The January 8 2020 edition of WWE NXT, out of the Full Sail Arena in Winter Park, Florida, just wrapped up. We’ve got the match results, as well as our overall thoughts on the show, for you to check out below. Let us know what you thought about episode #541 of WWE NXT by tweeting us, @TheRumbleRamble.
Everyone Wants a Piece of Rhea Ripley
Newly crowned NXT Women’s Champion Rhea Ripley opened the show with a speech, talking about her run in NXT and almost sounding as though she may be about to announce a move to Raw or SmackDown.
But the promo was, of course, cut short before we could know for sure which direction she was going. Toni Storm made her entrance, renewing her long-standing rivalry with The Nightmare.
Soon after, NXT UK Women’s Champion Kay Lee Ray, Io Shirai, Bianca Belair, and Candice LeRae were all in the ring with Rhea and Toni, each woman giving her reasoning as to why she should be the next No. 1 Contender.
Before anything could be settled, a brawl broke out and it was quickly announced that there would be a 6-woman tag team match taking place between them – and it would be happening right then.
Rhea Ripley, Candice LeRae, and Toni Storm vs. Io Shirai, Kay Lee Ray, and Bianca Belair
6-Woman Tag Team Match
Candice LeRae hot started the match, picking up right where she left off in the brawl by diving onto all three teammates on the floor.
Back from commercial, Candice was still in control, connecting with a dropkick to Bianca Belair before taking Kay Lee Ray down as well. Candice was on fire but Io Shirai has no problem using whatever means necessary and distracted her to give Kay Lee the advantage.
After receiving a beatdown at the hands of Ray, Candice LeRae was faced with Io Shirai, who continued the abuse, hitting a nasty flapjack and gaining a near fall. Shirai inadvertently knocked Bianca off the apron, causing the first rift between the heel team.
Io and Kay Lee worked together to keep Candice as far away from her teammates as possible, Bianca Belair joining in when she recovered from her fall to the floor. Kay Lee Ray eventually got a little too confident, allowing Candice to gain a near fall with a roll-up, but Kay Lee got her revenge with a brutal forearm.
Bianca tagged into the match and Candice nearly escaped after sending her crashing to the floor, but Kay Lee Ray made a quick tag, keeping LeRae on the ropes.
A massive brawl broke out at ringside as Candice fought to break free of her attackers and, after a commercial, LeRae had gained a bit of momentum, hitting Kay Lee with a hurricanrana.
Bianca Belair tried to prevent any assistance for Candice by knocking Rhea off the apron, but Toni Storm finally got the tag. A fresh Toni took out both Kay Lee Ray and an interfering Io Shirai, coming back for a German on Ray.
From here, Toni Storm kept the steam rolling, scoring a near fall over Kay Lee Ray before Ray escaped by tagging Io Shirai into the match. Io Shirai came at Toni with a vengeance, hitting a knee strike and a backbreaker in quick succession.
Shirai appeared to be ramping up toward a victory, but Bianca Belair chose this moment to get her revenge, tagging herself into the match as Shirai climbed the ropes. The ensuing argument led to a physical fight between Io and Bianca, giving Toni time to tag Rhea Ripley in.
Rhea Ripley took advantage of the situation by unleashing a series of strikes on Bianca Belair, finishing off with a Riptide to win the match.
After the match, Candice eyed Rhea Ripley’s title, but ultimately handed the gold over and the three victors celebrated their win together.
Winner: Candice LeRae, Rhea Ripley, and Toni Storm
9 months after surgery. Dr Cordover is the 🐐— BLACKHEART (@NXTCiampa) December 3, 2019
I showed him the video from War Games. He said, “HOLY 💩”. And then he brought in co workers so he could show them the video. My kind of surgeon.
Blackheart > Wolverine pic.twitter.com/PP4cgT0XEO
Tommaso Ciampa cut a backstage promo in which he talked about relinquishing the NXT Championship due to a neck injury, but he didn’t let it keep him down. He recovered, worked hard, and now he’s back to claim what’s his from Adam Cole.
Imperium (Marcel Barthel & Fabian Aichner) vs. The Forgotten Sons (Wesley Blake and Steve Cutler)
Dusty Rhodes Tag Team Classic 1st Round Match
The 2020 Dusty Rhodes Classic kicked off with The Forgotten Sons and Imperium, who cut a pre-match promo about their domination of NXT.
Steve Cutler started the match against Fabian Aichner, gaining a quick near fall before tagging in Wesley Blake, who did the same. With the help of a bit of double team offense, Fabian was able to break free and take Marcel into the match.
Cutler nearly won the match with a boston crab on Fabian, but Marcel was able to intervene, despite being beaten down for his efforts. After more back and forth, Steve Cutler was thrown to the floor, but Wesley Blake was able to take on both opponents alone.
Marcel Barthel blocked a moonsault from Blake by getting his knees up, giving Imperium the upper hand they were looking for, and they followed up with a double suplex.
Steve Cutler saved his partner by wrenching Fabian Aichner from the ring and throwing him into the barricade before shifting his focus back to Marcel. Imperium did their best to prevent double team attacks from The Forgotten Sons, failing at first but eventually sending Cutler to the floor.
And after a double European Bomb, Fabian pinned Wesley for the win and the ticket to the next round.
The Broserweights are Born
“I’m a bro. You’re a Bruiserweight. Dusty Cup. Let’s do this.”— WWE NXT (@WWENXT) January 9, 2020
… and that’s the story of how the #Broserweights were born for the 2020 #DustyClassic. @SuperKingofBros @PeteDunneYxB pic.twitter.com/KZ7Pg8H4wq
In an interview with Cathy Kelly, Matt Riddle explained how he came to form a team with Pete Dunne for the 2020 Dusty Rhodes Tag Team Classic. He basically said that they exchanged hand signals, and it was pretty much a done deal from there.
There was some nodding and broserweighting in there as well.
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Austin Theory vs. Joaquin Wilde
In his second match on NXT TV, Austin Theory took on Breakout Tournament Superstar Joaquin Wilde. Theory clearly didn’t take his opponent as seriously as he should have and paid for it when Wilde refused to relinquish control in the early part of the match.
Joaquin Wilde actually held the upper hand until Austin came back with a Fisherman’s suplex for a near fall. Theory did his best to keep Wilde grounded, but Wilde broke free, landing a forearm and the two broke into a strike exchange.
Wilde came out on top with a hurricanrana, but before he could follow up, Austin slammed into him with a dropkick and won the match with a TKO.
Winner: Austin Theory
Gallus (Wolfgang and Mark Coffey) vs. Undisputed Era (Kyle O’Reilly and Bobby Fish)
Dusty Rhodes Tag Team Classic 1st Round Match
The NXT Tag Team Champions clashed with the NXT UK Tag Team Champions in the second match of the Tag Team Classic, starting the match with a bragging session, as you would expect given the teams involved.
Once the action was underway, Wolfgang wasted no time in taking control, using his size and strength advantage to overpower both Undisputed members before tagging Mark Coffey into the match.
After a double team attack, Coffey went after Kyle O’Reilly, but Kyle was able to fight him off, escaping to his corner and Bobby Fish, who crushed Coffey with a knee strike.
Before Bobby Fish could keep the momentum going, however, Mark Coffey was back on the offensive, rag dolling Bobby around the ring. Bobby hit a back body drop, but it would be the last attack he got in for some time, as Gallus worked together to wear him down from then on.
Seeing his teammates in trouble, Adam Cole helped Kyle O’Reilly to distract Gallus, giving Bobby an opportunity to escape. With Kyle back in the match, Wolfgang wasn’t quite so dominant but did connect with a slam, putting O’Reilly back in his place.
Mark Coffey took advantage of his partner’s handiwork, beating Kyle down while trash-talking the rest of The Era. Gallus continued to hold dominion over the action, which didn’t seem to faze Undisputed at all, who continued to taunt Gallus, despite being at a disadvantage.
Back from commercial, Wolfgang proved himself once again by taking on both Kyle and Bobby, as Mark was laid out at ringside. Bobby Fish took control with a striking combination, but it wasn’t long before Wolfgang became frustrated, throwing Bobby out of the ring.
With Kyle O’Reilly wearing down Wolfgang in the ring, Bobby Fish took on Mark Coffey at ringside, but Gallus came out on top again, even taking out the third Undisputed Member, Adam Cole, as he tried to cause a distraction.
Shifting focus back to Kyle, Mark Coffey tried to keep Kyle pinned down, but Kyle came back with attacks of his own, then tagged Fish into the action. Undisputed Era then double-teamed Coffey relentlessly, wearing him down until he wisely dodged an attack that sent The Era crashing into each other.
Coffey got to his corner, tagging Wolfgang back in, who connected with a Samoan Drop on Kyle, but Bobby saved his teammate before the three-count was up.
Gallus forced The Era out of the ring, where Mark threw himself onto them, but a distraction allowed Adam Cole to give his team the boost they needed, and a Total Elimination from Bobby and Kyle won the match for Undisputed Era.
Winner: Undisputed Era
NXT Doesn’t Need Finn Bálor
An extremely irate Johnny Gargano came to the ring to cut a promo on Finn Bálor. The crowd made their disagreement known as Johnny talked about how far NXT had come without Bálor’s assistance. He, of course, brought up Bálor’s attack that forced him to sit on the sidelines, but he was back now and ready for a fight.
Gargano went on to say that he could have left NXT as Bálor did, but chose to stay with the brand he loved. Finally, Gargano’s claims that Bálor couldn’t hack it in the new and improved NXT drew the Club leader out.
Finn Bálor mockingly congratulated Gargano on his excellent promo work, adding that he should be Johnny Promo because he couldn’t get cleared to do anything else. The two lobbed insults back and forth until Bálor challenged Gargano to a match at TakeOver Portland next month, which Gargano accepted.
Mia Yim vs. Kayden Carter
Looking to prove herself against the HBIC, Kayden Carter dodged Mia’s early attack, gaining the respect of her opponent. But this newfound respect didn’t stop Mia from trading chops with Kayden, after which Kayden landed a dropkick, gaining a near fall.
Mia Yim scored a near fall of her own with a powerbomb, and after another failed 3-count, Yim’s frustration with Kayden’s perseverance almost cost her the match. Kayden powered up with a series of strikes, but a Protect Ya Neck outta nowhere won Mia the match in the end.
Winner: Mia Yim
Damian Priest vs. Keith Lee vs. Cameron Grimes vs. Dominik Dijakovic
North American Championship No. 1 Contender Fatal 4-Way
Keith Lee has been gaining steam for months now, and both the crowd and we at home felt it was finally his time. Our collective wish was granted, but not before Keith Lee had the fight of his life against Damian Priest, Dominik Dijakovic, and Cameron Grimes.
Perhaps unwisely, Cameron Grimes fearlessly went after Keith Lee, looking for his now-signature quick win, but Lee overpowered him, throwing him to the side as Dominik Dijakovic and Damian Priest battled in the opposite corner.
When a finishing attempt from all four competitors failed, Keith Lee and Dijakovic lifted Priest and Grimes onto their shoulders, slamming them down and putting their friendship aside to go one-on-one.
Damian Priest and Cameron Grimes got in on the friendly fire, attacking the behemoths, but Priest wasn’t too keen on working with Grimes and threw a strike directly into his face.
Damian shifted focus to Dijakovic, launching himself toward the larger competitor, who came out on top of a striking exchange, then threw Priest at Keith Lee, who caught him in mid-air. Cameron tried to use this to his advantage but was hit with Damian Priest for his efforts.
Lee used Priest as a weapon once more, this time against Dijak, powerbombing him onto his frenemy. This gained Keith a near fall, but it wasn’t quite enough to win the match.
At ringside, Cameron Grimes threw himself at Keith Lee again, and was again thrown to the side, as Lee had his sights set on Dijakovic. In ultra-heel fashion, Priest wisely stood aside as Cameron and Dominik wore down Keith Lee outside. But Lee wasn’t down for long, slinging Cameron into the barricade before taking Dijak down.
Damian momentarily thought this was his moment, but reconsidered when he witnessed Keith’s power. Priest instead decided to let Grimes to the work for him, attacking only after he thought Cameron had done sufficient damage to the titan of NXT.
Back from commercial, Priest may have been regretting his decision, as he was locked in a staredown with Keith Lee. Damian got the better of Keith for a second or two and ascended the ropes for an aerial attack, but a headbutt from Lee sent him crashing down to the apron.
Another headbutt and a superplex put Lee firmly in the lead, but before he could take the win, Dijakovic was back in the ring and taking a near fall of his own with a moonsault on Keith.
Nothing if not fearless, Cameron Grimes went after Dominik Dijakovic, after just watching him bring down Keith Lee. And, surprisingly, Grimes dominated this interaction, scoring a near fall before Damian Priest intervened.
A series of attacks from Priest led to him throwing Grimes from the top rope, but Keith again caught an opponent mid-flight. Before he could do much else, however, Dijak attacked Damian, then took Grimes for himself.
Dominik leveled Grimes with a Feast Your Eyes, standing back to allow Keith Lee to Pounce him before Damian Priest came in with his Reckoning finisher on Keith.
Dijak saved his friend from defeat, causing a massive exchange between Dominik and an angry Damian Priest. Priest and Dijak had each other by the throat, both struggling for dominance, but neither of them would get it.
Keith Lee slowly rose behind them, taking them both down with a double chokeslam. Lee powered up, but Grimes caught him unexpectedly with a crossbody, scoring a near fall.
In his frustration, Cameron Grimes nailed Damian Priest with a kick on the apron that Dijak followed by shoving Damian to the floor. Cameron climbed the ropes and launched himself to the outside with a moonsault onto Priest.
After throwing Dominik out as well, Cameron turned toward Keith Lee, thinking that he was about to win the match with his Cave In – but he was mistaken. Keith caught him in the chest, trading strikes with Grimes until a final Spirit Bomb kept Cameron down for good.
Keith Lee is now the No. 1 Contender to Roderick Strong’s North American Championship!
Winner: Keith Lee
NXT Results (January 8 2020)
Check out the fan votes on the January 8 2020 edition of WWE NXT on Twitter:
What letter grade would you give tonight’s show? #WWENXT— Rumble Ramble (@TheRumbleRamble) January 9, 2020