NXT Takeover New Orleans: Night Of Chaos
Introducing the Chaos
The title of this review says it all ladies and gentlemen, because holy crap was this PPV chaotic?! At least in my humble opinion, because a lot of carnage, destruction, jaw dropping and wince worthy moments occurred during this Pay-Per-View. And I'mma cover them all as best I can, enjoy.
The Assessment Of The Resulting Chaos
The Ladder Match For The NXT North America title. A high octane chaotic spectacle. I mean bodies were flying, being hurled and slammed through ladders, it was a mess. I can't really say there was a single show stealer in this match either as each combatant has some highlight reel worthy moments. From Velveteen's elbow drop off the ladder onto Lars. Lars hurling Ricochet at Killian Dane. Lars crushing a ladder with Velveteen Dream and EC3's bodies. EC3 dropping Killian face first from atop the ladder, and power bombing Velveteen Dream from atop the ladder into a ladder in the corner. Ricochet's athleticism, in how he avoided being tossed from the ladder, laying out Lars with a flying forearm, and his flying press onto EC3. And how could I forget Ricochet dropping Velveteen Dream from atop the ladder with an avalanche neck breaker, which Velveteen somehow survived. Killian Dane hitting Lars with a suicide divide, and then to the two brutes, Dane and Lars striking each other atop the ladder. Adam Cole's super kick barrage, his alliance with EC3, and then him dropping EC3 off a ladder. These were just a few highlights from a match filled with pure unadulterated mayhem, and somehow when the dust settled on this war zone, Adam Cole emerged the first NXT North American Champion.
Speaking of chaos, next came the women's title match of Ember Moon taking on former UFC star Shayna Baszler. This match had a great back and forth between the two women. Ember's drop kick resulted in Baszler retaliating with a jab, Baszler went for another jab and was met by a code breaker from the top rope. Baszler took control for a bit with a series of holds to wear Ember down. Ember turned things around, and took the offensive most of the match, as it looked like she was going to win. But Baszler, showed a great sense of resilience, and determination, before she stripped Ember of the women's title with a rear naked choke. Like its predecessor this match was pretty chaotic, again with the trade off of strikes, holds and slams by both women, and Ember showing off her strength by power bombing Baszler had me freaking out.(Despite the fact that Baszler is 136 lbs...) I'm not all that upset that Ember Moon lost, because sh went down fighting. Struggling to escape the choke, until she passed out, which is admirable.
What followed was the Dusty Rhodes' Tag Team classic Championship between Authors Of Pain, Roderick Strong and Pete Dunne, Kyle O'Riley and Adam Cole. This started the way all multiple men tag matches start with all combatants saying "screw the rules let's just fight," as a brawl broke out. This resulted in the AoP dominating everyone in the ring(as they do), as Pete Dunne was tossed over the top rope, and Adam Cole was power bombed through the announce table. After O'Riley attacked the AoP with a flying knee and boot to the face, he engaged Pete in a submission trade off. Roderick got back at O'Riley, who tried to get him in a triangle choke. One of the AoP tried to engage Strong and O'Riley, before caught him in an ankle lock, before the second AoP member dropped Pete Dunne on O'Riley. We then got some semblance of order, as the AoP tagged each other during a bout with Strong, before O'Riley engaged Strong and the AoP. O'Riley got laid out, before the AoP continued to pick apart Strong. Strong managed to tag in Dunne after interference from O'Riley. The chaos continues as a whirlwind of strikes, slams, and counters are thrown between Dunne, Strong, O'Riley, and the AoP. And then when it looked like Dunne and Strong have the match won with a pin on the AoP, Strong turns on Dunne, and places O'Riley atop the fallen AoP member giving O'Riley and Cole the win... This resulted in Strong joining the Undisputed Faction. WHAT THE FROG?!
Anyway... What followed was the NXT Championship match between Aleister Black and Andrade "Cien" Almas. Almas held his own far better than I expected against Black, as there was a trade off of various attacks. He did so well, that I thought he was going to retain, and to my surprise this was not meant to be. But the show stealer of this match was Almas' manager, Zelina Vega. Vega was a coach, and support assaulter in this match. She not only coached Almas from the sidelines, but also attacked Black twice with hurricanranas, and missed him with a frog splash, as she landed in Almas' arms. Alister took this opportunity to finish Almas with the Black Mass, and become new NXT Champion.
And finally was Johnny Gargano settling some unfinished business with his ex-partner Tomaso Champa... This was an "Anything Goes" match, which explained a God awful lot. Gargano was out for blood in this match, as he unleashed a barrage of strikes. Champa managed to break free and retaliate with striking back, before Gargano hurled him over the announce table. Champa retaliated by slamming Gargano onto the floor and then the wooden slab of the of the table. Champs proceeded to beat down Gargano through the arena, before Gargano resiliently fights back. Champs lays Gargano out, before stealing the crutches from some poor soul, and attacked Gargano with said crutches. Gargano managed to avoid the crutches, before knocking Champa down with a kick. After a retaliation from Champa, Gargano planted him on the exposed concrete. After a tug-of-war over one of the crutches, Gargano wrenched the clutches from Champa and proceeded to beat him with it. They say "Revenge is a dish best served cold," and I'm guessing the metal of that crutch felt quite cold when it struck Champa repeatedly. After a clash of strikes and slams from these men, Gargano grabbed Champa with a submission, before Champa broke free by raking Garganos' eyes. This then turned into a scene straight out of Baki The Grappler, as Champa tethered Gargano to him with his wrist wrap, and the two proceeded to wail on each other with left jabs. Gargano proceeded to dominate Champa, before Champa broke free with a kick to the gut. Things escalated to Champa removing his knee brace, before Gargano got ahold of it, and struck Champa's injured knee with it. Gargano was going to finish Champa off with a crutch, before he backed off from a remorseful looking Champa. Champs then took the opportunity to try and strike Gargano with his brace only to miss, and end up tapping to a brace-faced STF.
It is rare to witness the kind of mayhem, carnage, and chaos this PPV displayed. It's rare because very seldom can the wrestlers preform at the level that was displayed this night. Yet while the ladder match was the best of the night, the others refused to fall short. I enjoyed the choreography and stories told during in the ring of each match. I loved how despite Ember's loss, she went down fighting until the bitter end, which earned my respect. I enjoyed Strong betrayal, as for me since I haven't been keeping up with NXT as of late, it came as a surprise, which resulted in me screaming "traitor" at my screen. EC3 earned my respect during the ladder match too, as seeing him in TNA, he didn't seem to get to show off what he could do. Velveteen Dream already had my respect after his match against Aleister at War Games, but the ladder match made it clear this man was hard working lunatic. I knew Ricochet was good when I saw him as Prince Puma in Lucha Underground, but after this I think WWE's found their replacement for Adrianne Neville. Zelina Vega and Almas were real troopers against Black, and I'm kinda bummed out Almas lost, because man did he put up a good fight...
All and all a five star show, and I think Wrestlemania on the main roster has their work cut out for them if they want to top this, but I highly doubt they do.