By Graham "GSM" Matthews
Big E def. Bo Dallas in a "Win or Go Home" Match
I thought it was a great touch to have Dallas' last NXT match against the same man he beat for the NXT Championship a year ago, and I got a kick out of how Dallas stated that he was undefeated against Big E. Speaking of whom, how WWE hasn't brought Big E's five count gimmick to the main roster is beyond me, as it is extremely over with the Full Sail University crowd. The match was decent enough but didn't get good until the final few minutes. I really loved how they used the turnbuckle spot like they did during their championship clash last year and I'm glad the commentators acknowledged it. It wasn't as hot of a match as I expected it to be, but it was a nice way for Dallas to go out. I thought the post-match antics by Dallas were cut short, but at least their showed what happened "during the break" afterward and it was absolutely hilarious.
Divas Champion Paige def. Tamina Snuka (Non-title)
I found this to be a better bout than their encounter at Extreme Rules, but that might have been because of the better crowd and how this match didn't serve as filler. Both Divas had impressive showings and they made the most out of the time they were given. It was more of a showcase for Paige than anything else since their feud hasn't been furthered at all on WWE TV, but it was a quality match from the ladies, nevertheless.
Adam Rose def. Camacho by Count-out
Although I'm a major fan of the Adam Rose gimmick, I just haven't been able to get into his feud with Camacho. Camacho doesn't excite me in the slightest, there's nothing particularly interesting about him and he hasn't evolved at all. The match was fine yet forgettable, and the count-out finish was logical in furthering their feud going into their rematch at Takeover. The Rose character continues to garner a great response from the NXT fan base despite struggling on the main roster, so not all hope is lost, I suppose.
Natalya def. Sasha Banks in a Semifinals Match in the NXT Women's Championship Tournament
It was pretty predictable from the get-go that Natalya would be winning this match, but at least Charlotte's pre-taped backstage promo cast some doubt for viewers that were still unsure. The match was good but probably would have been better had it not been for Tamina vs. Paige earlier. The focus was more so on the tension teased between Sasha and Charlotte at ringside than on the action and I assume a Sasha face turn might be coming soon. It could lead to a nice feud in the NXT women's division, something that is desperately needed right now.
NXT Champion Adrian Neville def. Curt Hawkins (Non-title)
It's always a treat to see Hawkins in action. He's underrated in the ring in my opinion and he isn't used often. Granted, he served as an enhancement talent for Neville here, but he worked a fun match with him for a few minutes that put Neville over nicely going into Takeover next week. The post-match confrontation between Neville and Tyson Kidd was a pleasant surprise with both competitors shining on the mic. Neither guy is known for being a great promo, so this was a great way of hyping their upcoming title match and putting some heat on it.
This show was all about building up Takeover for next week and it definitely succeeded in that respect. The action was entertaining, the build was well done and as a whole the hour flew by. The last NXT special on the WWE Network (Arrival) was fantastic and I expect Takeover to be just as good if not better with what's on tap.