7. Asuka vs. Nikki Cross – June 28, 2017
And talk about underrated classics. The first-ever Last Woman Standing match in WWE history, don’t let Sasha and Charlotte tell you differently, also its WAY more brutal than the one the Queen and the Boss had.
If Nikki Cross hadn’t already convinced you that she was insane with her propensity to run around like one of the witched from MacBeth with her f**king dress on fire, then the bumps she took here SHOULD make that abundantly clear.
Sometimes it’s as simple as Asuka putting a trash can on Nikki’s head and just kicking it as hard as she can, sometimes it’s as horrible as Asuka being powerbombed on a pile of chairs on the outside.
There’s a f**king sickening superplex from a ladder through the announce table.
The fans are annoyingly dead for large stretches of the match, which is a real shame, but even they wake up for some of these high spots, which served as a proper star-making turn for Nikki Cross.
6. Adam Cole vs. Kyle O’Reilly – July 8, 2021
Fans may have soured on Kyle O’Reilly’s super cool and in no way lame cool guy persona, cruelly booing his big blowoff win against Adam Cole Baby at Takeover 36, but god damn if these two men couldn’t go.
Their two takeover encounters are notable, although both of them are crazy excessive wacky hardcore matches that bury the lede on how technically sound both men are, it often felt like Cole and O’Reilly were almost duty-bound to live up to the carnage of Ciampa/Gargano, but their tv match at the Great American Bash might actually be their best.
Because it’s a regular match, more of a focus on technicality, which is definitely Kyle’s strong suit, and a really strong example of how a blood feud can actually flourish under confined rules.
It’s a belter, both men trading submissions and stiff strikes, each one having every single limb in the purple on 2K by the end of the match, wish the rabid crowd had been a little more into Kyle at the time so they could have lost their mind at the amazing moment O’Reilly kicks out of the first last shot, with all the limbwork stories paying off in the final stretch leading to the last last shot.
5. Undisputed Era vs. The Revival – November 20, 2019
Once upon a time, before AEW was invented, the home of the greatest tag wrestling in the world was NXT.
DIY, AOP, American Alpha, Enzo & Cass, The Revival and the Undisputed Era, to name just a few, it seemed like every single Takeover between 2016 and 2020, they kept finding new ways to raise the bar.
Two of the most accomplished teams, and providing some of the greatest takeover matches ever were The Revival, now known as FTR and the Undisputed Era, now known as Kyle O’Reilly and Roderick Strong.
Like two ships passing each other in the night, the Revival checked out of NXT shortly before the UE checked in, and it was long anticipated dream match, UE vs the Revival, well it actually happened, not at Takeover but on NXT TV, and it f**king ruled.
One of the only times that Revival ever worked face, the best team of one era, faced off against Fish and OReilly, often regarded as the best team within UE.
All dickhead, all seamless transitions, all the time, building to a beautiful crescendo of violence with rare heroism from Dash and Dawson.
4. Flash Morgan Webster & Mark Andrews vs. The Broserweights – January 15, 2020
And sticking with blisteringly good tag wrestling, who doesn’t love a little bit of the Dusty Rhodes tag team classic.
There have been a HUGE amount of beautiful NXT TV tag matches as part of the tournament, American Alpha making a name for themselves getting a 20-minute bout out of the goddamn Hype Bros, DIY vs. Aleister Black and Ricochet, Grizzled Young Veterans vs. UE, but this is a underrated favourite, the odd couple of the Broserweights vs. the happiest boys in all the schoolyard, Mark Andrews and Flash Morgan Webster.
Just four dudes who’d wrestled each other a whole bunch on the UK indie scene and beyond, this match just decided to skip the feeling out process and just go straight into silly flips and power moves, and it’s LOVELY.
Mark Andrews’ hot tag is hot enough to melt vibranium featuring a ludicrous sunset flip tornado DDT spot.
Also there’s an electric chair, poisonrana thing which, just… chefs kiss. The match gets a tag team wrestling chant for a reason.
If you’ve forgotten about this match, go and watch it again, it’s just fun. And you’re right lisa, fun IS fun.
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