The road to Takeover: Brooklyn III starts tonight with a main event carrying HUGE title implications. We will see Drew McIntyre and Killian Dain square off in a #1 Contenders Match for Bobby Roode’s NXT title. But first, we head straight to some women’s action, that also has major implications for the NXT Women’s title!
Ember Moon vs. Ruby Riot
Nice pops for both women during their intros, as well as very loud dueling chants at the opening bell. Very nice start. The crowd was pretty engaged in this match throughout, mainly due to both women digging deep into their playbooks in order to match each other step for step. As a matter of fact, the pace and momentum swings were both so varied, that I never would have guessed who was going to pull this one out. Ember ended up doing just that after a counter one-legged dropkick followed by the Eclipse. Nice win in a very good match. I would love to see an extended program between these two. I love their chemistry.
Next, it’s off to the announce table where we learn that Kassius Ohno will face Hideo Itami next week. Now we see footage from earlier today of Ohno conducting an interview with reporters, before being interrupted by Itami. Hideo asks him if he asked for the match and Ohno confirms that he did. Itami is not pleased, and lets Ohno know in Japanese before kicking a trash can and storming off. And then… A STREET PROFITS VIDEO PACKAGE!!!
Oney Lorcan vs. Danny Burch
We switch gears and roll into what on paper is a street fight between Burch and Lorcan. I feared for someone’s jaw in this one. And after a few clean breaks at the start, the street fight came off the paper. These two really took it to each other, as evidenced by Danny getting his nose busted and Lorcan being a ragdoll in spots. The brawl actually ended with some technical prowess though as Burch ran at Lorcan and Oney rolled him into a single leg crab and got the win. I was really into this one, even though it wasn’t much of an actual match per se. Afterwards, Burch asked for another match between the two and Lorcan obliged before heading to the back. I need that match to happen ASAP.
Before break we get a shot of Killian Dain preparing for his match later tonight.
No Way Jose vs. Cezar Bononi
The Upset Machine Bononi seems to have a new focus and it really is coming at a great time, in the aftermath of his big win against Andrade “Cien” Almas. Not much going on here with Bononi’s early fire getting snuffed out by NWJ, and then this match getting fully extinguished soon after via a Fastball Punch. After the match, Almas and the beautiful woman formally known as Rosita showed up at ringside and Almas proceeded to assault Bononi and she cheered him on. He then looks up at the ramp and motions for a disgusted Jose to come stop him, and Jose obliges but Almas takes off into the crowd before NWJ can reach him. I like where this is going. It’s going to make La Sombra Great Again!
Footage of McIntyre preparing backstage leads us to break, and the main event is next.
#1 Contender’s Match (NXT Championship): Drew McIntyre vs. Killian Dain
Dain is out by himself for this match, which I was totally not expecting, given the stakes. Mauro also points out that both men are undefeated in singles competition here in NXT. Oh yeah, and I love Dain’s solo theme! I also never noticed how much taller McIntyre is than Dain either before tonight. As far as the match, it started slow, much slower than other matches I have seen them have. But things picked up, and there were a lot of major moves from both men that probably would have ended most matches. One thing that stands out to me when I watch Dain in WWE now is that his agility and speed really make his matches stand out. You see it a little with the running crossbody, but there are so many other moves in his arsenal that are slowly coming out in WWE and this big match allowed quite a few to come out. The finish here was well done as Drew put Dain down with a Future Shock off of a counter, but only got a 1 count as Dain “hulked up”. McIntyre immediately nailed a Claymore but Dain rolled right over and continued “hulking up” so Drew hit another Claymore that finally turned back the challenge of the Beast of Belfast and put himself into the main event at Takeover. Loved the ending sequence. McIntyre shouts into the camera that he is coming for Roode’s title as we go off the air.
What a show, what a show. I loved the whole thing, especially the main event. Those two really showed what a big man can do in the sport in this day and age. I also loved that their was no tag team action this week, since we just had a tag title match last week. I think it was smart to let them sit on the sidelines this week so that we could look at what I think is the weak link in the NXT roster, with a new set of eyes. One big takeaway from this show and something to look out for moving forward is, what is the actual state of the women’s division? I think the title picture and situation needs at least some sort of path or clarity moving forward. Hopefully we will get answers soon.
Well that’s all I have for this week. Don’t forget to hit me up on Twitter at the handle in the title if you want to talk Yellow Brand stuff, and I’ll see you guys next week!