For the second week in a row, Drake Maverick’s career was on the line. Last week, he needed to upset Kushida to stay alive in the cruiserweight championship tournament - that tournament being the only thing keeping his career alive given he was released a month back.
That win forced an overtime for the A Block of the tournament, a triple threat match between Kushida, Drake, and newcomer Jake Atlas. Maverick had to try to pull another rabbit out of his hat to stay alive in the company.
And he did.
After having his left arm worked over hard last week by Kushida, the underdog was very limited in this match, this allowing Atlas and Kushida to carry much of the brunt of it.
In the end, Kushy and Altas brawled on the top rope. Kushida brought Atlas down, right into the Hoverboard Lock. However, an opportunistic Maverick draped his arm over Jake when his shoulders were down. The referee counted the 1-2-3 for Maverick, advancing him to the finals.
Replay later showed that Atlas started tapping out before that 3 count hit so technically, Kushida should have won this match.
Kushida was not happy, thinking he had that match won (and perhaps wondering if it were a pin for Maverick, would it not also be a pin for him?), but he didn’t do anything super heelish afterwards.
El Hijo del Fantasma walked out after to shake the hand of the man he’ll meet in the finals.
One more match left for Drake to save his WWE career, even though technically he should be done tonight.
You can find all the results from tonight’s NXT at the live blog here.