing Rush with stiff strikes and catching heat from some nasty-looking submissions, continuing to work over Rush as they cut to another commercial.

Rush and Devlin attempted cross-body blocks, which resulted in both crashing in the middle of the ring.

Devlin returned with a cutter, sending Rush out onto the floor, then attempted an Orihara moonsault. He missed, but rolled through and landed on his feet. Rush responds with a springboard corkscrew moonsault.

Some continued back and forth action between the two, with Devlin landing the side back suplex and pinfall with the 1-2-3.

There was an interview segment with Dakota Kai and Raquel Gonzalez. Both had discussed their experiences at the WWE Performance Center and why Gonzalez helped Kai in Portland with her street fight against Tegan Nox. Kai noted Gonzalez’s worth and expressed an openness to team up. NXT general manager William Regal appeared to explain the terms of a rematch between Kai and Nox, and it will be contested inside a steel cage.

Prior to a commercial break, they showed video of Ciampa outside the facility.

Upon return, a post-match interview with Rhea Ripley aired following her match at TakeOver: Portland, talking about Charlotte Flair’s attack leading to their match at WrestleMania. She said the joke is on Charlotte because Ripley got who she wanted.

Austin Theory came out, presumably prepared for a match, except Ciampa had followed him out during his entrance. Ciampa cut a promo about the show Sunday and responded to Theory that it wasn’t his time for a match tonight.

Ciampa continues, knowing he knows why Johnny Gargano did what he did Sunday, and when Theory tried to turn him around, he was laid out by Ciampa with a right hand before stating Gargano needs to be gone from NXT.

The Theory went after Ciampa while he was walking to the back, which was met with a barrage of attacks, including at least 5-6 barricade whips.

Chelsea Green is in a photoshoot with manager Robert Stone in preparations for a “brand relaunch” later in the night. Not sure what that means, not sure that I really care.

Finn Balor cuts a promo stating NXT is his chessboard, and after defeating Gargano, he warned to keep an eye out for his next move.

Grizzled Young Veterans (Zack Gibson and James Drake) is in tag-team action against Raul Mendoza and Joaquin Wilde.

The match started off with Wilde and Drake in action. Gibson and Drake did their part to keep the high-flying Wilde and Mendoza grounded and did well for starters, with plenty of creative double-team work.

Mendoza lands a hot tag in the middle of the match and cleaned house, ending a short-lived sequence with a springboard missile dropkick to Gibson, but was taken out only moments later by a codebreaker from Gibson with a Drake assist to ensure the victory.

Gibson would cut a brief promo, stating they were in the “land of neckbeards and yanks” instead of the “land of the free.” They warned they will take over NXT before heading backstage.

Other wrestling action during the show include:

  • The Broserweights (Matt Riddle & Pete Dunne) def. Danny Burch & Oney Lorcan
  • Brief video package with Strong telling his Undisputed Era stablemates that he doesn’t need their help
  • The Forgotten Sons cutting a promo on Grizzled Young Veterans
  • Clips from Keith Lee’s appearance on WWE Backstage
  • Keith Lee def. Kona Reeves
  • Dominik Dijakovic calls out Lee, asking for another shot
  • Chelsea Green (w/ Robert Stone) def. Kayden Carter
  • The Velveteen Dream def. Roderick Strong

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