NXT Takeover: XXV Recap & Results

Last week on NXT: Bianca Belair and Mia Yim continued their rivalry with Mia Yim giving Bianca her first pinfall defeat in wrestling. Drew Gulak and Kushida put on a fucking wrestling clinic, with Kushida getting the pinfall win. The tag team scene is all over the place with a huge four team brawl taking place and The Undisputed Era posing on top of a ladder.

Cold Open

Five years ago NXT had their first Takeover and we see a compilation package on the past 24 events. NXT Takeover is hands down the best American wrestling there is. Every Takeover reestablishes my love for professional wrestling. HHH says Takeover is for the fans and it’s hard to argue.

Matt Riddle vs. Roderick Strong

  • This feud is based around Roderick trying to prove his worth to Undisputed Era by attacking Matt Riddle backstage. Riddle is ready for war bro.
  • Riddle is so good at kicking off his flip flops that he aimed them at Roddy and kicked both of them off at Strong.
  • The bell rang and the lights lit up the crowd instead of the ring, thn the spotlights hit the ring as the crowd light darkened. It was a neat error.
  • Mat wrestling to start off the bout and Matt Riddle almost had Roddy choked out minutes into the match.
  • Riddle isn’t messing around and hits his signature triple gutwrench suplex.
  • Roderick and Riddle battle on the ring apron and Roddy is able to hit a backbreaker on the apron. The crowd is surprisingly split between the two. Roderick offense looks reckless and effective. This match hits and it hits hard.
  • Everytime Riddle tries to get an advantage, Roddy connects with a backbreaker and vicious strikes. It always surprises me when Roddy takes control of a match. Strong is now aiming is attacks on Matt’s ribs and back, because that’s where Riddle’s injuries were.
  • Matt Riddle’s comeback is full of strikes and suplexes, but they aren’t sustained. This is a back and forth match. The story is that both men are even and hit flurries of offense. It’s a sprint but both men are stamina monsters.
  • The pace is finally starting to slow a little. The type of action hasn’t changed, both men are just worn out from this non-stop intensity. They end up battling on the top rope an Strong hits a superplex on Riddle for two.
  • Strong is still working on the lower back, which makes sense because he is the messiah of the backbreaker.
  • Riddle is trying to over power Strong but his back keeps giving out. Strong is now relentless with his attacks and Riddle still kicks out after over a minute of non-stop punishment. After the kick out the crowd erupts in applause and a thunderous “NXT” chant.
  • Riddle is now able to connect with the powerbomb he has been gunning for all match. Then hits the running knee that defeated Kassius Ohno, but Roddy kicked off.
  • This action is so fast paced and the commentary team is so intense that it’s really hard to cover all of the emotion that is bleeding through the screen.
  • The plan of Roddy’s attack on Riddle’s back all comes to a head when Roddy gets the Strong Hold Boston crab in. Some way Riddle is able to reverse into the Bromission but can’t keep the hold applied because of the back pain.
  • Riddle hits countless elbows to Roddy’s head and then hits a tombstone type move for the finish and the win.

And I’m Like… I would say that this match hit on all cylinders but they really only went one pace. They went as fast and as hard as any finishing sprint in any match, but for the whole match. This was crazy and really made both men stars. All of Undisputed Era have matches tonight and Roddy lost the first one. Good shit all around.

Vacant NXT Tag Team Championship Match

Street Profits vs. Forgotten Sons vs. Undisputed Era vs. Oney Lorcan and Danny Burch

  • This is a due or die moment for the Street Profits. IF they don’t win it, it’s gonna be hard for me to see them as a top tier tag team. Especially after not being able to win the belts from War Raiders.
  • Street Profits come out and party in the crowd with the fans. Everyone rocking their red solo cups and t’s beautiful.
  • Forgotten Sons are a tremendous heel team, everything about them is so infuriating. Steve Cutler and Wesley Blake come out without Ryker, but as you can see in the video above. Dude shows up eventually.
  • Wesley Blake has competed in Takeovers in 2015… That’s wild that he still is in NXT.
  • Oney and Burch don’t have a team name or really a gimmick, they just wrestle well and kick a lot of ass.
  • During the Undisputed Era’s entrance, Kyle isn’t playing air guitar, but Montez Ford of the Street Profits is. That popped me.
  • The match starts with all the dudes going at each other. This match won’t really tell a story because of the amount of men involved. It will be fast paced and bonkers, I already know I won’t do this shit justice.
  • We are less than five minutes in and Undisputed Era go to bring a ladder in the ring. Wesley Blake dives out of the ring right into the damn ladder. That is the most suicidal suicide dive you can do.
  • Dawkins jumps onto all the wrestlers. It’s a spot that is cool to see but I don’t like it much because everyone is waiting around for a dude to jump on them.
  • Kyle lands back first on the ladder and starts flopping around, the refs instantly run to check on him cause that shit was ugly. The refs are wearing gloves already, don’t know if someone is bleeding or it’s just expected.
  • Forgotten Sons put a ladder on both of their heads and shit is just so dangerous right now. Someone is definitely breaking shit tonight.
  • There was like seven outrageous and intricate ladder spots that happened, but they happened so fast I was just enamored with the match and didn’t really know how to capture it.
  • Kyle has a good cut going on his back too. The ring looks like a tornado went through it with bodies, ladders and headbands. No one has climbed the ladder yet.
  • Bobby Fish is the first one to climb the ladder but Blake powerbombs O’Reilly into the ladder and Fish lands right on O’Reilly.
  • During Money In The Bank Finn Balor was like “I’m gonna take the most sickening bumps ever in a ladder match” Kyle O’Reilly was like “Hold my beer at Takeover”.
  • Cutler tries to climb the ladder but Kyle gets a leg submission through the ladder on Cutler. Blake shows up to beat the ever loving shit out of O’Reilly and The Forgotten Sons then hit their finish on Fish.
  • Forgotten Sons climb the ladder together which is dumb. There is no one to defend the opponents. Street Profits show up to get Blake and Oney and Danny show up to get Cutler. EVERYONE IS OUT!
  • Kyle went to climb the ladder but he forgot about Jaxson Ryker who comes in to further ruin the livelihood of Kyle O’Reilly.
  • Ryker takes everyone out. The crowd is mad and under these bright lights, Jaxson needs to shave his head bald cause the male pattern baldness runs deep with that man.
  • These Jaxson Ryker moves are more vicious than they are meant to be. Like Oney Lorcan gets back dropped into the ladder but he doesn’t flat back onto them, he just hits the corner of the ladder with parts of his body. It’s out of control.
  • You know it’s good heel work when all three teams that aren’t the Forgotten Sons team up to take Ryker out and the crowd goes ballistic.
  • UE decided that instead of setting the ladder up and winning the match they want to hit Ryker in the head with a ladder. Montez Ford then does the front flip over the top rope onto Ryker, then Lorcan does it too! That might be the one mistake that UE makes. Mauro audibly laughs at this match due to how much he is enjoying it.
  • After all that chaos, Burch and Lorcan are the only two left standing, and the dumbasses climb the ladder together. IN A TAG LADDER NEVER CLIMB TOGETHER! One person NEEDS to play defense.
  • UE and Oney and Danny climb two ladders and battle for victory before the Forgotten Sons tip the ladders over and almost win the match.
  • Montez Ford hops on the ladder, knocks Blake off and THEY WIN!!!

And I’m Like… The crowd loses their shit in the arena while I lose my shit at home. Well deserved championship for Street Profits, who celebrate with the crowd!! The solo cups are high in the air! This match was balls to the wall bonkers and I’m so happy everyone is coming out of this match not seriously injured. Fantastic job all around.

North American Championship

Velveteen Dream (c) vs. Tyler Breeze

  • Tyler has a very basic entrance, which is disheartening. I’m so glad that he is back, but he deserved an epic entrance.
  • On the plus side this is the most basic Velveteen Takeover entrance too. Velveteen is rocking some gold tights that are looser than normal as well.
  • The BDE both of these men exude is off the charts. I love every bit of this and they haven’t even locked up!
  • It’s weird that they don’t even get the normal introductions. Velveteen slowly undresses as sexy as possible and Tyler recognize that game.
  • Dream is covered in gold glitter and is wresting with a necklace on. Tyler is able to already almost hit his unprettier move, which shocks Dream. Breeze is here and is ready to show the world what Vince McMahon has never seen.
  • This match is all big moves to start off. I am really thrown off by how loose Dream’s trunks are, it feels so “less than” everything he’s worn. Tyler doesn’t even have the furry leg warmer tassel things he is known for.
  • Dream leap frogs Breeze and immediately sells his leg. Tyler without hesitation puts a single leg crab on Dream. Nigel points out how Tyler is applying the hold, putting more pressure on the knee than on the back.
  • Tyler is not messing around at all and Dream is getting his ass kicked.
  • Dream hits a superkick on the outside and snaps. He brings out a killer instinct that we’ve rarely seen. Dream is slamming Breeze’s head into the announce table repeatedly. Then Velveteen pulls out the classic Eve Torres move where he poses for a selfie with the laid out opponent.
  • Tyler superkicks Dream and then stops to stare at the North American championship for a second. Great work. Breeze walks in the ring and right into a Dream Valley Driver for a two count. Dream goes for a Purple Rainmaker but hesitates because of his knee. Tyler does his patented slow roll to the outside.
  • I’m not sure when we entered into Act II of this match but we are totally here. Signature moves and signature counters, hella nearfalls and overall great wrestling. The crowd is eating it all up. Tyler Breeze is so fucking good. Velveteen Dream is right up there with him too.
  • Tyler Breeze is bleeding from the ear. Like the inside of his head is bleeding and leaking out. Tyler’s ear drum has been popped or something. This is wild.
  • These dudes are reversing tombstone piledriver attempts on each other but Dream is able to fight out of it. Velveteen goes on the top rope and Breeze kicks nothing. Like Dream was a couple feet away. Mauro sells that it’s Tyler’s equilibrium being off and I am here for it.
  • Tyler kicks out of an Unprettier and reverses a Purple Rainmaker. a Supermodel Kick and Unprettier later and Tyler goes for the pin. Dream kicks out and the entire crowd is shocked. This is some good shit.
  • Tyler then hits the Beauty Shot out of nowhere and Dream rolls to the outside. Tyler has this match in hand, if he wins, it’ll be his first championship ever in WWE.
  • Tyler has the match won by countout but stops the ref from counting 10 because Breeze wants the belt. Dream is able to recover and hit a DVD and Purle Rainmaker to win the match and make kissy faces at the camera.

And I’m Like… This match had it all and all of it was brilliant. Even the supposed botches made sense in the story. This was great fucking work by both men and I hope there will be more in the future with these two. Dream even takes Tyler’s phone to take a selfie but notices Tyler in the background. They have a discussion in the ring, Tyler doesn’t let Dream leave the ring as the crowd chants “selfie”. Tyler asks for a selfie and it’s shown on the big screen. Some admiration and a passing of the torch moment. I hope we get more Tyler.

Punishment Martinez is now…

NXT Women’s Championship

Shayna Baszler (c) w/ The Horsewomen vs. Io Shiari w/ Candice LeRae

  • The video package is all about how Io Shirai is regarded by some “the greatest wrestler in the world regardless of gender”.
  • Shayna gets a Goldberg style entrance where the camera follows her from the back and she walks with The Horsewomen but leaves them in the back.
  • Baszler is someone I hope the best for and wish to succeed, but I don’t want her to be in Vince’s control. She is special, she is tremendous and one of the best. The way she is booked in NXT is near perfect and it’s something I would hate to see ruined.
  • Shayna starts the match off with a snapmare and a disrespectful kick to the face of Io. Io is pissed and atempts to come at Shayna. Baszler goes for the snapmare and kick to the face again, Io gets her arm up and Shayna catches the arm and tries to stomp it. Io rolls out of it, hits a snapmare and fakes a kick to Shayna’s face. WOW what a fucking sequence. It establishes the two characters and how they wrestle in a matter of minutes.
  • Baszler of course gets the arm and stomps the hell out of it. Shayna is in her zone and is attacking Io’s arm. One thing Baszler does better than anyone is build sympathy for her opponent.
  • Man, I thought I was used to the way Shayna works over an arm but I’m over here gagging at this shit. I’ve never been grossed out by limb attacks until I watched Shayna wrestle. It’s god like.
  • Io is able to land a fantastic German suplex but can’t hit a bridging pin because of the injury to her arm. Io is hitting strikes, 619’s and springboard dropkicks. After a pin attempt we enter into a strike battle.
  • The crowd is into this match but they aren’t as loud as they previously have been.
  • Shiarai wakes the crowd the fuck up with a moonsault to the outside. It’s crazy how you can see that move multiple times a week if you watch that much wrestling, and yet, Io’s is still awe inspiring.
  • Shirai looks to have the match won so The Horsewomen show up and LeRae is right behind them breaking a kendo stick apart on their bodies. Candice takes out two of the toughest women in NXT to make sure this match is even.
  • Io is caught in a flash pin but kicks out, Shayna goes for the Kirafuda but Io gets out. A palm thrust sets up Io to hit her moonsault.
  • Shayna reverses it and is able to apply the Kirafuda Clutch, Io is able to roll backwards and pin Shayna but Baszler kicks out.
  • Io’s instincts kick in and she goes for a pin but in the process, Io lends her neck to Shayna who applies the Kirafuda. The crowd is clapping so hard that the building is almost shaking.
  • Shayna will not let go and all hope seems lost for Io to win the match. The crowd chants louder “Io, Io” but it’s all for naught. Io taps out.
  • As Shayna celebrates her victory, Io attacks Shayna with a kendo stick. Beats the shit out of her and hits a moonsault. Then Io yells at Candice to give her a chair and Io hits a moonsault with a chair. It’s gorgeously brutal and I am so ready for where ever this shit leads. Good gawd. Shayna is left in the ring gasping for air, shaking. Her back is near bloody from the welts. The crowd chants “You Deserve It” and boo Shayna as Baszler stands and walks away unassisted.

And I’m Like… Fucking A. That match ruled so hard. There was logic and psychology, there was high flying and submission based wrestling, there was reversals and counters. The crowd was there at the end and god damn I was there too. What a showing by these women. NXT Takeover is the best wrestling out there you guys. It’s perfect.

NXT Championship Match

Adam Cole vs. Johnny Gargano (c)

  • I’m worried for Gargano. Adam Cole got the special entrance and looks like he is being presented. I would like for Johnny to win, but damn, signs aren’t looking good. Also, before the match started the camera showed Stephanie McMahon. Seated a few seats from her is AEW’s Britt Baker. She is engaged to Adam Cole. Why would she be in the crowd if Adam wasn’t winning? Gargano does enter with some Captain Marvel inspired gear though.
  • The storyline here is that, their previous match was a 2 out of 3 falls match. Adam Cole got the fist fall but lost two straight. Cole is sure as hell he can beat Johnny again. Gargano is too confident and cocky, thinking that he is wrestling for every underdog in the world and Adam is too hungry.
  • This is Johnny’s 14th Takeover. Meaning he has been featured on over half of the Takeover’s that have ever existed.
  • The match starts with an intense lock up. The crowd is electric and split in half for these two wrestlers.
  • Both men attempted their finish but were thwarted.
  • Adam takes a breather outside of the ring, Johnny invites him to reenter and says “get back to work”.
  • After Cole gets back in the ring, some chain wrestling takes place. Johnny gets the advantage and attempts a neck vice submission. Cole rolls out of it and then a strike battle happens. It’s like they are going through all the typical wrestling spots minutes into the match.
  • Adam Cole has hurt Johnny’s knee and decided that his gameplan will be to take out Johnny’s right leg. This was after Johnny hit a double stomp on Cole’s arm while Adam was using it to steady himself on the outside.
  • Johnny is starting to hit a flurry of offense and doesn’t sell his leg until after a couple moves. Mauro attributes it to adrenaline.
  • We are just about ten minutes into this match and they are already trading HUGE moves for nearfalls. This is gonna be a nuts Act III.
  • After they both trade big kicks to the face and roll to the outside, the crowd loses their shit and starts an “NXT” chant followed by “This is Awesome.”
  • Gargano was preparing to do a suicide dive but his knee is too injured so he just went out of the ring but got caught with an ushigoroshi. Then Johnny gets caught with another one in the ring for two. Gargano and Cole are both nursing their injuries. Adam’s arm and Johnny’s knee.
  • Cole goes for a Panama Sunrise but Johnny reverses it into a Gargan-NO Escape, Adam grabs Johnny’s knee, which makes Johnny let go of the hold. Cole gets a figure four cinched in. They battle it out while picking apart each others limbs.
  • Every time Johnny hits a big enough move to get the win, Cole rolls to the outside. Gargano says screw it and goes for a suicide dive. Adam Cole superkicks Johnny’s face in mid air. Then Cole hits a Panama Sunrise on the outside. It was a tremendous nearfall. Mauro and Nigel are dropping gems for calls and this is special. “Adam Cole’s timing makes metronomes jealous”.
  • “Johnny it’s over for you, you had your special moment, now, it’s time, for mine” says Adam. Cole goes for a Last Shot but Johnny reverses it to a Garga-No Escape which Cole reverses and applies the Garga-No Escape himself. Johnny rolls out of it and hits the Last Shot on Cole for two. “NXT” chants followed by “Fight Forever”. Great wrestling tonight folks.
  • A strike battle leads to a standing ovation. They trade superkicks and Gargano hits a poisoned rana but Cole’s momentum bounces him off the ropes and allow Cole to hit a Last Shot. That only gets two and the crowd is off their shit. Standing ovations, loud chants. No one is sitting except for the front row.
  • Adam Cole goes out of the ring and grabs a chair. The ref fights with Adam Cole about using the chair and Johnny takes out the referee on accident. Gargano can’t believe it but leaves his back open to a chair shot. Johnny ducks the chair and superkicks the chair into Adam’sface. Johnny rolls Cole into the ring and the crowd auidbly counts to 20 as Cole is flat on his back. Gargano has to get the ref in the ring.
  • Adam Cole calls out the rest of UE, Gargano grabs a chair but it seems like it is just a ploy to buy time by Cole.
  • Cole hits the pendulum piledriver and only gets two. NOW EVERYONE IS STANDING!
  • Cole sets Johnny up for a Last Shot but Gargano can’t even stay up on his knees. Johnny is completely out of it. HE’S PLAYING POSSUM!! Johnny gets the Garga-No Escape but Cole targets the knee again. Johnny just CANNOT get it done. Cole hits successive superkicks. Johnny reverses a Panama Sunrise but Cole is able to try again and hit it. Then he follows it up with a Last Shot and GETS THE WIN! Adam Cole is now the second ever NXT Triple Crown champion.

And I’m Like… Holy fucking shit, what a ride. This match was everything and more. This Takeover was everything and more. Once again an instant classic show with instant classic matches. Adam Cole’s victory was foreshadowed during the entrances but it doesn’t matter. I can’t process what I just watched. How can I break that down? That was magic, fucking magic in the ring. Thank you Johnny Gargano, thank you Adam Cole and thank you NXT. Never change.

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