HEAVY MACHINERY vs. THE MIGHTY- 4.25/10
I love Mauro Ranallo, but he needs to delete the phrase “it’s on like Donkey Kong” from his repertoire immediately. The thing that prompted Mauro to say this was Heavy Machinery charging at the Mighty to start things off, hoping to get revenge on The Mighty for not just cheating them out of a win but also for attacking one of them in the gym a few weeks ago (leading to a scheduled match becoming a handicap match against The Mighty, which The Mighty also won).
We got a big dive from Tucker Knight, but he eventually got cut off and worked over. Then the Street Profits showed up in the crowd and their music played and they had a party, which distracted The Mighty long enough for Knight to tag in Dozovic, who ran wild for a few moments, then Heavy Machinery hit their tag team finisher at the win. This finish was very “sports entertainment,” but I’m fine with those every once in a while, so long as you do it with guys who it feels like it works (and I think it worked here).
MOUSTACHE MOUNTAIN vs. STATE LINE- no rating, good semi-squash
State Line got just enough offense in on Trent Seven’s leg to remind us that it’s injured, then the babyfaces made their comeback and won.
MOUSTACHE MOUNTAIN PROMO- good
They’re still friends after losing the tag titles. They’re invoking their rematch clause at TakeOver.
EC III vs. KONA REEVES- 3/10
The Velveteen Dream interrupted the match to cut a promo on EC III. He said that if Ethan is upset at TVD walking out on him during their tag team match in the UK, he could “come to The Dream’s world” to talk about it… “and if you’re lucky, you might get to bask in the experience.” That phrasing seems oddly specific.
I figured this distraction would allow Reeves to roll Ethan up for the win, but Ethan kicked out, hit his finisher and won. Hooray for not basically repeating a finish in the same one-hour show.
EC III INTERVIEW- He says he will play TVD’s game, so we’re going to be getting some basking soon.
CANDICE LERAE vs. SHAYNA BASZLER- 7.5/10
Candice was her usual awesome babyface self and sold her arm very well, and Baszler was her usual excellent vicious, arrogant bully heel. I SOOOOO badly want to see these two have an epic, twenty-minute title match.
POST-MATCH SEGMENT- very good
Baszler put Candice in the Kirifuda Driver after the match for no reason other than to be an asshole. Kairi Sane ran out and made the save. Shayna came back and kicked Kairi while she was checking on Candice, and the Kairi had to be restrained by the referees while Baszler retreated.
MOUSTACHE MOUNTAIN INTERVIEW- They cut a good promo saying they would win the tag titles and were then confronted by the War Raiders. Hanson said that the War Raiders would destroy whoever came out of Brooklyn with the tag belts.
WILLIAM REGAL MAKES SOME ANNOUNCEMENTS- both Cole vs. Ricochet for the North American Championship and EC III vs. The Velveteen Dream are official for Takeover.
KEITH LEE DEBUTS NEXT WEEK- f*ck yeah!
TOMMASO CIAMPA PROMO/ CLOSING SEGMENT- good
He jaws with the crowd, including getting in the face of a stunt-granny at ringside. Aleister Black came out but Johnny Gargano ran right past him and sent Ciampa scurrying. Johnny grabbed a mic and made sure Ciampa knew that “THE ONLY REASON YOU’RE NXT CHAMPION IS BECAUSE OF ME!” So Aliester Black kicked Johnny in the face (and the fans chanted “you deserve it!”).
Another fine episode of NXT, moving things right along for Takeover while also providing some very fun wrestling.
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