When Lyra Valkyria, the plucky 27-year-old babyface from Dublin, Ireland, was booked for a main event match against Becky Lynch, the 36-year-old veteran babyface from Limerick, Ireland, it felt like nothing more than a pair of fellow countrymen attempting to put each other over.
Sure, Valkyria can certainly go, as she’d already held four titles up to that point in her professional wrestling career, but after less than a year in NXT proper, would Shawn Michaels really give her the nod, especially considering the presence of Jade Cargill, who clearly had eyes for the title around Lynch’s waist?
Well, as it turns out, Valkyria was able to come out on top, wrestling the now-signature match of her professional career at Halloween Havoc and finishing out the night with the NXT Women’s Championship belt raised up in the air. Suddenly, the era of NbeXT was over, doing its job of procuring a better rating while allowing Lynch to work as a fighting champion, and yet, “The Man” wasn’t bitter about the pin, or worse, attempting to call foul on the outcome but instead proud of her protege for taking the next step in her career, suggesting that the brand is “in good hands” moving forward.
“The NbeXT era has come to an end. I am immensely proud of my run as NXT Women’s Champion. From getting to step in the ring with some of the finest up-and-comers to open challenges on Raw and being a catalyst for highlighting the wealth of hungry talent we have on our roster,” Becky Lynch wrote on Instagram.
“Lyra Valkyria is the real deal and will be a star for years to come. The future is in good hands.”
Whoa, impressive endorsement, right? Well, Lynch wasn’t alone in dishing out compliments, as Drew McIntyre, too, shared his thoughts on Valkyria’s success and his excitement to see what she does next.
“I’ve still not had the chance to watch it. I’ve seen the highlights, so I’ve been reading about it, and I can’t wait to watch it now,” Drew McIntyre told TNT Sports via Fightful. “I went straight from Raw to an appearance in Orlando, to another appearance and barely got home just now before I head off internationally in about two hours. So I’ve been nonstop. But seeing that is very, very cool. I can’t imagine to know how Lyra feels right now, just wrestling. You know someone like Becky is someone she idolized, and it’s awesome to see. Just two women have an amazing match like that because it’s been the norm now, to see the females get such same opportunities if they have the talent. But two women from the same part of the world, from a little part of the world, you know where we’re from and doing such big things, so she should be very proud of herself. You know if Becky was willing to be part of that moment, it very much means she deserves it, and I can’t wait to watch it.”
What does the future hold for Valkyria? Will she go on an extended run that defines the title in NXT? Or will she lose it to someone like Tiffany Stratton or Cargill, who both want to give the likes of Asuka a run for their money for the most prolific title runs in NXT history? Fans will have to tune into Week 2 of Halloween Havoc to find out.
“It’s so awesome to see two women from a little part of the world doing such big things” ✨@DMcIntyreWWE shares his thoughts on @Real_Valkyria‘s NXT Women’s Championship win, besting @BeckyLynchWWE 🏆#WWENXT | #HalloweenHavoc pic.twitter.com/i4YPq0eRQb
— WWE on TNT Sports (@wweontnt) October 27, 2023
Lyra Valkyria shared her initial thoughts after defeating Becky Lynch.
After securing the biggest win of her career, McKenzie Mitchell caught up with Lyra Valkyria to ask her initial feelings on defeating Becky Lynch and becoming the new NXT Women’s Champion.
Though Valkyria was still in shock, she couldn’t help but feel like the match really served as a cherry on top of everything she’s worked towards over her near-decade-spanning career.
“It doesn’t feel real. I really feel like I can’t put it into words. When I was out there, it felt like time was standing still, and everything connected,” Lyra Valkyria said via Fightful. “It just felt like everything I’ve worked for for nine years now all came together. I felt on top of the world because it felt like no decision I’ve ever made has been bad because it all led to this. I think that I would live my entire life again just to feel what I felt holding this title up out there. I think in what we do, we would work our whole careers in the hopes of feeling what I feel right now, even once. I think I’ll be living in that moment for another nine years. I can’t explain how good it feels right now to be your NXT Women’s Champion”
Say what you want about professional wrestling and the outcomes being pre-determined, it’s safe to say Valkyria was incredibly proud of her efforts at Halloween Havoc and, frankly, has every right to be.