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Jeremy’s WWE NXT Review 2.20.24

February 20, 2024 | Posted by Jeremy Thomas
WWE NXT 2-20-24 Lyra Valkyria Image Credit: WWE
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Jeremy’s WWE NXT Review 2.20.24  

Hello everyone, and welcome to our live WWE NXT coverage on 411! Jeremy Thomas, here as always, and tonight NXT is continuing their road to, uh, Roadblock. That was a bit more awkward than intended. Anyway, tonight’s show is a taped episode from last week as WWE heads to Elimination Chamber, and on this show we’ll see Shotzi challenge Lyra Valkyria for the NXT Women’s Championship while Lexis King gets a shot at Oba Femi’s NXT North American Championship. In addition, Roxanne Perez takes on Wren Sinclair and former partners Brooks Jensen and Josh Briggs will compete against each other. It’ll be a show, that’s for sure.

Here at ye old Thomas household, I’ve been busy as always with my movie-watching. I kicked off the last week by following up my Nightmare on Elm Street rewatch with a rewatch of the fantastic documentary Never Sleep Again: The Elm Street Legacy. The rest of the viewing largely…wasn’t great. Madame Web is not as bad as Morbius the way some have been claiming, but it sure as hell wasn’t good, and the new shark attack movie No Way Up was not horrible but definitely needed more sharks. Similarly, the underground fighting action film Lights Out was middling but had a few decent moments and a solid cast. On the plus side, the new sci-fi thriller Monolith was a unsettling in a very good way and may turn people off with its slow burn and ambiguity, but it’s carried by a strong performance by Lily Sullivan.

On TV, I watched the season finale of Dirty Laundry on Dropout which is always fun and kept up with Drag Race season 16 as well as the new season of Drag Race: UK vs. The World. I’m vacillating between Team Plasma and Team Nymphia Wind for the former, and am fully on Team Tia Kofi for the latter.

Anyway, we’re gonna have a lot to cover tonight so let’s hop right in.

As a reminder, the GoFundMe for Larry’s daughters is still active and if you can make a donation, that would be awesome. Thank you so much to everyone who’s done so thus far.

* We start off with Shotzi walking through the parking lot earlier today, as does Lyra Valkyria. And we’re kicking off with the North American Title match!

NXT North American Championship Match
Oba Femi vs. Lexis King

King ducks a lockup and kicks at Femi but gets put in the corner. He ducks a boot and lays in some chops, he’s thrown to the corner and springboard out but Femi swats a kick aside and hits a big backdrop. Femi whips King into the ropes, King with a sunset flip but Femi steps out of it. King lays in kicks to the chest and head, comes off the ropes and is CAUGHT by Femi, who pushes him over the ropes to the floor.

Femi rolls King in and follows but is hit with a dropkick and falls to the floor. King pushes Femi into the ropes but Femi fires back with a big slap and rolls King in. King with a stomp to the head and starts to work the arm with an overhead chickenwing.

King is whipped into the corner and goes up and over Femi, pushing him shoulder-first into the corner. He kicks Femi from the apron and goes up top for a stomp to the shoulder as Mr. Stone comes to the ring. King out of the ring and shoves Stone, he comes back in and is goozled. King escapes and hits some strikes into the ropes but Femi with a BIG clothesline. King up and gets shoved into the air, hitting hard.

Femi with a snake eyes, followed by a toss and a pop-up powerbomb to finish it.

Winner: Oba Femi (4:01)
Rating: ** 1/4
Thoughts: This was fine for a four-minute match. Nothing special to it, the Stone involvement wasn’t too consequential but advances that story. The key here is Femi looking dominant.

* Thea, Jacy and Jazmyn Nyx are backstage and Thea says Riley hasn’t answered him yet. Jacy asks what happened on the Valentine’s date. Thea says that she told him not to open the car for her. She says she stayed on her phone most of the time because it was to look unavailable. Jacy says that’s not what she meant.

Arianna Grace walks up and says she’s been on many dates, and that Thea may have scared Riley away. She says welcome the door being open and reciprocate attention. She doesn’t think it’s a lost cause. Jacy says she can’t do everything for Thea and Arianna says “And she’s your best friend?” Some threats are exchanged and the Chase U girls leave.

* Bron and Baron are WALKING backstage.

* Lyra asks Tatum Paxley if she’s good after the beating last week. Tatum says she has only been able to eat soup but she’s great and is happy Lyra came to her aid. Lyra says she has one thing she needs Tatum to do and she has a special surprise if she does. Tatum says she can go after Shotzi but Lyra says the one thing she needs is for Tatum to stay in the back. Tatum isn’t happy about it but agrees. Lyra leaves and Tatum says it’ll be the hardest thing she’s ever done, but she’ll do it.

* The Wolfdogs have come to the ring! We get a recap of Bron signing with Smackdown before they get in the ring and get mics. The crowd chants “YOU DESERVE IT!” Bron says if they would have thought back in No Mercy when they were beating the crap out of each other that they’d be standing here in their alligator boots with the titles, they’d say they’re crazy.

Corbin says he remembers No Mercy because he beat Bron. Bron says he’s carried the team, and Baron says he set Bron up pretty nicely in the Tag Title match with the End of Days. Bron says Corbin set him up with End of Days, and he hit the Spear, so… Spear of Days? Corbin loves it. He says they’re a couple a-holes in the middle of the ring with new hardware, and are good with being the new Tag Team Champions.

CHASE U IS HERE! Chase says Bron and Corbin might not care who their next challengers are, but they do. Duke says winning those titles weren’t easy for Bron and Corbin, but Chase U is back and it’s their time to shine. Bren says they can take their calenders and school spirit and shove it up their asses.

Duke isn’t happy but Chase says it’s a teachable moment. He says they were promised a match by the former champions, and Duke says that they’re gonna get the match.

Nathan Frazer and Axiom are here! Frazer says their title shot is null and void, while Axiom says they got closest to beating Bron and Baron in the Dusty Classic. Nathan says those guys jumped them and they’re ready for payback, you pieces of sh– Axiom cuts him off. Duke says they need to get to the back in the line because they’re going to plant the Chase U flag where it belongs.

Corbin says that’s a “You Guys Problem” and they have places to be, so take the problems and tell someone who cares. Ava comes out now and says it’s not up to Bron and Corbin to decide who the next challengers is; it’s up to her. So she’s booking Chase U vs. Frazer and Axiom for the next title shot for tonight.

* Roxy is backstage and asked by Kelly about her match with Wren. Roxy says Wren reminds her of herself when she got here: happy to be here. But after time, she’ll learn that happy to be here doesn’t cut it. You get passed over for others including main roster stars coming down for title shots. She says she hopes Shotzi and Lyra watch her match because she’ll be watching theirs.

* The latest mysterious vignette says “Men deny their truth…I will be a mirror to it.”

Roxanne Perez vs. Wren Sinclair

Lockup to start and Roxy backed into the ropes. Roxy turns it around and manhandles Wren, then shoves her on the break. Wren shoves her back, Roxy charges in and they are rolling around on the ring until falling to the outside.

Roxy batters Wren on the outside and then rolls her in — Wren gets a couple roll-ups for two counts, but then gets decked. Whip reversed into a punch by Wren, back suplex gets two and Wren goes right into a front facelock. Roxy reverses and slams Wren on the mat. It spills to the outside, Roxy with a wristlock takedown and slams Wren into the apron, then rolls her in and covers for one.

Roxy back to the wristlock, she wrenches on Wren’s neck as well. Wren to her feet but Roxy tripes her and drops a knee on the arm, cover gets two. Roxy into a Million Dollar Dream, Sinclair up to her feet but gets tripped back to the mat. Wren battles back up and punches her way to a better position, then snapmares Roxy.

Roxy charges into a boot and Wren hits a couple clotheslines. She charges in the corner, Roxy gets her foot up but Wren catches it and slams Roxy down. Roxy takes back over, Pop Rocks, cover but Wren escapes! Roxy right into the crossface and Wren taps.

Winner: Roxanne Perez (4:22)
Rating: ** 1/2
Thoughts: Very decent match for the time given. Roxy is working a different style and it’s not as crowd-pleasing but fits her new character well. I’m digging it.

* The Meta-Four are backstage and says Lash will take care of Kelani Jordan, then says they need to figure out what to do about the No Quarter Catch Club. The NQCC come in and Charley talks about the title but Noam cuts him off, saying it’s boring. He asks who he’s facing and they invoke the Catch Clause, meaning that Dar will know when they’re in the ring next week.

Josh Briggs vs. Brooks Jensen

Lockup to start, Briggs shot into the ropes and runs Brooks over. Briggs keeps running and Brooks knocks him down. Briggs fires back and covers for one, then slams him in the corner. Back elbow, then a hammer blow across the back. Irish whip reversed by Brooks in the corner, Brooks with a chop and then a bulldog. Brooks goes after the legs but Briggs pushes him off and Brooks falls to the outside.

Briggs goes through the ropes and Brooks waffles him with a punch! Brooks beats on Briggs and shoves him in, following. Briggs with an Irish whip, leapfrog, Brooks with a cutter! Briggs rolls outside, Brooks follows and throws Briggs into the guardrail, then throws him over the guardrail to beat and stomp on him! We’re on PIP break.

We’re back and Briggs has Jensen in a headlock. Brooks fights out of it and hits an enzuigiri. Briggs charges, Brooks with a backslide for one, Briggs slams Brooks down and wrenches the next with his feet. He batters Jensen in the corner for a four-count but gets backed up by the ref.

Briggs gets Brooks up, whip into the corner and a standing sidewalk slam followed by a splash for a nearfall. Briggs stands over Brooks and says he’s doing it for him, telling Jensen to show him he’s a man (Pronoun overload.) Brooks with a big shot but falls to his knees. Briggs is happy and goes in, but Brooks hulks up and lets out a flurry of punches. Clothesline off the ropes, a dropkick and Brooks is up! He goes up top, missile dropkick and a cover for two.

Chops by Brooks in the corner, then a bulldog but Briggs shoves him off and hits a BIG boot. Chokeslam, cover, Brooks kicks out at two-plus! Brooks and Briggs now on their knees and trade blows, they get to their feet and Briggs takes over with hammer blows, comes off the ropes into a big boot but hits his own. Brooks with a spinning heel kick and suplex, cover gets a nearfall.

Brooks goes for a powerbomb, it gets countered but Brooks with a sunset flip. Cover for two, Briggs with a punch and then Briggs hits two big clotheslines with an “I love you man!” in between for the pin.

Winner: Josh Briggs (10:58)
Rating: ** 3/4
Thoughts: This was pretty good, though I think Briggs and Jensen have more chemistry as partners than opponents. I’m not sure what the end game is for these guys though.

* Joe Gacy comes to in the straitjacket that Dijak put him in. He’s in a padded room. Dijak walks up and puts his nightstick on the table, saying there’s no decency in Gacy. Gacy admires Dijak’s attempts to stop him, but the train isn’t leaving the track. Dijak says he has many instruments of piece to derail Gacy’s train. Gacy walks up to laugh at Dijak through the window.

Luca Crusifino walks up and says this is illegal. Dijak basically tells him to fuck off and Gacy pops back up, laughing and saying this isn’t over.

* Melo walks into the barber shop and says this is where Trick Melo Gang began. He says they were good memories and great moments, but here he is all alone. He ain’t lonely though. Let’s talk about it!

He’s here with his pride, knowing his principles stay intact and he didn’t have to snake his boy out of his spot and he didn’t get too big for his boots. He says he wanted Trick to get his feeling of being the top guy and lift him up, but this is how he repays him, by trying to be NXT’s #1 guy? He could have been #5, #3 or Melo would have even let him be #2. But no one is above Melo. He says he let Trick have his run to amuse him, and says he saw the signs that Trick would try to overtake him. He knew that Trick was his biggest competition and had to get him before he got Melo.

Melo says wherever Trick’s at, stay there because his 15 minutes are up. As for Ilja, if he wants to see him then get in line because if they’re not talking about the NXT Championship they have nothing to talk about.

Arianna Grace vs. Jacy Jayne

Lockup to start, Grace with a wristlock reversal into home of her own. Jayne flips through and trips Grace for one. Grace nails Jacy with a shot, snapmares her and then runs her over before telling Jacy to kiss her hand. Jacy instead sends Grace into the ropes and to the outside.

Jacy follows Grace out and rolls her in, but Grace with a judo throw. Bodyslam but Jacy floats over and puts Grace in the corner, splash and a slam, senton gets two. Jacy locks in the chinlock and locks in the legs, Grace backs Jacy’s shoulders to the mat for one.

Jacy charges at Grace but Grace dodges and bodyslams Jacy, elbow gets two. She works the shoulder, Jacy to her feet and throws Grace over the top. Jacy follows but gets kneed in the cut, she answers with a back elbow and distracts the ref , calling for Thea to nail Grace. Jazmyn does instead and rolls Jacy in, clothesline and a cover for three.

Winner: Jacy Jayne (3:19)
Rating: ** 1/4
Thoughts: Not a great match, and it didn’t help they they didn’t get much time to work.

Post-match Jazmyn earns Jacy’s appreciation, Thea not so much.

* Tony D is sipping coffee as Stacks and Adriana Rizzo walks up. He tells them to sit down and Rizzo says she gave everything she had. Tony says it was a good showing. Stacks says last week was on them and they’ll get the titles back. Tony says not now. He says he lost track of the bigger picture and says they’ve been playing small ball between Chase U and OTM. They’re the D’Angelo family, and it’s time he leads them in a new direction. No community vote, no feedback, they do it his way and if they don’t like it, too bad. They need to inform the rest of the family. It’s time for Tony to really be the Don of NXT.

* Ridge Holland is back for another sitdown interview with Sarah and asked about his assault of Gallus after their three-on-one match last week. Ridge says when they spoke last, people saw a different side of him but he still can’t get that stench of misfortune off him. He says Gallus smashed his leg last month and that’s fine, but when he gets that chair in his hands it becomes a weapon. He can’t even defend himself with other people attacking him. He says this isn’t the forum and next week he’ll address the WWE Universe and apologize for his actions even if no one cares. He says the main with that chair is not the man he is in life.

* Shotzi is prepping for her title match backstage.

NXT Tag Team Title #1 Contender’s Match
Chase U vs. Axiom & Nathan Frazer

Chase and Axiom start off and do some counterwrestling to start. Chase puts Axiom on the mat, Axiom counters into a headscissors. Chase escapes and locks in a shoulderlock, it turns into a wristlock. Axiom escapes and goes after the leg, wrapping it up but Chase escapes. Amateur takedown by Axiom, he goes for a surfboard but Chase lands into a cover for one. Some more back and forth.

Chase shot into the ropes, but he turns it around until Axiom hits an armdrag and tags in Frazer, tandem offense and a DDT followed by a standing Shooting Star for two. Frazer sends Chase into the ropes and ducks the clothesline, Chase with a kick to the head. Duke tags in, double shots to the gut and back. Duke with a shoulderblock, cover gets two.

Into the ropes, Frazer with a headlock, he gets thrown into the ropes and races through but Duke runs him over. Chase tags in, double back suplex but Frazer up and over. Axiom tags in, he lays into Duke and springboard off the top to take down both Chase U guys. Duke charges, the ropes are pulled down. Axiom and Frazer dive on Duke and Chase on the outside twice each as we go to break.

We’re back with Axiom in control of Duke. Frazer tags in, half and half suplex and a double superkick, Frazer covers for two. Headlock, but Chase to his feet and goes for the tag. Frazer blocks it and trips Chase, he goes up top and leaps but Chase catches him with a uranage. Duke tags in and he comes in hot, taking out Frazer with a boot and then kicking Axiom off the ropes. Powerbomb, Axiom rolls through and charges at Duke in the corner, caught for a uranage.

Chase U punches to Axiom, he grabs Frazer and drops him onto Axiom. Duke gets Axiom up for Razor’s Edge but Axiom counters with a rana. Frazer tags in, missile dropkick! Axiom tags back in, they get Duke up top but he fights back. Axiom is up, Duke grabs him — Axiom with a Spanish fly! Cover gets a nearfall and Axiom is shocked at the kickout!

Duke is taking kicks from Axiom and Frazer and hulks up — double clothesline! He tags in Chase, high cross budy to Frazer who rolls through for two. Frazer with a kick, they go into a series of pins and Chase manages to catch Frazer with one!

Winner: Chase U (11:29)
Rating: ***
Thoughts: Best match of the night so far with ease, to no surprise considering these four guys. It was faster than I could keep up with but everything was crisp and happy to see Chase U win.

Post-match, the OC shows up and lays out everyone! Magic Killer to Duke Hudson! So they’re here I guess.

* Ilja says he saw through Melo from day one. Melo’s jealousy consumed him, and he pointed the finger at him? He says Melo is a coward for attacking Trick from behind as well as him. He says Melo is the lowest form of life and he’ll see him at Roadblock with one condition. Show up next week and see him face to face. He tells Melo to come for the title because he’s coming for something more important — Melo’s soul.

* Fallon is backstage brooding about the boys fighting and Thea is brooding about her situation. Fallon says she saw her boys fight and she can’t find her footing. Thea says that Chase U may have a tag title shot but got laid out by the OC, then everything went bad with her date. Fallon says Valentine’s Day strikes again and if she could erase Valentine’s Day from her memory, she could. They walk off together and Fallon starts talking about last year with Kiana James and Brooks.

Lash Legend vs. Kelani Jordan

Circle and lockup, Lash with a waistlock and slams Kelani down. She talks shit and Kelani piefaces her. Lash with a wristlock, she picks Kelani up but Kelani counters into a sunset flip but Lash doesn’t go down. It turns into a rollup by Kelani for one, a crucifix for one again. Kelani off the ropes and runs into an axe kick to the gut.

Lash with a short-arm shoulder takedown and another. Sidewalk slam into a backbreaker, splash gets two. Lash chokes Kelani against the ropes for four and then pulls her into a whip into the corner, then another. She charges into a back elbow, Kelani with a wristlock but Lash catches her in an over the back rack. Kelani escapes but slams Kelani, she goes for a splash and Kelani with the knees up.

Kelani with strikes and chops, she unleashes on Lash and comes off the ropes for a rana, but Lash catches her — Kelani leaps off to her feet and kicks Lash. Top rope and she leaps into a rana! Dropkick to Lash, she catches a kick and hits a spin kick.

Kelani goes up, Jakara distracts her, Lash with a chokeslam for three.

Winner: Lash Legend (4:29)
Rating: ** 1/4
Thoughts: Yeah, that wasn’t great. It wasn’t awful, but the match came off as rushed and they had some sloppiness as a result.

Kiana and Izzi go after Kelani after the match but Kelani dodges them a lot and escapes.

* Shotzi WALKS backstage. So does Lyra.

* Kelly asks The OC about their return to NXT and Karl says they’re back to stay. Gallows says he doesn’t know if Chase U is happy about it but he was never a good student. Karl liked the calender though. Karl says that they are going to separate the men from the boys in the Tag Title division.

Set For Next Week:
– Ilja & Carmelo face-to-face
– NXT Heritage CUp Match: Noam Dar vs. Member of NQCC

NXT Women’s Championship Match
Lyra Valkyria vs. Shotzi

Lockup to start, Lyra with a waistlock and a takedown. Shotzi goes into a front facelock, she rolls back and applies a front facelock submission. Lyra gets to her feet, takes down Shotzi and goes for the leg but Shotzi kicks her off.

Headlock takedown by Lyra, Shotzi rolls her into a one-count but back to the headlock. Bodyscissors into a pin for one by Lyra, who then gets another pin attempt. Shotzi with a rollup for two.

Lockup and Lyra with a headlock, shot into the ropes and Shotzi runs Lyra over. Into the ropes, Shotzi with a rana but Lyra lands on her feet. Hiptosses by Lyra, whip into the ropes, Shotzi with a chop and she goes up top for an armdrag. Shotzi put on the apron, Shotzi goes for a hangman leaping off the apron and that’s where the knee buckles as we go to PIP break and officials check on Shotzi.

Winner: No Contest (3:15)
Rating: N/A
Thoughts: It’s an unfortunate turn of events and not much else you can say here. Best wishes to Shotzi as she recovers.

During the break, Shotzi was helped to the back. We’re back and Lyra is still in the ring looking upset. We see the moment again in a recap, and Ava comes out. She says due to the injuries Shotzi suffered, she can’t compete but they’re getting an NXT Women’s Title match. She says it’s now an open challenge and whoever comes out is their next opponent.

It’s Lash Legend!

NXT Women’s Championship Match
Lyra Valkyria vs. Lash Legend

Lyra with kicks to Lash to start but gets decked by the challenger. Big toss across the ring by Lash, who picks up Lyra for a half nelson. Cover gets one.

Lash with a rear chinlock to wear Lyra down, Lyra to her feet but gets pulled right back to the match. Lyra back up and gets whipped into the ropes, she gets a double hand thrust and some kicks followed by a suplex attempt but Lash blocks it. Lash puts Lyra in the corner and charges into a boot. Lyra up top and leaps, Lash catches her for a backbreaker. Cover gets two.

Lash shoves Lyra’s face, Lyra shoves back and Lash nails Lyra. Leaping elbow to the back, cover gets two. Lash batters Lyra in the corner and pulls her out to whip her back in a couple times. Slam down and a cover gets two. Lash picks Lyra up for a modified Gory Lock over the shoulder. Lyra escapes and comes off the ropes for a clothesline.

Rana by Lyra and an enzuigiri. She lies in wait and goes for a spin kick, Lash catches it and hits the Slam Dunk! Cover gets a nearfall. Whip into the corner, Lyra gets the boot up and Lyra goes up top — high crossbody! Lyra covers for two.

Lyra grabs Lash and tries to get her up on her shoulder, but no dice. Pump kick from Lash, jackknife cover for a nearfall. Lash frustrated now, she picks Lyra up and puts her on the top rope. Lash goes up and Lyra with elbows to knock Lash down. Splash off the top, that’s three.

Winner: Lyra Valkyria (5:49)
Rating: ** 1/2
Thoughts: Considering the situation this was a fine match. They worked a cold match there and it came off looking pretty solid. Respect to those involved for working on the fly.

And with that, we’re done for the night!

The final score: review Not So Good
The 411
It's impossible not to talk about this week's show without addressing the fact that they had an unfortunate happenstance in the main event, and I give full credit to Lyra and Lash for their impromptu work to deal with the situation. That being said, this just wasn't a good episode on the whole. Most of the matches were rushed or didn't click with the exception of a couple, and most of the storyline stuff was middling at best. We've seen much worse episodes before, but this was just a lacking episode on the whole.

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WWE NXT, Jeremy Thomas