On their Dec. 23 episode, NXT continued to fill up their first show of 2021 like it’s a TakeOver.
The New Year’s Evil edition of WWE’s black-and-gold brand will have some stiff competition from AEW’s second of two New Year’s Smash shows. We’ll see what Tony Khan and company have up their sleeves, because they’re gonna need more than Snoop Dogg to counter this line-up.
Adding to the already booked Finn Bálor/Kyle O’Reilly rematch for the NXT championship and Karrion Kross vs. Damian Priest, a pull apart brawl and a caricature from New Year’s Evil’s host Dexter Lumis gave us one of two slobberknockers booked tonight.
Rhea Ripley and Raquel González have been rivals all through 2020, with Ripley picking up a win in a great match at Halloween Havoc, and González getting a measure of revenge by winning WarGames for her team. It took an army of referees and producers to keep them apart tonight after Rhea defeated Raquel’s partner Dakota Kai. But no one will even try when they face off in a Last Woman Standing match on Jan. 6.
Then, Timothy Thatcher’s desire for a rematch with Tommaso Ciampa drove him to try to send a message to the Sicilian Psychopath by “taking liberties” with Leon Ruff. That backfired when he got distracted by Ciampa and was pinned by Ruff. There will be no distractions when they have the second ever bout in the Fight Pit at New Year’s Evil.
Thatcher defeated Matt Riddle in the first ever Fight Pit match back in May.
We’ll see what Dynamite offers, but I’m assuming it will also be a very good show. Which means wrestling fans will be the real winners in two weeks.
Here’s a look at the New Year’s Evil line-up as it currently stands:
- Finn Bálor vs. Kyle O’Reilly for the NXT championship
- Rhea Ripley vs. Raquel González in a Last Woman Standing match
- Tommaso Ciampa vs. Timothy Thatcher in the FIGHT PIT
- Karrion Kross vs. Damian Priest
Their final 2020 show will be a low-key affair, by comparison. They’ll hand out Year-End Awards, continue to build to New Year’s Evil, and serve up the latest battle in Roderick Strong & Pete Dunne’s long rivalry. That was set-up when Dunne attacked Strong at ringside of tonight’s main event. We’ll also see Leon Ruff attempt to reclaim the North American title from Johnny Gargano in a match booked by General Manager William Regal after Ruff upset Timothy Thatcher.
Sound like a good way to say goodbye to 2020 and welcome 2021?