NXT went back to Brooklyn one more time as title were decided, scores were settled and the ‘Blackheart’ and the ‘Rebelheart’ fought to who will be the last man standing. But how did all pan out?
Undisputed Era (c) vs Moustache Mountain- NXT Tag Team Championship Match
Result: Undisputed Era retain via pinfall
Thoughts: To my memory, this is greatest opener in NXT Takeover history. The combination of storytelling; UE cutting off each member of Moustache Mountain at their side of the ring, with Seven potentially throwing in the towel and Tyler Bate’s leg coming into question made everything tense. The in-ring work was nothing short of perfection with two ‘This is Awesome’ chants, a ‘Fight Forever’ chant and a standing ovation; all for the opening match. Having Undisputed Era retain is a smart decision as they are currently the best stable in WWE right now. The cherry on the mental trifle was the attack post-match by the War-Raiders which absolutely destroyed both Strong and O’Reilly. They are a fantastic pairing and the size difference between the two teams could create magic. Finally, my hat goes off to Seven and Bate. Tyler Bate is the exact same age as me which is just…terrifying and Trent Seven showed off how truly fantastic he is to a wider audience who may not be that interested in him prior to his match. What. An. Opener.
EC3 vs Velveteen Dream
Result: Dream wins via pinfall
Thoughts: Velveteen Dream had ‘Call me up Vince’ on his tights. If that doesn’t make you a fan of the Dream; nothing will. It absolutely has to be spoken about how just…mesmerising Dream truly is in the ring. Every motion he does is thought out, calibrated and precise. Not a single move is wasted. Whenever Vince does listen to Velveteen’s bum and calls him up, he has to allow him to be THIS guy, not a weird version that Vince wants to make. The match, predictably, was really great. EC3 was a really great compliment to this match as well. The in-ring work, again, was incredibly crisp and the finish worked incredibly well. Just absolutely lovely stuff and cannot wait to see what’s next for both men. Also, I’ll throw this in here, after the match; MATT RIDDLE WAS RINGSIDE. BRO, BRO, BRO ETC. He’ll be fantastic on the yellow brand.
Adam Cole (c) vs Ricochet- NXT North American Championship Match
Result: Ricochet wins via pinfall- is new North American Champion
Thoughts: This match featured one man doing a backflip off of the second rope but getting caught square in the face by a superkick when he was in mid-air, upside down. That wasn’t the finish of the match. That tells you everything about this match. It somehow beat the opener and is a legit Match of the Year contender. When we saw the line-up of this match; we knew it would be next level good. NO-ONE could have predicted it was going to be as good as it truly was. The superkick was enough on its own but the backflip handstand into a backstabber, the mini moment of trading insane moves before Cole fell onto Ricochet and then the flying hurricanrana before the finish. Ricochet fully deserves this title and it’s going to be really interesting to see who he feuds with going forward. Additionally; Undisputed Era’s leader just lost his title- what does THAT mean going forward? Just fantastic, FANTASTIC stuff from both men who completely smashed all expectations.
Shayna Bayzler (c) vs Kari Sane- NXT Woman’s Championship Match
Result: Kari Sane wins via pinfall- is new NXT Woman’s Champion
Thoughts: Well…who saw that coming?! This was, probably, the best WWE woman’s match of the year. Much like most of the matches on this card; the story was incredibly simple. Both women kept trading submissions, Shayna was dominant, Sane mixed it up as she’s better in general. So simple but kept the crowd completely engrossed from start to finish. And the finish worked brilliantly; protects Shayna as she was caught out by a quick reversal and makes Sane look intelligent and she is fully deserving of that title. It creates the question of if Bayzler will be making an appearance on either RAW or Smackdown Live after Sunday night, but we’ll have to wait and see. For now- let’s celebrate with our new Pirate Queen; YO-HO!
Tomasso Ciampa (c) vs Johnny Gargano- NXT Championship Match
Result: Ciampa retains as Johnny couldn’t answer the 10 count
Thoughts: The greatest Last Man Standing match of all time- without a doubt. I’ve never seen such perfect storytelling in a single match, especially within WWE. I honestly am speechless after that match so don’t actually know how long this review is going to be. But if you haven’t seen it; please go and watch it. Nothing I say will be able to explain how fantastic this fight, and it was definitely a fight, truly was. The brutality, the emotion, the love, the hatred, the intelligence, the pure rage was just…exquisite. Johnny Gargano became what he hated and more. He went further than the most evil man possibly could. Ciampa apologising and having Gargano completely ignore him but cost himself the match in the process couldn’t have been done even better. And where do we go from here? Ciampa is still champion; so, will it be Ciampa vs Black going forward? Does Johnny stay in NXT or move up to the main roster? So many questions with no answers. All we do know is that, again, we potentially saw the greatest Takeover special and it culminated with one of the greatest matches in a generation.