The Go Home episode for the special 25th Takeover! How did NXT put the cherry on their build for Takeover XXV?
As TakeOver XXV looms, how does NXT prepare for the landmark shows?
NXT Championship: I really loved the promos between Gargano and Cole. It’s a great juxtaposition between the babyface and the heel, while keeping both guys edgy. I love Gargano’s story of never giving up and finally winning the pony.
Cole’s continued insistence on the narrative that he should’ve won because he got one pinfall, despite KNOWING that he had to beat Gargano twice to be champion is kind of silly, but it’s also a heel thing to cling to the narrative despite all the facts.
Velveteen Dream vs Tyler Breeze: I’m not a Velveteen Dream fan, but him mocking Tyler Breeze’s selfie gimmick, but I’m not thrilled with him saying Breeze couldn’t handle NXT when he was a pillar of the show in the early years.
NXT Women’s Championship: I’m totally ready for this match to be brutal. It feels like this feud is heading into brutal territory. I don’t what the backstage relationship is like, but Baszler and Shirai have sold me on the ‘These women do NOT like each other and it’s going to go down on Saturday’. I’m surprised that Regal hasn’t banned Shafir and Duke from ringside so it’s a fair fight, but then we wouldn’t have a spot for Candice LeRae. I’m also banking on Sane showing up to get one last shot in at Baszler.
NXT Tag Team Championship: The match between Forgotten Sons and Lorcan and Burch was every bit as rough as it sounds, but it was still really good, but that didn’t stop things from turning into a free-for-all in grand WWE fashion. Undisputed Era was standing tall at the end of things, but I’m not sure they will be after Saturday, but at least the band is united for now.
Bianca Belair vs Mia Yim: Well, like my mother says, what goes around, comes around! That was a great match. Belair and Yim have a ‘fight forever’ feel that feels like there is legit heat in it. Yim FINALLY getting a win by using Belair’s hair against her was hilarious and fitting
KUSHIDA vs Drew Gulak: What a match! I’m still not TOTALLY on the KUSHIDA bandwagon, but that was an amazing match. Something I keep noticing and I can’t help but wonder if WWE is having Gulak purposefully pulling his ‘Proper wrestling isn’t high-flying’ schtick primarily on minority wrestlers on purpose because that’s really the only people I’ve seen him do it with.
Don’t get me wrong, the match with KUSHIDA was incredible and a great mix of both mat wrestling and the high-flying stuff, and I’m glad KUSHIDA won, but the thing with Gulak is something I keep noticing and it keeps making me wonder. Even if it isn’t on purpose, it makes watching Gulak get beat very satisfying.
Overall Thoughts: As far as go-home shows go, that was really impressive. Just about every match and/or segment was about TakeOver and building the hype for it.
I’m SO happy Mia Yim beat Bianca Belair and got a PINFALL win over the so-called undefeated ‘EST’ and the fact that she did it by using Belair’s hair against her was a perfect payback to how Belair won last time.
I’m really hoping Shirai beats Baszler on Saturday and I hope Candice LeRae helps her do it because the whole thing has become stale and Baszler hasn’t looked like a badass in months.
I’m not sure what will happen in Gargano vs Cole, but it should be a great match, same with the Tag Team Ladder match.
KUSHIDA vs Gulak was fabulous, but I have a feeling it isn’t over considering the smack Gulak was talking after he lost, which should also be fun.
That’s it for Tiffany’s On Time NXT Takes! I will be back Saturday to breakdown TakeOver XXV!