The match card for NXT TakeOver XXV takes shape as matches got announced and rivalries heated up this past week on NXT.
The NXT Tag-Team champions, the War Raiders, kicked off the show this week. Mauro Ranallo on commentary played up their achievements after they had “raided” the main roster in recent weeks.
The War Raiders received a warm reception from the NXT crowd as they got on the mic and asked General Manager William to join them in the ring. Regal obliged and the Hanson and Rowe announced their decision to relinquish the tag-team titles.
As the fans voiced their disappointment and Regal expressed surprise at the turn of events, out came the Street Profits. The charismatic duo of Angelo Dawkins and Montez Ford got on the mic and claimed, with the full backing of the Full Sail crowd, that they could beat the War Raiders (they used the other name). After having pushed enough of their buttons, Hanson and Rowe accepted the challenge, took back their titles from Regal and told him “make the match”.
Regal announced the NXT Tag-Team championship match, set for the main event.
— WWE (@WWE) May 16, 2019
NXT’s biggest heel faction featured this week as a part of a couple of backstage segments. Cathy Kelley interviewed Adam Cole, Kyle O’Reilly, and Bobby Fish outside the arena with Roderick Strong conspicuous by his absence.
However, as Cole was giving an update about the current state of the group, Strong appeared from behind. Confronting Adam Cole, Roddy told him that he was right and the group was stronger together. With that, Roderick Strong handed Adam Cole a bloodied flip-flop, presumably from Matt Riddle, as he told Cole that the Matt Riddle problem had been taken care of. Kyle O’Reilly’s expressions were absolute money throughout this segment.
Riddle’s Condition and Johnny Gargano
Matt Riddle was seen later on in the show, getting his ribs taped up with NXT Champion Johnny Gargano standing by his side. Gargano later answered a question about Riddle’s condition saying he would be okay.
He would then add and announce that at NXT TakeOver XXV, he would face off against Adam Cole for the NXT Championship one more time.
Return of Keith Lee
After his hard-hitting battles with Dominik Dijakovic a few weeks ago, Keith Lee made his return to NXT TV this week. The NXT universe was singing to Lee’s tune, undoubtedly pleased to see him back.
The Limitless One faced off against Cezar Bononi this past week and put on a clinic in wrestling psychology. Lee was at his athletic, chest-chopping best as he pulled the strings of the crowd with his every move. This was an excellent show of strength and athleticism. Bononi stood no chance as Keith Lee made quick work of the Brazilian with a jumping sit-down powerbomb.
The Forgotten Sons – Forgotten Again
Cathy Kelley caught up with a furious-looking Forgotten Sons just as the trio were about to enter GM Regal’s office. The faction talked about how they were going to show everyone, including William Regal, why you do not forget the Forgotten Sons. Ironic.
KUSHIDA and the Finest
NXT’s latest international star KUSHIDA took on Kona Reeves in singles action this week. This was Reeves’ first singles match back on NXT TV in some time.
This was a different match to Keith Lee’s decimation of Cezar Bononi with Reeves actually getting the better early on. NXT’s Finest used his size advantage to exert himself and throw KUSHIDA around on occasion. Interestingly, 205 Live and occasional NXT superstar Drew Gulak made his way out to the entrance stage, silently observing proceedings – perhaps this was an extension of Vince McMahon’s new “wildcard” rule or whatever that was called.
The Japanese star eventually took control after a series of athletic kicks and elbows including a sensational summersault plancha from the top turnbuckle to the outside. As the crowd chanted his name, KUSHIDA finally managed to lock in the hoverboard lock and made Kona tap out in front of a seemingly unimpressed Drew Gulak.
Beth Phoenix, at the very start of the show, was introduced as the newest member of the NXT commentary team. A change that comes about after the recent rumors of Percy Watson asking for his release but a pleasant surprise to see the Glamazon on NXT TV.
Vanessa Borne, accompanied by Aliyah, was in singles action this week against an enhancement talent called Jessie. Borne showed off her heel skillset in this match with Aliyah also getting involved on occasions when the ref’s back was turned.
Borne picked up the victory thanks to a version of a swinging neckbreaker.
The fan-favorite team of Montez Ford and Angelo Dawkins came out first to take on the intense and well-respected NXT Tag-Team champions, Rowe and Hanson, the War Raiders.
This was a very fast-paced match with the champs not forgetting how their last contest with the Street Profits began as they returned the favor with a surprise attack just as the bell rang.
The challengers seemed to have been rattled but recovered enough to turn the tables late on. The match featured plenty of believable near falls with a clean win for the upstarts over the veteran champions teased on a number of occasions.
— WWE Universe (@WWEUniverse) May 16, 2019
The Street Profits showed their credentials with Dawkins getting the better of Hanson in a scintillating exchange which including dueling cartwheels before Dawson delivered a spinebuster to Hanson.
— WWE NXT (@WWENXT) May 16, 2019
Eventually, the match turned into chaos as the disgruntled Forgotten Sons showed up, spoiling everyone’s mood. As they took out the two teams, out came Oney Lorcan and Danny Burch, getting their own back at the Forgotten Sons.
— WWE (@WWE) May 16, 2019
The Street Profits eventually managed to get the better of the NXT champions as they delivered an electric chair into a brain buster on Rowe. As Dawkins and Ford left the arena, an enraged Rowe and Hanson took out their frustrations on Danny Burch and Wesley Blake who were left in the ring.
The show ended with the current NXT Tag-Team champions laying their championship belts in front of them and bowing to the NXT universe. Was this their final swansong?
Two huge matches were announced for NXT TakeOver XXV this week as Johnny Gargano will defend his NXT Championship against the leader of the Undisputed Era, Adam Cole.
In the Women’s division, Shayna Baszler will defend her crown against Io Shirai.
Stay tuned to the Last Word on Pro Wrestling for more on this and other stories from around the world of wrestling, as they develop. You can always count on LWOPW to be on top of the major news in the wrestling world, as well as to provide you with analysis, previews, videos, interviews, and editorials on the wrestling world.