It’s the NXT before TakeOver!
With just days left before NXT takes over Toronto, some grudges need to be settled! Will the Original Bro get even with the Beast of Belfast?
- Shane Thorne VS Joaquin Wilde; Thorne wins.
- Matt Riddle VS Killian Dain; No Contest.
PLAY BY PLAY
NXT GM William Regal is already in the ring!
And that’s because he is officiating the NXT Tag Team Championship contract signing for TakeOver: Toronto! The Street Profits are first to enter as the champions, and they interrupt the introduction for their challenges. No disrespect, but Angelo Dawins and Montez Ford can give their challengers a proper introduction. “Ladies and gentlemen, boys and girls,” Ford says just like Road Dogg! He introduces “the next team to get their ass whooped by the Street Profiiiits…! O’Reilly Autoparts! Laurence Fish-Burn Junior! The Undisputed Eraaa~!” And with that, Kyle and Bobby appear! They join the Profits in the ring, “BOOM,” and take up mics of their own. Fans first tease O’Reilly with “Autoparts! Autoparts!” Fish says, “Man, was that funny.” But they forgot to laugh. O’Reilly remembered to laugh but chose not to because it wasn’t actually funny.
Fish says the truth hurts. Therefore, if the Profits feel sensitive, cover your ears. “This level? You’re not on it. But! But!” Fans echo “But!” but Fish tells them to shut up. For the first time in the Profits’ careers, those autographs are in demand! Let’s get the contracts signed, because the Profits stand no chance of leaving with the titles. Not only is reDRagon better bell to bell, they’re funnier, too. What was that joke O’Reilly told Fish earlier? Please indulge us. O’Reilly wants them to stop him if they know this one. “The Street Profits… Are the NXT Tag Team Champions.” Fish laughs and the Profits play along. Fans tell him, “Shut up, Bobby!”
Ford and Dawkins get serious, and Ford takes off the sunglasses. “You guys have shocked the system ever since you stepped foot in NXT. You’ve had multiple title reigns. You’re in damn near every episode, and you’ve been on ever TakeOver since you got here.” They’ve beaten ever team in NXT. From Authors of Pain to SAnitY to Burch-Lorcan and even Moustache Mountain, that makes reDRagon probably the best ever. So why does that make them think losing is an option for the Profits? What makes reDRagon think that only now, that the Profits are featured, now that the fans love them, now that the fans feel them, what makes reDRagon think that as far as the Profits have come, that losing is an option!? The only option is to “WIN! WIN! WIN!”
Fans echo along with Ford, but Dawkins calms him down. In Toronto, Profits gon beat dat ass. “Beat Dat Ass! Beat Dat Ass!” And that is Undisputed! The Profits sign their part, then reDRagon signs theirs. And with that, it is official! Will the Profits still have the titles after Toronto? Or will the Undisputed Era’s prophecy start coming true?
NXT looks at the coming North American Championship Triple Threat!
Again, the Undisputed Era foretold of their complete dominance and being #DrapedInGold before the end of 2019. And they’ve never been more poised for that coming true than now. Roderick Strong got a pin on The Velveteen Dream, but not even the Savior of the Backbreaker is worthy in the eyes of the Experience. However, what neither Dream nor Strong could foresee was the return of a BRUISERWEIGHT! And as the longest reigning WWE United Kingdom Champion, or any champion on the combined NXT US and UK rosters, he is worthy of having another title, is he not?
While Dream has beaten opponent after opponent 1v1, he must now take on two at once! Dunne has a grudge with Strong, but he won’t let Dream think he’s the one in the spotlight. Dunne put the UK roster on the map, but Dream says the North American title belongs in North America. Will that title stay in North America? Will Dunne bring it home to the UK? Or will the title become Undisputed?
NXT looks at the grudge between HBIC and Queen of Spades.
Mia Yim simply shared her life story of fighting up out of SoCal and into the ring. Wrestling was an escape, and the fans are her support. The fans cheering for her is why Mia got signed by Triple H to NXT. And she has worked hard to be worthy of that support. But Shayna Baszler doesn’t see how a “great story” is supposed to impress her. For Shayna, the story always ends the same: #TapNapOrSnap. The Women’s Division is greater than it’s ever been, and it’s because of her. Shayna got signed because of her dominance in the original Mae Young Classic. Mia got in because of pity. Mia doesn’t deserve a title shot when she didn’t even earn her place! Mia laughs. The only reason Shayna is dominant is because she’s had her two “b*tches”, Jessamyn and Marina, cheat for her.
Shayna doesn’t care about respect, so long as the others fear her. But Mia gave them a taste of their own medicine when she took them out. Shayna spins it as Mia being the coward. Mia deserves a prison sentence, not a title shot! Mia says Shayna’s just upset she’s not the baddest woman anymore. Shayna vows to put this “street trash fantasy” to sleep, but Mia says Shayna will finally fight someone who doesn’t fear her. Shayna has achieved far more to be beaten like this. But Mia says she’ll be the Head Champion in Charge. Who proves this is THEIR Women’s Division?
Shane Thorne VS Joaquin Wilde!
“The Worst” is bitter that an entire tournament was put together to give eight newbies an opportunity when he’s been around the entire time. However, he’s choosing to take on DJ Z, who got bumped in the first round, rather than someone who went a little bit farther. Will Thorne make an example of Wilde this close to TakeOver and the tournament finals?
The bell rings, and Thorne circles with Wilde. They tie up and go around, and Thorne puts Wilde on ropes. He lets up and taunts Wilde, but Wilde rolls him up! TWO, and Wilde says, “There’s a lot more where that came from!” Thorne gets up and ties up with Wilde. Wilde gets the waistlock but Thorne reaches back for a headlock. Wilde pops out and shoves Thorne down! He handsprings on Thorne and “Bew bew bew bew!” Thorne gets up and ties up with Wilde. He gets the arm but Wilde reverses, only for Thorne to roll, handspring and reverse. But Wilde reverses right back! Thorne tries again, but Wilde still reverses back, and even brings Thorne to the mat! Thorne rolls back, arm-drags and reverses the wristlock, but Wilde wrenches, steps through and arm-drags back!
Fans fire up with Wilde while Thorne backs off in frustration. Thorne runes but Wilde ducks and then arm-drags him again! Thorne gets up and throws hands to whip Wilde back. He runs in but Wilde elbows back to wrench and CHOP! Wilde goes to ropes, acrobatic arm-drag! Thorne comes back and dodges the dropkick once, but not the next one! Wilde is fired up as he covers, TWO! Wilde runs and tilt-o-whirls into a guillotine! But Thorne pops out to a BRAIN BUSTER! Thorne doesn’t cover, he wants to prove how much better he is. But fans rally up as Wilde slowly stands. Thorne throws European Uppercuts and a swift kick. Wilde goes to ropes and Thorne is on him with haymakers and more EuroUppers. Cover, TWO! Thorne wrenches Wilde’s wrist while he’s down on the mat. Wilde endures as Thorne twists the arm around more, and fans rally up.
Wilde throws body shots but Thorne keeps on that arm. Wilde breaks free but is put on the apron. Thorne elbows Widle then runs, but into a slingshot lariat! Both men are down and fans rally up. Wilde and Thorne go to corners, and Wilde comes out with a jawbreaker! Then he leap frogs and springboard trust fall back elbows! Fans fire up as Wilde runs in corner to corner for another back elbow, then a CHOP! Wilde whips but Thorne reverses, only for Wilde to go up and over. Thorne elbows him then goes up, but gets caught into a POWERBOMB! Cover, TWO!! Wilde is shocked but he grits his teeth as he takes aim. Thorne stands, Wilde rolls, but his DDT is blocked. Thorne CHOPS and ROCKS Wilde, but Wilde CHOPS and punches back! Wilde spins but into Thorne’s uppercut! Thorne runs, but Wilde reels him in into the pop-up BOOTS!
Thorne staggers out of the ring, but gets clear as Wilde slingshots. Wilde DIVES through the corner! The Daredevil tope takes Thorne out, but Wilde keeps going, to FLY! Down goes Thorne! Wilde gets back in and is fired up with the fans! The ring count climbs but reaches 5 before Thorne is up. Thorne flounders at 7 but gets in at 9! Then he gets right back out to catch his breath. Wilde comes over and drags Thorne up, but Thorne yanks him down! Thorne throws Wilde into a post! And steel steps! And a hip toss onto the ramp! Thorne just fires off strikes before sending Wilde into the apron edge! Thorne puts Wilde in at 7, KNEE TRIGGER! Cover, Thorne wins!
Winner: Shane Thorne, by pinfall
The Worst just bested one of the Breakout stars! But he still looks angry. Will Thorne prove he’s better than the entire bracket as NXT rolls on?
NXT looks back at what went down between Genius of the Sky and Mrs. Wrestling.
Io Shirai’s struggles in NXT started with how Shayna Baszler had her Horsewomen help keep the title. After Kairi Sane was taken out, Candice LeRae stepped up to back Shirai up. However, that didn’t stop the Horsewomen from running wild, and from Shayna getting the better of Shirai. But one thing did happen: Shirai snapped! Shirai would take her anger out on Shayna, but that did not settle things between Genius and Queen. A steel cage match was set to end it, but again the Horsewomen would create chaos. Candice wiped out the Horsewomen, but a miscalculation would cost Shirai. And she would snap again, but on Candice!!
The Genius came to a dark conclusion: friends are only burdens. She does not want friends, she does not want fans, she only wants success. Shirai vows to be the one and only woman at the very top of NXT! Shirai gave herself a makeover to match this new attitude, but will she make it out of TakeOver still on her feet? Or will the wrath of LeRae be worse than anything Shayna ever did?
NXT mourns the loss of Harley Race.
Matt Riddle VS Killian Dain!
The Beast of Belfast blindsided and brutalized the Original Bro, literally crashing him down through the stage! But Riddle says if Big Damo wanted a fight, all he had to do was face him head on, bro. Will Riddle show Dain what happens when you anger a bro? Or will Dain take everything from Riddle in this ruthless return?
Speaking of ruthless, Dain comes outta nowhere with the DIVIDE crossbody! Dain rains down rights on Riddle as fans boo and jeer! Dain roars as he drags Riddle up. Riddle fights back with body shots, but gets a headbutt for it! The ref backs Dain off, but Dain comes back to CANNONBALL Riddle into the steel steps!! Dain gets up with a sick grin, and he finally leaves. Referees help Riddle up, but nothing has been settled. Will Riddle be ready for the next time Big Damo pulls something like this?
NXT recaps the Breakout Tournament!
Of the incredibly stacked locker room at the WWE Performance Center, the top eight were chosen to compete in this inaugural and innovative tournament. Joaquin Wilde, Boa, Dexter Lumis, Bronson Reed, Angel Garza and Isaiah “Swerve” Scott were all ambitious hopefuls, but they all fell in the first two rounds. And the two who made it to the end are Jordan “Smiles for” Myles, and #CountryConfident, Cameron Grimes. The winner between these two men will have a shot at an NXT title of their choosing. There is only one more win for both men, and this final showdown goes down next week on NXT TV!
NXT shares the interview with the reunited #Breezango!
Tyler Breeze was in trouble against the Forgotten Sons, but Fandango made a heroic return to save his friend! Cathy Kelly is just as excited as the fans, but Prince Pretty and the Dancing King shush her. Breeze wants do know where ‘Dango has been! Fandango was in too deep, Breezy, he was in too deep. The Fashion Files got them obsessed with everyone else that they forgot themselves! What does he mean by that? Their fashion sense is wack. Wack? Yeah, it’s what the kids are saying these days. It means “bad.” They’re bad!? Yes. But Fandango is back to help Breeze with a makeover. Like a refresher? No, like Breezango Re-imagined! What will this new and improved Breezango be like when they take on the Forgotten Sons next week?
NXT presents Prime Target: Toronto!
The rivalry of Johnny Wrestling and Adam Cole BAYBAY was intense in New York and incredible in Connecticut. Gargano had to admit Cole was the better man that night. Cole is on top of NXT as the other Triple Crown Champion, while Gargano felt down in the dumps. But Cole couldn’t leave it at just having won. Cole wanted Gargano to realize he was not special, he was just a “second-rate Adam Cole.” Gargano questioned where he went from there. He scratched and clawed and finally hit the top, only to be knocked right back down. Gargano searched inside for who he really is. Cole would rub his victory in the faces of Gargano’s family and fans, but Gargano would go after Cole with frustration and fury. The only thing left for William Regal was to make Cole VS Gargano III, in a Three Stages of Hell! Each man chose a stipulation: Cole choose a standard wrestling match while Gargano choose a Street Fight. Should two falls not be enough, Regal himself will be there to choose the third and final stipulation. The trilogy will end one way or another, “may the best man win.”
For inspiration, Gargano looks at the NXT Hall of Champions, those alumni that have found incredible success on the main roster. Gargano wants to be the next superstar to change things, and he is already an inspiration and an encouragement to the superstars working their hardest in the Performance Center. Gargano’s goal is to leave NXT better than it was before. His dream of greatness dates back to childhood. As for Adam Cole, he had an entire Championship Celebration Tour BAYBAY just to show off that he IS the NXT Champion. All over the country, night after night, against superstar after superstar, Cole proved he’s the best. Gargano would talk with great champions of the past, such as Seth Rollins. Rollins warns Gargano that the Street Fight as the second match, that’s tough. As tough as Brock Lesnar? Well…
Finn Balor was another alumni who talked with Gargano about the progress Gargano has made. Finn knew Gargano would break out of midcard to top of the card soon enough. Gargano jokes that he might be able to break Finn’s record. Though that is a tall task in itself. For everything they’ve been through, you want that pressure because it means you’re the one!
Fans are torn, but Regal wants to see if Cole can survive given Gargano’s determination. Road Dogg knows Gargano is determined to cement his legacy. Kevin Owens doesn’t see this match staining Gargano’s legacy. Losing to Adam Cole is no shame. Kevin is a friend of Cole’s, so he knows him very well, and what Cole is willing to do to win. Tyler Breeze and Serena Deeb feel this match could go either way, and the winner defines this phase in NXT History. Coaches know this is going to be an instant classic either way, and the fans are the real winners. Gargano promises no one else is like him. Cole vows to go down as the greatest NXT Champion ever, no matter who is in his way! These two men are ready to take each other to Hell, but who survives the return home THE NXT Champion?
I’m surprised at this NXT go-home being so lacking. Two matches and only one actually happened? Just as many recap/hype packages as a “post” TakeOver episode? C’mon, NXT, you can do better than that. Thorne VS Wilde was a lot of fun, and of course Thorne wins, but then Damo just attacking Riddle to make it a No Contest, that’s not cool. Maybe this is to save the story for the next part of the year, but it just seems like the wrong time to do a swerve. Then to my surprise, the Breakout Tournament Finals aren’t at TakeOver but on the “post” TakeOver episode. That’s also a shame, but I suppose it’s to keep TakeOver itself the same five match format as always for time constraint reasons. Especially with the Three Stages of Hell we’ll be getting for Cole VS Gargano III, which will surely go a long, long time. But if that were the case, put the tournament finals tonight and have the winner watching from the crowd.
The packages themselves were great, of course, as expected of the production team in the WWE and NXT. Everyone was solid in their part, from the women’s title to the North American title to the grudge match of Shirai and Candice. Ford surprised me with how well he modified Road Dogg’s usual introduction. As for reDRagon, Fish and O’Reilly were falling flat there with the cliche “haha so funny I forgot to laugh” stuff. But with the passion shown by Ford during the contract signing, I feel like that just furthers reDRagon winning to keep the Undisputed Era’s prophecy going. Prime Target: Toronto was a great package, probably the best yet, and Gargano talking to Rollins and Finn, I can’t be sure if this means he wins or loses.
My Score: 8/10