This episode of NXT emanated from the Barclays Center in Brooklyn and was the traditional post-TakeOver show. Thus, it mainly featured recaps of the TakeOver bouts as well as matches that were taped prior to the main show.
Aliyah w/ Vanessa Borne vs. Candice LeRae
This match was set up last week when Aliyah and Vanessa Borne interrupted a Candice LeRae interview where she was discussing her desire for an opportunity at the NXT Women’s Championship. It was a fine bout in which Candice would overcome the disadvantage posed by Borne at ringside, and win with a springboard moonsault. Aliyah and Borne are certainly the next top heels in the NXT women’s division after Shayna Baszler and pals, so I like the idea of any potential babyface challengers to Baszler going through them before they are granted a title opportunity. A word on Aliyah here: she is entering her fifth year in the WWE developmental system, so it’s nice that they’ve finally found a role for her which she excels at.
Jaxson Ryker w/ Steve Cutler & Wesley Blake vs. Danny Burch w/ Oney Lorcan
Last week on NXT, Jaxson Ryker defeated Oney Lorcan, so now it was his tag team partner Danny Burch’s turn to face the wrath of one third of the Forgotten Sons. The match followed a similar format to the Ryker vs Lorcan contest, and Ryker once again picked up the win with his No Remorse sit-out chokeslam. Lorcan attempted an attack on Ryker after the bell, but he and Burch were overpowered by the numbers game of The Forgotten Sons. There now seems to be sufficient heat between the two teams for a blow-off contest of sorts, and I’d like to see the Brit-Am Brawlers recruit a third partner for a six-man tag team match on an episode of NXT soon.
Street Profits vs. Fabian Aichner & Marcel Barthel
As a big fan of both teams, I was very much looking forward to this main event. There was no heat established between the two teams going in, but the match was a fascinating clash of styles. The fun-loving swagger of the Street Profits was pitted against the no-nonsense, business-like nature of Fabian Aichner and Marcel Barthel. Aichner and Barthel dominated proceedings early, isolating Montez Ford in their corner and doing a great job of utilising classic heel tag team tactics. Once Ford was able to make the hot tag, Angelo Dawkins showed great fire in turning the tables on the team known as the European Union, and the Profits soon picked up the win with their electric-chair-into-a-blockbuster combo. While it still seems like the Forgotten Sons are being positioned as the top challengers to the War Raiders’ Tag Team Titles, I would be very much behind Street Profits giving them a run for their money.
Elsewhere on this episode, after each of the aforementioned recaps of a TakeOver match, the story for one of the competitors was built on. The biggest development was that Velveteen Dream would defend the NXT North American Championship against the former WWE Cruiserweight Champion Buddy Murphy next week! This was set up when Murphy walked by Dream backstage, who was filming himself talking about what a great WrestleMania weekend he’d had. Dream then taunted Murphy over losing his title to Tony Nese. Cross-brand matches are always exciting, especially when championships are at stake. Murphy returning to his former home brand will also be a pretty cool moment.
Tension within the ranks of the Undisputed Era was also shown, as they were seen arguing after Adam Cole’s NXT Championship loss to Johnny Gargano. Pete Dunne declared he would have a rematch with WALTER for the WWE United Kingdom Championship, and Shayna Baszler told interviewers she would always win no matter how many challengers to her NXT Women’s Championship were thrown at her. I don’t expect them to break the Undisputed Era up, despite the fact that there doesn’t seem to be much left for them to do in NXT, because I think there’s huge mileage to be had with the group on the main roster. Next week’s Superstar Shake-up on Raw and SmackDown will certainly be something to keep an eye on if you’re an Undisputed Era fan. Indeed, the prospect of any imminent NXT callups is certainly an interesting one, but Undisputed Era are the ones sitting at the top of my list of those expected to move on to bigger things.
Overall, this was a good post-TakeOver episode of NXT, with all three matches being entertaining affairs, and some interesting storyline developments were also made.