Finn Bálor and Adrian Neville Set The Stage For NXT Takeover


– WWE NXT Results – 2/4/15 | Fail Sail University, Winter Park, FL | Commentators: Corey Graves, Rich Brennan, and Alex Riley

NXT kicks off in SWAFT fashion as Enzo Amore and Big Cass get the crowd going. They introduce Carmella who tells the crowd that Blue Pants (who defeated Carmella on 1/1/15) went back to the clearance rack. Emma comes out next with her usual bubble entrance and dance number.

– Emma vs. Carmella

The crowd loves Emma and they’re happy to see her back at Full Sail. Carmella doesn’t care and goes right in for the attack but Emma catches her with some forearms. Carmella is able to out power Emma to take control of the match. Emma bounces back with a two clotheslines. Emma looks to have things well in hand until Carmella delivers a drop toe hold and applies a leg scissors choke, forcing Emma to tap out.

The SWAFT crew celebrates in the ring while Emma looks dejected. Emma was a little more intense this time around and it was mentioned that Emma is back in NXT to jump start her career and she might be a little sour as a result. Carmella compliments Cass and Enzo’s act but she isn’t as over with the crowd, yet. Enzo has charisma for days and “you can’t teach that!”

Winner: Carmella via submission


– #1 Contenders Tournament Semi Final: Adrian Neville vs. Baron Corbin

This is Baron Corbin’s first big test against a main event player in NXT. Neville used his uncanny athleticism and funky flips to avoid the big man until Corbin cut him off with a big clothesline. Corbin did an excellent job with the intimidation factor as he got the heat Neville.

Corbin hits a big move in what can only be described a vertical suplex into a forward power slam for a two count. Neville comes back with a springboard dropkick and follows up with a dive over the top but Corbin makes the catch and drops him on the guardrail.

Corbin puts Neville back in the ring and Bull Dempsey comes out of nowhere to throw Corbin into the post. The referee missed it because he was checking on Neville. A dazed Corbin slides back into the ring which gives Neville the opening he needs to drag him in position for the Red Arrow and gets the 1-2-3.

Corbin beat Dempsey last week thus ending his undefeated. This week, Dempsey returns the favor by costing him the match with Neville and which also ends Corbin’s undefeated streak.

Winner: Adrian Neville


Backstage: Sami Zayn puts over Kevin Owens as a master manipulator because he was able to trick William Regal, who has seen all of the dirty tricks, into making their match for the NXT championship after he was explicitly told it would be a non-title affair. Zayn doesn’t believe Owens’ claims that his attacks aren’t personal and will beat the hell out of him at NXT Takeover.


Announcement: General Manager William Regal has made it official. Baron Corbin and Bull Dempsey will lock horns in a No Disqualification match at NXT Takeover Rival.


– Bayley vs. Becky Lynch

Bayley seems a little hesitant while Lynch is all smiles and full of arrogance. Becky immediately goes after the injured knee of Bayley and follows up with a snap suplex. After three leg drops, Lunch goes after Bayley’s knee again with some knee drops. Bayley sends Lynch out of the ring.

Lynch gets distracted by the presence of Sasha Banks, gets back in the ring and walks into a Bayley barrage of back elbows. Bayley misses the charge into the corner and Lynch delivers a dragon screw leg whip. Bayley rolls up Lynch for a two count and a mean streak develops as she aggressively stomps away at Lynch’s left knee.

Bayley applies a single leg crab but Lynch gets to the ropes for the break. Lynch rolls outside in pain, Banks shouts hollow words of encouragement. Banks throws Lynch back into the ring and walks right into a Bayley to Belly and is pinned.

The result brings a satisfying smirk on her face Banks who gets in the ring and reads Lynch the riot act. They get into a shoving match with Banks hitting the canvas. The music hits and Charlotte arrives on the entrance ramp, starring at all three women as Bayley is stuck in the middle and looks unsure of herself.

Winner: Bayley


Backstage: Kevin Owens says he knew he would manipulate himself into the title match because he knows Sami Zayn. Owens mentions that Takeover will be two months to the day he debuted in NXT and will walkout as champion.


Another broadcast interruption occurs, as it was no sold by the commentary team. However, it appears the arrival Solomon Crowe is imminent.


Backstage: Tyler Breeze is taking some gorgeous selfies of himself and is interrupted by Devin Taylor who asks him about his plans after being eliminated from the tournament. Breeze is annoyed by the question and sarcastically commends Taylor on her cutting edge journalism. Breeze says losing one match is no big deal and plans on watching the rest of the tournament very closely.


– #1 Contenders Tournament Semi Final: Finn Bálor vs. Hideo Itami

Adrian Neville joins the crew on commentary, as a longtime friendship is put aside for the pursuit of NXT gold. A small “This is awesome” cant breaks out before the bell even rings. Some crisp mat wrestling brings about a stalemate. They go at it again and they break as the crowd voices their appreciation.

Itami has control on the mat with some nice counters between the two. Bálor gets to his feet, sends Itami into the ropes, leap frogs him, and delivers a picture perfect drop kick as we go to break.

We are back and Itami connects with a running boot to the face and covers Bálor for a two count. Itami delivers a neck breaker and applies a rear chinlock, Bálor gets up quickly, rolls through a sunset flip and hits a drop kick. Neither man has been able to gain a decisive advantage since they know each other so well.

Bálor applies an abdominal stretch and bends back Itami’s fingers on his right hand and transitions into a quick roll-up for a one count. Bálor hits several cradles attempts all for a two count. Itami hits a back elbow, climbs to the top but Bálor hits a jumping sidekick to the head and Itami crashes to the canvas.

After some vicious chops in the corner, Itami hits a leg lariat and fires back with some clotheslines and a running knee in the corner. Itami goes for a tornado DDT, Bálor shifts the momentum to the apron where Itami sees it coming and hangs him out to dry. Itami hits a clothesline off the top rope for a near fall.

Fans chant for the GTS and Itami goes for it, but Bálor slides out and comes back with a Pele Kick. Counter after counter has been the story of this match as both men look very weary. The fans chant “Marking Out, Marking Out” as both men trade forearm shots. Itami gets the better of the exchange as he switches to stiff kicks.

Bálor collapses in the corner and Itami looks like a man possessed as he runs in and drills Bálor with a running dropkick. Itami sends Bálor into the ropes and is caught with a sling blade but Bálor it too tired to make the cover. Then, out of nowhere, Bálor charges in with a running dropkick and Itami’s body looks as if it went limp as his head hit the bottom turnbuckle. Bálor hits the double stomp off the top rope and gets the win.

They show a replay of the running dropkick Itami was leveled with and it looked even more impressive in slow motion. Bálor and Itami shake hands, Adrian Neville claps in approval of Bálor’s handiwork. They meet at the top of the ramp, shake hands and our tournament final is set for next week.

Winner: Finn Bálor


The show ends with a great pre-fight video package hyping Zayn vs. Owens by exploring their storied friendship and highlighting Owens a credible threat for Zayn’s title.


NXT TakeOver Rival will air on Wednesday, February 11th at 8:00 pm exclusively on the WWE Network.

NXT Championship: Sami Zayn vs. Kevin Owens

Tag Team Championship: Buddy Murphy & Wesley Blake vs. Lucha Dragons

Women’s Championship Fatal Four Way: Charlotte vs. Sasha Banks vs. Bayley vs. Becky Lynch

#1 Contender Tournament Finals: Finn Bálor vs. Adrian Neville

No Disqualification: Baron Corbin vs. Bull Dempsey

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