WWE NXT
THE GREAT AMERICAN BASH 2023
SUNDAY, JULY 30, 2023
H-E-B CENTER
CEDAR PARK, TX

Watch: Peacock

KICKOFF SHOW
EIGHT-MAN MIXED TAG MATCH
DRAGON LEE, NATHAN FRAZER, VALENTINA FEROZ & YULISA LEON VS. META-FOUR (JAKARA JACKSON, LASH LEGEND, NOAM DAR & ORO MENSAH)

There is a pre-show match here in case you just can’t get enough NXT. Noam Dar lost his NXT Heritage Cup to Nathan Frazer on television a few weeks ago. His group, the Meta-Four—I swear to god, that’s their name—have been trying to cheer him up by helping him get it back. Frazer and Dragon Lee have had issue with Dar recently, so they’re teaming up here. I think the match would be better if the women were on the floor instead of officially in the match, but it’s an NXT pre-show, so I’m not expecting much anyway. Prediction: The Meta-Four – god that’s a stupid name

BARON CORBIN VS. GABLE STEVESON

Olympic Gold Medalist Gable Steveson will make his in-ring debut with WWE on this show, taking on Baron Corbin. Steveson isn’t the first Olympian to wrestle in WWE. From names like Kurt Angle, who famously won Olympic Gold in 1996 with a “broken freakin’ neck,” to Bad News Brown, who won the bronze medal in judo at the ’76 Games, pro wrestling has seen many Olympians enter the ranks. That includes current WWE roster member Chad Gable, a Greco-Roman wrestler who participated in the 2012 Games.

Steveson signed to the WWE in the summer of 2021, and after making several cameos, he will debut on NXT. The company has high hopes for him, with visions of another Gold Medalist becoming a real-deal WWE Superstar a la Kurt Angle. WWE trusts Baron Corbin in these spots, with him having wrestled Pat McAfee at a previous big event. This will be what gets the mainstream attention from this show, so the lights will be bright. Here’s hoping he can deliver. Prediction: Gable Steveson

WEAPONS WILD MATCH
BLAIR DAVENPORT VS. ROXANNE PEREZ

The NXT women’s division has had a nasty injury bug running through it. Nikkita Lyons, Wendy Choo, and Sol Ruca – all actual people – have been jumped in the infamously dangerous NXT parking lot. They decided to give someone the heat for all these injuries, and that someone is Blair Davenport.

Roxanne Perez was almost next on the list, but she’s fighting back for the NXT women’s locker room. After a fight at a grocery store, because everything in WWE history must be referenced, this has been made a Weapons Wild match. The last Weapons Wild match was between Perez and Cora Jade at NXT Halloween Havoc, a show so bad that it inspired this rant from The Flagship Podcast.

The build has been fine, and Davenport is one of the better wrestlers in NXT, so this one should be better. I mean, it would almost be an accomplishment to be worse. Prediction: Roxanne Perez

WWE NXT WOMEN’S TITLE SUBMISSION MATCH
TIFFANY STRATTON (C) VS. THEA HAIL (W/ANDRE CHASE & DUKE HUDSON)

A few weeks ago, at the Gold Rush TV special, Hail got a title shot against Stratton. Hail, who was training with Drew Gulak and Charlie Dempsey, learned some submission holds ahead of the match. Hail tapped out Stratton with a kimura, but the referee was taken, leading to Stratton retaining. Ever since, the Chase U student section has been harassing Stratton with You Tapped Out chants.

Hail then got herself a rematch in a submission match by locking Stratton in a kimura and forcing her to accept the challenge. Hail has been hyping up the fact that she would be the youngest champion in NXT history at age 19, which tracks with WWE’s recent need to update their history books. That seems simple enough, but if I know my NXT, I know that we should be on high alert for some goofy, overwrought finish that keeps the title on Stratton. Prediction: Tiffany Stratton

WWE NXT TAG TEAM TITLE MATCH
GALLUS (MARK COFFEY & WOLFGANG) (W/JOE COFFEY) (C) VS. THE D’ANGELO FAMILY (CHANNING “STACKS” LORENZO & TONY D’ANGELO)

If you like your NXT nonsense, boy, do I have a story for you!

So proud mob boss Tony D’Angelo arrested, with the story being that someone ratted him out for…well, mob activity. Gallus planted the seed in D’Angelo’s head that it was his underboss, Stacks, that sold him out to take his place in the family. This lead to a—and I swear to god I’m not making this up—Title Match vs. Dropped Charges match on NXT, where Stacks would either win a tag team title match and free D’Angelo, or lose and have D’Angelo stay in jail.

I guess D’Angelo getting locked up was some plan by Joe Coffey and Stacks, but it was a double reverse swerve by Stacks and D’Angelo to get a tag team title match? I guess?

This is stupid, and I don’t want to talk about it anymore. Prediction: The D’Angelo Family

WWE NXT NORTH AMERICAN TITLE TRIPLE THREAT MATCH
DOMINIK MYSTERIO (W/RHEA RIPLEY) (C) VS. MUSTAFA ALI VS. WES LEE

NXT has morphed again, this time back to the “third brand” that it was before it morphed the last time. Now, main roster names like Baron Corbin and Dana Brooke have made their way to NXT. The Judgment Day has also been on NXT lately, with local meme Dominik ending the long title reign of Wes Lee a few weeks ago.

The change in strategy has worked, with NXT drawing some of the biggest ratings they have in years. WWE fans are interested in seeing Dominik do stuff. I don’t get it, and I never will. But he’s here, added into the previously booked title match between Ali and Lee. This will be Lee and Ali doing stuff, with Dominik eventually stealing someone’s pin. It’s every three-way you’ve seen before in this company. Prediction: Dominik Mysterio

WWE NXT TITLE MATCH
CARMELO HAYES (W/TRICK WILLIAMS) (C) VS. ILJA DRAGUNOV

Someone important has seen Carmelo Hayes, and they are not impressed. Since the last PPV, he’s taken two falls to Finn Balor. One, in a surprise match on Raw. The other was in a tag match on NXT after this here title match was announced. The go-home angle saw him laid out at the end of it, taking a Torpedo Moscow that was meant for Trick Williams. His size was always going to be a detriment to him in this company, and being tucked away on NXT was only going to work for so long.

Meanwhile, Dragunov has been heated up well. He had the match against Dijak at the Battleground show, which has gotten a lot of praise. He followed it up with a good match against Bron Breakker in a #1 contender’s match on NXT TV. These guys are moving in opposite directions, but I don’t think the NXT brass are giving up on Hayes yet. I think he retains in what should be a quality main event. Prediction: Carmelo Hayes