Written by Marc Middleton
The WWE NXT “Takeover: Vengeance Day” Pre-Show opens up from the Capitol Wrestling Center at the WWE Performance Center in Orlando, Florida. Sam Roberts welcomes us. He’s joined by Wade Barrett and Brandon Walker of Barstool Sports. They hype tonight’s show and we see Pete Dunne and NXT Champion Finn Balor arriving earlier today for the main event. We get a video for the finals of tonight’s Dusty Rhodes Tag Team Classic tournaments.
Walker predicts Dakota Kai and Raquel Gonzalez will win the Dusty Classic for the women’s division. We see NXT Women’s Champion Io Shirai, Toni Storm and Mercedes Martinez arriving earlier today. Sam sends us to a video package for tonight’s Triple Threat. Barrett predicts Martinez will take the title tonight. Sam believes it could be a bad night for Shirai as well. We get a video package for the Men’s Dusty Classic finals. McKenzie Mitchell interviews MSK backstage and they are hyped up for the tournament finals, confident that they will take home the trophy and earn the title shot.
The panel is interrupted by the former Eli Drake from Impact Wrestling and the NWA. He is now known as LA Knight. He puts the locker room on notice and warns that he has his eyes on any Superstar who is currently holding a title. We get a video package for tonight’s main event and more discussion on the Takeover show. That’s it for the pre-show.
– The NXT “Takeover: Vengeance Day” event opens up with Josiah Williams doing a Valentine’s Day-themed rap video. We’re live from the Capitol Wrestling Center at the WWE Performance Center in Orlando, Florida now. Vic Joseph welcomes us. He’s joined by Wade Barrett and remotely WWE Hall of Famer Beth Phoenix. They briefly hype the show and send us right to the ring for the opener.
Women’s Dusty Rhodes Tag Team Classic Finals: Dakota Kai and Raquel Gonzalez vs. Ember Moon and Shotzi Blackheart
We go to the ring for the finals of the first-ever Women’s Dusty Rhodes Tag Team Classic as Alicia Taylor does the introductions. Dakota Kai and Raquel Gonzalez are out first. Out next comes Ember Moon and Shotzi Blackheart to a pop, riding in on Ember’s tank.
Fans chant “NXT!” as Shotzi and Kai go at it to start. They trade offense and tag in their partners. Moon ties up with Gonzalez but gets dropped with a big sidewalk slam. Moon tags in and they double team Gonzalez briefly. Gonzalez fights back and covers Shotzi for a 2 count. Gonzalez tosses Shotzi into the corner and works her over. Shotzi ends up kicking out at 2. Kai comes back in and takes control. Shotzi turns it around and applies a single-leg Crab. Kai finally gets to the bottom rope and breaks it. Moon tags in and they double team Kai. Moon splashes in from the apron for a 2 count.
Moon keeps control and in comes Shotzi again. Shotzi takes Kai down and applies the Crab. Shotzi takes Kai back to her corner and in comes Moon for another double team as they continue focusing on Kai’s hurt knee. Kai tries to drag them to her corner but Moon pulls the heel hook submission back into the middle of the ring. Moon taunts Kai while keeping her in the submission. Kai finally kicks her way loose and reaches for a tag but Moon drags her back once again.
Shotzi tags in as Raquel distracts the referee. The referee doesn’t see Shotzi tag in, so he orders her back out. Moon argues with the referee. Moon runs over and knocks Gonzalez off the apron, then goes back to work on Kai’s knee with a DDT to the leg. Moon with an ankle lock now. Kai uses it to send her flying into the turnbuckles. Gonzalez tags in and levels Moon with clotheslines. Gonzalez slams Moon back into the turnbuckles a few times as fans boo her.
Gonzalez keeps control and hits Moon with big fall-away slams. Gonzalez snatches Shotzi and also hits her with a big fall-away slam. Gonzalez covers Moon for a 2 count. Kai tags in and leaps off the top with a flying clothesline assisted by Gonzalez. Moon kicks out at 2 due to Shotzi running in. Gonzalez sends Shotzi to the apron but Shotzi pulls her to the floor. Shotzi unloads on Gonzalez from the apron. Gonzalez powerbombs Kai into the Plexiglas barrier and she lands hard at ringside.
Gonzalez controls Moon back in the ring now. The match briefly falls apart now. Moon hits The Eclipse on Gonzalez but Kai distracts the referee and he misses the count. Gonzalez ends up kicking out at 2. Kai grabs Moon from the apron, allowing Gonzalez to come from behind for a slam but Shotzi breaks it up with a missile dropkick. Gonzalez kicks out at 2. Moon comes right back with a scissor kick for a 2 count as Gonzalez continues to kick out. Fans chant “this is awesome!” now.
Shotzi unloads on Kai now, splashing her in the corner. Shotzi with more offense before slamming her face-first into the knee. Kai kicks out at 2. Kai drops Shotzi into the middle rope. Shotzi nails an enziguri when Gonzalez comes in. Gonzalez blocks a move from Shotzi. They end up in the corner trading shots. Shotzi hits Sliced Bread but Kai breaks up the pin attempt. Moon runs in and sends Kai to the floor. Shotzi nails a suicide dive on Kai for another big pop and “NXT!” chant. Gonzalez takes more double team offense but still kicks out at 2.
Shotzi has Kai on her shoulders at ringside now. Moon flies from the top, taking Kai off her shoulders for a big pop but they all land hard on the floor. Gonzalez comes out and drops Shotzi. Moon sends Gonzalez into the steel steps with the back of her head. Moon with kicks. Moon and Gonzalez come back in but Moon applies a submission. Kai breaks it up with a pump kick. Kai with a Scorpion Kick and Chiropractor to Shotzi for another close 2 count. Kai with a big double team with Gonzalez but Moon saves the pin. Moon takes a bad landing out on the ramp and Gonzalez shoves her off the stage to the floor. Gonzalez comes back in but Shotzi splashes her back for a close 2 count. Shotzi dropkicks Gonzalez to the ramp. Kai gets sent out next to her.
Shotzi goes to the top but Gonzalez shoves her off to the mat. Gonzalez presses Kai from the ramp and tosses her in the ring on top of Shotzi. Gonzalez follows in and hits the big spike chokeslam on Shotzi in the middle of the ring to get the pin.
Winners: Raquel Gonzalez and Dakota Kai
– After the match, the music hits as Kai and Gonzalez celebrate their Dusty Rhodes Tag Team Classic win. We go to replays. Kai and Gonzalez are on the stage with NXT General Manager William Regal now. They celebrate in front of the trophy as the pyro goes off.
– We see Pete Dunne and NXT Tag Team Champions Oney Lorcan and Danny Burch arriving earlier today. We also see NXT Champion Finn Balor arriving earlier today.
– We get a video package for the next match.
NXT North American Title Match: Kushida vs. Johnny Gargano
We go back to the ring and out first comes Kushida. We see The Way backstage – NXT North American Champion Johnny Gargano, Austin Theory, Candice LeRae and Indi Hartwell. They are hyped up and focused on beating Kushida. Dexter Lumis takes Theory out with a chloroform attack but no one sees it. The music hits and out comes Gargano, LeRae and Hartwell. Gargano wonders where Theory is and then sends LeRae and Hartwell to find him. Gargano heads to the ring as fans boo.
Kushida with an early Hoverboard Lock but Gargano gets right to the ropes. They lock up and trade more holds, going to the mat. Kushida tries softening Gargano up for the submission. They break and Kushida levels Gargano with a shoulder. Kushida with more offense on their feet. They go back down to the mat. Kushida avoids a GargaNo Escape and keeps control. They get back up and Gargano ends up sending Kushida over the top rope. He misses a baseball slide out. They go back & forth until Gargano kicks Kushida from the apron, then sends him into the steel steps.
Gargano stands tall on the floor and talks some trash but fans boo him and chant for Kushida. Kushida counters a move and drops Gargano into an armbar submission but on the floor. The referee counts and Kushida breaks it at 6. Kushida breaks the count and goes back for Gargano. Kushida with a big Chickenwing suplex on the floor, dropping Gargano hard. They bring it back in and Kushida dropkicks the hurt arm of Gargano. Gargano turns it around and nails a neckbreaker over the middle rope, dropping him on the apron. Fans boo Gargano as the referee checks on him.
Gargano keeps control and works on Kushida’s arm now. Gargano with a big suplex in the middle of the ring but Kushida kicks out at 1. Kushida blocks a neckbreaker but Gargano slams him face-down. Gargano follows up with a big running kick to keep Kushida down as fans continue booing him. Gargano mocks Kushida and uses the middle rope on him to bend his neck back as the referee counts. Gargano with a standing submission in the middle of the ring now.
Kushida fights up and out, turning it into an Octopus submission. Gargano takes them down and they trade pin attempts on the mat, and again. They roll around some more with pin attempts. They collide with double clotheslines and both go down as fans chant “NXT!” again. They get up and trade big forearm strikes. Kushida with an inverted Atomic Drop, a big hip toss and a low dropkick. Kushida rocks Gargano with a right hand to the jaw to drop him. Kushida puts a foot to the back and stretches Gargano, then stomps away.
Kushida goes for a Chickenwing suplex again but it’s blocked. They trade shots. Kushida misses a kick but ends up with an ankle lock applied. Kushida with a big German suplex. Kushida levels Gargano with a kick to the head but he kicks out just in time. More back and forth now. Kushida sends Gargano to the floor. Gargano fights back in but Kushida catches his slingshot Spear. Kushida drops him and rolls through with a big suplex with a bridge but Gargano somehow kicks out.
Fans do dueling chants now. Gargano tries to fight in from the apron but Kushida punches him in mid-air. Kushida runs with Gargano’s arm and drives him into the middle turnbuckle and ring post. Kushida with an arm bar in the corner but Gargano sends him away. Gargano gets laid out on the top now after Kushida came running back into the corner. Kushida climbs up but Gargano nails a twisting suplex from the second rope. Gargano keeps Kushida in the hold, nailing a second rope assisted tornado DDT for a close 2 count in the middle of the ring. Fans chant “NXT!” again as both competitors are laid out.
Kushida blocks a submission. They go back and forth with offense now. Gargano gets out of an armbar attempt. They tangle and trade more holds on the mat. Kushida tries to lock in an armbar but Gargano breaks it for a 2 count. They both get laid out after nailing each other with stiff strikes at the same time in the middle of the ring. Fans chant “NXT!” again. They get up on their knees and trade shots in the middle of the ring now, then to their feet. Gargano catches the springboard elbow and turns it into the GargaNo Escape in the middle of the ring.
Kushida slowly tries to go for the bottom rope but Gargano has him locked in. Kushida starts peeling Gargano’s arm away, trying to the Hoverboard Lock now. Gargano gets loose and crawls for the bottom rope but gets pulled back. Gargano kicks out of a bridge at 2. Gargano with a big superkick. Kushida with a right hand. Gargano catches Kushida and lawn darts him into the middle turnbuckle. Kushida blocks a right hand and they tangle in the corner now. Kushida launches Gargano into the turnbuckles with a Chickenwing suplex. Fans cheer for Kushida as he pulls Gargano to the top by his injured arm. Kushida with the big flip from the top, landing in the Hoverboard Lock on the mat. Gargano struggles but the armbar is straight now. Gargano looks to tap out but he turns over. Kushida turns it right back over. Gargano looks to tap to the Hoverboard Lock but he manages to get his feet on the bottom rope to save the match.
They go to the floor now and Kushida rams Gargano into the barrier, going right back to the arm submission. Gargano rams them back into the barrier to break free. Gargano crawls away from Kushida to the stage. Gargano is crawling to the exit now but Kushida appears there. Kushida yells, then runs and attacks Gargano, sending it back into the ring. Kushida with the Hoverboard Lock applied now but Gargano slams Kushida with the back of his neck into the ropes. The hold is once again broken as some fans chant for Gargano.
Kushida is on the ramp going to the ring. Gargano nails One Final Beat from the ring, dropping Kushida on his head on the ramp. He rolls Kushida back in and slowly follows. The referee checks on Kushida. Gargano nails a second One Final Beat and covers for the pin to retain.
Winner: Johnny Gargano
– After the match, Gargano is laid out on his back as the music hits. The referee brings the title over and he finally starts to move. Kushida is barely moving as well. We go to replays as Gargano takes the title. We come back to Gargano standing tall but still beat up.
– We get a promo for WWE Elimination Chamber next Sunday.
– Mercedes Martinez, Toni Storm and Io Shirai are shown warming up in the back.
– We get a promo for the 2021 Men’s Dusty Rhodes Tag Team Classic.
Men’s Dusty Rhodes Tag Team Classic Finals: MSK vs. The Grizzled Young Veterans
It’s time for the finals of the 2021 Men’s Dusty Rhodes Tag Team Classic. The winners will receive the trophy and a future title shot at NXT Tag Team Champions Oney Lorcan and Danny Burch. We go back to the ring and out first comes MSK – Wes Lee and Nash Carter. Out next are The Grizzled Young Veterans – Zack Gibson and James Drake.
Gibson takes the mic and cuts a promo on MSK as he and Drake head to the ring. He tells them to wipe the stupid smile off their face and take this seriously. He goes on and tells them to take their flips and their spins, and the pajamas they’re wearing, and shove them up their ass. He keeps ranting and then drops the mic. Fans continue to boo Drake and Gibson as they hit the ring and pose. Carter and Gibson start the match off, locking up. They go to the corner and back out. Carter takes Gibson down first with a headlock. Gibson turns it around on the mat and they tangle. Gibson controls by the arm and taunts some.
More back and forth into the corner. Drake tags in and takes over on Carter. Drake takes Carter down into a headlock and tightens it. Carter nails a springboard splash off the rope after they break and get up. Carter tags in Lee and they double team Drake in the corner. Carter also charged at Gibson on the apron. Lee locks up with Drake now. Gibson comes back in but they double team him with kicks, bringing him to his knees. Carter stomps on Gibson’s back, sending him to the floor with Drake to regroup.
Lee cartwheels and flies out, taking The Vets down. Carter then runs the ropes and uses Lee’s back to leap from the ring and land on Drake but not Gibson. Gibson comes back and levels Carter with a clothesline on the floor. Gibson controls Carter in the ring now. Gibson with a neckbreaker for a 2 count. Gibson grounds Carter but he gets his foot on the bottom rope to break it. Gibson traps Carter in the corner and in tags Drake for more double teaming. Drake covers for a 2 count, and another out of frustration, and a third.
Drake grounds Carter with another submission. Drake keeps control but Carter stays in it after several big moves and pin attempts. Carter fights out of the corner, knocking Gibson off the apron and reversing a suplex on Drake. Lee continue reaching for the tag but Gibson runs over and pulls him off. Lee backs Gibson into the ring. The referee is distracted by Lee as The Grizzled Vets hit a big assisted Flatliner on Carter. Carter still kicks out at 2 and Drake can’t believe it. Drake manhandles Carter on the mat now, focusing on his neck as fans boo.
Drake with knees to the gut as Carter is back on his feet. Drake sends Carter to the corner for more double teaming but Carter ducks a kick and crawls to tag in Lee. Lee runs wild on both opponents, sending Drake to the floor with a clothesline. Lee cuts Gibson’s attack off and unloads with offense now, dropkicking him. Lee runs the ropes and leaps over the corner, taking out Gibson and Drake on the floor, staying on his feet. Fans cheer him on with a big pop. Lee brings it back in the ring and takes out Gibson with back flips into a big kick. Gibson somehow kicks out at 2. Fans chant “this is awesome!” as he goes to the top. Drake grabs his leg but gets kicked away. Gibson still brings Lee to the mat and he lands hard. Lee blocks a powerbomb and brings Gibson down face-first into the mat.
MSK with a big double team on Gibson now, then Drake to knock him off the apron to the floor. Fans cheer MSK on. Carter is getting hyped up now as Gibson pleads from his knees. Carter snaps and unloads with strikes, tackling Gibson. Carter keeps control with a big Cutter from the ropes for a close 2 count. Gibson ends up fighting both opponents off now. Lee goes for another flipping kick but Gibson knees him out of mid-air. Lee appears hurt. Gibson nails Helter Skelter and Drake follows up with the 450 but Lee still kicks out just in time. Drake and Gibson can’t believe it.
Lee ends up avoiding the big double team off Gibson’s shoulders in the corner, rolling Gibson for a 2 count. Drake tags in as they double team Lee some more. Carter runs in to make the save. MSK takes out Drake and Gibson with big moves now as fans cheer them on. Carter flies off the top onto Drake. Lee then follows right up with a corkscrew splash on Drake but he somehow kicks out. MSK can’t believe it. MSK goes for the modified Hart Attack but Gibson pulls Lee to the floor as he runs the ropes. Gibson gets Lee on his shoulders in front of the announcers. Drake runs the ropes and flies out, hitting a huge Doomsday Device from the ring to the floor, taking Lee out. Fans chant “NXT!” now.
Drake runs in but Carter decks him. Gibson also gets rocked but Drake drops Carter from behind. They go to double team Carter but he fights them off for a few seconds. They stop him and hit the big double team but Carter somehow kicks out at 2. Drake and Gibson can’t believe it. Gibson grabs Carter’s face and yells at him, then slaps him. Fans boo. Drake tags back in for Ticket To Mayhem but Lee runs in to assist his partner. They hit double superkicks for a big pop. MSK goes on and hits a huge double team Blockbuster on Drake from the corner for the pin to win.
– After the match, fans cheer as the music hits and MSK recovers. Carter and Lee stand up in the middle of the ring, then hug each other. We go to replays. We come back to MSK on the stage now, celebrating at the Dusty Rhodes Tag Team Classic trophy as the pyro goes off and confetti falls.
– We get a Black History Month video.
– They air a new rap music video on Cameron Grimes. The video includes lyrics related to his new storyline centered around stocks and getting rich. There’s footage of Grimes’ return on last week’s show, and footage of him partying with all his riches, in a pool and everything.
– We see Pete Dunne and Finn Balor preparing for tonight’s main event in the back.
– We get a video package for the next match.
Triple Threat for the NXT Women’s Title: Toni Storm vs. Mercedes Martinez vs. Io Shirai
We go back to the ring and out first comes Mercedes Martinez as the boos start up. Toni Storm is out next, followed by NXT Women’s Champion Io Shirai. We get formal ring introductions from Alicia Taylor but Martinez doesn’t wait, she attacks Shirai and knocks her to the floor.
Storm attacks Martinez but Martinez beats her down and mounts her. Shirai runs back in and drops Martinez, covering for a 2 count. Shirai ends up sending Martinez to the floor but Storm attacks from behind. Storm drops Shirai and they run the ropes with counters. Shirai rolls Storm up and drops her face-first. Shirai knocks Martinez off the apron as she tries to re-enter. Shirai blocks Storm and drops her, then stomps on her for a pop.
Shirai stomps away on Storm while she’s down in the corner now. Storm catches a slingshot kick and ends up leveling Shirai with a running boot. Storm with a running clothesline against the ropes. Martinez decks Storm from the floor and drops her on the floor but they both land hard. Shirai goes for a moonsault from the apron but Martinez moves and Shirai crashes into the barrier. Martinez attacks and clotheslines Shirai over the barrier into the crowd.
Martinez brings Storm in the ring and covers for 2. Martinez goes on and does the Three Amigos on Storm but Shirai interrupts them with a missile dropkick. Shirai with running knees in the corner to Martinez. She runs again but Storm catches her in the big sidewalk slam. Storm runs and splashes Shirai in the corner. She charges again but Martinez catches her with a Spinebuster for 2. Shirai gets locked in a submission but it’s broken. Shirai grounds Storm in a submission now. Martinez gets on top of both of them and applies a Dragon Sleeper to Shirai. Storm is on the bottom of the stack but she rolls away. Martinez with a big Exploder suplex to Shirai now.
Shirai goes on and hits a 619 to Martinez, then sends her to the floor with a missile dropkick. Storm attacks Shirai and takes her to the top for a superplex but Martinez interrupts and Shirai gets knocked to the floor. Martinez climbs up on Storm and unloads with clubbing blows to the back. Martinez with a super German to Storm. Martinez ends up in a Tree of Woe in the corner. Shirai comes back to the top and decks Martinez, then hits the huge double stomp while Martinez is turned upside down.
Shirai attacks Mercedes on the floor but Martinez ends up launching her into the Plexiglas and she goes down hard. Storm comes out and drops Martinez on the floor. Storm takes apart the top of the announce table now while her opponents are down. Storm goes to slam Martinez on the announce table but Martinez counters with a DDT on the floor. We see Shirai up high on the lighting rig now. She leaps out and takes down both opponents on the floor with a huge splash. Fans chant “NXT!” as the referee checks on all three Superstars.
Martinez gets up first. She launches Shirai into the steel ring steps spine-first. Shirai lands hard as fans boo Martinez. Martinez gets the upperhand on Storm and brings her back in, running over her with a knee to the jaw. Martinez grabs Storm by the arms and pulls her into multiple knee strikes to the face. Shirai is still down on the outside. Martinez hits her Fisherman’s Buster on Storm in the middle of the ring but Storm kicks out just in time. Storm slides off Mercedes’ shoulders and lands a big headbutt. Storm nails Storm Zero in the middle of the ring for a close 2 count.
Storm can’t believe the kick out. Fans chant “NXT!” now. Storm with a big flying headbutt to the stomach. Storm covers for the pin on Martinez but Shirai breaks it up with a moonsault from the top out of nowhere. Shirai pushes Storm to the side and covers Martinez for the pin to retain.
Winner: Io Shirai
– After the match, Shirai recovers and takes the title as we go to replays. Shirai poses in the corner with the title and is all smiles as Storm and Martinez try to recover.
– We get a promo for next Sunday’s Elimination Chamber pay-per-view. We also get a promo for WrestleMania 37, which is just 55 days away.
– We see footage of LA Knight (Eli Drake) signing his NXT contract earlier today with NXT General Manager William Regal. They shook hands and Regal welcomed him. We also see a replay of Knight making his debut and cutting a promo during the Takeover Pre-Show.
– We get a video package for tonight’s NXT Title match.
NXT Title Match: Pete Dunne vs. Finn Balor
We go to the ring for tonight’s main event and out first comes Pete Dunne. The dramatic music starts up as we see NXT Champion Finn Balor approaching the steps of the stage in the back. Balor’s entrance music starts up as he makes his way to the ring to a pop. We get formal ring introductions from Taylor as they face off in the middle of the ring.
The bell rings and they stare each other down. Fans chant “NXT!” and they go at it. They lock up and break. They size each other up and tangle again. They go to the mat and trade holds. They break and get back up, staring each other down. Balor grabs the arm and takes Dunne down by it. Dunne with an arm drag but Balor keeps him down by the arm now. Dunne turns it around but Balor slams him to the mat to break free. Balor grounds Dunne by his arm again.
Balor twists the arm up and keeps control. Dunne with a Monkey Flip but Balor keeps his arm tied up. More back and forth on the mat but Balor keeps the upperhand with the arm. Dunne turns it around but Balor quickly gets away. They lock up as fans chant for Finn. The champ takes the challenger down with a headlock as the referee checks on them. They run the ropes and Balor drops Dunne with a shoulder. Balor takes Dunne right back down with a headlock.
Balor with another takedown as they tangle again. Dunne ends up with a leg scissors on the mat, keeping Balor down. Balor breaks free and they both get up for a stalemate as fans chant “NXT!” now. Balor smirks at Dunne. They lock up again and Dunne takes it to the ropes. The referee counts but Dunne rams Balor with shoulders against the ropes. Balor takes him to the corner but Dunne takes control and starts bending the fingers back. Dunne bends the fingers and wrist again but Balor breaks it.
Balor looks for a submission but Dunne counters. Balor ends up on top of Dunne on the mat now, tying his arm up. They tangle on the mat some more and Balor tries to avoid an arm bar attempt. Dunne gets the upperhand on the mat, bending Balor’s hand back again as fans boo. Dunne snaps the arm and hand back as the boos get louder. Balor screams out in pain. Balor rolls free and retreats to the corner in pain as Dunne stares him down. Dunne goes for the arm again and they end up on the mat. Dunne grounds Balor and starts bending the fingers back. Balor keeps bending but Balor tries to break free. Fans rally for Balor but Dunne grounds him with a boot to the neck and an elbow to the ribs. Dunne bends the hand back once again, then jumps and stomps the ribs.
Fans boo Dunne as Balor clutches his ribs in pain. Dunne grabs Balor but Balor stomps his toes. Balor with a drop toe hold into a leg submission as fans cheer him on. More back and forth now. Balor goes for the single-leg Crab but they end up back on the mat. Dunne with a headbutt and a forearm across the jaw to get the upperhand, going into a front face-lock. They get back to their feet and Dunne goes for a Guillotine. Dunne goes for a twisting suplex and drops Balor on his head but it looks as if Dunne’s knee also goes out. Balor kicks out at 2. They trade strikes now. Dunne chops Balor into the corner. Balor with a big stomp to the back of the knee as it’s trapped in the corner.
Balor takes Dunne back down but Dunne goes for the arm bar. Dunne takes Balor back down by the arm and gets a 2 count. Dunne with a big enziguri. Balor comes right back and levels Dunne with a clothesline for a close 2 count. Balor stomps Dunne while he’s down. Balor drops a knee to the back of the neck as fans cheer him on. Balor with big strikes to the back of the knee now. He grounds Dunne from behind and beats on him with forearms. Balor with a STF in the middle of the ring now, causing Dunne to start fading out.
Dunne is fading but he manages to get Balor off him by driving Balor’s fingers into the mat. Balor chops Dunne into the corner. Balor chokes Dunne as the referee warns him and counts to 5. Balor with another big chop to drop Dunne in the corner. Balor sends Dunne into the opposite corner and keeps control. Dunne takes a chop but fights out of the corner with chops of his own. Balor takes the knee out a few ties and goes for 1916 but Dunne counters. Dunne keeps fighting and stomps away while Balor is down. Dunne with a shot to the jaw and a sitdown powerbomb for a close 2 count. Fans chant “this is awesome!” now.
Dunne with a big jumping stomp, then a snap German suplex. Dunne keeps control and stomps the fingers. Balor comes back and nails a Backstabber in the middle of the ring. Balor drops Dunne again and then dropkicks him into the corner as the crowd continues to cheer him on. Balor goes to the top for a Coup de Grace but Dunne counters on the way down and catches him in a submission. Dunne pounds on Balor while trapping him on the mat. Balor is almost at the bottom rope but Dunne pulls him away and continues grounding him, this time in the middle of the ring. Balor manages to get his feet on the bottom rope and the hold is broken.
Dunne points to how Balor is knocked out, despite the foot on the rope, and the referee checks on Balor but apparently he’s awake, but barely. Dunne charges with a huge kick while Balor is down, right after the referee says he’s still in it. Balor counters and goes for the 1916 but that is blocked. Dunne goes for the fingers again but Balor takes him down in another hold. Dunne breaks free and snaps the fingers as Balor screams out and fans boo. Dunne grabs the fingers and holds them but Balor fights him with his good hand. Balor stomps while Dunne still has his hand. They continue to tangle and this leads to Dunne nailing a Bitter End for a very close 2 count. Dunne can’t believe it.
A shocked Dunne sits up against the bottom rope. Fans chant “this is awesome!” again. Dunne nails a double stomp to both hands, and another while the boos get louder. Dunne rocks Balor and goes for a powerbomb but Balor turns it into a big DDT. Balor charges but runs into a kick to the jaw. Dunne keeps control but Balor blocks a Bitter End. Balor turns that into the reverse 1916 for a close 2 count as Dunne somehow kicks out, still clinging to Balor’s fingers.
Balor tries to pull his hand away from Dunne. Balor kicks his injured angle but Dunne snaps the fingers back again. Balor with a double stomp to the back to keep Dunne down. Balor has Dunne on his knees. He gets his hand free but has also pulled Dunne’s mouth guard out. Balor backs up, points his guns at Dunne, and then hits the double dropkick to the face. Balor immediately goes to the top and nails Coup de Grace. Balor follows up with 1916 for the pin to retain in the middle of the ring.
Winner: Finn Balor
– After the match, Balor recovers as the music hits. We go to replays. We come back to Balor standing tall with the title. He poses in the corner as the crowd cheers him on. Dunne is down but recovering. Balor poses on the stage with the title around his waist until NXT Tag Team Champions Oney Lorcan and Danny Burch run out, dropping Balor from behind. The boos get louder as Burch and Lorcan bring Balor into the ring for the double team. The referee tries to stop the attack but he gets knocked down, possibly by a recovering Dunne. Dunne joins in for the triple team until The Undisputed Era’s music hits for a big pop. Adam Cole, Kyle O’Reilly and Roderick Strong run down and hit the ring as Dunne, Burch and Lorcan retreat to the stage. O’Reilly checks on Balor and offers his hand. O’Reilly helps Balor to his feet and they shake as fans cheer them on. The Undisputed Era stands in the middle of the ring and does their pose as Balor stands with them, doing his own pose. Cole suddenly superkicks Balor out of nowhere. O’Reilly and Strong, especially O’Reilly, aren’t happy with this. O’Reilly has words with Cole while we hear Strong say he understands what Cole did. Cole superkicks O’Reilly out of nowhere and lays him out next to Balor on the mat. Strong looks a bit unsure about everything but he’s with Cole. The boos get louder now as Cole looks down at O’Reilly, who is barely moving. Cole and Strong exit the ring while Balor and O’Reilly are still down. NXT “Takeover: Vengeance Day” goes off the air.