156: NXT Women’s Champion Asuka Breaks Goldberg’s Undefeated Streak

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Over the past few months, wrestling historians and fanatics have been watching the Live Events results from NXT online with a passing fascination and viewing each televised match in wonder if they’ll actually do it. But “they”, we mean the NXT Creative and WWE brass. And by “it” we mean have NXT Women’s Champion Asuka break another one of pro wrestling kayfabe’s mythical records. The Legendary Undefeated Streak of Bill Goldberg in WCW during the Monday Night Wars.

WWE has been on a record breaking year for breaking records, first having John Cena tied Ric Flair‘s record number of World titles at 16, then having the New Day squeak passed Demolition‘s 27-year old record for longest WWE Tag Team title reign, 483 days to Demolition’s 478. Asuka has set three NXT records this year already on her reign of domination in the women’s division. First in early January, she passed Paige‘s record for longest title reign for an NXT Women’s Champion, when she held on to the belt for her 277th day (she’s now past 380). A month later almost to the day, Asuka passed Finn Balor‘s reign as NXT Champion of 292 days, to become NXT’s longest reigning singles competitor. And then on March 31st, when she retained her title at NXT Takeover: Orlando against favoured Ember Moon (in a shock to many), Asuka passed The Ascension‘s record reign of 364 days as NXT Tag Team Champions, making her now the the longest reigning champion of ANY kind in NXT history. And when you look at the talent that has gone through NXT, from Seth Rollins to Charlotte to Finn Balor to Shinsuke Nakamura, is quite a feat.

Photo: WWE

Bill Goldberg became WCW’s unlikely saviour for much of the Monday Night Wars in the late 90’s when the former NFL player exploded onto the scene on Nitro and defeated Hugh Morrus (aka Bill DeMott) in record time and annihilation. And thus, The Streak that preceded The Streak was born (although Morrus was actually Goldberg’s 4th victim by that time – he’d crushed Buddy Lee Parker, Hector Guerrero, and John Betcha at previous Live Events). Goldberg would become a wrecking machine, knocking down wrestler after wrestler after wrestler, on his way to his first championship in WCW, taking the US Championship from Raven. His onslaught continued through the nWo, when he took the WCW World Heavyweight Championship title from “Hollywood” Hulk Hogan at the Georgia Dome in Atlanta. His rampage was finally stopped in one of the most brutal angle botches in wrestling history (even Goldberg haters felt bad for him at the time), when recently appointed creative writer Kevin Nash pencilled himself in to take the World title off Goldberg in his first loss, thanks to the help of a taser from his party chum, Scott Hall. But regardless, Bill Goldberg went on a tear of 155 straight victories – including WCW Live Events, television matches and PPV matches (although the kayfabe number is actually 173 although no one knows why. During the middle of his streak, Goldberg’s numbers started to jump in bunches, with WCW just assuming no one was keeping track of the Live Event results), from June 23, 1997 to December 27, 1998.

On February 25th, Asuka scored her 149th win in a row in NXT, a fact that was not lost on the very man she whose record she was chasing. Cain Knight of Cageside Seats confirmed the 149 wins via Asuka’s Internet Wrestling Database profile.

That 149th win was at the February 24th NXT Live Event in Miami, where Asuka beat Sanity’s Nikki Cross. Since that date, Asuka has had these matches:

150. defeated Nikki Cross, March 2, 2017, NXT Live Event (Columbus, OH)
151. defeated Liv Morgan, March 3, 2017, NXT Live Event (Cleveland, OH)
152. defeated Liv Morgan, March 4, 2017, NXT Live Event (Youngstown, OH)
153. defeated Ember Moon, April 1, 2017, NXT Takeover Orlando
154. defeated Ember Moon, April 13, 2017, NXT Live Event (Atlanta, GA)
155. defeated Dara (Sonya Deville), April 14, 2017, NXT Live Event (Spartanburg, SC)
156. defeated Ember Moon, April 15, 2017, NXT Live Event (Concord, NC)

With Asuka’s defeat of Ember Moon on April 15th, she officially passed Bill Goldberg’s actual undefeated streak of 155 wins.

Unfortunately, with the acquisition of WCW libraries by WWE, the WWE acknowledges the kayfabe record of 173 victories by Goldberg, which means Asuka still has 15 more victories to go before she’ll be officially recognized as breaking Goldberg’s number.

Regardless, Asuka is a records conqueror in NXT and with any luck, will get to “officially” break Goldberg’s streak before she makes her main roster debut (or will she continue it on the main roster?)

 

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