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NXT TAKEOVER: RESPECT

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One of these days these Takeover shows will disappoint. Tonight was not that night

Sasha/Bayley I still MOTY

Sasha still WOTY

This is feud of the year

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Sorry for my sometimes hard-to-read stream-of-consciousness notes for yet another show. 

 

I love that NXT matches have so much good limb/joint work in them on these big shows. Thought the Mechanics showed good fire and kept up the pace, which made sense as they wanted to try and put these guys away and not fuck around. It was just getting distracted that led to Joe tagging in and their eventual loss.

 

I wanted to see Baby Lesnar wrestle Baron Corbin one-on-one after that opening exchange. OK, Full Sail chanting GA-BLE to the cadence of "Medal" was actually pretty awesome. I know everyone loves Chad Gable and I do too, but Jason Jordan looks like he will be a star one day and has WWE Champion written all over him. Pace was slower at first, but it made sense with the bigger guys in here, and Jordan and Gable had nice double-team stuff. Gable has nice offense, actually, and was good working the arm here as well. That finishing run was fucking HOT. Thought it was over on the weird Bossman-slam thing and then on the INSANE Gable reversal into a deadlift German suplex. Corbin and Rhyno winning kinda killed it though. Really bummed me out a bit. Then again, if Joe's turning on Finn, this guarantees that he won't get cheered for helping the opposing team win. On the other hand, they should have chosen a heel team that's an actual tag team, like the Mechanics, for this spot instead. 

 

We need to talk more about Corbin though because he is getting better every day, too. Damn, I loved that match. 

 

I feel like Asuka already might be a top-five person in the company in terms of charisma, non-New Day division of course. That was a really, really fun competitive squash. Asuka just looks and acts so differently from everyone else in the ring, just how she moves around the ring and stuff. I look forward to her chopping down Nia Jax for the Women's Championship six months from now. Dana looked good too. She's rapidly getting better, and having to wrestle Asuka can only help her improve. 

 

Guess Nia Jax will be killing Bayley next week. 

 

Both Breeze and Crews needed wins here, so I'm not sure how this matchup was a good idea. Crews has been a great athlete, but not necessarily a great wrestler so far, so I was looking for a big match here from him against Breeze, who I think at this point is good for having a good match every time out. Breeze was really good at playing a sort of wily vet role, actually, like him floating over and trying to schoolboy Crews, then following up with rolling Crews out of the ring when he was blocked. Crews bumped big and has all the pieces to be a star between bumping, flashy offense, and charisma at this point. Breeze busting out a Sharpshooter was dope, and the back work cutting down Apollo's athletic ability and allowing Breeze to stay a step ahead was actually really clever layout of the match. 

 

I also love that Breeze once again got frustrated off a near-fall, got off his game plan, and then got beaten. This has happened every time he's had a big loss at these specials for the past year or so, and I really hope that they do one last storyline for him where he corrects this and then finally beats Bálor or whomever for the NXT Title as a "Thank you for being a bedrock down here in NXT for so long" title reign before he's called up.

 

Four fantastic matches already.

 

Finn kept the leg selling up fairly well. The match didn't really pick up until Rhyno took out Finn's knee, IMO. Corbin should be a more consistent striker. Sometimes, he looks really good, but other times, he's REALLY lose, like a couple of his kicks that clearly didn't even touch Bálor's knee. I don't get Joe and Finn winning. Total letdown. Usually, the booking in NXT is on point, but this tournament was an example of that. Not a bad match or anything, but without an accompanying angle, it was worthless. Even if the bookers think, "Hey, we want a face team to win this because it really is to honor Dusty and not to facilitate an angle," Enzo and Cass should have been the choice to win it. Meh. 

 

Thought Cody had a great speech and loved the photo op at the end with the trophy. I hate to say this, but seeing Cody be so genuine makes the thought of watching shitty, over-the-top Stardust even less desirable than it already was. 

 

Stephanie desperately trying to leech off the heat of everyone from The New Day to Sasha Banks and Bayley is pretty sad. 

 

Because of the NXT specials and stuff, this was kind of surreal at first. It's like there's a meta "They're all just buddies forging a new path for women's wrestling in the U.S." thing that gets mixed in with the idea that these two really want to beat each other. The crowd, which I thought was AWESOME most of the night, didn't help with the "Women's Wrestling" and "You Deserve It" chants. It kinda hurt the match in the sense that I came in thinking about it more as a match where "acceptance of women's wrestling as serious performance art" was the important prize on the line as opposed to the NXT Women's Championship being the important prize on the line. 

 

Sasha is going to try and kill herself with these head drops every big match. The chain wrestling wasn't the cleanest, but it was fine, and I did like that they knew each other well enough that even going for quick pinfalls, they were kicking out quickly and countering early finisher attempts. Then Sasha faked a respect handshake to gain the advantage, which I feel is when this match really picked up. Then Sasha being like FUCK IT and trying to cheat her way to a pinfall from then on was great, leading up to the eye poke and rollup. I'd like to pretend that Sasha asked Kevin Owens for some advice before this match. 

 

Sasha turning up the old school heelness with the cheating and using the stairs and talking shit to the little Bayley fan was pretty fantastic, too. HOLY SHIT, did Sasha steal Izzy's bow and then throw it at her?! Like shit man, that was fucking great! Fuck, this match is now certified awesome. Sasha stomping on hands to put on a Walls of Jericho and shit, man, I can't handle it. This almost never happens anymore in WWE. Then the desperation Bayley pinfall was out of nowhere and great. 

 

Fuck this crowd, which had been good all night, for trying to make a statement in the middle of a hot match. Sasha Banks is making kids cry and you stop to chant "BETTER THAN RAW" and "THIS IS WRESTLING." Man, fuck off.

 

Anyway, this match just felt violent once Sasha went off. Bayley was very aggressive and I felt like the story became Bayley just having too much fire and determination and anger as Sasha was just trying to survive. I did think rolling Sasha into the ropes after the top-rope B2B was really obvious though. This wasn't the cleanest match in spots, but it did have a lot of raw emotion. 

 

Man, that ending...whoo, Bayley was NASTY spiking the fingers to get out of the Banks Statement and then locking in that chickenwing and jamming Sasha's injured hand to get the final tapout. I kinda wish they didn't bother with some of the highspot flippy stuff and went straight to trying to rip each other's hands and arms off after Sasha went nuts and started making kids cry.

 

Also, I was thinking, "Hey was Izzy in on that whole thing," but she looked both relieved and slightly traumatized after the match, like totally emotionally drained. Not even Streep and Day-Lewis are that good at acting.

 

I don't even know where to place this in the Sasha Banks catalog of matches in 2015, but she's had the best year of anyone in the WWE this year. vs. Lynch, 4-Way vs. Lynch, Charlotte, and Bayley, and the two matches vs. Bayley are already enough volume combined with quality that I don't think anyone else has reached it. Then she has at least two awesome regular NXT TV matches with Charlotte that were good too, and all for different reasons. She's worked joint/limbwork heavy matches, high-spot dramatic matches, she's worked old-school heel matches, even a brawl with Charlotte. She's so good. It's a shame that she'll be wasted on the big show. 

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That was an awesome show. I loved Asuka's debut. It was the best debut I can recall seeing in NXT and Dana's best match so far.

 

Loved Bayley/Sasha. I thought it was great how they managed to work such a different match from Takeover Brooklyn.

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This pro wrestling shit can be really good sometimes, eh?  ZERO complaints, other than none of the "established" teams making the finals.

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I feel like Izzy was kinda in on it... like, they probably told her they were going to do something, but not what exactly, so her emotion was still legit.

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Sasha made an 8 year old cry. Match of the decade.

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Also, as shitty as the Full Sail crowd got at the end there, they were at least hot all night. I'll take Full Sail over the dead crowds that barely pop for anything on your typical RAW ten times out of ten. 

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Copied from the other thread:

 

4 Things...

 

1. If you want to keep up with the "Dana isn't better than Eva", fuck off. 

 

2. It was nice to not see any over booked shennangans in the tag tourny or final, those matches didn't need it.

 

3. Baron Corbin sold me, boy came to play tonight.

 

4.  It's fucking criminal what goes on on the Main Roster with how fucking awesome that Ironman was.  

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On first watch I would say NXT: Brooklyn match was better but Sasha's heel work was absolutely fantastic and the finishing sequence with her unable to lock in the Bank Statement and then nearly getting her hand ripped off by Bayley was so fucking awesome. 

 

Goddamn the countout win was great too.  Stealing Izzy's bow and all.  lol

 

Another great, great show.. 

 

That Dusty trophy is one of the best damn trophies I've seen.  

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Of all the other stuff that happened on the show - I definitely want to make mention of Dana Brooke who was really good in a spot that I don't think enough people are going to give her credit for

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Also, I fucking LOVE that Bayley went and lifted a Zack Sabre Jr move for the finish.

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The only complaint I have on this show was Gable and Jordan losing in the semis.  If you are going to do a show long angle about Balor knee it would make sense to have them there.   Balor & Joe winning seems kind of cliche but to be honest the faces always won the Crockett Cup.

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Excellent show.

 

The main didn't feel like 30 minutes to me. Sasha's heel work was 5 notches above anyone else in the company. It wasn't the cleanest match ever, but I loved it so many great call backs with new counters thrown in. Sasha is the best worker in the company imo.

 

Gable and Jordan losing sucked, but they looked awesome as babyfaces. Really fun opener, and a great showing from the Mechanics. I'm kinda glad they didn't have an angle in the tag tourney with that main event they didn't need it.

 

Asuka was fucking awesome. It'll be a crime if we don't see her vs at least two of the four Horsewomen in NXT. Breeze got a pretty good match out of Crews who I'm still not sold on.

 

Sasha fucking Banks and It's fucking Bayley

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Those two tag matches were Corbin's best work, to date. I really wanted Jordan and Gable to win, but Joe-Balor winning makes sense, especially since they're probably going to feud. 

 

Asuka is legit, and Brooke was perfectly fine in their match. 

 

Crews is something special. An Owens-Apollo feud would be loads of fun. I wonder when grizzled NXT veteran Tyler Breeze will be called up to the main roster, though?

 

As for that Ironman match..what can you say? Another fantastic outing from Sasha and Bayley. I really hope Sasha isn't too fucked up from that nasty neck/head bump. I wonder if Izzy knew Sasha was going to take that bow out of her hair? if so, she's one hell of a  little actress. Loved the ending scene with all the emotion on display. 

 

Great show. Makes me remember why I still watch. 

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I'm not sure which of the 2 Bayley/Sasha match is better.  Brooklyn match was technically a better match performance-wise, but the Ironman match was more visceral with better selling.  Just felt more like a war than a match.

 

Great performances all around.  Other than Finn, everyone involved in the Dusty Tag Tourny probably had their best NXT matches.  Dana looked great too and Asuka charisma is just through the roof.

 

Top to bottom, this was probably the best NXT special so far.

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So, my early thought is that, top to bottom, this was the best Takeover yet.

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I love Breeze.  He's so damn great at this gimmick that it doesn't even really matter that he lost on another special.  His match with Crews tonight was pretty good. I don't think there was a bad match all night. Not even close. 

 

Asuka looked very well seasoned.  I didn't know a lot about her but she moves around very well and her offense looks fantastic.  Her armbar was awesome.

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So, my early thought is that, top to bottom, this was the best Takeover yet.

This was my thought as well. I think the tag final was probably the worst match and even that was at least solid.

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Oh yeah, and full props to the Full Sail crowd for the "Save the Gable" chants.

 

Asuka made Dana look great, even if it was a glorified squash.  I also love how she's gonna start out with the simple face paint and work her way up to Psycho Clown.

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Bayley needs to really start using the Jim Breaks Special.

 

KyNmGH.gif

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Sasha has had 5 Takeover matches vs Charlotte , The 4 way, vs Becky, and the two Bayley matches. When is the last time a worker had a better run of 5 ppv matches in a row?

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Wrestlers in general should steal more stuff from Jim Breaks. The stalling, the cheating, the bitching at the ref, the insulting people in the front row, the clear egotism that makes a good wrestler think he's better than he is...also the Breaks Special. 

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