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Samoa Joe debuts as NXT TakeOver: Unstoppable pulls out all the stops

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After weeks of anticipation and build-up we finally got our second NXT special event of the year and TakeOver: Unstoppable managed to live up to the high expectations.

Some of the biggest stars of NXT were on show as Kevin Owens took on Sami Zayn with the NXT Championship on the line, Finn Balor battled Tyler Breeze whilst Sasha Banks defended her NXT Women’s Championship against a new-look Becky Lynch.

FINN BÁLOR VS. TYLER BREEZE

Kicking off TakeOver was the number one contenders match for the NXT Championship. On the pre-show it was revealed that Hideo Itami was attacked in the parking lot prior to the match which resulted in this match being a singles match and not a triple threat.

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Both men were treated to special entrances, a makeshift catwalk was created for Tyler Breeze who donned new gear whilst streaming his entrance live on the Periscope app and Finn Bálor was out in his modified demon gear and the fans truly showed their appreciation to kick the night off in the right way.

It was the right match to kick off the show as two of the most solid workers on NXT went head to head and the fans were split throughout the match. Even though Breeze was the heel on paper he had his fair share of fans chanting his name.

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Tyler Breeze actually dominated most of the match, coming close to ending the match several times. The closest he came to doing so was when he threw Bálor to the exposed turnbuckle and hit the Beauty Shot, but Bálor kicked out.

Bálor fought back in terrific fashion, diving off the entrance ramp on to Breeze before hitting a huge dropkick in the corner and following it up with the Coup de Grace and Finn Bálor is our new number one contender to the NXT Championship.

CHARLOTTE & BAYLEY VS. DANA BROOKE & EMMA

Divas tag team action next and the heels are welcomed to great heat, Charlotte is cheered by the fans but Bayley is clearly the favourite amongst the crowd at Full Sail University in a match where two feuds were being combined into one match.

This was a shorter match than the opening match which was expected considering we were 40 minutes into the event, but nevertheless it was fast-paced from start to finish. Emma didn’t get in a lot of offence, she preferred the underhanded tactics whilst Dana Brooke was the aggressor in their team.

Bayley and Charlotte worked together really well, tagging one another in and the fans were definitely behind Bayley as she was the aggressor in her team. Charlotte looked to have the match won when she locked in the figure four on Emma, Bayley hit a Belly to Bayley on Dana Brooke which allowed Charlotte to hit the Natural Selection on Emma for the victory.

BARON CORBIN VS. RHYNO

The two big-men of NXT finally collided in the middle of the ring and right off the bat the fans were treated to an all-out brawl. There was not an ounce of technical wrestling on show as we saw plenty of punches and kicks and clotheslines being thrown and connected, and once more the fans started to turn on Baron Corbin.

This was one of Corbin’s longer matches but he didn’t do a lot to really impress the NXT Universe, it was the same old story with him but Rhyno did get a lot of offence him, throwing Corbin around at will and hitting a huge spinebuster followed by a belly to belly suplex.

Rhyno came close to winning and almost hit the Gore, but ran into a huge clothesline which allowed Corbin to hit the End of Days for the win.

We get a backstage interview with Kevin Owens who is preparing for his main event match with Sami Zayn, he talks about the huge week he has had at the NXT shows in Philadelphia and his appearance on Raw. He says tonight will be the icing on the cake and NXT will never see Sami Zayn again.

ENZO AMORE & COLIN CASSADY VS. BLAKE & MURPHY - NXT TAG TEAM CHAMPIONSHIPS

As expected, the fans were white hot for Enzo and Big Cass from start to finish as it felt like this was their night to finally capture the NXT Tag Team Championships. Blake and Murphy started off stronger by double teaming the smaller Enzo Amore but he fought back in his scrappy style before tagging in Big Cass who cleaned house.

He hit a huge powerslam to Blake followed by an elbow drop for a two count before Big Cass was on the receiving end of a double team from the champions. Cass tagged in Enzo and put him on the top rope and then went to the outside, we then saw an interference from Alexa Bliss who took out Carmella and that caused a distraction.

Big Cass was hit with a huge kick by Murphy which knocked him out and as the referee was distracted, Bliss knocked Enzo Amore off of the top rope which allowed Blake to go for the cover and the champions retained.

BECKY LYNCH VS. SASHA BANKS - NXT WOMEN’S CHAMPIONSHIP

The potential show-stealer certainly lived up to the high expectations. These two women continued the trend of women impressing on the big stage and the reactions they received were well deserved. Both Sasha Banks and Becky Lynch were being cheered for throughout the back and forth match and the arms were being heavily targeted by both women as they play an important role in their submission finishers.

We saw lots of great spots in this match, Lynch hit a huge belly to belly suplex and then a knee drop on Banks’ left arm and then locked in an armbar followed by a German suplex for a near fall which prompted the ‘suplex city’ chants.

Sasha Banks fought out of Lynch’s submission hold by reaching the ropes and hit a huge dive through the ropes to take Lynch out, but Becky caught her mid-air and threw her into the steel steps.

Back into the ring, Becky Lynch went to the top rope but Banks was one step quicker and ran up behind her and hit a huge arm breaker from the rope and followed it up with the Bank Statement to retain the NXT Women’s Championship. After the match the fans showed their appreciation for both women, especially Becky Lynch who certainly impressed the NXT Universe and has a bright future ahead of her.

SAMI ZAYN VS. KEVIN OWENS © - NXT CHAMPIONSHIP

Main event time and you could feel the excitement and tension in the air after the video package aired and it was Sami Zayn out first to a thunderous reaction, whilst Kevin Owens also received a great reaction as he wore a John Cena t-shirt down to the ring, mocking the fact he laid him out this past week on Monday Night Raw.

The match definitely didn’t go as many had predicted, Sami Zayn dominated 90% of the match and didn’t give Kevin Owens a chance to ever get back into it. The two of them took most of their action to the outside near the fans and used whatever they could to their advantage.

The match was non-stop action from start to finish, and Zayn just seemed to be one step quicker as he tossed Owens around the arena at will and every time Owens tried to get back into it, Zayn moved out the way and countered to the outside. Zayn called for a Helluva Kick on the steel ring post but he ran straight into a huge pop-up powerbomb on the apron.

The medics tended to Sami Zayn whilst the fans chanted ‘let them fight’ and the commentators continued to remind the fans how Owens wants to finish Sami Zayn once and for all and he didn’t show any remorse, continuing to attack the helpless challenger.

Kevin Owens continued to beat down on Sami Zayn, attacking the injured left shoulder over and over again, General Manager William Regal even came out to put an end to the torture but Owen showed no remorse and attacked Regal as well.

After knocking out William Regal, Owens brought a steel chair into the ring and he proceeded to attack Sami Zayn, as he did we heard theme music play and then the most shocking moment of the year, Samoa Joe made his NXT debut and had a stare off with Kevin Owens to conclude an epic night.

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