This Saturday at NXT TakeOver: WarGames, Finn Balor defeated Matt Riddle in what was a pretty decent back-and-forth match.
The match was Balor’s first on a TakeOver since he lost the NXT Championship in a steel cage match to Samoa Joe at NXT TakeOver: The End in 2016. It was his first on NXT TV since July 13, 2016 when he tackled Shinsuke Nakamura.
The match showed a more vicious side to Balor and reminded WWE fans more of his work as Prince Devitt in NJPW prior to joining WWE several years ago.
The display from the former Universal Championship was incredibly impressive. This is especially true considering reports have emerged suggesting Balor was actually sick before the show.
Fightful Select is reporting that the Irishman was battling some kind of illness prior to this weekend’s show. There is no word on what the exact illness was, nor how serious it was:
“We’re told Finn Balor was battling an illness prior to his match with Matt Riddle”
This perhaps explains why Finn Balor was not selected to be part of Team NXT last night at Survivor Series, as WWE thought it would be better to give him some time to rest.
Finn Balor was not actually supposed to go one-on-one with Matt Riddle at TakeOver. Instead, Riddle was supposed to be part of the men’s WarGames match, with Finn Balor taking on Johnny Gargano. Plans changed as Gargano is dealing with an injury.