NXT Inquest for 8/7/17 (Gargano and Cole)

In the go-home edition of NXT, the show showcases the matches leading up to the event including the NXT Championship match between Adam Cole and Johnny Gargano. Cole and Gargano have raged a war over the NXT title for some time. NXT General Manager William Regal is in the ring and is there to officiate the NXT tag team championship contract signing between the Street Profits and the Undisputed Era.

The Street Profits face-off against Kyle O’Reilly and Bobby Fish at NXT TakeOver: Toronto II. Fish and O’Reilly came to the ring after receiving a rather amusing introduction of the Undisputed Era. Kyle was asked by Bobby Fish to tell a joke with the punchline of the Street Profits are the tag team champions. Fans responded with ‘shut up bobby’ chants. Both Dawkins and Ford go on to compliment the Undisputed Era, but lead that into saying that losing isn’t an option. The only option for them is to WIN! At NXT TakeOver: Toronto Dawkins said that that the Street Profits are going to beat that a** and that is…Undisputed. Both teams sign the contracts and the champions music plays as everyone signs and the Street Profits leave.

Nigel McGuiness discussed the triple threat NXT North American Championship involving the Velveteen Dream, Pete Dunne, and Roderick Strong. Dunne walked into NXT and eyed the NXT North American Championship with putting the title into a new stratosphere.

Before the break, we are told of the match between Killian Dain and Matt Riddle coming up shortly.

After the break, we see a build-up for the NXT Women’s Championship for NXT TakeOver: Toronto between Mia Yim and Shayna Baszler. We get a glimpse of Yim’s early wrestling and how the fans pushed to have her signed to NXT. Baszler comes out and shares that it takes a lot more than a good story to make a difference. We see how Yim took out both Duke and Shafir and that Baszler is going to do to her exactly what she promises to do. The angst between the two of them is real.

McGuiness also addressed how the NXT TakeOver: Toronto Championship match between Adam Cole and Johnny Gargano. After the break, we get a matchup between Joaquin Wilde and Shane Thorne.

Joaquin Wilde vs. Shane Thorne

Wilde makes his way out to the ring whose ring entrance is strikingly familiar to that of Ali on Smackdown Live. It could be a coincidence, but then again both Wilde and Ali are from Chicago so who knows. Once in the ring, Wilde takes in the adulation of the fans. We hear of how Shane Thorne is upset that these new NXT Breakout talents are being granted a championship opportunity when he has been there longer and more deserving. Ranallo addressed Thorne’s achievements as a tag team specialist (formerly with Nick Miller). Wilde is able to shove Thorne off of him, but momentarily. Thorne attempts to lock in a headlock, but Wilde is able to break free of it and taunts Thorne in the process. Wiled and Thorne are able to counter each other’s armbar and arm drags. Wilde locks in an arm drag and follows that up with a dropkick and a pinning attempt.

He then attempts a guillotine, but then Thorne is able to break free and turn that into a suplex. Thorne picks up Wilde and hits an uppercut and a pinning attempt but to no avail. Shane then locks in an armbar and wristlock on Wilde. Wilde attempts to fight him off but then is able to get back into the ring with a somersault springboard. He hits a back elbow on Thorne and is then whipped into the turnbuckle and attempts a climb the top rope until he is hit with a powerbomb. Thorn and Wilde exchange chops and forearm uppercuts. Wilde then drops a double boot and then hits a tope suicedia through the turnbuckles on Thorne and then a somersault plancha over the top rope onto Thorne. Thorne is able to get back into the ring, but just enough time to break the count. Wild attempts to drag Thorn in over the top rope, but he’s pulled out. Thorne beats down on Wilde and sets him up for a running knee strike and follows that up with a pinfall and the win.

Winner: Shane Thorne

After the match, we see Io Shirai’s transformation and how she turned her back on Candice LaRae. The story of how Shirai was excited about the potential of being the NXT Women’s Championship. The story is largely tied to how Shayna Baszler and the remaining Horsewomen are all involved in costing Shirai. We see Shirai’s post-match attack on Baszler with a kendo stick and moonsault with a chair on the champion. Fans were getting a sense then that she had an edge as she, but no idea just how far she could go. Shirai’s next opportunity was going to be in a steel cage with the hopes of keeping Baszler’s friends out of it.

The problem was their involvement also brought Candice LaRae to come to Shirai’s aid as well. We see Shirai striking Baszler repeatedly with the steel cage door and the champion falling out and retaining her title. A shocked Shirai looks-on in disbelief at what just took place. At this point, LaRae attempts to console her until Shirai looks at her and begins to beat on her mercilessly leaving a battered Candice LaRae in the ring. Shirai speaks of how she ‘doesn’t need any friends’ and she ‘doesn’t need any of you’. The much darker Shirai says she will climb to the top on her own.

After the next break, we are to get the Matt Riddle and Killian Dain main event. Once we return from the break McGuiness addressed the loss of Harley Race at the age of 76. Our own Evan Ginzburg spoke of his memories of Mr. Race and everyone that came into contact from him. How he transitioned from wrestling to managing and later inducted into the WWE Hall of Fame.

Matt Riddle vs. Killian Dain

Riddle came out first to the ring as his music hit with a swagger about him. Out of nowhere, Killian Dain attacked an unsuspecting Riddle at ringside beating him down. Dain begins to walk away to come back and hit a somersault plancha onto Riddle who was resting, by the steel steps.

Winner: N/A

Dain Riddle
Photo / YouTube

Riddle is recovering at ringside as no match was set to take place.

We then see the rundown of the NXT Breakout Tournament where the winner will have a championship match of their choosing. Each highlight shows how they move from round one of the semifinals and eventually the finals. The finals will be Cameron Grimes against Jordan Myles that will be decided next week.

After the final break, we see the NXT Championship two out of three falls build up between Johnny Gargano and Adam Cole. Before that, we see the beatdown of the Forgotten Sons on Tyler Breeze until Fandango comes to his aid. Cathy Kelly has an interview with them via wwe.com as an exclusive. Breeze and Fandango address that he was in too deep that they weren’t policing themselves and their own fashion sense and that its whack…bad. We are to anticipate Breezango Reimagined. Next week we will see Breezango face the Forgotten Sons.

McGuiness shares the past few months between Cole and Gargano including them walking backstage to Cole being applauded. The difference in emotions between Cole and Gargano display where both men are since the title changed hands. What is next? Gargano is about to realize who he is and that they will face each other in a two out of three falls match. We hear about how Cole selected a wrestling match and Gargano selected a streetfight stipulation between the both of them with the third still unnamed. Gargano looks at all the past champion and we get others sharing with him how he wants to be seen as the best.

They show how Gargano wants to change the culture and leave it better than how he came into it. We see him training and Tegan Nox talking him up and Xia Li wanting to be like him. Gargano said that he wants to leave his mark on NXT and be like Shawn Michaels and how that was just like him. Adam Cole is then shown competing in town to town defending his championship whether it was North Carolina, South Carolina, or Texas he is there. Cole spoke about how he can’t be stopped. Then Seth Rollins is seen chatting Gargano about their upcoming respective matches.

Cole Gargano NXT
Photo / ITNWWE

To see both chatting it up is great. They continue to flashback between Gargano and Cole’s past few months leading up to NXT TakeOver: Toronto including Gargano chatting with Balor and how he’s trying to be the guy like he was. They question can Gargano regain the title with Road Dogg, Kevin Owens, William Regal, Tyler Breeze, Serena Deeb, Terry Taylor, and Robbie Brookside all chime in. As this show draws to a close we see just both are willing to subject the other to in order to win. Will it be Gargano or Cole at NXT TakeOver: Toronto?