WWE NXT WarGames 2021 Results: Winners, Grades, Reaction and Highlights
- Imperium vs. O'Reilly and Wagner
- Grimes vs. Hudson
- Strong vs. Gacy
- Bron Breakker, Carmela Hayes, Grayson Waller and Tony D'Angelo vs. Tommaso Ciampa, Pete Dunne, Johnny Gargano and LA Knight
- Raquel Gonzalez, Io Shirai, Cora Jade and Kay Lee Ray vs. Mandy Rose, Gigi Dolin, Jacy Jayne and Dakota Kai
With WWE officially retiring the TakeOver name for NXT specials, this year's WarGames event felt like the final step in changing over to the new NXT 2.0.
Let's take a look at everything that happened at Sunday's WarGames.
Women's WarGames Match
Since WarGames matches can be chaotic, the play-by-play will be kept to a minimum. We will cover when each person enters the ring and the bigger spots.
Dakota Kai and Kay Lee Ray started for their teams while everyone else was locked inside their cages. Kai brought in some kendo sticks to combat the baseball bat Ray had, but both women abandoned their weapons after the first hit landed.
The first person to join them in the ring was Cora Jade. Kai was able to hit a double DDT right before Gigi Dolin joined her in the ring. She brought a trash can with her along with a mystery bag. Shirai joined her team and brought some chairs into the ring.
Jacy Jayne was up next, and she grabbed a table to bring in with her to the ring. The babyfaces set her up on the table, and Jade took her out with a huge senton from the top of the cage.
After it looked like Jade may have dislocated her shoulder, Shirai snapped it back into place. Raquel Gonzalez brought more trash cans and chairs into the ring when she made her way down.
Mandy Rose was the final competitor to enter and took her time going over to Jade and pulling her across the ring by her bad arm. We ended up with each team in a different ring.
The match came to an end when Jade made the pin for her team on Jayne. Her teammates rushed to her side to congratulate her and celebrate the victory.
At times, this match felt like it was all over the place. Some of the spots looked poorly planned, which led to some awkward moments where people were getting ready or waiting for something to happen.
Between those moments, though, was a lot of fun involving weapons and women taking big risks. The spot with Jade looked genuinely scary, but she appeared to be fine and sold the bump like a pro.
Some of the weapon spots were creative, but the match didn't feel like it came together until most of the women were in the ring.
Imperium vs. Kyle O'Reilly and Von Wagner (NXT Tag Titles)
Kyle O'Reilly and Von Wagner were out first for their NXT Tag Team Championships match against Fabian Aichner and Marcel Barthel of Imperium.
O'Reilly and Barthel started with a nice exchange of wristlocks and counters. Aichner tagged in and took KOR down with an arm drag. Wagner got the tag and leapfrogged over O'Reilly onto Aichner for a two-count.
Aichner won a battle of wills to deliver a suplex to KOR before Barthel tagged in. O'Reilly caught him with a knee to the face, but it did little to slow down the German Superstar.
Wagner came in hot and took it to Barthel and Aichner. When O'Reilly came in again, Imperium were able to regain the upper hand.
O'Reilly tried several different submissions but they were either countered or broken up. Barthel was able to score the win with a clothesline from the top rope while Aichner held O'Reilly in the air.
Wagner is new to NXT and needs time to grow, but every time he stepped into the ring during this match, the pace slowed and the crowd seemed to lose interest a little. His move set and look are a little too generic to stand out.
The other three men in the match did a respectable job making this a competitive contest, but the outcome was almost too predictable.
This would have been the Match of the Week on a regular episode of NXT, but it fell a bit short of some of the other classics we have seen for the NXT tag titles at these special events.
Don't take these criticisms to mean this was a bad match. It was a good showing for Wagner and made Imperium look like a dominant duo. KOR is always solid, but that's not news to anyone who has followed his career.
Cameron Grimes vs. Duke Hudson (Hair vs. Hair)
Cameron Grimes and Duke Hudson put their hair on the line in this match, so whoever lost would leave WarGames looking as bald as "Stone Cold" Steve Austin.
Hudson scooped up Grimes and planted him in the corner for some shoulder thrusts, but the crypto investor quickly unloaded on him with some kicks to the chest. Hudson threw Grimes over the ropes and he landed on the steel steps.
Grimes was able to recover and delivered more kicks to the body until Hudson took a breather outside the ring. He pulled Grimes to the floor and hit a belly-to-belly suplex.
Hudson locked Grimes in an abdominal stretch and yanked him down to the mat by his hair. He dominated the match for the next few minutes as he put his rival through the wringer.
Grimes hit a headscissor takedown and a kick to the head. He scored a near-fall after a tornado DDT and followed up with a running kick from the apron. Surprisingly, Grimes scored the win with a roll-up in the corner.
After it looked like Hudson was going to get out of it by attacking Grimes, the winner took him out and put him in the barber's chair to shave his head.
For a match with a strange build and goofy stipulation, this ended up being a pretty fun showcase for both men. It won't make any Match of the Year lists, but it will hold up against the rest of this show.
People have known how good Grimes is for quite some time, but this was Hudson's first real chance to show us what he can do after a couple of false starts. He has the potential to grow into somebody interesting given enough time and effort.
Seeing Grimes win was genuinely surprising because it felt like this night was all about putting over the new stars WWE introduced when NXT 2.0 launched.
Roderick Strong vs. Joe Gacy (Cruiserweight Championship)
Joe Gacy and Roderick Strong locked up and fought to the corner. Strong was looking to fight but Gacy seemed to be more interested in playing his mind games.
After a burst of offense from Gacy, Strong cornered him so he could tear his shirt off and deliver some chops to the chest.
The big man was able to regain the upper hand and use his size advantage to dominate the lead star of Diamond Mine. Strong hit a superplex and a gutbuster for a quick two-count.
Gacy wrestled Roddy into a submission but couldn't keep it locked in. He took out most of Diamond Mine with a dive over the top rope. Harland kept Ivy Nile from getting involved, but Gacy made him put her down.
Gacy came back in and hit a powerbomb for a two-count, but Strong recovered and hit a backbreaker for the win.
This match had moments of good action, but the overall pace and story it told kept it from being great. It was just kind of...there.
Both men are fantastic athletes and showed their skills here. It just didn't click. The crowd seemed halfway into it and halfway out.
Men's WarGames Match
Carmelo Hayes and Johnny Gargano started the match for their teams. They locked up and the latter scored the first takedown. The crowd chanted for him the whole time since this could be his farewell match with WWE.
Johnny Wrestling had the upper hand as Grayson Waller made his way in for Team 2.0. He hit Gargano with a backbreaker to take control. Trick Williams threw a chair into the ring for his team.
Pete Dunne was up next for Team Black and Gold. He went on a rampage against both men until Gargano recovered enough to help.
Tony D'Angelo came down for Team 2.0 and brought some tables into the ring with him. Dexter Lumis chased Williams away while D'Angelo locked the door with a chain to keep the rest of the other team out of the cage.
LA Knight couldn't get in the ring when it was his turn, so he climbed up over the wall to get in. Both teams were going to war until Bron Breakker came down as the final member of Team 2.0.
He helped put his team in control until it was time for Tommaso Ciampa to come in and start tearing everyone apart. He and Gargano had a fun moment with a crutch.
A huge brawl broke out at one point, with Team Black and Gold getting the better of Team 2.0. Waller hit a huge elbow from the top of the cage onto Knight to put him through a table.
After several more minutes of back-and-forth action, Breakker pinned Ciampa to get the win for Team 2.0.
Seeing a DIY reunion on the night that could be Gargano's last with WWE was bittersweet in more ways than one.
While this match had a couple of issues, it still ended up being the biggest highlight on the show. Not only did every single person have at least one moment, but it also seemed to serve as Gargano's sendoff.
These bouts have started to rely too much on weapons since becoming an NXT staple, but it's hard not to find some of the table spots entertaining.
This was a decent show but when you compare it to most TakeOvers, it had a lot less excitement.