Border Brutality: WWE NXT TakeOver Toronto 2019 Review

NXT TakeOver Toronto did what every other TakeOver does…shocks the world and elevates the game.

Literally, there is never one WWE fan that says the words “That was a bad TakeOver”.

There will never be a fan, WWE or general wrestling fan that will ever say “NXT TakeOver will be a terrible show”.

That is how wonderful the talent in NXT is. 

That is how hard-working and dedicated the men and women in NXT are, to entertain the fans and make a name for themselves.

They continue to show everybody that NXT is arguably the hottest brand in sports entertainment and wrestling today.

Tonight proved just that fact.

Five really good matches, a lot of excellent moments and heart-stopping adrenaline throughout the night but enough building it up, let’s talk about NXT TakeOver Toronto.

The Street Profits vs The Undisputed Era for the NXT Tag Team Championship

Two of the best tag teams NXT has to offer. Two of the most entertaining teams in WWE as a whole. All four of these men brought it. Kyle O’Reilly was great as always. Bobby Fish was great as well. Montez Ford is an absolute STAR and his potential is exponential. His energy and his dedication was a beautiful way to keep the crowd into the match. The star of the match though…and I never thought I would say this was Angelo Dawkins. I’ve been sleeping on Dawkins for years. Didn’t think he had potential but in this match, he proved himself more than ever. He used his strength and ability to really make this a great match to watch. The Street Profits retain but I wouldn’t mind seeing these two teams clash one more time.

Prediction: The Street Profits

Result: The Street Profits

Unpredicted Chaos

What happened this past Wednesday and over the last two weeks has told us anything, Killian Dain and Matt Riddle do not like each other at all. Matt Riddle unexpectedly came out to the ring and wanted to fight Killian Dain. Not in a match, just a fight and fight they did. This time though, it wasn’t a one-way fight. Riddle battled back and battled back. Dain took control of the fight though and even taking himself, Riddle and a random security guard off the stage and through a table. The segment ended after that.

Candice LeRae vs Io Shirai

Two of the most gifted women’s wrestlers in the world put on one of the best women’s wrestling matches I have or possibly anyone else have seen in their lives. I mean these two used their talent to put on a show. Candice was as excellent as she always is, proving that she can be her own performer and stand on her own two feet instead of just being known as Johnny Gargano’s wife. She was talented before she left the indies and she’ll be talented when her husband goes up to the main roster…but more on that later. Io Shirai was Io Shirai. Did amazing athletic feats and introduce a few new elements to her style including a submission. In the end, Shirai won but in my mind, both of these women won. The NXT Universe won because with no titles, no meaningful gain from having this match, these two women proved that they belong.

Prediction: Io Shirai

Result: Io Shirai

Velveteen Dream vs Pete Dunne vs Roderick Strong for the NXT North American Championship

Three great talents put on yet another TakeOver classic. Pete Dunne was intense and added that brutality element to this match. Roderick Strong did what Roderick Strong does. Showing that he is one of the most gifted competitors in the world. Velveteen Dream played ultimate spoiler throughout the match not wanting to lose his championship and stop pinfall after pinfall. These three really took it to the limit and they could have gone another 30 minutes and still would have made this an amazing match to watch. In the end, Velveteen Dream got the surprise win and retains the North American Championship.

Prediction: Dream

Result: Dream

Shayna Baszler vs Mia Yim for the NXT Women’s Championship

Everyone wants to dethrone Shayna, so many want Baszler to lose her championship. But if there is one thing I have learned over the last year, never bet against the Queen of Spades. Now I will admit, the match was slow and stagnant at some parts and I believe this match should have been first but these two had a good match and Baszler retains once again.

Prediction: Shayna Baszler

Result: Shayna Baszler

Adam Cole vs Johnny Gargano 2 Out Of 3 Falls Match for the NXT Championship

1st Fall

The 1ST Fall was a straight-up wrestling match and the way the two fought each other you would have thought they were already in the Street Fight fall. There were some wicked spots and wrestling. In the end, Cole brought a chair in the ring and he tried to use it, but the referee wouldn’t allow it. Gargano eventually got his hands on it and didn’t really care about losing that fall so he hit Cole with the chair and lost the 1st Fall via DQ

2nd Fall

The Street Fight was next, and the intensity just escalated. Fighting in the crowd, jumping off barriers and through barriers and tables, DDTs onto chairs, the whole fall was nasty. There were near falls after near falls after near falls, bringing such surprise and anticipation to this match. It was supremely well done, and in the end, Cole ended up tapping out to the Gargano Escape. Gargano 1-Cole 1. One fall left to go, and it would turn out to be the craziest of the three.

3rd Fall

During the TakeOver Toronto pre-show, NXT General Manager William Regal announced the 3rd Fall to prove a definitive winner and bring a definitive end to this rivalry. The 3rd Fall would be a Steel Cage Match but not only a Steel Cage Match but a Barbed Wire Steel Cage Match. Not just was it a Barbed Wire Steel Cage Match, it was a Barbed Wire Steel Cage Match with weapons all around the structure. There were sledgehammers (a Triple H favorite), tables, ladders, chairs (oh my), kendo sticks, fire extinguishers and so much more. Take all of that and add in these two talented stars and you have your Match of The Year. 

I mean there were so many spots in this match. Double superkick spots, Kendo Stick shots, Fire Extinguishers, and so much more craziness. There was even a point where the Sledgehammer was involved, and Gargano got some cutters and cut off a piece of the barbed wire to attempt to maim Cole. Cole ran away up the cage and sat on the top of the cage. Gargano followed him and they fought at the top. Then…this was the moment my heart stopped. Gargano tried to put the barbed wire in Cole’s face, Cole stopped him, and Cole took Gargano and they both dove off the top of the cage and crashed through a pre-set table. They were both out cold, but Cole had the wherewithal to put his arm over Gargano and Adam Cole retained the NXT Championship. 

Prediction: Adam Cole

Result: Adam Cole

These two put on an absolute classic and if this was Gargano’s swan song in NXT, what a way to end things. We’ll see where these two go from here, but I highly recommend you go watch this show especially this match. NXT Takeovers never disappoint and there was nothing I didn’t love about this show.

I said this on social media a thousand times, and I will continue to say it, NXT is one of the best wrestling brands in the world and as long as it is around, WWE will never lose momentum.

J.D. Phillips