Saturday, June 01, 2019

NXT Takeover XXV Recap

Matt Riddle vs. Roderick Strong was the first match tonight for the 25th NXT Takeover event.  Strong tried to impose his will on Riddle early on backing him into the corner with chops to his chest, but Riddle fought out and drove Strong to the outside with three gutwrench suplexes.  Riddle continued his attack with a forearm to Strong's face, but Strong was able to take control by slamming Riddle on to the ring apron.  Strong focused his offense on Riddle's back with a series of back breakers and an Angle slam, but Riddle kept fighting back with thrust kicks to the face.  Riddle hit a fireman's carry into a knee strike and a German suplex, but Strong stayed in it.

Strong backed Riddle into the ropes and hit a vicious jumping knee to the face followed by several elbows and a slam to the mat, but it was not enough to put Riddle away.  Riddle tried to make Strong tap out to his Bromission, but the focused attack on his back allowed Strong to fight out.  Riddle would continue to persevere and looked like he was going for a tombstone piledriver, but he locked his arms together and drove Strong to the mat for the pin.

Bobby Fish and Kyle O'Reilly of The Undisputed Era looked to become two time NXT Tag Champs when they faced The Forgotten Sons, The Street Profits and Danny Burch and Oney Lorcan.  This ladder match for the vacant NXT Tag Team Championships started with Fish and O'Reilly taking control early clearing the ring with kicks and knee strikes.  Wesley Blake of The Forgotten Sons ended their momentum with a suicide dive to the outside of the ring taking out Fish and O'Reilly.  The Forgotten Sons brought a ladder into play using it as a weapon taking out their competition until Burch and Lorcan hit a double German suplex with a ladder wrapped around their necks.  The Street Profits were not to be outdone as Angelo Dawkins hit a top rope dive onto their opponents and Montez Ford hit a blockbuster from the top rope.

The momentum shifted in the favor of Blake and Steve Cutler when Jaxson Ryker came to the ring and laid out their opponents which led to a temporary alliance by the other teams to eliminate him.
Fish and O'Reilly battled Burch and Lorcan at the top of the ladder until The Forgotten Sons knocked both teams to the outside.  Dawkins reentered the ring with a spear to Cutler and Ford did a springboard from the top rope on to the ladder.  Ford knocked Blake off the ladder and grab the championships to become the new tag champs.

Tyler Breeze returned to NXT to face The Velveteen Dream for his NXT North American Championship.  The showmanship between Breeze and Dream was on full display as Dream threw his glove in Breeze's face during his entrance and Breeze would pose on the top rope and signal with his foot for Dream to back away from him.  Breeze looked as aggressive as he has ever been with stomps in the corner to Dream as the referee tried to get him to back up.  Dream stopped Breeze's onslaught by going to the outside and Breeze ate a superkick when he chased him out of the ring.  Dream would then slam Breeze's head on the commentator's table before making his way back into the ring.  It looked like Dream was going to make quick work of Breeze after hitting a Death Valley driver, but Breeze was able to kick out.

Even though Dream tried to put Breeze away with is own finisher using a double under hook of his arms and driving his face into the mat, the savvy vet would not go away easily.  Breeze got back into the match by hitting Dream with a superkick and a spinning heel kick, but Dream rolled to the outside to by himself a breather.  Dream grabbed The North American Championship and tried to attack Breeze with it, but he saw it coming and after the ref grabbed the title from Breeze, he turned around into another Death Valley Driver and a top rope elbow from Dream for the win.

The only two time NXT Women's Champion in history Shayna Baszler defended her title against Io Shirai.  Baszler toyed with Shirai early on by pretending to go for a kick to the head only to lightly tap her head with her foot.  Shirai showed that she was not going to be intimidated by responding with a slap to Baszler's face.  Baszler took control by stomping on Shirai's elbow and focused her attack on it throughout the match.  After having her elbow worked over, Shirai got back into the fight with a missile dropkick from the top rope and a moonsault to the outside. 

When it looked like Shirai was closing in on a victory, Jessamyn Duke and Marina Shafir tried to get involved, but were attacked with a kendo stick by Candice LeRae.  Shirai refocused her attention on Baszler and went for another moonsault, but she came up empty even though she landed on her feet.  Shirai was able to counter Baszler's Kurafuto Clutch submission earlier in the match into a pin attempt, but Baszler locked it in again and forced her to tap out.

Adam Cole vs. Johnny Gargano for The NXT Championship was the main event and they started off countering each other's every move to avoid a fatal blow early on.  Gargano worked on Cole's elbow by stomping on it when Cole had his arm on the ring apron.  Gargano would continue to attack Cole's elbow to set up his submission The Gargano Escape.  Cole would counter back landing a superkick to Gargano's knee to even the odds.  These men know each other so well as both would pump fake the other and land superkicks as the battle went on.  After getting hit with a slingshot spear from Gargano, Cole was able to use a torcher rack into a knee to Gargano's face.

Cole and Gargano were going on adrenaline as Cole countered Gargano's face lock submission into a figure four leglock only for Gargano to reverse the pressure by turning Cole on his stomach.  Cole looked like he was going to put the finishing touches on the match with superkick after superkick only for Gargano to bounce off the ropes into a clothesline turning Cole inside out.  The fight spilled to the outside and Cole landed springboard into a sunset flip piledriver on the mat. Cole rolled Gargano back into the ring, but he was able to kick out.  Gargano applied the Gargano Escape again only for Cole to attack his previously injured knee to break the hold. 

After Gargano took out the referee in an attempt to hit a suicide dive on Cole, he dodged a chair shot and hit a superkick, but the referee was unable to recover to count the three for Gargano to retain.  Gargano and Cole traded superkicks again and Gargano was able to hit a spiked hurricanrana only for Cole to bounce up and hit a running knee to the head.  Cole's damage to Gargano's knee was too much as he eventually hit another springboard sunset flip piledriver and a running knee to win his first NXT Championship.  The 25th NXT Takeover event was as great as many of the previous Takeover events.

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