Most TakeOver go home episodes of NXT are heavy on the hype packages, but tonight’s show did a great job of hyping up the live special while also giving us some solid in ring action.
Andrade Almas took on Kassius Ohno, Sanity and Roderick Strong addressed the next chapter in their rivalry and Bobby Roode responded to Hideo Itami becoming #1 contender. Let’s get to the show!
Hideo Itami got a very cool retrospect of his NXT career throughout tonight’s episode. It started with his debut back in 2014 (!) and ended with last week’s victory over Roderick Strong. It also included some awesome footage of his live event match against Tyler Breeze from 2015 WrestleMania weekend where he performed the GTS for the first time. Similar to what they did with Roddy Strong over the last few weeks, NXT is at their absolute best when they utilize the world class production team they have. It’s almost impossible to think Itami has been in NXT since 2014, and while the build to his match with Roode has seemed rushed, the videos they aired tonight show you why it’s so easy to root for Hideo.
We also heard from the ultimate piece of crap Bobby Roode, who was at his absolute heel best tonight. If you want to feel true hate for someone, give Bobby Roode 5 minutes and a microphone. He came out in his custom suit and ran down Itami, which contrasted beautifully with the video clips we watched of Hideo’s NXT career. Roode made a valid point about forgetting Hideo was even on the roster and followed that up with a theoretical conversation Hideo is going to have with his wife and kids after he loses to Roode on Saturday night. The best thing about Roode is that he says everything you don’t want to hear, including the fact that he’s beaten everyone in his path so far in NXT, including Shinsuke Nakamura twice.
After a great promo by Roode, Hideo came out to confront Bobby. While Roode slid of the ring, Itami GTS’d every security guard in sight, and eventually got Roode up on his shoulders and kneed him on the chin. NXT did a great job of selling their main event for TakeOver tonight, but it doesn’t bode well for Itami that he’s already nailed Roode with two GTS’s prior to their championship match.
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