NXT Tag Team Champions War Raiders def. Local Athletes (Non-title); War Raiders def. Adrian Jaoude and Cezar Bononi (Non-title)
It's crazy to think how War Raiders have barely been in action on NXT TV since becoming NXT Tag Team Champions back at TakeOver: Phoenix. Their reign hasn't been all that memorable as a result, but at least their entrance here was cool and they made quick work of their opponents. Having them compete in back-to-back squashes established them as a dominant force. Here's hoping they receive more focus coming out of TakeOver (assuming they retain the tag titles, that is).
Jaxson Ryker def. Oney Lorcan
Forgotten Sons do nothing for me, but they proved during the Dusty Rhodes Tag Team Classic that they can be carried to great matches if up against the right opponents. This was one of those instances with Lorcan just being a blast to watch and Ryker managing to hold his own. It was a perfectly serviceable match, though I'm not sure what purpose it was supposed to serve other than to give Ryker a credible victory.
Bianca Belair def. Kairi Sane by Disqualification
Both of these ladies will be vying for the NXT Women's Championship at TakeOver: New York, so this offered a small taste of what we can expect in that Fatal 4-Way. Belair had her first breakout performance against Sane during the inaugural Mae Young Classic two years ago, so it was cool to see them face off in a rematch here. It was enjoyable while it lasted, and I understand why it ended in a non-finish, but the constant interference from Shayna Baszler is getting ridiculous. Here's hoping it'll be over after TakeOver. At least the massive brawl that closed the show was well received by the live crowd.
Per usual, this go-home show for TakeOver: New York largely consisted of video packages for the event that hyped up Johnny Gargano vs. Adam Cole, Velveteen Dream vs. Matt Riddle, and Pete Dunne vs. WALTER. There was also additional build for the Fatal 4-Way and War Raiders vs. Aleister Black and Ricochet in the opening and closing matches. Lorcan vs. Ryker was pretty pointless, but if nothing else, it was fine. I have high hopes for TakeOver and can't wait to be there in attendance. On paper, it has the potential to be one of the best TakeOver specials to date.
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