Tonight is the go home show for NXT TakeOver Brooklyn III. Since last week’s episode the match between Johnny Gargano and Andrade ‘Cien’ Almas has been confirmed, making the line-up for TakeOver theoretically complete. Advertised ahead of this week’s episode, Ember Moon and Asuka have their contract signing, and Roderick Strong takes on Drew McIntyre. If Strong wins the match he will get the match he asked for against Bobby Roode after TakeOver.
Ruby Riot def Billie Kay
Street Profits def Lars Sullivan and Chris Silvio
Roderick Strong vs Drew McIntyre – No contest due to interference
In the housekeeping at the start of the show we were reminded that Drew McIntyre and Roderick Strong are tonight’s main event, and informed Ruby Riot and Billie Kay have a match tonight. Commentary then handed over to William Regal for the contract signing.
Ember Moon looked slightly apprehensive as she waited in the ring for Asuka. Not a great sign considering they were only there to sign a piece of paper, but she did lay Asuka out with an Eclipse last time they were in a ring together so maybe she had grounds to be.
Before signing, Ember Moon praised Asuka for her undefeated streak, mentioning her surpassing Goldberg’s streak and calling her one of the most dominant champions to set foot in WWE. She talked about Asuka having beaten some of the top names from RAW, SmackDown and NXT. Then she said there was only one woman Asuka had taken shortcuts to beat, and that was her. She had to shove a ref to beat her in Orlando, and injured her to keep her out of TakeOver Chicago. But Asuka made a mistake because Moon refuses to be a victim, and she’s stronger, faster and better than she’s ever been. It’s all because of Asuka’s shortcuts and by way of thanks, she’s going to end her undefeated streak and beat her for the championship at TakeOver (pretty sure Asuka would prefer flowers to be honest).
Asuka signed the contract and let William Regal declare the match official before grabbing a mix. She delivered an angry sounding torrent of Japanese and held the title belt up to Ember Moon.
The crowd were really loud, and the mainly in favour of Asuka, slightly surprising to me, I thought Moon was more over than that. Asuka’s undefeated streak and title run are impressive though, credit where credit’s due. It will be interesting to see who the TakeOver crowd are behind on Saturday. Whoever they favour, the match is going to be great.
Lars Sullivan appeared in a segment in William Regal’s office. He interrupted Regal telling a story and asked him to give him another chance in a tag team match, stating ‘I know I’ve been bad in the past. Regal explained that he didn’t need him ‘beating the granny out of him in the middle of the ring’. Sullivan promised that wouldn’t happen and pleaded for one more chance in a tag team match. William Regal agreed, ‘one more chance’.
Street Profits vs Lars Sullivan and Chris Silvio
Chris Silvio started, and finished the match. He was thrown around and beaten down by Street Profits, who did a great job of keeping him away from Sullivan. They seem very popular with the crowd already, and for good reason. As the ref counted the three to signal Street Profits’ victory, it seemed Chris Silvio’s troubles may just be beginning.
Street Profits ran away up the ramp and backstage as Lars Sullivan started to look very angry.
It looked like Sullivan was going to break his promise, then it looked like he might walk away. Instead he put his partner over his shoulder and left the arena.
Commentary started to talk about the upcoming women’s division match, then cameras cut back to Lars Sullivan, still carrying Chris Silvio. He took him outside, slammed him into a metal fence, hit him a couple of times, then picked him up and threw him in the bin. Commentary pointed out (from their nice safe distance) that Sullivan only promised Regal he wouldn’t do anything to his tag team partner in the ring so he kept his promise, after a fashion.
Billie Kay vs Ruby Riot
Ruby Riot is over, the crowd love her. There were duelling chants at the start of the match, but the ‘let’s go Billie’ side were noticeably quieter. Peyton Royce was, of course, ringside for the match. I know it’s probably just me, but I can’t wait until Kay and Royce turn on each other. Maybe I’ll see the character depth in them then that I struggle to find now.
I liked the match. Billie Kay has the height and power advantage, Riot has the speed, and arguably the superior technique. They both like to kick. Riot used a kick to take Peyton Royce out of the equation, and to win the match. Billie Kay spent a little too long mocking her opponent and got a Pele kick to the head for her troubles.
Ruby Riot was bleeding a little from her elbow, and shaking her arm out a lot, after the match. Hopefully it’s just a knock and there’s no injury.
Peyton Royce said all Riot had done was prove that lightning strikes once, even for – more personal looks based insults – like her. She will never be iconic. I’m guessing this isn’t over and we’ll be seeing Ruby Riot vs Peyton Royce in the near future.
We got a run down of the TakeOver Brooklyn card next (minus the Roode versus McIntyre match), leading into an in-depth look at the build for Authors of Pain vs SAnitY, including some Paul Ellering promo work.
Drew McIntyre vs Roderick Strong
Main event time already. I swear NXT is the fastest hour of television all week, it seems to go by in just a couple of minutes.
Roderick Strong needed to win this match to guarantee himself a shot at Bobby Roode in the future. Drew McIntyre was just trying to prove he would take on all comers, unlike his TakeOver opponent who has been reticent about getting out of his suit and into the ring recently. That said, there is no way McIntyre wanted to go into TakeOver on the back of a loss. The men have no grudge against each other, not that you could tell from the match.
They beat each other with everything they had. A match worthy of the main event, in which either would have been an acceptable winner. Hard hitting and with well-pitched intensity.
They wore each other out and ended up in a corner. Roderick Strong was perched on the top turnbuckle and Drew McIntyre was hanging upside down in the ‘tree of woe’, periodically pulling himself upright to trade blows with Strong.
Sadly, we didn’t get a clean finish. Bobby Roode appeared and shoved Roderick Strong off the top turnbuckle to the floor and started to kick and pound on McIntyre. He left the ring briefly to throw Strong into the steel steps, then got back in the deliver a glorious DDT to McIntyre. The show finished with Bobby Roode stood in the centre of the ring screaming ‘glorious’ and ‘my NXT’.
On the upside, that’s the most fighting Roode has done in a while. It will be interesting to see if Roderick Strong is granted his match with Roode, as this was ruled a no contest. I’d be very surprised if he wasn’t.
No surprises of additions tonight, so TakeOver Brooklyn III retains the standard five match structure. The card looks great.
- Johnny Gargano vs Andrade ‘Cien’ Almas
- Aleister Black vs Hideo Itami
- Authors of Pain (C) vs SAnitY – NXT Tag Team Championship match
- Asuka (C) vs Ember Moon – NXT Women’s Championship match
- Bobby Roode (C) vs Drew McIntyre – NXT Championship match
Any of the matches could steal the show, but my money is on Black vs Itami as match of the night.
Check back here at Rear View Reviews tomorrow (17/08) for a full preview of NXT TakeOver Brooklyn III.