The John Report: WWE NXT 05/14/24 Review

WWE NXT May 14

This is WWE NXT featuring a Charlie Dempsey-Tony D’Angelo Heritage Cup match, some big qualifying matches, and more.

As usual with NXT, I will do a summary style for most of the show and then play-by-play for one or two matches.

This episode took place at the WWE Performance Center in Orlando, Florida. Follow me on Twitter/X @johnreport. My WWE NXT Review archive is here. Let’s get to it.

The show started with Noam Dar down on the floor selling an attack while he was checked on by officials. Meta-Four was there with Lash Legend saying that Trick Williams didn’t do this. Noam had a smirk on his face as if he was faking it.

There was a video about the NXT Women’s Combine to determine wrestlers in the six qualifying matches to get into the NXT Women’s North American Title Match at Battleground.

Kiana James was shown talking to Izzi Dame in the locker room. James told Izzi she’s a superstar and that’s why James chose to hang out with her. James said she’ll run Raw while Izzie runs NXT and Izzi left for her match.

The commentary team is Vic Joseph and Booker T. Mike Rome has taken over as the NXT ring announcer since Alicia Taylor went to Smackdown. Mike does a good job.

NXT Women’s North American Title Qualifying Match: Sol Ruca vs. Izzi Dame

Sol was number one in the NXT Women’s combine. Sol was showing off her athleticism early and hit a moonsault for a two count. Dame took control after sending Ruca out of the ring and Sol hit the steel steps hard. Dame was in control in the ring with a backbreaker. Dame continued on offense with a flapjack into the mat. Sol hit multiple shoulder tackles along with a standing moonsault. Dame nailed Sol with a boot for a two count. Sol managed to counter Dame with an impressive Sol Snatcher cutter off the ropes. No replay of that move? They need to replay that. It went about five minutes.

Winner by pinfall: Sol Ruca

Analysis: **1/4 A good win for Sol Ruca, who is always fun to watch especially thanks to that Sol Snatcher move she does. Dame has potential as a taller woman who can use her power, but it will take some time to develop her character. I’m stunned that they didn’t show a replay of the finisher.

Sol Ruca is the first of six women to qualify for the NXT Women’s North American Title Ladder Match at Battleground.

Tony D’Angelo and The Family were shown talking to NXT GM Ava in Ava’s office. Ava wondered where Damon Kemp & Myles Borne are. Tony said they didn’t know. Ava threatened to take Tony out of his Heritage Cup but Rizzo said she can’t do that since the match was advertised and Ava fined Tony instead. Ava said they were fined $20,000 and Tony got Adrianna Rizzo to hand Ava an envelope as if they had it ready. Tony said it’s all there and then some.

The team of Malik Blade & Edris Enofe were talking in the locker room with Enofe looking at a rabbit’s foot since he’s been worried about good and bad luck a lot. Their friend Brinley Reece said they are awesome and they have her, so let’s go get a W.

The team of OTM made their entrance for tag team action.


The allies Shayna Baszler and Lola Vice were interviewed backstage about having their eyes on the NXT Women’s Title situation. That interview ended when Karmen Petrovic attacked Vice while Natalya fought with Baszler. It was broken up by other women and officials.

Analysis: That issue isn’t over and obviously will lead to another match.

OTM – Bronco Nima & Lucien Price (w/Jaida Parker) vs. Edris Enofe & Malik Blade (w/Brinley Reece)

Enofe and Blade got some offense early, but Price got the tag and Nima stomped on Enofe. Blade saved Enofe from a double team move followed by Blade & Enofe each hitting headscissors and dropkicks. Blade & Enofe each hit somersault dives over the top on the heels. After Parker grabbed Enofe’s leg, Reece got into a fight with Parker. The guys broke it up.


When the match returned, Parker and Reece kept fighting on the floor. Officials broke it up. The OTM guys were in control of Enofe. After a couple of minutes of that, Enofe brought Blade in for some hot tag offence including a neckbreaker along with Blade hitting a cross body block off the top on both guys. Enofe’s left boot was unbuckled and Blade tagged in Enofe for some reason. Blade ran the ropes, his boot was coming off, so he stopped and Price superkicked Enofe. OTM hit a double team spinebuster on Enofe for the pinfall win after about 11 minutes.

Winners by pinfall: OTM – Bronco Nima & Lucien Price

Analysis: **1/2 It continues the “bad luck” story for Enofe & Blade since Enofe’s boot came undone during the match. The Enofe/Blade team is an example of two guys who are talented wrestlers, but they really haven’t had a good storyline during their entire run in NXT for over two years. They don’t even have a team name. OTM could certainly get elevated this year to become the NXT Tag Team Champions at some point. I think they have a lot of credibility as a team.

Noam Dar and Meta-Four were in the trainer’s room. The trainer said he couldn’t clear Dar to wrestle. Oro Mensah said he’ll take Dar’s match for him. Noam said he knew it was Je’Von Evans or Trick Williams who did this. Lash Legend said she couldn’t do this (talk about Trick in a bad way because Lash likes Trick) so she left for her match.

Ivy Nile made her entrance for singles action.


The NXT Tag Team Champions Axiom & Nathan Frazer were in the locker room talking to their buddy Ridge Holland. The OC duo of Karl Anderson & Luke Gallows showed up saying that Ridge is a main roster talent who needs to leave NXT. Ridge said he started in NXT. Gallows told Ridge to find somebody to team with and they’ll kick him out of NXT tonight. Ridge stared at them as The OC left.

Analysis: I don’t know what was going on with Karl Anderson’s tan. He either had a sunburn or a lot of spray tanner on.

NXT Women’s North American Title Qualifying Match: Lash Legend (w/Jakara Jackson) vs. Ivy Nile

Lash had a big size advantage as a taller woman. Lash hit an uppercut and rammed Nile into the turnbuckle. Lash bodyslammed Nile on the floor. Nile got some offense going with a forearm smash to the face. Lash came back with a running splash against the turnbuckle. They battled on the turnbuckle where Lash wanted a Chokeslam, but Nile countered it into a top rope bulldog for two. Nile went for a submission, Jakara grabbed Nile’s foot and Lash slammed Nile down. Lash hit a pump kick (like a Brogue Kick) for the pinfall win after about four minutes.

Winner by pinfall: Lash Legend

Analysis: ** A solid shorter match with Legend benefitting from Jackson grabbing Nile’s foot on the floor and Lash finished off Nile after that. That top rope bulldog spot for a two count was a great nearfall because it looked like a finisher. Nile’s on Raw, so she was just here to put over NXT’s Legend.

That win means that Lash Legend joins Sol Ruca as two of the six women in the NXT Women’s North American Title Ladder Match at Battleground.

Analysis: I think Lash or Sol could definitely win at Battleground. Lash might be my pick to win no matter who the remaining women are.

Je’Von Evans was interviewed backstage by Sarah Schreiber. Evans denied attacking Noam Dar while saying he doubts Trick Williams did it either. Evans said it was time to get bouncy since he has a match next.


A newcomer Carlee Bright was shown talking to NXT GM Ava saying she wanted a match with Lola Vice. Ava said that Bright nearly made the top 12 in the NXT Women’s Combine so she’s going to give Bright the match. In Ava’s office, we could see crazy Tatum Paxley peaking through the blinds. Ava got a phone call and left.

Je’Von Evans vs. Oro Mensah (w/Jakara Jackson & Lash Legend)

This was supposed to be Evans against Noam Dar, but Dar is “injured” so Oro is taking the match. Evans is a 20-year-old phenom (Vic mentioned it later in the match). Oro got some offense early, but Evans came back with an impressive hurricanrana and dropkick. Oro dumped Evans over the top to the floor leading to a break.


Oro was in control with a flipping kick to the head and a reverse Powerbomb slam. Evans got some offense with a jumping kick to the head along with a springboard clothesline. Oro went for a moonsault off the ropes, but Evans avoided it and Evans hit a springboard Cutter like a Cody Cutter. Oro left the ring, so Evans hit an amazing dive over the top onto Oro on the floor. Evans got a lot of height on that leap. Lash was going to give Oro a chair to use, but Trick Williams showed up to stop Lash from that. Oro nailed Evans with a forearm smash. Evans came back with a superkick. Evans hit an amazing springboard corkscrew splash off the top for the pinfall win after 10 minutes. The crowd was on fire for Evans while Booker said “wow” reacting to it.

Winner by pinfall: Je’Von Evans

Analysis: *** The last few minutes were really well done and put over Evans in a big win. Oro isn’t pushed much, so Evans beating him isn’t that much of a shock. From an athletic standpoint, Evans really stands out and is so fun to watch. That finisher by Evans is a thing of beauty. I was really impressed by that.

After the match, NXT Champion Trick Williams celebrated with Je’Von Evans in the ring.

Analysis: I like seeing those two aligned. Making Evans ally of Trick will shine more of a spotlight on Evans, who is an impressive rising star.

Charlie Dempsey is the NXT Heritage Cup Champion and he was interviewed by Kelly Kincaid. Dempsey said that Damon Kemp & Myles Borne were in rough shape after what The Family did to them. Dempsey was confident about beating Tony D’Angelo tonight.

Wes Lee was shown walking backstage for a promo up next.


Let’s Hear from Wes Lee

Wes Lee said that the last time he was in the ring with a microphone, he didn’t know if he’d be able to come back. Wes talked about how much he loves NXT and loves the NXT North American Title. Wes said that he missed this. Wes spoke about how two days after his major surgery, he was walking and a few weeks later, he was back in the gym focused on getting back in the ring. Wes talked about how hard he fought to be back.

Oba Femi, the NXT North American Champion, credited Wes for being a great champion. Femi said that Wes has to sit back and watch Femi take this title to heights never seen before. Femi said that Wes had the spirit of a warrior, but he’s an actual warrior and he is a mountain that Wes cannot climb or conquer. Femi said he thinks that Wes wants a title opportunity. Wes said yeah. Femi wanted Wes to prove he deserves a title opportunity.

Wes said that clearly Femi has the size, the speed, brute strength and freakish athleticism. Wes said that he may not check as many boxes as Femi, but when he had that title…and here’s Ivar.

Ivar said that everybody is excited to have Wes back, including himself. Ivar said that he came back from a major injury and he had the same surgery and they had the same spinal surgeon so he gave a shoutout to the doctor. Ivar said that Wes wants a shot at Oba, but Ivar wants a shot too.

Josh Briggs joined the promo party saying that they are all so emotional. Briggs said that this is a man’s game so here are some facts. Briggs said at Stand & Deliver, he tore the damn house down with Oba, but they both know how close Briggs was to taking that title with broken ribs. Briggs said that his ribs are healed and they need to run it back. Wes told Femi to make this a Fatal 4-Way Match. Femi said that’s why he is the champion and Wes is not. Femi told them to fight among themselves and the winner will get an opportunity against him. Femi left.

Analysis: A simple way to settle a promo argument by having the triple threat match to set up a title match. That’s fine with me. I think Wes Lee will probably win that triple threat, but it could go to one of the others. Femi has been booked as somewhat of a tweener champion who shows heel tendencies at times.

Ridge Holland was interviewed by Kelly Kincaid backstage. Chase U showed up saying that Ridge didn’t have to fight alone. Andre offered up Riley Osborne as his partner, Riley wasn’t thrilled about it and then Riley said it was okay. Thea Hail said it was a teachable moment, so they were happy.

The OC’s Gallows & Anderson entered for tag team action.


An alarm clock went off while the screen was dark. It is likely about Wendy Choo’s return.

Lexis King was talking backstage to some random people bragging about how talented he is. Jazmyn Nyx walked up asking if they can sign a “Get Well Soon” card for Jacy Jayne. The random people didn’t sign it. King signed it even though he said “Jamie” rather than Jacy. King signed it while Nyx read it and said he wrote “Jackie” instead. She called him an idiot.

Analysis: Riveting television as usual for these skits.

Ridge Holland & Riley Osborne (w/Andre Chase, Duke Hudson & Thea Hail) vs. The OC – Luke Gallows & Karl Anderson

Ridge knocked down Luke with a shoulder tackle. When Osborne tagged in, The OC guys worked him over a bit. Osborne managed to get a dropkick and a standing SSP for two. Karl hit a great spinebuster on Osborne. Karl whipped Osborne into the turnbuckle a few times to continue the attack. Osborne hit a springboard attack to break free and brought Ridge in. Ridge hit an overhead suplex and a powerslam for two on Karl because Luke made the save. Luke punched Osborne out of the ring. Ridge lifted up Karl, Osborne went for a springboard move, Osborne dropkicked Ridge by accident and Karl covered Ridge to win. It went about five minutes.

Winners by pinfall: The OC – Luke Gallows & Karl Anderson

Analysis: **1/4 A decent tag for the time given. This story with Ridge Holland trying to get others to trust him isn’t working that well, but maybe long term it will work out. Karl & Luke are getting a mild push that could lead to a Tag Team Title match for them.

There was a quick video about newcomer Carlee Bright.


Lola Vice (w/Shayna Baszler) vs. Carlee Bright

This is Bright’s debut on NXT although she has been on Level Up. Bright hit a cross body block. Vice nailed a kick to the ribs and a kick to the back. Karmen Petrovic and Natalya were watching on a TV backstage until they left. Bright got a backslide pin for two. Bright avoided a kick and hit a couple of clotheslines. Bright hit a standing moonsault. Bright jumped off the ropes, so Vice kicked her in the gut followed by Vice doing a back fist to the face for the pinfall win after three minutes.

Winner by pinfall: Lola Vice

Analysis: *1/2 An easy win for Vice over a newcomer like Bright. Lola winning was pretty obvious here. Bright is clearly athletic like a lot of women on the roster. We’ll have to see how she develops in the months ahead.

After the match, Lola & Shayna wanted to do more damage, so Natalya & Karmen Petrovic went out to the ring for the save. Petrovic challenged Lola & Shayna to a tag team match next week.

Analysis: It was obvious they were building to a tag team match.

Chase U talked to Ridge Holland backstage. Riley Osborne apologized for what he did and Ridge said he knows it was a mistake. Ridge said he hopes that they can trust him. Riley shook hands with Ridge. Ridge left while Chase said they’ll take it one day at a time.


Next week on NXT:

* Fallon Henley vs. Thea Hail in a NXT Women’s North American Championship Qualifying Match

* Brinley Reece vs. Jaida Parker in a NXT Women’s North American Championship Qualifying Match

* Wes Lee vs. Ivar vs. Josh Briggs. The winner will challenge Oba Femi for the NXT North American Title at Battleground.

* Natalya & Karmen Petrovic vs. Shayna Baszler & Lola Vice

Analysis: A solid lineup for next week.

NXT Heritage Cup Championship: Charlie Dempsey vs. Tony D’Angelo (w/Channing “Stacks” Lorenzo, Luca Crusifino & Adrianna Rizzo)

Round 1: It was mentioned by Vic that Tony was a skilled amateur wrestler before his WWE days. Tony D tripped up Dempsey going for a leg lock. Tony got an impressive takedown leading to Dempsey going to the ropes. Tony got a hiptoss while Dempsey held onto a headlock. Dempsey went for a backslide, but Tony countered it with a rollup where he held onto Dempsey’s legs for the pinfall. They went to break there.

Tony D’Angelo leads 1-0.


Round 2: The match returned with about 60 seconds left in the three-minute round. They exchanged strikes. Dempsey got a kick to the ribs followed by a suplex into an armbar on the left arm. The bell rang because it was the end of the round.

Round 3: Dempsey worked over the left arm with uppercut strikes to the arm. Dempsey took down Tony D by the left arm and went for a submission on the arm. Tony powered out of the submission, but then Dempsey went for an armbar again. Tony got a rollup for two. They exchanged pin attempts again with each guy getting a couple of nearfalls. Tony tossed Dempsey across the ring twice. Tony charged, but Dempsey avoided it and sent Tony into the ring post. Dempsey hit a bridging German Suplex for a pinfall.

The match is tied 1-1.

That means the next fall wins in this match that has six rounds max.

Round 4: Dempsey nailed a running uppercut smash. Dempsey worked over Tony D with stomps to the body. Dempsey got another takedown going for a submission on the left arm. Dempsey was relentless going for a submission on the left arm. Tony countered it with a Powerbomb slam into the mat. Tony got a knockdown with a clothesline along with two punches. Tony hit two belly-to-belly slams. Tony D hit a spinebuster for two just as the bell rang to end the round.

Round 5: Tony hit a running forearm along with a German Suplex. That’s when Damon Kemp and Myles Borne showed up to fight with Stacks & Luca on the floor. Dempsey went after Tony, who punched Dempsey in the face. Tony sent Borne out of the ring onto Kemp. Dempsey got a bridging pin attempt for two. Tony countered a move with the Fuggetabout It slam that is a Fisherman’s Suplex for the pinfall win at 1:52 in the fifth round.

Winner by 2 falls to 1 and NEW NXT Heritage Cup Champion: Tony D’Angelo

Analysis: ***1/4 A good championship match with the unique Heritage Cup rules. There was a nice mix of submission wrestling by Dempsey throughout the match along with some nearfalls by both guys. I think all the nearfalls put over the idea that they are going for the win and that’s important in a match like that. I’m happy for Tony D getting a big win like that. It wasn’t a long NXT Heritage Cup reign for Dempsey and his group. I’m fine with the change.

It is Tony D’s first singles title win in NXT although it’s not exactly a title. It’s still a prize at least.

There was a brief celebration for Tony D and then they quickly cut to the backstage area.

They showed Wes Lee, Josh Briggs and Ivar on the floor looking like they were beaten up. The Gallus boys Joe Coffey, Mark Coffey & Wolfgang were standing over a fallen Ivar. Joe spoke into the camera: “Did you miss us? This is just the start!” End show.

Analysis: It could mean a renewed push for the Gallus boys. I like them and I’m glad they are back.


Three Stars of the Show

  1. Tony D’Angelo
  2. Je’Von Evans
  3. Charlie Dempsey


The Scoreboard

This week: 6.5 out of 10

Last week: 6.5

2024 Average: 7.03


Final Thoughts on WWE NXT

A solid show overall, but I wouldn’t say the NXT brand is hot right now. They are still suffering after losing a lot of top talent to the main roster and they are trying to fill in the gaps with main roster talent as well as newer stars.

The match quality is down from their better shows. I thought Tony D & Charlie Dempsey did a nice job in their Heritage Cup match and I’m glad that Tony finally won a singles title (if you want to call it a title). Je’Von Evans continues to impress as a very athletic 20-year-old with a bright future. I like how Trick Williams was there to support him. Most of the other matches were kept short or were just average.

Welcome back to Gallus. We know they helped The Rock train for WrestleMania 40 and now they are back on television. They are one of the best groups in NXT so I’m happy to see them on the show again.


Thanks for reading. My contact info is below.

John Canton


Twitter/X @johnreport