The highly anticipated NXT TakeOver: Unstoppable event is now in the books and at the end of it we saw Kevin Owens keep hold of his NXT Championship.
In fact, no championship changed hands at TakeOver as Blake and Murphy defeated Enzo Amore and Big Cass thanks to an Alexa Bliss interference, whilst Sasha Banks managed to overcome a resilient Becky Lynch.
There was a lot of hype surrounding the event and expectations were at an all-time high, NXT had to readjust part of their card with Hideo Itami out injured and questions were raised over Sami Zayn’s injury but he still competed and fans hoped the match would steal the show.
The events that unfolded earlier this week truly made this one of the best TakeOver event yet, if not the best. Here are the factors I believe helped make Unstoppable the perfect TakeOver event.
#6 – ATTENDEES
This NXT felt like a must-watch show, not only because of the stellar match line-up, not because Kevin Owens had all eyes on him thanks to his actions on Raw, but a lot of factors combined and one of those factors was that a lot of big names were in attendance, they wanted to see what NXT was all about and they witnessed it first-hand.
We saw the new NXT recruits sitting ringside, the most popular being Uhaa Nation and they could all see what they would soon be a huge part of. We also saw Stephanie McMahon sitting ringside, if the boss is here to watch you know you have to step up and steal the show and NXT did just that, and she would have surely been impressed.
Sitting next to Stephanie McMahon was someone interesting, Hafþór Júlíus Björnsson otherwise known as ‘The Mountain' on the hit TV show, Game of Thrones. As expected, rumours started to circulate about what he was there for, was he there simply as a fan who was enjoying the wrestling show? Or could he play a role with the WWE in the near future? Either way, it certainly got fans talking.
#5 - FINN BÁLOR VS. TYLER BREEZE – ENTRANCES
Fans were wondering how this match would play out considering Hideo Itami wouldn’t be a part of it anymore, but the writers did a great job of writing Itami out of the match in the pre-show. All eyes are always on Finn Bálor when TakeOver comes around, because we know he brings out the demon and leaves the fans wanting more with his impressive body paint and this time added wings to his impressive look.
Complete with the red lights pumping like a heartbeat, we thought Finn Bálor stole the show with his entrance and it truly was impressive. But this time, Tyler Breeze also stepped up to the mark. It was revealed that Breeze would be using the Periscope app during his entrance and he pulled out with an amazing entrance of his own, having divas pose as models who took selfies with him on his way down as he checked his face to make sure it was perfect.
He even had his own catwalk on the stage and the fans showed their appreciation for them both and rightfully so, we knew they two would put on an epic performance which they did, but their entrances were also top notch.
#4 - THE FULL SAIL CROWD
Every single week the NXT crowd at Full Sail University bring it, and they’re always extra loud when it’s a TakeOver special so they had to play their role of living up to what the fans at home expected of them very well, and they didn’t disappoint.
The crowd can only react by what it happening in front of them, they reacted wonderfully throughout the evening by cheering for the impressive entrances, certain spots in numerous matches, showing their appreciation for certain stars who impressed on the night but they also booed when they needed to.
The Baron Corbin and Rhyno match wasn’t the greatest of matches, and they realised that and realised that Baron Corbin needs to step up to the mark and do something different, so it was great to see the fans not cheering for every single face on the card as they even cheered loudly for Tyler Breeze, the fans were a big part of making TakeOver enjoyable.
#3 - SAMI ZAYN VS. KEVIN OWENS
All eyes were on the main event as Sami Zayn – who still wasn’t 100% - faced the task of keeping the destructive Kevin Owens at bay, but no fan would have predicted the manner in which their match played out.
We would have expected it to be a back and forth encounter which would showcase Sami Zayn’s hard before Kevin Owens would turn it up a gear and destroy Sami Zayn and his NXT career. But instead, we saw Sami Zayn dominate 90% of the match, he didn’t even let Kevin Owens fight his way back into it.
Eventually he did and it was a fantastic ending, he knew he had to stay true to his word and finish Sami Zayn once and for all and now we saw what Kevin Owens was capable of, he destroyed his friend, he put his hands on the General Manager, William Regal and he proceeded to attack Zayn with the steel chair, he didn’t win but he kept his title and kept his word.
I felt this was important, Owens was never going to lose his title with his match against John Cena around the corner, and now he looks more dangerous than ever and you have to wonder, what can he do to John Cena? I felt the main event lived up to expectations, the manner in which it ended was nothing short of perfect, which brings us on to…
#2 – SAMOA JOE ARRIVES
Rumours were flying around for months that Samoa Joe was coming to the WWE, then a few weeks later it was more NXT specific, and then recently it was heavily rumoured that he had signed a deal and would debut at TakeOver, but fans would believe it when they see it and we saw it earlier this week.
Triple H denied that he had signed Samoa Joe in a conference call and it’s clear why he said that, and it paid off because the loudest reaction of the night went to Samoa Joe. A face off with Kevin Owens was the perfect way to have him debut, and the chanting that followed topped off a wonderful debut for Samoa Joe in one of the more shocking debuts in recent years.
#1 – BECKY LYNCH VS. SASHA BANKS
Match of the night, the best match on NXT this year and perhaps the match of the year so far, period. It’s become a common trend that the women of NXT always step up and steal the limelight and Lynch and Banks did just that.
From start to finish, the fans were well into this and rightfully so as we saw some great spots and close calls to make it interesting and keep fans on the edge of their seats, but most of all we saw wrestling, something we usually aren’t treated to in every match.
The finish itself was fantastic, Becky Lynch put in a performance of a lifetime and came ever-so-close to dethroning Sasha Banks but Banks herself stepped up, hitting an impressive arm breaker from the top rope and locking in the Bank Statement, a great finish to a spectacular match and it’s no surprise that wrestling fans worldwide have been raving about this match ever since.