The John Report: WWE NXT 06/13/23 Review

wwe nxt june 13

This week’s WWE NXT featured a six-man tag team match, Baron Corbin facing Ilja Dragunov in the main event and more.

I will use a summary style for most of the review and play-by-play for one or two matches.

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

There was a graphic saying In Memory of The Iron Sheik. Keep making jabronis humble, bubba.

It was Vic Joseph and Booker T on commentary as usual.

Schism – Joe Gacy, Rip Fowler & Jagger Reid (w/Ava) vs. Wes Lee, Mustafa Ali & Tyler Bate

The babyface trio went into the ring to start the fight. That led to the ring being cleared until it was Gacy and Bate in the ring leading to the bell finally ringing. When Ali tagged in he hit a hurricanrana on Gacy. Wes tagged in with a senton attack onto Fowler, but Reid got the tag and hit a tag team stun gun into the top rope. The Schism trio made quick tags as they worked over Wes in their corner. After a few minutes, Wes broke free to bring in Bate, who hit a back body drop on Reid. Bate got a two count after a standing Shooting Star Press. All three Schism guys were in the ring, so the faces punched them out of the ring. Ali, Bate and Wes hit dives over the top onto the heels leading to a break.


It was Bate’s turn to be the face in peril as Fowler decked him with a clothesline. Bate showed off impressive power hitting a vertical suplex. Ali faced off against Reid as Ali and there was a bunch of chaos at that point with all six guys getting involved, which led to Ali hitting a neckbreaker on Reid. Big bump by Ali running full speed into the middle turnbuckle. Wes hit a dropkick on Fowler and then a dive over the top rope onto the other two heels. They did a spot where the referee was distracted, so he didn’t see Bate made the tag. Gacy hit a triple Powerbomb and a backup referee went into the ring to stop the count to say Bate was legal. Ali hit a DDT on the floor and Wes hit a dive on the floor. Bate finished off Gacy with the bounce off the ropes clothesline and a Tyler Driver 97 for the pinfall win after 15 minutes.

Winners by pinfall: Wes Lee, Mustafa Ali & Tyler Bate

Analysis: ***1/2 A great match with a super hot finish. That trio of Wes, Ali and Bate are so talented and exciting to watch. The Schism guys all work hard while they are always capable of having good matches. The issue I have with the second referee coming into the ring is why did it happen in this case with a tag that the original referee didn’t see, yet many times where there’s a referee bump affecting a match finish, there’s no second referee to be found. I’m fine with doing this kind of thing, but let’s be more consistent about it.

There was a backstage scene with Thea Hail arguing with her technique coaches Drew Gulak and Charlie Dempsey. Duke Hudson showed up with his trophy to break up the arguing. Duke called Andre Chase saying he wanted an update on his recovery because things are getting out of hand.

Bron Breakker was shown walking backstage.

This Friday on Smackdown will see Roman Reigns return for more of The Bloodline family drama.


Let’s Hear from Bron Breakker

Bron Breakker made his entrance to boos wearing all black attire including a jacket. I like the full beard look for him as a heel. Some fans were signing the Seth “Freakin” Rollins song at Bron since Bron challenged Rollins last week on NXT.

Bron said that he made some headlines last week because he called out the biggest superstar from Monday Night Raw. Bron wants everybody to be held accountable for their actions. Bron said that Ilja Dragunov didn’t look like the most intense superstar when Bron speared him through the concrete. Bron spoke about how Rollins is everything he says he is until he locks eyes with Bron Breakker.

Bron asked where’s Seth Rollins? Where’s the workhorse champion? Ilja Dragunov appeared in the aisle, but officials and referees made him go to the back. Bron said Ilja is not on his level. Bron said everybody will be held accountable and he doesn’t care if it’s Ilja or Rollins.

Seth “Freakin” Rollins, the World Heavyweight Champion, appeared on screen for a promo. Rollins said he liked Bron’s approach. Rollins said Bron wants to make a lot of noise and be The Guy. Rollins said truth be told it would be kind of nice to go back to where it all started for him. Rollins said he can’t believe he’s going to say this because “challenge accepted.” Rollins said next week it’s going to be Seth Rollins vs. Bron Breakker for the World Heavyweight Championship live on NXT. The fans were singing Seth’s song while Bron seemed happy about it.

Analysis: A huge match for next Tuesday’s NXT with Seth Rollins defending the World Heavyweight Title against Bron Breakker. Rollins winning is the likely result, but I’m happy for Bron getting the opportunity to wrestle Rollins because that’s going to help Bron improve. Bron’s promo was okay as a young heel looking to make some noise while Rollins was the typical babyface champion that wasn’t going to back down from a challenge.

There was a video about Dana Brooke showing highlights of her career including her NXT beginning nearly a decade ago. Dana is a free agent in the storyline, so she was in the battle royal last week and she’s back in NXT.

Dana Brooke was interviewed backstage by Mckenzie Mitchell. Dana said she’ll be here for as long as they want her. Dana talked about her past like teaming with Emma, leaning from Charlotte and competing for the 24/7 Title. Dana said she has busted her ass and now she’s home in NXT. Cora Jade interrupted saying that Brooke screwed her out of the battle royal. Brooke told Jade to blame her sense of entitlement for losing the battle royal. Jade said nobody here likes Brooke, she slapped Brooke in the face and left. Brooke sold the slap to end it.

Analysis: I hope it goes well for Dana in NXT. They weren’t using her on Raw, so they might as well put her in NXT for now. Dana tagged with Mandy Rose on Raw a few years ago and we know how good NXT was for Mandy, so maybe it will be similar for Dana. I don’t think Dana is as good of a talker as Mandy is. I just think if Dana gets a chance to show what she can do then maybe she’ll do well.


The trio of NXT North American Champion Wes Lee, Mustafa Ali & Tyler Bate talked about their win. Ali said if it wasn’t for that second referee, the outcome of this match could have been different. Ali said we know what’s next for them – Wes defending the NXT North American Title against Bate. Ali suggested that he can be the referee of the match. Wes and Bate agreed to it.

Thea Hail (w/Duke Hudson) vs. Cora Jade

Cora is the “veteran” in the match at 22 years old while Hail is 19 years old. They are two of the youngest people in WWE. When Hail tried a leapfrog, Jade blocked it and Jade hit a dropkick. Dana Brooke walked out to ringside to watch the match. Jade sent Hail face first into the middle turnbuckle and a running elbow for two. Jade continued on offense with a double stomp on the back. Hail got some offense going with suplex and a springboard back senton. Hail went for a dive that was never going to hit and Jade hit her with a forearm. Jade punched Brooke. Jade grabbed a kendo stick, the referee took it away and that allowed Brooke to shove Jade into the stele steps (the referee never saw it). Back in the ring, Hail applied a Kimura Lock submission with a body scissors and Jade tapped out. It went four minutes.

Winner by submission: Thea Hail

Analysis: ** They got through it okay with the story being about Brooke getting revenge against Jade for that slap earlier in the show. There were some spots that didn’t look smooth like when Hail had to make it look like she was doing a dive, but you could tell it was never going to happen. Hail is getting a title shot, so having Brooke cost Jade and Hail win makes sense in terms of the storyline.

After the match, Thea Hail’s “coaches” Drew Gulak & Charlie Dempsey applauded Thea for the win.

Nathan Frazer and Dragon Lee was shown backstage along with Noam Dar along with the Heritage Cup and Noam’s group.


A tweet from Shawn Michaels announced the NXT Gold Rush two week NXT TV special.

Next week: Seth Rollins defends the World Heavyweight Title against Bron Breakker. In two weeks on June 27th, Carmelo Hayes defends the NXT Title against the winner of Baron Corbin-Ilja Dragunov in the main event.

Noam Dar was in the ring on crutches while he was in the ring with his Meta-Four group. Dar said that Nathan Frazer brutally attacked him in the parking lot, so Dar can’t compete. Dar said that his Meta-Four buddy Oro Mensah is going to defend the Heritage Cup against Frazer. The announcers argued about if Dar is hurt.

Heritage Cup: Oro Mensah (w/Noam Dar, Lash Legend & Jakara Jackson) vs. Nathan Frazer (w/Dragon Lee)

Round 1: They had three-minute rounds in a match like this. There as a lot of fast paced action early. Frazer hit a running ROLLUP OF DEATH~! to pin Mensah in under two minutes. It’s 2 out of 3 falls in this match.

Round 2: The second round started with Mensah getting some offense including a spin kick to the head and a dropkick for a two count. Mensah got a kick to the head, Jackson distracted the referee, Legend pulled Frazer into the corner and Mensah hit a running kick. Mensah pinned Frazer to tie it up 1-1. They went to a picture-in-picture break for round three that is not shown here in Canada.


Round 3: They were into the third round with both guys going for pin attempts. There were about four two counts consecutively. Mensah went for a superkick off the ropes, but Frazer met him with a superkick. Mensah kicked out of a pin attempt right before the end of round three.

Round 4: Frazer started with a running kick. Mensah came back with a cradle for two. Mensah hit a missile dropkick and a spinning slam for a two count. Frazer hit a superkick to the chest for two. Mensah did a German Suplex off the top with Frazer doing a moonsault bump over to his chest to sell it. Jackson and Legend tried to get involved, but Feroz & Leon took them out. Frazer avoided a charging Mensah, who bumped into the turnbuckle. Frazer hit a springboard Phoenix Splash off the top for the pinfall win with about 30 seconds left in round four, so it went 11:30.

Winner (2-1) AND NEW Heritage Cup Champion: Nathan Frazer

Analysis: *** There’s a Heritage Cup “title” change although the champion wasn’t in the match, so that makes me think we see Dar complaining about this in a big way. Anyway, Frazer and Mensah worked well together with a lot of fast paced moves. It was exciting to watch. Mensah hasn’t been featured in the ring that much in NXT, but he’s an athletic guy that can do well when he gets chances like this. I’m happy with Frazer winning because I’ve said for months that he needs to be featured more, so I’m glad he has the Heritage Cup.

Nathan Frazer celebrated with the Heritage Cup with his friends while Noam Dar was devastated at ringside.

There was a video about Lyra Valkyria wanting to come back strong after losing her shot at the NXT Women’s Title.

Jacy Jayne was talking to Elektra Lopez in the women’s locker room with other women in the background as they mocked Lyra. Lola Vice walked in trashing Jayne for losing in the battle royal. Lola told Elektra she didn’t like too many people, but she liked Elektra and Elektra said maybe they should stick together.

Dabba-Kato entered for a handicap match.


Von Wagner was shown talking to Mr. Stone with Stone talking about Wagner’s therapy. Dijak insulted Stone for not representing a winner. Stone and Wagner argued about the picture from Wagner’s past. Wagner told Stone that he trusts him and he will always trust him.

Analysis: Sure. They are really going slowly with this story that I think is being done to try to make Wagner into a face.

Dabba-Kato vs. Axiom & Scrypts

Kato knocked both guys down with chops and tossed Axiom into Scrypts. Axiom jumped onto Kato, but Kato kicked Scrypts to knock him down and Kato slammed Axiom to the mat. Scrypts tagged in and hit a spin kick to knock Kato out of the ring. Scrypts and Axiom took turns hitting dives. Axiom launched Scrypts over the top onto Kato. That was impressive. Axiom hit a moonsault off the top onto Kato on the floor. Scrypts hit a moonsault in the ring and Axiom hit the Golden Ratio kick for the win in a match that went over three minutes.

Winners by pinfall: Axiom & Scrypts

Analysis: **1/4 I thought Dabba-Kato would win, but the athletic team of Axiom & Scrypts hit a lot of moves on Kato in a short fashion. It wasn’t easy to knock Kato down, but after so many moves, Kato did sell and it looked believable by the end.

The (sometimes known as) Los Lotharios duo of Angel Garza & Humberto Carrillo attacked Axiom & Scrypts after the match.

Analysis: More main roster stars on NXT. Garza & Carrillo haven’t been doing much for a long time, so again I’m fine with putting them on NXT for some fresh matchups.

Next Week on NXT Gold Rush:

* Seth “Freakin” Rollins defends the WWE World Heavyweight Championship vs. Bron Breakker.

* Wes Lee defends the NXT North American Championship vs. Tyler Bate with Mustafa Ali as the referee.

In two weeks on NXT Gold Rush: Tiffany Stratton defends the NXT Women’s Championship vs. Thea Hail.

There was a video featuring Channing “Stacks” Lorenzo looking at a wall of photos of NXT people. Stacks talked about how Gallus got Tony D’Angelo arrested. Stacks said he has to make the big moves, so he’ll show us why he’s the underboss.


Duke Hudson & Thea Hail were walking backstage with Duke saying he was proud of her. Duke said Thea will be the youngest NXT Women’s Champion ever in two weeks. Duke said he’ll do a pep rally for Hail next week. Tiffany Stratton interrupted with the NXT Women’s Title saying in this story, the underdog doesn’t win. Stratton left, so Gulak & Dempsey walked into the picture. They wanted Hail to focus on her training. Hail said she’ll see them in the gym later.

Analysis: It’s a typical NXT segment where they try to get a bunch of different people in a backstage setting. There were five people here within one minute.

Edris Enofe vs. Malik Blade

They are tag team partners that think wrestling eachother will be good for their team. Booker said they don’t need to do this. Hank Walker & Tank Ledger walked out to watch the match as babyface friends of Blade & Enofe. Josh Briggs & Brooks Jensen also showed up at ringside. Blade was in control after avoiding a dropkick and then Blade connected with a dropkick. Enofe hit a clothesline on the floor, but then Blade avoided an Enofe dive to the floor. Blade hit an impressive dive over the top on Enofe. There was a superplex by Enofe for two and then Blade shifted his weight to hook the leg for the pinfall win after three minutes.

Winner by pinfall: Malik Blade

Analysis: *3/4 It was okay. They did a lot of spots where they exchanged holds, did counters and avoided moves to show there’s a familiarity there. Blade won on a counter move, so it showed how even it was.

After the match, Edris told Malik he knows when his birthday is – April 22nd. Edris said he loves Malik.

Booker T said he got some breaking news for these three teams in a triple threat match next week on Gold Rush. The winners of that match get an NXT Tag Team Title match against Gallus in two weeks. Garza & Carrillo were watching from the platform. The three teams started fighting in the ring. Garza & Carrillo were interviewed saying they wanted to be part of this tag team division.

Analysis: They are trying to build up some male tag teams in NXT, which is a good thing because the division has been hurting for a few months.

Damon Kemp was shown complaining to a referee about not seeing his foot on the rope. Eddy Thorpe walked into the scene as Kemp said that Thorpe got a cheap victory over him. Thorpe said we can run this back any time you want in any match you want. Kemp left saying he’ll think about it.

Roxanne Perez entered for singles action.


A video aired about Blair Davenport talking about the parking lot saying she has single-handedly derailed the future. She spoke about people she injured: Nikkita Lyons, Wendy Choo and Sol Ruca. Tatum Paxley also helped Blair in the battle royal last week. Blair issued a warning to Roxanne Perez as well.

Analysis: Using storyline attacks to cover for real injuries is a good booking move because it puts over Blair as a heel that isn’t afraid to attack people to get ahead.

Roxanne Perez vs. Tatum Paxley

Perez was in control with a headscissors takedown. Paxley hit an impressive double underhook suplex. Paxley hit a move that was like a full slam for a two count. Perez hit a springboard cross body block followed by punches. They did a spot where Perez was going for Pop Rox, but it looked more like a regular sunset flip because Paxley’s knees hit the mat. Anyway, it was an awkward sunset flip pin for Perez for the win. It went three minutes.

Winner by pinfall: Roxanne Perez

Analysis: ** Easy win for Perez with an awkward finish because they didn’t hit Pop Rox properly. They don’t push Paxley much at this point, so it was all about giving Roxanne a win. I like Perez, but she has lost some momentum since losing the title.

Post match, Roxanne Perez said she’s looking for Blair Davenport and she will hurt Blair like Blair has hurt other women in the division. Blair said it’s not a threat, it’s a damn promise. Booker said he was proud of her.

Gigi Dolin and Fallon Henley were talking backstage with Gigi complaining about Kiana James eliminating her in the battle royal. Henley says it’s because Kiana sees Gigi as a threat. Henley warned Gigi to watch her break. Gigi said she’ll make Kiana know why you don’t mess with a reject. What a strange line.

The Dragunov-Corbin main event was next.


A video aired featuring a new tag team coming to NXT: Lucien Prince and Bronco Nima. They started out as friends when they were young kids and NXT isn’t ready for them. They are muscular dudes.

Next week on NXT Gold Rush:

* Seth “Freakin” Rollins defends the WWE World Heavyweight Championship vs. Bron Breakker.

* Dana Brooke vs. Cora Jade.

* Josh Briggs & Brooks Jensen vs. Edris Enofe & Malik Blade vs. Hank Walker & Tank Ledger.

* Wes Lee defends the NXT North American Championship vs. Bron Breakker with Mustafa Ali as the referee.

Analysis: The North American Title match will be amazing. I’m also intrigued about Rollins-Breakker too.

Ilja Dragunov vs. Baron Corbin

I’ll go play by play here. Dragunov had kinesio tape around his ribs. Corbin hit him in the ribs with punches and hit a shoulder tackle. Corbin delivered a hard chop to the chest. Dragunov chopped him back and took off Corbin’s tank top leading to stomps by Ilja as well. Dragunov hit a hard chop to the chest. Corbin sent Dragunov into the top rope with a stun gun followed by a clothesline. Corbin hit Dragunov with another clothesline. Dragunov came back with two German Suplex. Corbin went to the ropes, then he hit a back elbow and Dragunov came back with a clothesline. Corbin to the floor led to a break.


Dragunov was in control with a headlock, but Corbin got out of it with a clothesline and Dragunov sold the ribs hitting the ring apron. Corbin slammed Dragunov onto the apron. Corbin worked over Dragunov’s ribs with elbows and sent Dragunov into the side of the ring apron. Back in the ring, Dragunov tried to fight back, but Corbin hit a Chokeslam backbreaker onto the ribs for a two count. Corbin did a hard whip into the turnbuckle to work on the ribs some more. As Dragunov tried to fight back, Corbin tripped him up again. Corbin hit a Death Valley Driver-style move for a two count. Corbin worked over Dragunov with forearms to the back followed by a slug fest. Corbin punched the ribs again. Corbin hit the Deep Six slam for two as usual for that move. Dragunov hit knees to the ribs, then a chop and a jumping kick to the head. Dragunov went to the ropes with a knee drop. Dragon went up top and hit a senton splash with his back. Dragunov was selling the rib injury on the landing. Dragunov countered a slam with a leaping DDT. Fans chanted “this is awesome” for them. Dragunov hit a delayed suplex along with a forearm smash. Dragunov charged, Bron Breakker went into the ring and Dragunov hit an uppercut on Bron. Corbin grabbed Dragunov and hit the End of Days slam for the pinfall win after 13 minutes.

Winner by pinfall: Baron Corbin

Analysis: ***1/4 A pretty good match due to Dragunov’s elite-level selling, which I always praise heavily during his matches because he’s so great it. Corbin did his job well as the heel that destroyed Dragunov’s ribs during the whole match. That was the obvious story to tell and it worked. Dragunov tried to fight back, which is why we love him, but Corbin was too relentless and Corbin was put over big by winning this match even though it wasn’t clean. I’m not a huge fan of another wrestler going into the ring during a match, but since Dragunov hit Bron, there was no DQ for Breakker getting in there. Corbin got the win after that.

The win by Corbin means he’ll challenge Carmelo Hayes for the NXT Title in two weeks (June 27).

Ilja Dragunov and Bron Breakker went fighting to the backstage area.

Analysis: That will be an intense match when it happens. Maybe at Great American Bash in late July.

Carmelo Hayes went after Corbin in the ring with Melo hitting a springboard clothesline. Melo went up top and hit the Nothing But Net leg drop to the back of the head. Melo stood tall over Corbin to end the show.

Analysis: I think Melo will win, but Corbin has been built well.


Three Stars of the Show

  1. Wes Lee, Mustafa Ali & Tyler Bate
  2. Baron Corbin-Ilja Dragunov
  3. Nathan Frazer


The Scoreboard

This week: 7 out of 10

Last week: 6.75

2023 Average: 6.92


Final Thoughts

A good show thanks to three of the longer matches that were a lot of fun while there were also plenty of short matches. The opening six-man tag team match was outstanding with Wes Lee, Mustafa Ali & Tyler Bate working so well together. I liked the Baron Corbin-Ilja Dragunov main event too. The Heritage Cup match was also entertaining with Nathan Frazer getting a big win that is well deserved.

I think some of the people that criticize NXT at times need to remember that it’s about getting a lot of these talents experience. For example, 19-year-old Thea Hail beating 22-year-old Cora Jade wasn’t a technical wrestling masterpiece, but they have such bright futures. In five years, they will still both be very young in pro wrestling, they will use this experience at such a young age and become better performers.

The lineup for next week’s “Gold Rush” part one is strong with Seth “Freakin” Rollins facing Bron Breakker with the World Heavyweight Title on the line. Plus, Wes Lee against Tyler Bate will be an incredible match.


Thanks for reading. Go Toronto Blue Jays. My contact info is below.

John Canton


Twitter @johnreport