Can I just start by saying my voice was shot when I first started writing this shit. Pete Dunn came out during the pre show and I kinda lost it…oh I yelled like a cat getting skinned..It was amazing…I’m a big fan of the Bruiser-weight… But anywho it’s ya boy May25th and I bring to you…NXT Takeover Brooklyn III: the experience…and you know RiceBall had to crash the party… Hannnnnnh?
First things first? I’m late. I’m horribly late and I own that. My intentions were to have this post up at least three days ago but alas life got in the way but I do want to apologize for my tardiness. Especially to those who were anticipating hearing about the show. Going forward, I’ll try to maintain a level of promptness and consistency peeps. So ok…I’ve been trying to go to an NXT event for YEARS now. Despite how much I love WWE as a whole, NXT is where it’s at baby…There were…so…many…too…sweets…oh dear God where do I start? The night was insane! We left at around 2-3ish in the afternoon and embarked upon a two hour plus trek up to Brooklyn, NY from CT.
Immediately, the day started off right because we found parking literally down ONE block from the Barclays Center. Got out, walked for about three mins and entered into a sea of Bullet Club shirts…too sweets flying left and right. We spent a good amount of time at the merchandise stand before heading to our seats but as soon as we got inside the building and had our tickets scanned, the energy went up ten fold.
It didn’t officially hit me until we stopped at one of the indoor bars to notice that they set up the announcer booth directly behind it. Baron Corbin sat in on commentary with Corey Graves. A team consisting of us and some other equally dope fans stood there and gave Baron a hard time about his failed cash in attempt a few weeks back (*winces* that she shit still gotta be hurting him lol)
We moved on eventually and took an elevator up to the second floor to find the tunnel leading to our seats. We sat directly in front of a pair of rowdy fans shouting to Lars Sullivan from all the way up there how fucking ugly he was. I said to myself “Self………you’re home…” We got settled and the show started shortly after a few pre show matches that we found out were actually going to be the matches that we cut and used for this past Wednesday’s episode of NXT. No Way Jose came out and got the crowd lit per usual but the match never took place because that same Lars Sullivan I mentioned earlier ambushed him from behind and he never even got a chance to get in the ring. WWE has been running a “doesnt play well with others” gimmick with Lars and I like it so far. The guy is huge and intimidating and its nice to see a NXT get a monster heel with some potential. Cant remember the last time they actually had one. After we got an ok match with Sarah Logan, a fresh face in the women’s division. I’ve never seen her work before that match but she seemed ok from what I saw. She had a few nice moments and I love the fact that the women’s division in NXT seems to finally be on the upswing.
Ruby Riot still remains probably my favorite out of the newer women they’ve been pushing lately. Peyton Royce scored the win eventually as I suspected she would and the last match out of the batch was Tyler Bate and Trent Seven vs Wolfgang and my guy, Pete Dunn. I thoroughly enjoyed that one because I’m a big fan of old fashioned mat style wrestling. Locks and hold and submissions and just chaining combinations together in an attempt to catch the opponent off guard for the three count. Bate and Dunn have a TREMENDOUS amount of ring chemistry and I could honestly watch these two link up all day and never get tired. They are that good in my opinion. I also love the fact that Bate plays the babyface role down to a T where the fans love him and do his customary wave back whenever he enter the arena whereas Pete Dunn is an asshole. And I mean that in the best way possible as the fans still shower him with adoration all the same. Brusier-weight chants filled the building before the action even got started. It makes for a good dynamic when it comes to their matches. Trent Seven and Wolfgang didnt get as much burn as the former two but they had their moments as well. Ultimately, Wolfgang scored the win for his team by hitting Bate with a senton off the top rope which actually a bit surprising to me.
The lights shut off afterwards and the main show gets going after they roll the opening credits and video packages hyping the match card. They opened with Johnny Gargano aka Johnny Wrestling vs Andrade Cien Almas who in my opinion has been coming into his own so much more since they added the valet who’s name I cant recall at the moment. I’ve said it for months that Andrade is a good talent but him not speaking any english is hurting him because how is he supposed to get his character over if he cant talk and cut promos? He will never connect…but WWE has since rectified that and yeah I feel that little touch gives him that last bit he needed to start maybe getting a bit of good thing going. I’ve never questioned Andrade in the ring but I wasn’t confident in him character wise from the jump so I’m just glad they did the right thing there. Johnny is still very much in the beginning phases of his feud with Ciampa, his former tag team partner and because he’s out on injury for a bit, it made sense for Johnny to eat the pin here as it doesn’t hurt him as bad as Andrade who was in dire need of a big win. Also the way the match ended with the valet tossing the old DIY shirt into the ring to distract Johnny momentarily to allow Andrade the win via dirty methods. Good story telling and both guys come out looking good.
Next, in what was probably the match I was least excited about on the card (which says a lot because I liked all the matches) we got Sanity vs AOP for the NXT Tag Team Championships in a decent back and forth where Sanity utilized the free bird rules but in a manor different then what we see from the New Day. During this match, Sanity interchanged the competitors whenever they wanted as they started initially with Killian Dane and Alexander Wolfe but we got to see Eric Young and Nikki Cross switch in during the action as well. AOP has been a dominant team up until this point maintaining an undefeated status since debuting on the roster and holding the tag titles for months up until the show. Before hand I expected them to win but Sanity managed to overwhelm them with the numbers and defeat the now former tag team champions en route to starting their own reign. I’m not sure if this means AOP gets called up soon (seeing as how the tag division in NXT is a little thin to me but I could see them showing up on RAW soon) because the Revival has yet ANOTHER injury stopping them from gaining any steam since their debut and WWE may want another fresh team to take the spot they wanted for them. I suppose that’s a wait and see what happens kind of thing.
The next match of the night highlighted a disgruntled Hideo Itami who just recently made a turn to the dark side because he hasn’t been happy with how his career has gone since coming to WWE from Japan where he was known as THE guy while still going by the name Kenta. Injuries have played a HUGE part in why Itami never reached where I believe he was intended as I think he was meant to win the title in Japan and Takeoever a few years back but they rolled with Finn at the time. I never found Itami the most interesting after his NXT debut but lately I am enjoying the more aggressive side he’s been showing and I’m starting to think he maybe should’ve just been a heel from the beginning.
He took on a the HOTTEST new talent NXT has to offer in Aleister Black, a man who sports a dark, gothic type of gimmick that just oozes bad ass. Everything from his presence, to the cool way he just rises out of the ground during his entrance. To the insane music he has playing during his entrance. To the way he kicks off every gahdamn head they put in front of him. His Black Mass finisher is a spinning heel kick and it is NOTHING NICE…a lot of times with me for finishers, they have to look they will K.O. anyone including bigger opponents which is why I think Sweet Chin Music worked so well for HBK all those years. The Black Mass is one of those moves. He can either set you up by doing this cool thing I love where he stands there and picks your face up with his shoe until you’re standing and then hit you with it like that or it can be right in the middle of a back and forth where you weren’t expecting him to pull it out and POW! Your head’s kicked off and it’s a one, two, three bruh. This match was stiff. Hard hitting strikes reminiscent of the strong style that’s gotten over so heavily these past few years over in Japan. Both men use their legs and feet for a lot and dont deploy a lot of lift to slam type of moves. For me, I was amped to see this one because I love that kind of back forth contest and Black’s also been my GUY since he debuted. I personally think the guy’s a star and WWE would have to literally TRY to fuck him up. He’s that good to me. As I mentioned before, Black’s been undefeated since debuting and WWE opted to still keep that a thing sooooooooooo Itami got his head kicked off…One…two….three…
Now around this time during the show we thought to ourselves…. “hmmmm over on the left in the lower area….ain’t nobody sitting there….” and we collectively looked at each other and decided.. “We need better seats yall….” we rubbed our hands together and did the mischief eyes before getting up and making our way down to a far superior location… We made the move right as the Ember Moon and Asuka match was kicking off. Just to show you an idea of where our seats started, heres a pic from up where we were
Cuz thats how we roll!! Whooooooo! *Rick Flair voice* Ahem…so yeah we pulled the okey doke and got the best seats I’ve ever managed to fit my butt in at a WWE event…I’ve never not had to look up at the TV in the sky because generally I cant see directly into the ring but ohhhhh not at NXT bruh! We we’re out here!!! So like I mentioned, probably the second biggest match of the night kicked off with Ember Moon vs Asuka part II. The narrative here was Ember pushed Asuka further than anyone prior at the last Takeover event in Chicago where Asuka needed to cheat in order to keep her undefeated streak in tact and keep her title. Ember went on to get hurt for a few weeks, mend herself and build her way back up to be able to get another crack at the belt with the truth on her side as she has stuck to the idea that Asuka has never had to cheat to beat anyone else so perhaps Ember truly is a threat to end what has been a historic run as NXT Women’s champion for Asuka. The two women threw everything at each other and there was an Eclipse that Ember hit that had me and the rest of Brooklyn like, “That’s It!!! Asuka’s done!” I think we all collectively were shocked when she managed to get her shoulder up for the two count. Ember not believing the Asuka kicked out, went up top for another Eclipse and Asuka once again attempted to use the ref as a fodder but to no avail. She attempted ot roll up Ember with a handful of tights and the ref caught her in the act. The two women would go through a series of beautiful combinations back and forth before eventually Asuka would slap the Asuka Lock on Ember and she tapped her chances at winning the championship away.
This one shocked me not gonna lie… because Ember was the only woman on the roster not only good enough but the only one who was truly primed to take over as head of the division while Asuka moved on to hopefully Smackdown and on to bigger and better things. WWE opted to keep the strap on her, having Ember eat her second straight loss, and one with a tap out no less. I dont think the loss hurt Ember…in fact I think it helped her as far her getting over with the fans but she probably wont get another shot at the belt for a while…..or will she? It’s been announced recently that Asuka suffered an injury keeping her out for almost two months and she has since relinquished the NXT Women’s championship and it WILL have a new home. Perhaps Ember wins a tourney or something along those lines to win the belt then. Only time will tell. But here’s to a speedy recovery to Asuka as she really is a beast and I cant wait to see her vs Becky Lynch or Charlotte on the main roster.
In the last match of the night, we get a man in Drew McIntyre who has completely transformed himself much like current WWE champion Jinder Mahal since his departure a few years ago. Mahal came back bigger, leaner and more experienced and it somehow led to his current push as the Modern Day Maharaja but Drew did the same. He left WWE a few years and returned to the indies where he spent time in a few different promotions before coming back to WWE a new man and given a second chance. He is so much better in almost ever facet it’s not even funny.
The only gripe I have is that I truly wish he would go back to his Broken Dreams theme from back when he had his Chosen One gimmick….my GOD THAT SONG WAS A BANGAAAAAHHHHHH!!! whew…Drew…you need to get that shit back man…it was hard! Ahh but I digress…McIntyre went up against the man who dethroned Shinsuke Nakamura to become NXT Champion a few months ago in The Glorious One, Bobby Roode. Roode has been absolutely amazing since he debuted in NXT and has been a great heel champ for these last few. He is so good at being an asshole and making you hate him, that you have to love him. And that music? The man can do no wrong I say…truly glorious…Can I just mention that I love that spotlight thing NXT does for their title matches? Being as close as we were and seeing that was soooooooooo dope!
But wait there’s more! So remember yall…we ended up with better seats right? So there’s a family of maybe five or more sitting ahead of us. Three boys, I’m assuming were brothers and Mom and Dad….now one of the little boys in particular made my night when he found out AmniFlux was rooting for Roode. The little boy turned around to us and boooo’d so hard I lost my damn mind. They went back and forth beefing for a majority of the match and in some ways that might have been slightly more entertaining than the match itself. The match itself was ok but much more of a slow grind it out type of match that again wasn’t bad but it doesn’t fit really when you compare it to the rest of the styles that got worked in the matches prior. This one was more…old school in my opinion which I know some people prefer. Again, I didn’t hate it but I didn’t care much for the actual match itself which McIntyre won might I add and he rightly deserved it. Although I thought the heat they built up until the match could’ve been much better, McIntyre deserves this and not only that but Roode has nothing left to do in NXT anymore, hence his main roster debut this past Tuesday on Smackdown live. Roode is moving on to the big leagues while McIntyre is given the ball to be the guy amongst this crop of fresh talent attempting to become the new main event’ers in NXT. That little boy got up and stood up on his chair and screamed so loud and he couldnt have been more than four or five. It was friggin amazing yall. Hashtag “future son goals”.
Overall the show was great and just when you think its over, some WILD SHIT goes down!…now earlier in the night, we got a new tag team consisting Bobby Fish and Kyle O’reilly run in and destroy Sanity during their celebration over AOP for the titles. They’d left them lain out indicating that the tag titles were indeed something they would soon be coming after. Those same men hit the ring during Drew’s celebration providing a distraction for the true man of the hour, ADAM COLE BAYBAY!!! To be in the crowd as he ran out from the back and ambushed Drew, I cant even describe the feeling. The whole crowd lost its collective shit at the same time and nobody even cared that he misjudged his Super Kick and aimed too high…it…..was…..awesome….my….guy….!!!! All of it…I get the feeling Drew’s not gonna be champ for very long at all…but wow what a way to end the show. That ending lays groundwork for SOOO MUCH to happen going forward.. Adam Cole is in WWE and he has his own stable and instantly hot shotted into the main event. Amazing.
Finally, it ended and we’re coming out of the tunnel to the melodic sounds of a “too sweet!!!” chant filling up the building. We then participated in what I have to say was probably the dopest too sweet line ever. They just kept coming. That’s when I knew this Bullet Club shit was “foh lyfe” and it was truly family…my one friend got over 100 too sweet’s on our way out to the car. No bullshit… I’ve said it once…I’ll say it again… I love wrestling fans… We are the shit…Great experience all around and just like I predicted, NXT kicked SummerSlam’s ass AGAIN which I’m sure you all have seen by now. All I can say is next year? We’re doing it like kings and we’re out there the entire weekend…Takeover on Saturday…spending the night and then we in the next day for SummerSlam bruh…. out here. But yeah I know this was later than I wanted it to be but again I just kind of wanted to give you guys insight on our experience being there live and hopefully going forward, I can start doing reviews and different kinds of things eventually. Only the beginning but many, many more to come. *throws up the deuce*