One of the biggest matchups of the night was between Raquel Gonzalez and Rhea Ripley, and it more than lived up to the hype. The two powerhouses sized each other up and then went full speed ahead, though they were both probably a bit surprised early on. Gonzalez and Ripley traded giant chops, but their clotheslines weren't knocking the other one down. Ripley was able to knock Gonzalez out of the ring with a dropkick, however, and then she then went for another move but Gonzalez caught her in mid-air and then slammed her into the plexiglass. She then threw Ripley into the ring and went for a pin but Ripley kicked out.
Gonzalez continued to ground Ripley, locking her into a submission and wearing her down. It worked for quite a while, and even when Ripley eventually got out of it, Gonzalez picked her up and slammed her back to the ground, not letting her get any momentum. Gonzalez then locked Ripley into another submission, putting her over her shoulder and stretching her back.
Ripley again got out of this, but Gonzalez turned it around once more, slamming her down to the mat. She then threw Ripley into the corner and charged her, but the second time didn't work, and when Ripley looked to mount a comeback Gonzalez cut it off once more, clotheslining her and sending her down to the mat.
Ripley finally got some space, as she sent Gonzalez to the mat hard, and then hit Gonzalez with a number of hard punches and kicks. She then hit her with a missile dropkick, but Gonzalez kicked out of the pin. At this point, it was Ripley's turn to ground Gonzalez, and she kicked her while she was down. She then locked in a submission on Gonzalez. Gonzalez rolled through and threw Ripley off. Gonzalez picked up Ripley and spun and slammed her, but Ripley once more kicked out of the pin.
Gonzalez hoisted up Ripley onto the top turnbuckle, and then tried to suplex her but Ripley fought back. They traded blows on the top rope, and eventually, Gonzalez went back to the ground. Gonzalez then charged back in and grabbed Ripley, throwing her down to the mat and hard. Ripley was able to hit Gonzales right in the face with a kick and then hit her with a suplex to the ground, and that was just enough to get the pin and win. Ripley was clearly hurting though, and I doubt we've seen the last of this matchup.
Here's the official description for tonight's Halloween Havoc on NXT.
Halloween Havoc is back! The scariest night of the year comes to NXT as Io Shirai defends the NXT Women's Championship and Damian Priest defends the North American Title against Johnny Gargano under stipulations determined by Spin the Wheel, Make the Deal. Elsewhere, Rhea Ripley finally clashes with Raquel Gonález, Dexter Lumis makes Cameron Grimes face his fears in a Haunted House of Terror Match, and more tonight at 8/7 C on USA Network!
Here's the full card:
Spin The Wheel, Make the Deal: North American Champion Damian Priest vs Johnny Gargano
Spin The Wheel, Make the Deal: NXT Women's Champion Io Shirai vs Candice LeRae
Rhea Ripley vs Raquel Gonzalez
Haunted House of Terror Match: Dexter Lumis vs Cameron Grimes
Santos Escobar vs Jake Atlas
What have you thought of Halloween Havoc so far? Let us know in the comments or as always you can talk all things NXT with me on Twitter @MattAguilarCB!