NXT – April 3, 2019

Date: April 3, 2019
Location: Full Sail University, Winter Park, Florida
Commentators: Mauro Ranallo, Nigel McGuinness, Percy Watson

This is where NXT tends to shine (among other places) as we have the final show before Takeover: New York. The card is set but now it’s time for the final push towards Friday (yeah Friday again) and that should be awesome. As for tonight we have Bianca Belair vs. Kairi Sane in a match that is going to end in interference. Let’s get to it.

Opening sequence.

War Raiders vs. ???/???

Non-title. Rowe tosses both of them around and it’s a pop up powerslam for the complete destruction at 1:01.

War Raiders want some more competition.

War Raiders vs. Adrian Jaoude/Cezar Bononi

Non-title. Hanson gets to beat both of them this and it’s off to Rowe, who slams Hanson onto Jaoude. A powerslam/World’s Strongest Slam to both Jaoude and Bononi at the same time makes Rowe look like even more of a monster. Fallout finishes Bononi at 1:22.

Video on Pete Dunne vs. Walter. Just take whatever NXT’s share of my 9.99 is now.

Ad for the Performance Center YouTube channel, including a bunch of shots of people outside the Performance Center. I could go for something like Breaking Ground.

Earlier today Candice LeRae talked about being happy for Johnny Gargano. She wants a title shot of her own but here are Vanessa Borne and Aliyah to laugh at the idea. Then she and Johnny can be failures together. Candice says they would know about failures and says she’ll start getting towards the title with Aliyah.

Oney Lorcan vs. Jaxson Ryker

Danny Burch and the rest of the Forgotten Sons are here. Ryker (I always forget he wrestles too.) drives Lorcan into the corner but Lorcan is fine with the intense brawling style. Lorcan’s shoulder and chop have no effect so it’s time for Burch and the Sons to get in an argument on the floor. The distraction lets Ryker nail a fireman’s carry gutbuster for a near fall. Lorcan’s chops still don’t work and we hit a bearhug to make Lorcan scream. This time he fights out and the chops work for a change but Lorcan misses a charge. A sitout spinebuster finishes Ryker at 5:25.

Rating: D+. This was pretty much a squash, which you don’t often see between established names. Lorcan is now on 205 Live anyway so maybe this is it for him as a full time guy around here. Burch is the kind of guy who can go on his own so he’ll be fine. The Sons are in a better place than they were a few weeks back, but they’re still a long way from where they need to be.

Video on Tommaso Ciampa having to vacate the NXT Title, setting up Johnny Gargano vs. Adam Cole in a 2/3 falls match for the vacant title in New York.

Video on Velveteen Dream vs. Matt Riddle. That’s your dark horse for show stealer.

We look at Keith Lee vs. Dominik Dijakovic from five weeks ago and the followup fight at the Performance Center.

Keith Lee has a mini press conference and promises to make Dijakovic bask in his glory in two weeks.

Next week: the Street Profits vs. Fabian Aichner/Marcel Barthel and LeRae vs. Aliyah.

Bianca Belair vs. Kairi Sane

Sane takes off the wristband to start and sends Belair to the apron, allowing her to mock the hair whip. A spear and basement dropkick have Belair in trouble but she’s right back with a powerslam. The abdominal stretch stays on the ribs and Belair covers with one foot, including a mock of the ahoy pose. Sane is right back with an Octopus Hold but gets broken up in a hurry.

Instead she heads up top and dives into a fall away slam for her efforts. Belair’s splash hits some quickly raised knees and Sane dropkicks her to the floor. Back in and Belair’s suplex is reversed into a DDT, meaning it’s the sliding elbow in the corner. A top rope forearm gets two but Belair is fine enough to catch her on top. The superplex, with Belair hanging onto the ropes, drops Sane so a moonsault can get two. Belair loads up the hair whip but it’s Shayna Baszler running in for the DQ at 8:26.

Rating: B. Obvious ending aside, this was a rather strong trading of big spots with Belair being at her best just showing off her athleticism. Sane can more than hang with her in that area though, making this a very entertaining match. I’m not sure who leaves Takeover with the title but at least the ending was the right call and no one too a loss.

Post match Io Shirai runs in to help Sane but gets beaten down by Jessamyn Duke and Marina Shafir. The women’s division comes out to break it up and Belair throws Lacey Lane onto the pile. We’re not done as Shirai moonsaults onto everyone and poses with the title to end the show.

Overall Rating: B-. You can picture the checklist that NXT follows as they run through the go home shows. Everything on here served a purpose and each of the Takeover matches got some kind of attention. Nothing was left out and matches were set up for the next two weeks. That’s very impressive and it’s a good match on top of that. If Takeover comes close to its potential, it’s the show of the year so far, as tends to be the case. Typical NXT here.


War Raiders b. ???/??? – Pop up powerslam to ???

War Raiders b. Adrian Jaoude/Cezar Bononi – Fallout to Bononi

Jaxson Ryker b. Oney Lorcan – Sitout spinebuster

Bianca Belair b. Kairi Sane via DQ when Shayna Baszler interfered

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