All good things must come to an end. Just ask Finn Balor, who had his NXT Championship stolen from him by Samoa Joe at a live event last month. When these two get inside the first ever Steel Cage match in NXT history, there will be no stopping Joe and Balor from tearing each other to pieces. Also, the Greatest Man That Ever Lived, Austin Aries goes one on one with the King of Strong Style, Shinsuke Nakamura, and Aries will learn that when you come at the King you had best not miss. That’s not to even mention, Asuka defending her new Women’s Title against the monstrous Nia Jax, and The Revival attempting to get their Tag Titles back from the team of Jason Jordan and Chad “Ready, Willing and” Gable, collectively known as American Alpha. Plus, the debut of Andrade “Cien” Almas (fka La Sombra), when he goes up against the Perfect Ten, Tye Dillinger.
+ American Alpha (Jason Jordan and Chad Gable) (c) vs The Revival (Scott Dawson and Dash Wilder) (NXT Tag Team Championship): these two teams had a hell of a match at the previous event, and this was even better. The full sail crowd is insanely behind American Alpha, and booed everything The Revival did. This was a real tag team match, with strong emphasis on teamwork. Fantastic match
+ Andrade “Cien” Almas vs Tye Dillinger: Dillinger was a great opponent for the former La Sombra. Aside from a rather bland finish, this was a short but sweet match. Almas is definitely someone to watch
– Samoa Joe (c) vs Finn Bálor (Steel Cage Match) (NXT Championship): look, WWE style cage matches are just stupid. They make no sense. In that regard, this was more of the same. After their previous match was stopped for being too intense, this needed to be something huge, and it just wasn’t. This just felt very standard for a feud-ending cage match, even if the finish was impressive
– Shinsuke Nakamura vs Austin Aries: this match started off very slow, and despite a few high spots it all fell very flat to me. A few in-universe stupid decisions from both competitors left me scratching my head-
– Asuka (c) vs Nia Jax (NXT Women’s Championship): this was simply put not a good match. There was no split crowd, as with Bayley/Asuka, and Jax/Asuka just didn’t mesh very well. This was more or less just a filler match
> it is still surreal to me that four of the five matches on a (essentially) WWE show feature former international wrestlers. Samoa Joe, Price Devitt (Finn Balor), KANA (Asuka), Nakamura and Aries are all huge stars from various promotions around the world. I never thought I’d see the day
Should you watch this event: Maybe the name was significant after all, because when it’s all said and done this was the end of the TakeOver special’s streak of good events. The tag match was one of the best matches of the year, but the rest was either average or worse. Disappointing, but not worth your time.