WWE NXT Results: Winners, Grades, Reaction and Highlights from June 8
The June 8 edition of WWE NXT looked forward to TakeOver: In Your House 2021 on June 13. In particular, many wrestlers competed to make a statement ahead of the major event.
Ember Moon has been a constant thorn in the side of Raquel Gonzalez and Dakota Kai to the point that the NXT women's champion injured her partner, Shotzi Blackheart. Ahead of her title shot, The War Goddess challenged The Captain of Team Kick, hoping to even the odds by defeating the champion's friend.
Austin Theory and Oney Lorcan have collided because of the animosity between their friends Johnny Gargano and Pete Dunne. Just days before Johnny Wrestling and The Bruiserweight challenge Karrion Kross, Theory and Lorcan had their own score to settle.
After getting in the face of Isaiah "Swerve" Scott, Killian Dain gladly accepted a match with the leader of Hit Row, looking to shut up the loudmouth competitor.
The show also promised the return of Poppy and a "priceless" announcement from Ted DiBiase involving the match between LA Knight and Cameron Grimes at TakeOver.
NXT has gone in a new direction on the road to TakeOver, but this final stop had a chance to truly show fans what they should expect Sunday.
Austin Theory vs. Oney Lorcan
A fight before the show added to the fire between Austin Theory and Oney Lorcan. The young member of The Way found himself outmatched early by the former NXT tag team champion's technical offense. Theory got too cocky the moment he gained momentum and took a forearm to the face for his trouble.
Pete Dunne and Johnny Gargano arrived to back up their allies. With Johnny Wrestling in his corner, Theory started to build momentum, slamming Lorcan repeatedly into the barricade. The Bruiserweight and Johnny Wrestling began brawling.
In the chaos that followed, Lorcan planted Theory with a half-nelson uranage to win.
Lorcan def. Theory by pinfall.
This was perfectly solid and allowed Lorcan to show off his veteran ability to lead a match. He and Theory came up with a good game plan in this contest. The veteran dominated, while Theory played the cocky rookie.
It was nice to see Lorcan win. He rarely gets that chance, especially in singles action. When Danny Burch went down, it looked like we may not see much of him for a while. Instead, he has stood out more as the only man backing up The Bruiserweight.
Legado del Fantasma Makes a Winners-Take-All Title Match Official
Legado del Fantasma arrived to air grievances. Santos Escobar blamed Bronson Reed for costing Raul Mendoza and Joaquin Wilde the NXT Tag Team Championships.
The Colossal One walked out and mocked Escobar by showing his splash on the barricade from last week repeatedly. MSK backed up Reed, storming the ring. Escobar made a challenge for a six-man tag winners-take-all contest for both NXT championships, and the champions accepted for TakeOver.
A six-man tag team match was a perfect way to close out this feud. Legado del Fantasma has been unstoppable as a trio, setting up this contest as a major advantage for the heel team. Kushida would have made more sense in Reed's spot, but a match like this still needed to happen.
Reed taunting Escobar was usual, weird WWE humor, but it worked for the dynamic of these teams. Reed and MSK are pranksters, while Legado del Fantasma remains stone-faced at all times.
Killian Dain vs. Isaiah 'Swerve' Scott
Hit Row stared down Legado del Fantasma, MSK and Bronson Reed on the group's way to the ring, making clear that NXT gold is the goal of the crew.
Killian Dain used his power and size to his advantage, while Isaiah "Swerve" Scott took advantage of repeat interference from Hit Row. Swerve hit a reverse STO followed by a running back kick to nearly take the win, but The Beast of Belfast stayed in it.
Top Dolla planted Drake Maverick as Dain went for the Vader Bomb, and the interference allowed Scott to hit a running corner single-leg dropkick for the win.
Swerve def. Dain by pinfall.
Hit Row remains one of NXT's best rising teams. The staredown with Legado del Fantasma felt massive, like the beginning of a major stable rivalry.
The match was solid, but the interference and limited time did hold it back. It was clearly important to NXT to make Scott look like a threat, as he has more upside than Dain and Maverick at the moment.
The Beast of Belfast is in a reliable position in NXT, not too high or too low. He can work with anyone and make it memorable enough to matter.
Mercedes Martinez vs. Camron Branae
Mercedes Martinez was walking down to the ring when Xia Li struck. The two brawled, and Martinez sent her rival out of the ring. She then demanded the referee ring the bell. She made quick work of Camron Branae with an Air Raid Crash.
Martinez def. Branae by pinfall.
The squash match was not necessary at all, but it was vital that Martinez and Li get physical early. This sold the animosity between these two women fully. Martinez was so angry that she refused to let the Chinese Superstar stop her from picking up a victory.
Since Tian Sha is more important to NXT right now than the veteran, Martinez is not likely to win. This segment solidified that she is still a dangerous competitor, win or lose Sunday.
Ted DiBiase Brings Back Million Dollar Championship for Grimes vs. LA Knight
LA Knight and Cameron Grimes showed off their mansions and lifestyles to attempt to impress Ted DiBiase. The Million Dollar Man announced that the two would fight in a ladder match to become the new WWE million dollar champion.
Grimes has become the babyface in this story with little effort, and it has really sold this rivalry. Knight is clearly the right man for the DiBiase legacy, but Grimes cannot quite seem to realize it. This ladder match will be about forcing The Technical Savage to truly find himself.
It is a shame that Jake Atlas was not included in the match, given his recent work and wins over both men. The Million Dollar Championship can be a fresh addition to NXT, though it needs to be used differently than other men's championships in the promotion.
The Grizzled Young Veterans vs. August Grey and Ikemen Jiro
The Grizzled Young Veterans walked into this match with confidence, but August Grey and Ikemen Jiro got them off balance. The 205 Live stars took advantage of the arrival of Tommaso Ciampa and Timothy Thatcher to nearly take the win.
Zack Gibson and James Drake refocused and hit the Ticket to Mayhem to win. Afterward, GYV told Thatcher and Ciampa to get the memo and leave them to go after the NXT Tag Team Championships. The faces refused.
This led to the announcement of these two teams fighting next week in a tornado tag match.
GYV def. Grey and Jiro by pinfall.
This match never really got to a point that felt out of hand for GYV. The arrival of Ciampa and Thatcher just allowed the 205 Live duo to hit a few nice moves.
It's a shame because Grey and Jiro are better than they got the chance to look here. Even while WWE has rebuilt the NXT Cruiserweight Championship's prestige, 205 Live remains the forgotten brand.
GYV vs. Ciampa and Thatcher deserved a bigger stage, but not every match can make the TakeOver card. This final match between these teams should be special and main-event NXT.
Poppy Release New Album, Introduces Io Shirai Back to NXT
Poppy released her new EP album live on NXT while speaking with Triple H and William Regal. Dexter Lumis arrived with a picture to show his fan appreciation of Poppy. They hugged just as Indi Hartwell came in, frustrated and confused after leaving an interview with Candice LeRae to find him.
Candice LeRae called out Poppy for hurting her friend and trying to take the spotlight. Poppy arrived and made clear she does not wrestle. She instead had a friend who would fight for her. Io Shirai returned to take out The Poison Pixie with a tiger kick.
NXT has been leaning into campy comedy this week, and it has surprisingly worked. The backstage Poppy segment was so ridiculous that it somehow worked as an album release. It also helped add even more absurd drama to the romance of Hartwell and Lumis.
It also worked to bring back Shirai. She and LeRae have so much history, and The Genius of the Sky can get a tag team partner to challenge for the NXT Women's Tag Team Championships next.
She and LeRae are truly destined to fight forever, but the matches will always be worth it.
Ember Moon vs. Dakota Kai
Ember Moon walked in confident but quickly found herself at a disadvantage against Dakota Kai. The Captain of Team Kick did repeated damage to The War Goddess that built up to a corner Kaio Kick that almost ended it.
Moon finally responded with a powerbomb. Outside, Raquel Gonzalez missed a big boot on The War Goddess, leading to Moon hitting Kai and Gonzalez with a suicide dive. This set up the Eclipse, but the NXT women's champion struck first, planting her challenger for a disqualification.
Afterward, The War Goddess attacked both heels and then reversed a single-arm powerbomb into a stunner followed by the Eclipse to Gonzalez.
Moon def. Kai by disqualification.
Moon and Kai have chemistry that can be explored with more stakes down the line. The non-finish hurt the quality of the contest but made complete sense. Kai is a likely future title contender and should be protected for that opportunity.
She pushed The War Goddess and may have done enough to make sure Gonzalez retains. However, NXT still allowed Moon to get the final laugh before TakeOver with an Eclipse.
This feud has story behind it, but NXT has not done quite enough to make this story feel special. This segment was the best they have done so far, just in time for the title match.
Karrion Kross Tries to Take Out Everyone Before TakeOver
Brawls broke out between the NXT title contenders throughout the night that William Regal struggled to stop. The fighting spilled out to the ring where Regal talked down Kross until the contenders started appearing.
Kyle O'Reilly stood up to the NXT champion while Johnny Gargano watched on the announce table and Pete Dunne told everyone to shut up. Adam Cole taunted everyone from an undisclosed location and then disappeared before a fight started.
Everyone struggled to knock down the champion, even when security got involved. Kross stood tall over the crowd until Cole attack and laid out the champion with a superkick and Last Shot.
While a few corny lines did not work here, the overall impact was what mattered. Kross looked like the dominant force he has been for months by refusing to stay down. Cole made his mark by taking advantage of the chaos.
The dynamic works, and the match should be excellent. These men are all among NXT's best. They clearly have proven chemistry, even with just their brawling.
What could be more interesting is Regal's frustration boiling over. He is losing the roster at the moment, and he will need to do something massive to take it back as long as Kross defies him.