Matt Riddle made his NXT in-ring debut at last night’s live event from Florida, where he defeated Aichner. We know that Riddle signed with WWE at least a month ago as he was shown in the crowd during Takeover Brooklyn IV. He recently moved to Orlando and has been training at the WWE Performance Center.
The former UFC fighter has found great success in pro wrestling. He was considered one of the hottest free agents on the Indy scene before singing with WWE. There was some second thinking on WWE’s part about bringing Riddle in as his departure from UFC was related to failing multi drug tests for marijuana.
Riddle will finish his Indy dates on September 30 against Mark Haskins for a PROGRESS show in England. While he did not work the recent NXT TV tapings, Riddle is rumored to face Kassius Ohno at Takeover War Games II in November.
Below is WWE’s statement on Riddle making his NXT debut and pretty cool video package they put together.
Matt Riddle makes NXT Live Event debut
The King of Bros has arrived.
NXT’s newest blockbuster signee, former UFC fighter and independent wrestling champion Matt Riddle, made his in-ring debut tonight at a Live Event in Sanford, Fla., taking on Fabian Aichner.
Once a member of UFC’s welterweight division, Riddle left mixed martial arts in 2014 to pursue a career in sports-entertainment. He turned into the breakout star of the independent ranks, capturing titles in North America and Europe, before signing with NXT this summer.
Introduced as NXT’s newest Superstar at TakeOver: Brooklyn IV in August, Riddle tweeted Thursday night that he couldn’t wait to make his NXT debut, writing that it had “been a while since I’ve heard the roar of a crowd.”
Judging by the reaction of the NXT Universe in Sanford, Riddle’s wait is over.
— WWE NXT (@WWENXT) September 22, 2018