WWE NXT Results, Grades: Finn Balor, Velveteen Dream go to war

Finn Balor on the Oct. 30, 2019 edition of WWE NXT. Photo: WWE.com
Finn Balor on the Oct. 30, 2019 edition of WWE NXT. Photo: WWE.com /

Velveteen Dream defeats Finn Balor to secure the final slot in the NXT TakeOver ladder match

With NXT TakeOver 30  on the horizon, spots are filled as rivalries reach their penultimate climax.

Johnny Gargano Vs. Ridge Holland

Grade: B

The first contest of the evening pitted Johnny Gargano against Ridge Holland. Holland would utilize his size advantage alongside quick submissions to deter his opponent’s rapid speed. Gargano managed to regain control by targeting the arms and legs of the big man.

In the climax of the contest, Gargano capitalized on a distraction from Candice LeRae to unleash One Final Beat and move on to the North American Championship ladder match.

This match maintained a technical approach only to significantly pick up towards the culmination. Both men took full advantage of their strengths in pursuit of the win.

Dakota Kai Vs. Jessi Kamea

Grade: C

Dakota immediately charged at her opponent with head attacks. Kamea managed to hold her own with a series of brutal kicks. Towards the end, Kai hit the GTK to put her opponent away.

After the match, Kai threatened to repeatedly kick Io’s head in, only for the latter to run in and attack. Raquel Gonzales suddenly arrived and savagely attacked Shirai to establish a dominant partnership.

This match was relatively brief, though Kamea put on a decent showing for the duration. Kai repeatedly unleashed her own moves to keep the pace.

Breezango and Isaiah “Swerve” Scott Vs. Legado del Fantasma

Grade: B

The next match pit Breezango and Isaiah “Swerve” Scott against Joaquin Wilde, Santos Escobar, and Raul Mendoza. The teams viciously attacked each other at the beginning, with the heroic team gaining the upper hand. Wilde and Mendoza later took advantage of Fandango’s arm injury while keeping him isolated.

In the climax, Escobar hit the Phantom Driver on a disoriented Breeze to secure the win for his team.

The two teams kept a fast pace while utilizing their impressive chemistry to create an exciting atmosphere. Fandango put up a great fight in spite of his injuries.

Shotzi Blackheart and Rhea Ripley Vs. Mercedes Martinez and Aliyah

Grade: B

Rhea went after Martinez in the opening moments, later allowing Shotzi to pick apart Aliyah. The latter would reassume control with quick tags. Rhea found her way back into the match by using similar maneuvers, including a brutal powerbomb on Mercedes.

In the climax of the match, Shotzi performed an impressive top rope senton to come out victorious.

These teams worked extremely well together in spite of their drastic in-ring differences. Ripley changed the match’s flow dramatically with her high octane style.

Finn Balor Vs. Velveteen Dream

Grade: A

Finn Balor first caught his opponent in a constricting headlock until Dream regained control on the outside. He would use the plexiglass and barricades to wear his opponent down.  The momentum shifted towards Balor mid-match with another series of headlocks and submissions.

Dream found holes in his opponent’s game throughout while repeatedly mocking him. Cameron Grimes suddenly appeared in an attempt to confuse and distract his opponents, caressing the vacant North American Championship. In the climax of the contest, the interference of numerous opponents allowed Dream to hit the Dream Valley Driver and move on to TakeOver 30. 

This match was incredible from start to finish, with neither opponent willing to give up their chance at championship victory. Dream powered himself to victory in spite of the constant distractions.

August 19th NXT Results

  • Johnny Gargano defeated Ridge Holland via pinfall
  • Dakota Kai defeated Jessi Kamea via pinfall
  • Breezango and Isaiah “Swerve” Scott defeated El Phantasma, Santos Escobar, and Raul Mendoza via pinfall
  • Shotzi Blackheart and Rhea Ripley defeated Mercedes Martinez and Aliyah via pinfall
  • Velveteen Dream defeated Finn Balor via pinfall

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