NXT Takeover: Brooklyn Recap

It was billed as the biggest night in NXT’s history, and boy did it live up to that immense billing. NXT traveled outside of their home base at Full Sail University to host its first Takeover event on the road, and the high expectations heading into Brooklyn were not only reached but surpassed twice over. From the opening contest to the main event, it was certainly a night that no fan of the developmental roster or performer will forget in a hurry.

The night was capped off by two main event championship clashes, both worthy of headlining such a pivotal show for NXT. The final match of the night was for the NXT Championship, which was hanging tantalizingly over the ring, up for grabs under the stipulation of a ladder match. Finn Balor defended his coveted gold against former champion Kevin Owens in what was certain to be a physical encounter. It would share top billing with the night’s penultimate match, as Bayley looked to reach the summit of women’s wrestling for the first time when she battled Sasha Banks for the NXT Women’s Championship.

As for the remainder of the card, the third and final championship match was for the Tag Team titles, placing Blake & Murphy as the defending unit opposite the Vaudevillains. Samoa Joe and Baron Corbin engage in a clash of the powerhouses, Jushin “Thunder” Liger makes his WWE debut against Tyler Breeze, and Apollo Crews also makes his bow in NXT in a match against “the Perfect 10” Tye Dillinger.

Quick Results

  • Jushin “Thunder” Liger defeats Tyler Breeze
  • The Vaudevillains defeat NXT Tag Team Champions Blake & Murphy (New Champions)
  • Apollo Crews defeats Tye Dillinger
  • Samoa Joe defeats Baron Corbin
  • Bayley defeats NXT Women’s Champion Sasha Banks (New Champion)
  • NXT Champion Finn Balor defeats Kevin Owens

Jushin “Thunder” Liger vs Tyler Breeze

Highlights

Breeze’s entrances are so impressive and inventive

Liger mocking Breeze by laying across the top turnbuckle, and later using the Selfie Stick

Surfboard stretches by Liger pulling hard at Breeze

Supermodel kick rocking Liger

Impressive modified backstabber by Breeze, very innovative

Breeze relentless in his strikes in the corner for his legendary rival

Running senton off the apron from Liger taking down Breeze

Crowd Reaction

The fans loving Liger’s blend of supreme wrestling skill and comedy showmanship

Breeze attempting to rip Liger’s mask off got many in the audience excited

“Full Sail Sucks” a very proud New York audience

Low Points

Perhaps could have been longer, with Breeze getting more chance to shine in the closing exchanges

Finish

Liger defeats Breeze after hitting the Liger Bomb

Rating – 3/5

Blake & Murphy vs The Vaudevillains (NXT Tag Team Championships)

Highlights

Impressive leg dexterity by Gotch to transition Blake into an armbar

Brilliant double armdrag by English to take down both champions

Blake & Murphy combing for an elevated neckbreaker to English

Gotch slamming both members of Blake & Murphy off the turnbuckle with a bomb, followed by a senton by English

Blue Pants slaps Alexa Bliss in the face to finally gain retribution for the Vaudevillains

Crowd Reaction

The fans clapping along buoyantly to the Vaudevillains’ entrance, whilst heartily booing Blake & Murphy

The arrival of Blue Pants was one of the biggest pops of the night, followed by “Blue Pants City”

Low Points

Most of Blake & Murphy’s offense still fairly generic and unexciting when in control

Finish

The Vaudevillains combine with the Whirling Dervish to win the Tag Team titles

Rating – 3.5/5

Apollo Crews vs Tye Dillinger

Highlights

The “Perfect 10” gimmick of Dillinger has caught on perfectly with the NXT fans

Amazing athleticism by Crews with a cartwheel and back flip out of the corner

Dillinger dropkicking Crews down when he attempts to springboard in

Big straight kick by Dillinger, soon to be matched by a jumping enziguri by Crews

Crowd Reaction

Chants of “Ten” rain down from the Brooklyn crowd

Low Points

Would prefer to see something more from Crews’ finisher, but a very polished debut overall

Finish

A Gorilla Press by Crews, followed by a standing moonsault earns him a debut victory

Rating – 2.5/5

Samoa Joe vs Baron Corbin

Highlights

Joe with a flipping enziguri in the corner, followed by a running dropkick to send Corbin to the floor

Joe transitioning a roll-up attempt into a half Boston crab, then applies a crossface

Joe trips Corbin up on the ring apron then hurls him into the barricade

Corbin lulls Joe into a heel lock submission hold

Corbin connects with a spinning sideslam for a two count

Crowd Reaction

“Joe is going to kill you” rings around the arena as Corbin is emphatically booed

Chanting Joe with every quick jab he connects with

Low Points

A very slow pace at the beginning, but did pick up steam towards the conclusion

Finish

After Corbin hits a double-handed chokeslam, his pin attempt is reversed into the Coquina Clutch to earn Joe a submission victory

Rating – 2.5/5

Sasha Banks vs Bayley (NXT Women’s Championship)

Highlights

Excellent bonus for these Divas to be given an introduction by Stephanie McMahon

Banks’ entrance with a car and entourage was so well choreographed

Bayley hits a springboard elbow to a hung up Banks in the turnbuckle

Banks lands a kick knocking Bayley hard off the apron to the floor before mocking her rival, constantly berating her

Banks drops the knees across Bayley on the top of the turnbuckle, rather than the middle ropes

Banks focuses the attack on Bayley’s hand, crushing it against the ring steps

Bayley throws Banks into the turnbuckle with a suplex

Banks locks in the Bank Statement, smashing her foot onto Bayley’s injured hand, before Bayley reverses it into a painful crossface

Bayley connects with the Bayley-2-Belly, but Banks still has enough to kick out

Bayley attempts a hurricarana from the top rope but crashes down, before Banks lands on her with a double knee drop

Crowd Reaction

Fans split between both performers, with Bayley and Banks both incredibly popular

The crowd was louder throughout the entirety of this match than at any other point in the night, no doubt

“This is wrestling”, “This is awesome” and “NXT” chants constant

Low Points

Nothing, it was flawless, and any mistakes were lost to the story being told

Finish

Bayley throws Banks off the top rope with a reverse hurricanrana, followed by the Bayley-2-Belly to win the NXT Women’s Championship. Charlotte and Becky Lynch join her for celebrations, as does Banks with a respectful hug, with the crowd applauding the Four Horsewomen of NXT.

Rating – 5/5

Finn Balor vs Kevin Owens (NXT Championship)

Highlights

Finn Balor’s entrance – speaks for itself really

Wrestling without ladders to begin with, highlighted by cannonball’s in the corner and the Sling Blade

Owens teases running up the ladder onto Balor, but just produces a punch to the face

Owens launches Balor straight over the announce table, but later Balor runs across the table with a dropkick through a ladder into Owens

Somersault plancha over the top rope by Balor onto Owens

Owens connects with a running senton drop on Balor laid across a ladder

Owens misses a cannonball in the corner, hitting the ladder leaning there, and then suffers the Coup de Grace

Balor ascends to try and grab the belt, but is yanked off into a powerbomb

Owens hits another powerbomb, this time his patented one against the ring apron

Crowd Reaction

Again a very split crowd that admired the talents of both performers

Crowd turned on Owens when he mocks the injury to Sami Zayn when the “Ole” chants begin

A lot of “Ooohs” from the crowd following some scary spots with the ladder

Low Points

I think some fight broke out in the stands at some point, or somebody tried to get involved and ruin the show, but neither Balor or Owens should take any blame for that

Finish

Owens attempts a fisherman hook suplex from the top of the ladder, but Balor pushes him off onto a ladder set across a turnbuckle pad. Balor then lands a Coup de Grace from the top, then collects his championship.

Rating – 4/5

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