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WWE NXT results, live blog (Sept. 30, 2020): TakeOver 31 go home

WWE NXT’s Twitter

Here's a place to check results and comment along with the newest episode of WWE NXT, airing live in its regular Wednesday night at 8PM Eastern time slot on USA Network.

Check out our Wednesday morning preview post to get caught up on what's been happening, and what we expect this week.

Advertised for tonight: Shawn Michaels hosts a face-to-face between NXT champion Finn Bálor and his TakeOver 31 challenger, Kyle O’Reilly! Plus, North American & Women’s champs Damian Priest & Io Shirai face their opponents for Sunday, Johnny Gargano & Candice LeRae in mixed tag action, Dakota Kai vs, Shotzi Blackheart, and more!

Come right back here at 8 p.m. ET when the NXT live blog kicks off once the show starts on USA. It will be below this line here. (REMINDER: NO GIFS OR PICS ARE ALLOWED IN THE COMMENTS SECTION. OFFENDERS WILL BE BANNED.)

Enjoy the show!


Kyle O’Reilly & Candice LeRae’s big night from last week is recapped, and we’re reminded about tonight’s mixed tag. Tom Phillips & Beth Phoenix are our announcers, and one of the first wrestlers we’ll see in action welcomes us to the Ball Pit.

Shotzi Blackheart vs. Dakota Kai

Kai enters with Raquel Gonzalez. Mostly Shotzi at the start, and she welcomes Kai to the Ball Pit in between a few pinning predicaments. She also works on a painful looking arm and leg stretch submission. Dakota rolls out of it and gets to her feet, and soon answers a forearm in the corner with one of her own. They brawl to another corner. Suplex gets two for Kai. The Kiwi works her over in the ropes but gets too cocky and a drop toe hold sends her into the ropes. Gonzalez hopes on the apron to deter a follow-up move, and Kai gets a nearfall off slam. We go picture-in-picture.

Blackheart gets free just when we return to full screen. Drop kick into the corner starts a flurry, and a high knee is followed by the senton in the ropes. That gets two. Shotzi charges into a boot and finds herself on the receiving end of a pin shortly after. They end up on the apron, trading kicks. Shotzi blocks the pump kick and answers with the question mark kick, but when she goes to run the ringpost to float over and spike Kai, she isn’t able to get all the way over and lands right on her head. That looked really rough. The referee checks on her and she somehow pulls herself up. She runs the ropes for a dive and Raquel grabs her feet. That brings out Rhea Ripley! Gonzalez and Ripley jaw at each other, drawing the referee’s attention. Dakota goes for a yakuza kick, but Shotzi slips under and rolls Kai up for the win!

Shotzi Blackheart def. Dakota Kai via pinfall

Phillips kicks it to an interview with the Cruiserweight champ and his TakeOver challenger. Swerve Scott acknowledges he’s had a number of chances at Santos Escobar, but he questions if those have been fair shots. Escobar says he’s just making excuses. He calls Swerve a parasite, and on Sunday he’s going to get ready for his lingering problem. Scott complains about Legado Del Fantasma and Escobar’s loaded mask from their previous encounters, but says he’ll adapt to that like he’s adapted to everything else. Santos says those are examples of how he’s remade the decision in his image, in honor of the lucha style that birthed the cruiserweights. They end it by disagreeing on who will leave TakeOver 31 as champ.

We get another teaser for the mystery person who’s showing up Sunday. They leave Amway Center on a motorcycle “go back home”, cruising to outside Full Sail.

Kyle O’Reilly gets a Prime Target video. Very babyface presentation about his journey and friendship with Undisputed ERA and especially Adam Cole. Balor is a dream opponent, but they never crossed path until now. If he wins Sunday, says it’ll be the same as when Cole won the belt. TUE will stick together.

After a break, Todd tells us about Tegan Nox’s torn ACL. We go to Sarah Schrieber, who’s set to talk to Johnny Gargano & Candice LeRae. They talk about how Nox “had to be” injured, and how it was karma for breaking Johnny’s TV. They promise they’re going to win tonight and on Sunday to collect gold. They are NXT’s Power Couple, after all. They also mock Schrieber a bit.

Cameron Grimes is here. He gets a mic and tells us he’s not in a good mood. That’s because last week he was in the Gauntlet Eliminator - a stupid concept that General Manager William Regal couldn’t have come up with, because he knows Mr. Regal would have come up with something better.

The North Carolinian developed a match on his own - the Cameron Grimes Invitational Stepping Stones to the Moon Match! He’s hand-picked each of these opponents, too. First up, a former NCAA champ in the 80 pound weight class!

Cameron Grimes vs. Joey Pistachio

Cave in! That’s it.

Cameron Grimes def. Joey Pistachio via pinfall

Up next... Joey Strong! Whoever that is gets thrown across the stage, and it’s Ridge Holland. Grimes invites him to the ring to shake his hand, but he’s not part of the Invitational. Holland doesn’t care. He blasts him and that’s the bell!

Cameron Grimes vs. Ridge Holland

Holland stomps Grimey down until the ref calls for the bell.

Ridge Holland def. Cameron Grimes via TKO

Grimes rolls out and Holland walks out.

Schrieber with Austin Theory backstage. He asked for the interview, and she wonders if it’s to address his recent struggles. He dismisses his losing streak, saying he should have been in the Gauntlet Eliminator last week. He did watch Kyle’s video, and he thought it was touching. But it’s crazy that it took O’Reilly 15 years to get here, he worked WrestleMania at 22, and they’re calling KOR “the future”. Maybe O’Reilly should have to deal with him.

Video package on Kushida. In Japanese (with subtitles) he talks about his journey to WWE and people have mistaken his humility for weakness. At TakeOver he’ll beat Velveteen Dream to dance to the core of NXT.

Kushida vs. Tony Nese

Kushida just glares at the former Cruiserweight champ during his entrance. He quickly takes Nese down aggressively, but a cheap shot from Tony gives him a chance to take control and snap Kushida over the ropes. Doesn’t work for long, though. Kushida sends him into the ringpost on the floor. In the ring, he grabs an arm our out a fireman’s carry and bulldogs Nese’s arm. He grabs both arms and stomps on Nese’s chest, then grabs the Hoverboard Lock.

Kushida def. Tony Nese via submission

The lights go purple afterwards, and Dream is on the ‘tron. He asks for the real Kushida to stand up, then says it doesn’t matter, because he brings his best performance under the brightest lights. He’ll see Kushida at TakeOver.

Grimes is wandering around backstage holding a towel to his face. Faceless interviewer guy wants to talk about what happened, but Cameron tells him to get out of his face unless he can point him to Mr. Regal He turns and it’s Dexter Lumis! Just staring, of course. Grimes tells him to get out of his way, and we go to commercial.

Adam Cole is in the ring when we return. Undisputed ERA’s been in NXT for three years. They’ve done everything they said they were going to. But the prophecy ended, and people backstage think they can say anything to TUE and there not be consequences. But they’re the same Undisputed ERA that won the first WarGames match and more. He calls out Austin Theory for badmouthing O’Reilly.

Theory acts like he won’t head to the ring, so Cole gives him two options. Come to the ring and get his ass beat, or stay on the apron and the ERA will beat him down where he stands. The youngster comes to the ring and it’s a match.

Adam Cole vs. Austin Theory

It’s all Cole, so Theory tries to bail, mocking the TUE hand gesture on his way out. Cole follows so Theory tries for the cheap shot. He gets a pump kick for his trouble. Cole rolls him in and Theory tries to grab him, but the longest reigning NXT champ in history is one step ahead of him. The onslaught continues with a neckbreaker, then a drop kick into the corner. Theory’s leg gets caught on the rope and Cole blasts it.

Theory is still talking trash even while getting beat down. He evades a charge on the apron and answers with an “undisputed” drop kick. The young heel is in control as we go to commercial.

All Day is putting the boots to Cole in the corner when we return. He takes the beatdown to the center of the ring and gets two off a standing moonsault. The comeback starts with a block, then Cole getting a boot up on a charge. Kicks from the Panama City Playboy, then a backstabber gets two. Theory elbows free from Cole’s shoulders. Pump kick from TUE’s leader, then a neckbreaker gets two. Theory fights off Panama Sunrise, then kicks Cole in the back of the head. Blue Thunder Bomb gets a nearfall. Trading blows in the middle of the ring, Theory runs right into a superkick! Thumb to the eye by theory, but Cole sluffs it off to hit another superkick. Neckbreaker, then Last Shot.

Adam Cole def. Austin Theory via pinfall

Cole talks directly into the camera to put over O’Reilly. On Sunday Kyle will shock the world, but he won’t shock Cole.

Backstage, Schrieber talks to the Women’s and North American champs. Priest says Gargano & LeRae can call themselves the Power Couple of NXT, because they’re losing tonight and at TakeOver. They’re the rockstars of NXT. After an Io promo in Japanese, they Too Sweet. Damian Priest says Io Shirai is cool as hell. Io says Damian’s not bad.

Kayden Carter vs. Xia Li

Carter is accompanied by Kacy Catanzaro. Lots of early covers from both wrestlers, then a standoff and they slap hands (unlike when Carter & Catanzaro wanted to shake after Li & Jesse Kamea lost to them two weeks ago). Kayden with a takedown, but at the ropes, Xia gets vicious. Blow to the head, then she pulls Carter out to the floor hard. Kacy checks on her friend and talks her back into the ring, where she takes another flurry of strikes from Li. Xia is angry she can’t get three. Kayden starts he comeback from the corner. After a flurry from Carter, there’s a scramble, and Li takes the loss.

Kayden Carter def. Xia Li via pinfall

First Carter, then Catanzaro try to act sportswomanlike afterwards. Li pushes them both down and storms out.

Shawn Michaels is in the ring for a pre-tape face-to-face. O’Reilly and Balor come out to stand off on opposites sides of the belt. HBK asks if they want to shake hands, and they do. Michaels says we’re seeing the best Finn ever, and calls Kyle one of the best in the world. They put each other over, then get into some veiled jabs, like Balor calling KOR a tag team specialist. O’Reilly eventually says that he respects Finn for being a fighting champion and walking into a fight he knows he’s going to lose.

The ERA comes up, and O’Reilly refuses to say TUE won’t get involved, and dismisses HBK asking if there are issues between him and Cole about the title shot. Kyle gets smart with the Prince, then says it’s bullshit that he’s considered the underdog, because he’s gonna win. Finn agrees Kyle’s one of the best in the world and says he’d win if he anyone was else was champ.

Candice LeRae & Johnny Gargano vs. Io Shirai & Damian Priest

The champs enter second, and charge the ring and throw hands before the bell! The Garganos roll out and Johnny complains about the faces cheating and taking cheap shots.

The men start the official match. Gargano trying to use his speed to evade the bigger Priest, and it works until he gets punched in the face. He rolls to the corner after a side slam. LeRae checks on him to back Priest off, but doesn’t tag so Priest goes and tags his partner. The ladies swing one each other in the middle of the ring, then each avoids a big move from the other. Candice with a roll-up, but that’s answered with a flapjack from Io. Johnny runs in to save his wife, which brings in the Archer of Infamy with a kick around his partner to Gargano’s head. The married couple ends up in the corner. Shirai charges, Johnny rolls out and leaves his wife to take knees to the face. He pulls Candice to the floor, and Priest lets Io climb his back to leap on them on the floor. We go PiP.

Offense from Io on the small screen, but interference from Gargano (he cover his wife and took the Tiger Feint Kick for her) lets the Poison Pixie get the upperhand. She’s working a resthold when the commercials finish. Shirai fights back into it, and a suplex lets her reach the corner for a tag. Priest in hot and puts Johnny down with a lariat. Splash in the corner, Broken Arrow gets two. Gargano slips out of a Razor’s Edge and puts Priest down with a facebuster. Tags, and Io dropkicks Johnny before Candice can even get in! LeRae gets stuck in a crossface, so Johnny pulls her free. Priest runs over but can’t hit South of Heaven. LeRae tries to roll-up a distracted Shirai. Senton hits, but moonsault misses. Io with a backbreaker, and climbs for a moonsault, but Johnny rolls her out of the ring. Priest attacks, and Gargano ends up taking the moonsault! Priest in for a Reckoning, but the referee is looking at Io so Candice slips in for a low blow. While Shirai chases off Candice, Johnny hits One Final Beat.

Candice LeRae & Johnny Gargano def. Io Shirai & Damian Priest via pinfall

Io backs Johnny up, but LeRae slips in behind her and hits a backstabber. The Power Couple stands tall. Gargano goes and retrieves the belts for them to pose with as the show ends.

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