This is far from a 9 Deuce, unless you want to call it a 9 minus Deuce. There’s not a ton of ground to cover, but we will do our best. Russ is busy reliving his glory from his Royal Rumble predictions, so it’s just Keri and I for this one. Let’s face it, this is the best outcome possible. Keri and I also cover the Royal Rumble in a blog, so you can check that out too. If you are more into the podcast thing, check out the one that Steve and I did on Are You Not Kentertained?
- Tye Dillinger vs Eric Young
Keri: This match was decent. Nothing crazy. Nothing over the top. This was my first introduction to Eric Young and I was sorta impressed. I did find Tye losing very disappointing though. Maybe I need to stop watching again so he gets a win. Rating: 4 out of 9.2
Kent: This match was fine for all intents and purposes, but it never hit that very good range in my opinion. Both guys are capable of much better matches. I feel that the outside interference actually hindered this match more than anything else. I liked the in ring stuff, but the other stuff just didn’t move the needle so to speak. This was a 4.8 and that may be generous. Tye needs a win at a Takeover. I don’t get it. People who want him in the Rumble, but why? He has demonstrated how many straight Takeovers that he can’t win. Yeah, he has faced some really good competition that needed to get over. So then you need to focus on Tye now. It’s strike while the iron is hot or forget about it.
- Roderick Strong vs Andrade Cien Almas
Keri: This match was also decent. This was my first introduction to Strong and I was impressed. The guy is pretty good. Also, it looks like Andrade has also improved since I saw him last. Rating: 4 out of 9.2
Kent: This match worked well for me. This was Roderick’s best showing so far at NXT and Andrade is money. Andrade can be a main card level player if they keep pushing him in the right direction. He’s really talented. ROderick is fine in ring, I don’t have anything to really say for him one way or the other. I’d rather Tye get the push over Roderick, but he was probably promised a push early in order to sign on. I’d give this one a 5.8.
- DIY vs The Authors of Pain
Keri: This match was amazing. It had everything that you expect from a match of the night. Great job to both teams. I’ve haven’t seen too much of the Authors of Pain but this match made me like them. Rating: 7 out of 9.2
Kent: What do you know, DIY is in the match of the night again. That’s not to take anything away from the main event, but this was just a good story, good pace, smart spots, and the crowd was eating it up. I feel that this did everything that the main event did, but better. If you only see one match from this night, this is the one to see. The Authors of Pain have come a long way in a short time. The big thing now is to be able to carry a match on their own accord. It’s like Baron Corbin and Braun. You see these power guys and there are steps to their evolution. Baron can now hang with the best and hold his own in a match. Braun is coming along much slower and still needs to be carried. The Authors are probably ahead of Braun, but not by much. Having the manager really adds to what they do. As for DIY, I worry about them. I think they would be better served as a tag team on 205 then to go main roster and flop. They are less charismatic and less over than Bayley. Bayley has had a rough transition. This would be way worse for DIY. They are talented as hell, but I fear that they will get lost in the shuffle. WWE needs to refocus on the tag division on both rosters and make them fun again. It’s not that hard. I’d give this match a 7.2.
- Seth Rollins segment
Keri: I found this slightly unexpected. I knew there was going to be a Rollins-Trips call out at some point after what happened on RAW but did not see it happening this way. With that being said, this segment actually made me start to care about this feud again. Decent job WWE.
Kent: I thought this was smart. It was unexpected. Everybody knows that HHH is going to be there for NXT, so it just made a lot of sense. The bad thing was whey placed it. I would have done it before the tag match, because DIY gets the crowd more pumped. It’s a minor quip. I don’t care at all about this feud, but all in all, it was a smart way of doing things. No rating.
- Asuka vs Nikki Cross vs Billie Kay vs Peyton Royce
Keri: This was a match of firsts for me. First time seeing Asuka in months and she is still a badass. This was my introduction to Nikki Cross and she did not disappoint. I like this Sanity stable. I feel this is what the Wyatts could have been if Creative took the time to book them properly and they added a Sister Abigail. Also, it was my first time seeing Billie and Peyton since they started with NXT. I’m very impressed with how far they have come in such a short amount of time. They are the NXT mean girls and they are fantastic. With that being said, this match was good up to the ending. The ending well it happened. That is really all I can say about that. Rating: 5.5 out of 9.2
Kent: And this is where things went to shit. I hated this match.I liked seeing Nikki do work, as I think she’s not up to Asuka, yet, but may be on par with Ember or just below. As for Billie and Peyton, I am high on Billie, but this match did her no favors. If anything, it highlighted Peyton briefly, and she did great. The problem with this match was the booking and pacing. Stop doing this Charlotte and Sasha bullshit. Big spots are not the answer to women’s wrestling. It will doom it more than help it. Nikki is good with the spots, and good in the ring with Asuka. The double suplex off the announce desk was stupid. It’s slanted and neither Peyton nor Billie looked comfortable. “They drove Nikki through that table.” No they didn’t, and every replay showed it clear as day. They held her up and just waited until she was ready and she just fell basically. Billie and Peyton didn’t add any oomph to the move. They didn’t act like they added anything. It looked terrible.That’s a damn shame because that could have been awesome, but I just don’t think they were comfortable with it while watching it. I hated early on that Billie and Peyton did jackshit. The whole thing just was an irrational mess. It wasn’t any of their fault for the booking. Damn shame because I wanted to love this. Peyton needs to tone down the yelling because we don’t need another Kelly Kelly or Brie Bella. I think Brie was the biggest offender and should be put down for it. I give this wreck a 2.9. Sorry, I wanted to love it.
- Bobby Roode vs Shinsuke Nakamura
Keri: Ah, the battle of the amazing entrances. I have to say Roode’s entrance was good and Shinsuke’s was kinda disappointing. Where were my violins? I wanted more violins. Oh well onto the match. This match started out really slow. I was actually worried that this match would not meet my expectations. But then it picked up and I found it enjoyable. Then we had the injury angle part of the match. This was unfortunate and, in my opinion, took a little something away from the match. With that being said though, I was happy to see Roode win this one. I have a feeling we will see a rematch at the next Takeover and then Shinsuke will move up to the main roster. Rating: 6.5 out of 9.2
Kent: Let’s talk entrances first. Bobby’s involved 8 women in lovely dresses, half of which looked petrified or worse, like just unhappy to be there. Like, what the fuck happened there? Those girls should have been all smiles and happy to help make it look like Bobby is some playboy. The black chick on the right side, and at least 2 white chicks on the left looked borderline miserable. I hope that they are never utilized again, aside by Roode for his after match celebration. I hope they are cooking, cleaning, putting out, and not talking. If they aren’t doing those things, pay them and give them the boot. Shinsuke’s was cool in theory, but it hurt the shit out of my head, which sucks. It did look cool, but I couldn’t handle it. Therefore, advantage goes to Roode. In ring, the first 25% was dull, then Bobby really got into a groove and Shinsuke seemed to thrive off of it and it got really good. In my head, I am thinking that this is going to steal the show, plus I was waiting Samoa Joe. Instead, Shinsuke landed a sloppy knee, I think he may have actually slipped a bit. Then he “injured” his knee. I am fine with this angle, but you gotta make it believable. The ref blew it. He should have immediately came out, checked on Shinsuke and threw up the X sign. Yes, that is what they do for real injuries, but they have worked it into angles in the past. At the very least, teh ref should have come out fairly immediately. They are taught to do that just to check on the guys if anything looks rough. So right there, I knew it was fake. Then they spent such an inordinate amount of time with the doctor. It sapped away the momentum and energy from the match. Yeah, it was good for the most part. I loved Bobby punching the knee in the half crab, although I don’t get why he didn’t go figure four there. I give the match a 6.1 because it was on pace for a 7 something, but then they blew it, and then it dragged on. Once again, this was a damn shame. Roode got into a great groove and he was killing it. Proof that you don’t need to 20 indy flippity fuckeroos to get yourself over.
- Final thoughts and overall rating
Keri: Let me start out by saying I haven’t watched NXT in months. The last takeover I watched was Takeover: Brooklyn II and I found this one to be lacking in comparison with its predecessors. With that being said, there were some decent matches and the booking was decent as well. So, final rating: 6 out of 9.2
Kent: This is from top to bottom, the worst NXT event that I have seen as far as Takeovers go. Nothing really felt special or big to me. Aside from the tag match, no other match was great. The tag match isn’t even must see or match of the year contender. It was just a solid match. The ratings that I gave average out to a 5.36 and sadly, that seems about right, so I add a little to that for the Rollins segment, I think 5.8 is fair. I wish it was better, but I had low expectations heading in. No Way Jose vs Elias Sampson would have really helped, as would Revival vs TM61 or any other tag team. The talent is there, they need to do better angles.
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