KELLER & POWELL FLAGSHIP (12/5)
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NXT TAKEOVER REPORT
JANUARY 28, 2017
SAN ANTONIO, TEX.
LIVE ON WWE NETWORK
Monster pop for Tye Dillinger’s entrance. Interesting that this, and not Roderick Strong vs. Andrade Almas, is the opening match, Nikki Cross is not with Sanity on Eric Young’s entrance, which is also a bit of a surprise.
1. TYE DILLINGER vs. ERIC YOUNG (w/Sanity)
Young offers Dillinger one more shot at joining Sanity after the bell rings. Dillinger picks up the offered jacket, tosses it at Young to start an attack. Young hits the outside to recover. Dillinger wants to chase but thinks differently after seeing Wolfe and Dain ringside. Young returns to the ring to force Dillinger to a coner but Dillinger recovers. Dillinger escapes Sanioty ringside then tackles Young and brings the fight back to the ring. Young gets sent out again, but Sanity again keeps Dillinger away from Young. Ten perfect punches in the corner, but a thumb lets Young get the edge. Dillinger to the outside, Young distracts the ref so Dain runs Dillinger over. Elbow drop from the top to Dillinger’s back. Dillinger to the outside again. Young mocks Dillinger as he wears Dillinger down. Guillotine in the top gets a two count for Young. Neckbreaker draws another two count for Young. Young wants another guillotine on the top but Dillinger fights out and wants a superplex. Young fights out, ants another elbow drop but eats a dropkick from Dillinger. The ref starts a double count. They get up and trade strikes to a “Ten! Boo!” chant, but Young gets the better of it. Dillinger yanks the beard and rallies hard. Huge back drop. Young to the top, Dillinger jumps into the cprner for a snap superplex for a nearfall as Sanity prepares to rush the ring. Ten stomps in the corner, Dillinger preps the Tyebreaker, Dillinger brings Wolfe into the ring, Tyebreaker, then fioghts off Dain, but no DQ. Dillinger reverses the Wheelbarrow slame into a rollup for a nearfall, Tyebreaker but Wolfe puts Young’s foot on the ropes. Dillinger splashes all of Sanity then gets back in the ring, heads to the top, crossbody, Young rolls through and covers for two. Dillinger again turns his attention to Sanity, letting Young nail the wheelbarrow neckbreaker for the win.
Winner: Eric Young in 10:53. This was a strong match in terms of the action but the ref looks like an idiot for letting Sanity interfere so much in such an obvious fashion. This feels like the set up for another chapter in this story but I really disliked the booking here. NXT referees usually don’t come off as stupid, but they did here. This is the same WWE booking that NXT fans have rejected over the years.
-Samoa Joe is shown in the audience, the first sign of him since he lost the title match with Shinsuke Nakamura.
2. RODERICK STRONG vs, ANDRADE “CIEN” ALMAS
Hot action right out of the bell, quick cover from Strong doesn’t even get one. Fast-paced action shows why this match was highly anticipated. Dropkick from Strong for one. Almas with the slap in the corner. Almas locks in an armbar over the top rope to the five count. Almas with an armbar mid-ring but Strong gets to his feet and takes a knee to the middle. Strong dodges double knees and lands a suplex. Double count started, Strong lands chops first. Gorbuster from Strong followed by a high knee in the corner and a dropkick. Strong runs right into a boot in the corner, then rips Almas off the top to hit a backbreaker and get a two count. Almas with a German suplex into a two count. Schoolboy into a cover into a slam gets Almas two. They trade strikes but Almas knocks Strong into the corner, but Strong comes off the ground with a leaping knee to knock Almas down. They trade strikes again. Strong caught with an armbreaker but Strong wiggles to the ropes to break the hold. Almas delivers elbows on the mat in frustration then heads to the top, but Strong crotches him. They brawl up top, Strong hits a backbreaker using the turnbuckle for a nearfall. Almas wants the hammerlock DDT but Strong rams him into the corner, but then gets hip tossed into the corner. Almas whiffs double knees in the corner but lands a big clothesline, then the double knees. Strong wiggles out of a hammerlock DDT, slam, Sick Kick for the win.
Winner: Roderick Strong in 11:39. Really enjoyable match here, and Strong winning makes a lot of sense as he builds to the #2 face spot in the singles division. Strong needs some promo time to build himself up as a character.
Backstage, Bobby Roode looks comtemplative. Michael Hayes is shown in the audience.
The Authors of Pain seem to have raided Roman Reigns’ locker room for their gear tonight, looking like a SWAT Team. No smiles from #DIY tonight. Pre-introduction roughhousing.
3. NXT Tag Team Champions #DIY (JOHNNY GARGANO & TOMMASO CIAMPA) vs. THE AUTHORS OF PAIN (AKAM & REZAR w/Paul Ellering) – NXT Tag Team Championship Match
Rezar immediately takes the fight to Ciampa. Ciampa can’t outmuscle Rezar. Ciampa blocks a pair of powerbombs. Ciampa justs over another powerbomb, dives to tag Gargano, but Rezar cuts off the spear out of the tag. Gargano punches out of a powerbomb, runs to the corner and the action breaks down. Akam and Rezar clobber #DIY, then Ciampa suddenly recovers and #DIY clear Akam and Rezar from the ring. Gargano gets caught trying a slingshot DDT, then ends up getting tossed off the apron into the barricade. Rough landing there. Akam just tosses Gargano from the apron into the ring. Gargano is isolated in AOP’s corner. Nasty double team move puts Gargano down for two. Gargano breaks free on the outside, dodges and elbow and finally tags Ciampa. Ciampa with a variety of moves to take on both authors, a Garman suplex to both Akam and Rezar, sick strength. Running knee but Akam kicks out at two. Akam is defiant in the face of chops and kicks. Akam off the mat with a clothesline for two. Ciampa gets his insides kicked out in the corner. Ciampa fends off a double team, tag from Gargano, double spear from #DIY, Gargano covers for a nearfall. Gargano goes nuts with chops and slaps and punches in the corner, tag to Ciampa, but Akam fights off the double team, tags Rezar, double team move for a very close nearfall. Ellering cannot beleive that his team has not won yet. Superkick from Gargano stops The Last Chapter, Ciampa covers for two, Ciampa with the armbar, Gargano with the chinlock to keep Rezar out. Rezar to his feet, he slams Gargano onto Ciampa to break the hold. #DIY with blows from their knees then AoP retailiates. They repeat the sequence a few times. #DIY to their feet, then deliver knees. #DIY calls for their stereo kick finisher, but get caught with the Super Collider. The Last Champter to Ciampa.
Winners: The Authors of Painin 14:25. Granted, it was #DIY in the ring, but The Authors of Pain did a really good job at showing in-ring personality and not boring me to tears like most big man matches do. This was a really solid match. It was the right booking, though it is a shame that #DIY did not hold the title longer. NXT titles have shifted around way too much lately.
-Seth Rollins suddenly shows up to cut off the announcers to challenge Triple H to a match. The crowd is going insane. Triple H comes out from Gorilla in a suit. The crowd is going insane. Rollins strips his shirt off, Triple H signals for security. Three men come out and Triple H heads to the back. Rollins fights off the security team, then more come from the backl tor estrain him on the ramp. The crowd calls “bulls—” as Rollins is hauled away.
[ J.J.’s Reax: wow, a main roster feud just intruded on NXT, that is novel. ]
Nikki Cross makes her entrance without Sanity, but with the No DQ aspect of the Fatal Four Way, who knows if they will interfere or not. We already established on Wednesday that Asuka can hold her own against men. Billie Kay and Peyton Royce come out together holding hands. New ring gear for each. Asuka impressive as always.
4. NXT Women’s Champion ASUKA vs. NIKKI CROSS vs. BILLIE KAY vs. PEYTON ROYCE – NXT Women’s Championship Fatal Four Way Match
Royce and Key put their bakcs to each other mid-ring, then duck out to let Cross and Asuka brawl. Kay and Royce come in to attack Asuka and Cross. Cross in a Tree of Woe as Asuka takes on Royce and Kay with ease. Cross recovers. they grapple but Royce and Kay interrupt. Asuka manages a double German suplex to Royce and Kay, then charges Cross and then trade shots frokm a lockup. German suplex to Cross, cover for two. Asuka elbows Royce and Key off the apron. Cross hits a neckbreaker to Asuka. Cross smashes Asuka and covers for two. Asuka low bridges Cross out of the ring, but Cross gets the edge outside. Spinning neckbreaker takes Asuka off the apron to the outside. Tyop rope splash from Cross to Kay and Royce. Royce and Kay finally recover and put Cross into the barricades. Asuka is given lots of time to recover on her own as Royce and Kay beat Cross up the ramp. Cross climbs up to the announce tables area, then on top, but Kay sneaks behind her. They brawl on the table. Royce and Kay set Cross up from a suplex off the table, but luckily drop her through a table next to the announcer booth instead of off the front to the ramp. Royce and Kay from decide to find Asuka now that Cross is neutralized. They roll Asuka into the ring and double team her for two. Notable that Royce and Kay are still working together and not doing the typical spot of arguing over covers. Royce and Key make a plan, but Asuka fights it off. Windows Peak from Royce but Asuka bridges out of the cover. Asuka stumbles to her feet, hits the roundhouse to Royce then Kay, cover to Royce and the win.
Winner: Asuka in 9:54. Some good spots here, but the real money is clearly in Asuka – Cross, Asuka – Ember Moon, and Ember Moon – Cross. It was refreshing to not see the heel duo bicker over covers like we usually see.
UK Champion Tyler Bate is shown in the audience.
Roode has a bevy of ladies to greet and escort him on the ramp, for the first special entrance of the night. Nakamura has a moving platform to rude to the ring and a new jacket.
5. NXT Champion SHINSUKE NAKAMURA vs. BOBBY ROODE – NXT Championship Match
Lots of wary pacing out of the bell. they finally make contact. Very slow start to this match, with Roode playing mind games by hiding in the ropes. The crowd is torn 50/50 on this match. Cheap shot off a ref break lets Roode lock in a wristlock and force Nakamura to the mat. Nakamura escapes from the wrist lock but gets his head locked by Roode’s legs. Makamura breaks free and Roode dodges sharp kicks then mocks Nakamura, letting Nakamura kick him. Vibration kicks in the corner, but Roode grabs the foot, then Nakamura hits his double kicks manuver. Nakamura attacks on the outside. Nakamura with knees in the corner, but Roode puts Nakamura on the turnbuckle, kicks Nakamura off and it looks like Nakamura clips part of his head on the steps. Roode sends Nakamura into the steps. Then again. Cover in the ring yields two. Nakamura continues to sell a shoulder or neck injury. Roode with blows in the corner, then a clothesline. Roode to the second rope and a double axe handle, cover for two. Roode cranks Nakamura’s head around. Nakamura gets to his feet but Roode throws him to the mat and stomps away. Knee drop to Nakamura’s neck area, two count. Roode with the vibration kicks in the corner to taunt Nakamura. Pele kick from the apron lets Nakamura rally, running knee then a knee drop to Roode on the apron. Big strike sequence from Nakamura mid-ring. Vibration kciks from Nakamura. Nakamura sets Roode up for the running knee in the corner, Roode dodges so Nakamura knees the turnbuckle, then lands a neckbreaker. Roode goes to the second rope but Nakamura dodges the axe handle, roode blocks an inverted exploder suplex. Nakamura with a knee out of the corner, sets Roode up on top for the running knee, inverted exploder suplex. Nakamura calls for the end. But Roode stays on the mat selling being knocked out. Nakamura walks over, Roode with a surprise schoolboy for a nearfall, then a neckbreaker for a nearfall. Roode looks for the Glorious DDT, but Nakamura escapes, Roode nails a spionebuster for a close count. Roode plants Nakamura up top then goes there too thinking superplex. Nakamura blocks a superplex, lands a front suplex off his own, single leg dropkick to Roode. Kinshasa attempt, Roode gets a foot up, covers, puts his foot on the ropes but the ref sees it. Roode with punches and chops in the corner. Nakamura does the head to the middle, then smiles at Roode and asks him to bring in, then kicks Roode across the ring. Nakamura with a sudden jumping armbar, but Roode blocks, Nakamura wants a triangle, locks it in mid-ring. Roode fasdes, then lists Nakamura up into the air, Nakamura slides down, running knee, cover, Roode kicks out at two and a half. Nakamura to the second rope as Roode recovers, Roode rolls to the apron, Nakamura is behind him, leaping knee to Roode. Nakamura looks like he hurt his leg on the landing. The ref is counting as Nakamura tries to fix his leg. Rodoe gets rolled into the ring but Nakamura is slow to reccover. Kinshasa, but Nakamura can’t cover due to his bad leg. Roode is clearly done but Nakamura can’t move. Nakamura shouts at the ref in Japanese, and trainers hit the ring to check on Nakamura. Roode recovers but doesn’t go on the attack. Nakamura seems to argue that he can fight. There is a second ref in the ring to figure things out. Nakamura crawls into the ring, Roode nails the Glorious DDT, Nakamura kicks out. roode can’t beleive it. Nakamura is still selling the leg. Roode with a half crab to the injured leg. Nakamura crwals to the ropes… Matt Bloom is out, Roode pulls Nakamura mid ring, Nakamura tries a trinagle, Roode with another Glorious DDT.
Winner: Booby Roode in 27:07. What a match. This easily blew away the Nakamura – Joe matches which had me completely underwhelmed. Roode was a great heel and Nakamura had me seriously questioning if he had a legit neck injury halfway through or leg injury at the end, especially with Matt Bloom coming out near the end. Roode came off as brutal and devious, and going nearly thirty minutes with Nakamura proved he isn’t a flash in the pan. That said… yet another rapid title change for the NXT Championshio? Not a fan.
FINAL THOUGHTS: An outstanding main event redeemed and otherwise mediocre Takeover. The Women’s Championship match and the stupid Sanity antics of the opener really left a bad taste in my mouth. Strong – Almas was good and the Tag Team Match truly surprised me with the quality.