Undisputed Era vs Lorcan & Burch was a hard hitting brawl. I'm writing from memory so...Other than a segment in the beginning where UE worked over Burch, I have NO clue if anyone ever controlled the match. In my mind they just kept hitting eachother back and forth. The crowd was there for UE, but you could tell that as the match went on, they got more into the other guys. It ended when UE hit a total elimination style double team move. The crowd gives a good ovation for Lorcan & Burch.
Ricochet vs Velveteen Dream. LOVE the promo before the match. Where Ricochet sorta acknowledges that until now he was pretty much a super flippy guy and he wants to prove he's more. Velveteen in the meantime says he is the Dream and thus better at everything. Love how they show indy Ricochet stuf and Tough Enough VD stuff.
Dream rips off Hogan this time around and then we start the match. Great story where Velveteen tries to show he is as much a flyer as Ricochet is. Including the sick 'one foot on the 2nd rope then flip forward w/o hitting the ropes' move but only not as smooth (well doh) Ricochet in the mean time is slow out of the gates but eventually flies through VD a few times to get the upper hand. They start one upping one another and stealing moves until finally Ricochet hits the 630 senton for the win.
Women's championship match, Shayna Baszler vs Nikki Cross. I don't know. It was solid, it was fun with Nikki being insane and just doing her thing, but I don't really care for Shayna so I zoned out a tiny bit. It felt like they are setting up a story though but then again Cross went out so who knows.
Aleister Black defends against Lars Sullivan and at first I wasn't sure about this one. I think Lars is okay but not always. Sometimes he feels a bit green. This wasn't one of those nights. They worked the "can the champ hit the big man" angle well even though the "omg he blocks Black Mass" story is silly. I never really thought Sullivan would win, but they made him a good threat and hurdle for Black to overcome. After several tries he finally kicked Lars against the skull and got the win.
Ciampa vs Gargano Wow...from the get go they went crazy. This was not your generic WWE street fight. This felt like a war. Lots of items, lots of hard hitting, including near the end Ciampa exposing the wood of the ring itself. They fight up the ramp where they sort of rehash last year's break-up. Gargano destroys Ciampa through a table but doesn't allow them to wheel him out. He cuffs him and almost breaks him in the ring but there's no ref. Then ofcourse when the ref returns, it's Ciampa who spikes Johnny onto the exposed wood and 1-2-3. This isn't over yet is it? Please..fight forever. Nothing I can say can do this justice. So much hatred and emotion between these two. Wow just wow.
The tag match was great, but everything after that felt too long. I applaud the crazy hotspots everyone was willing to do, but there was a lot of unnecessary drama to get to them. The main event was kind of dumb. The effort was there, but they really tried to drive home the this is epic, but it probably would have been just fine in half the time. This was a Takeover that tried harder than it probably needed to.
I thought the first two matches were great while the championship matches were decent enough but felt like they knew they were both just filler matches so there was no point in going all out. I'm not a huge fan of garbage wrestling, but the story told in the main event, with Gargano going too far and stooping to Ciampa's level only to pay for it in the end, was great. I'm not sure where they go from here. Last man standing? NXT's first Hell in a Cell? I wouldn't mind Regal issuing a proclamation that the two of them aren't allowed to fight any more and if either of them touches the other, he's fired, until one of them wins the title and the other becomes #1 contender.
Addendum: I will note that when one of the commentators said something about Lars Sullivan being intelligent, I wondered wtf they were talking about. But he did a few things int he match that did actually come off as intelligent, so I appreciate that aspect of the character.
Finally got a chance to catch up on this (Sidebar: three hours of live wrestling followed by watching Takeover immediately before watching Money in the Bank is TOO MUCH WRESTLING). Most of my initial thoughts about circling for Brooklyn bore out, I think, but overall it was a solid show. Dream/Ricochet was for sure my match of the night, but Gargano and Ciampa tore the house down again. I want everyone to take a moment and realize that this was probably Gargano's worst match of 2018. That's the year this guy's been having. I absolutely loved the wedding ring spot.
Interesting note - wrestling really lets you know who the good guy is by who "wins" on the big, dangerous spots. Back in New Orleans, Gargano had the clear moral authority in the match. He got the better of the concrete spot, the exposed turnbuckle spot, and the knee brace at the end. In this match, he was hoist on his own petard with garbage can, and despite being the one to set it up, Ciampa got the advantage on the exposed wooden timbers. The only time the match was "cheering" for Gargano was the wedding ring spot into the big crash, and when Gargano didn't let up, the match turned on him again. I think that's some neat storytelling.
I am very interested to see how this whole thing wraps up in Brooklyn.
I haven't really followed NXT, but Meltzer was all over twitter talking about Gargano, and I've never (that I recall) seen him wrestle. I tuned in just as they were doing the video review thing. Was expecting a classic and it was definitely a fun match to watch. No rooting interest so it was hard to get into it too much but DAMN the bit where he took his wedding ring, spit on it, and threw it was the most heel thing I've seen in ages.
Overall a good, fun match, where the ending wasn't quite what I had expected.
Once again a tremendous card. Dream vs Ricochet and Gargano vs Ciampa both exceeded my already irrationally high expectations.
That tag match though, that was DOPE. Was thinking going in that "this'll be alright I guess, but whose taking Birch and Lorcan seriously here?" and ended with "DANNNNNNNNNNG". match was gangbusters. Especially loved the spot where Lorcan had Strong in the half crab and O'Reilly boots him in the face....and Lorcan just looks at O'Reilly and screams right back while keeping the hold (and O'Reilly once again sells the story further).
Originally posted by Tenken347I am very interested to see how this whole thing wraps up in Brooklyn.
I'd say Hell in a Cell, but with Wargames coming back it seems as if that NXT could dig into the past and look at another gimmick match to end this fued.