1. Takeover Brooklyn 2 kicks off with a video package about everything that has changed in the past 12 months, and it really is remarkable how many new faces have joined NXT. Big event feel to the whole thing, and the Barclays centre looks pretty packed.
2. And our curtain jerkers tonight are No Way Jose and Austin Aries, and Jose enters with his own conga line formed from the crowd. The Greatest Man who Ever Lived counters with a sweet cape and air of superiority, once again demonstrating how awesome Aries is. In case you were interested, Takeover Brooklyn 2 is sponsored by Jolly Ranchers, with the tag line of ‘Keep on Sucking’… which seems more appropriate for every Sheamus match ever.
3. This was a fun match with Aries playing the cowardly opportunist heel and selling hard to make Jose look good, while the big man stepped up and looked like a legitimate threat. Aries picks up the submission victory with the Last Chancery, then beats down Jose after the match, bringing out Hideo Itami to make the save. Jose has shown definite improvement since his program with Aries began, and I’m looking forward to AA’s impending feud with Itami.
4. Our second match is Australian Billie Kay taking on the debuting Ember Moon, formerly known as PCWs Athena. Billie puts on another solid performance (despite almost botching her finisher) while Ember shows a lot of potential without really being given the chance to shine. Moon (who has a great look) picks up the win with a blockbuster/stunner variation.
5. Now it’s time for the in-ring debut of Bobby Roode, whose entrance takes longer than anyone but Finn Balor, but is pretty awesome at this point. Roode is taking on Cien Almas, whose winning streak looks to be coming to an end… Good back and forth to start, but Roode takes control before too long and starts to wear Almas down. Both men work hard to put on a good show, and I can see Roode challenging for the NXT title sooner rather than later. Roode picks up the win with a pump handle front slam, apparently called the Glorious Bomb.
6. Next up the team of Ciampa and Gargano take on The Revival for the Tag Championship in what promises to be a hard hitting match. Tommaso and Johnny are over as hell, while Dash & Dawson seem destined to outlast Bayley in NXT, despite their in-ring talent. Excellent match that felt it could have gone either way, with plenty of near falls and false finishes until the Revival finally pick up the submission victory. Sort of felt like the wrong team won here, but I suppose that’s the point…
7. Our penultimate match of the night is the rematch between Bayley and Asuka, and can the super-face defeat the Japanese destroyer? Bayley looks subdued as the ring announcements are made, while Asuka looks confident in her new face paint. The match starts out slowly, with Bayley countering every move Asuka makes, but before too long Asuka takes control.
8. Bayley plays the face in peril for much of the match, with enough hope spots to keep the crowd on the edge of their seats. Both women put everything they had into their performances, with Bayley more than earning her ‘promotion’ to Raw. Asuka finally picks up the win with a super-stiff kick to the head, and I’m looking forward to seeing her dominate NXT for the months to come.
9. Our main event tonight is Shinsuke Nakamura facing Samoa Joe for the NXT title, and Nakamura comes out with his own personal violinist, which is pretty badass.
10. There isn’t much I can say about this match except that you should check it out if you haven’t had the chance. Two men who have been working for most of their lives to get to the top of the mountain, both working their asses off to prove that they’re the best. Shinsuke Nakamura eventually picks up the win and the NXT title after a five star match and another excellent Takeover.