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Last Saturday, WWE’s farm league NXT, “where you can see the superstars of tomorrow, today” had their first ever arena event at the sold out, Barclays Center in Brooklyn to a crowd of almost 16,000. Not a big deal by WWE standards, but if you’ve been paying attention, NXT has been a very small en devour by WWE, utilizing the television studio at Orlando’s Full Sail University (and a few choice small venues every so often) this group of would be WWE main roster superstar have never performed in front of more than a few hundred people. And outside of any appearances on Raw or a Pay-Per-View (PPV) they have not been seen outside of the WWE Network since that is the only place any of their NXT hour long weekly shows or their two hour PPV style events every few months or so. So, to many, it was quite a shock to see a sold out crowd despite the fact that the wrestling that comes out of NXT is possibly the best anywhere on TV today.
While I wasn’t completely blown away by the entire show, I was overjoyed that this particular group of superstars have pulled in such a crowd of ACTUAL fans of the NXT product. These fans chanted when they needed to, cheered who they needed to and booed who they needed to. They even started a “Full Sail Sucks” chant. These fans know NXT and love NXT. And I love NXT too. It was great seeing these characters on such at such a big venue and sadly, I kind of wish the majority of them wouldn’t be called up, because selfishly I don’t believe that they will be used properly, but we can’t always get what we want.
After a few matches that borderlined from good to OK we made it to the NXT Women’s Championship match between Bailey and the Champion Sasha Banks. Billed as the first of two main events, it lived up to that hype 100% if not more. If it wasn’t because the main event was with former NXT Champion Kevin Owens vs the current NXT Champion Fin Balor in a ladder match, I probably would have made the women’s match the final one on the card.
Now let’s get to the match as Bailey and Sasha Banks played their roles perfectly as Bailey the ultimate underdog vs the BOSS Sasha Banks. These two had an amazing video package that help to bring a usually SMARKY (Urban Dictionary helping with the definition of a smark “Combination of Smart and Mark, Mark meaning a wrestling fan who believes (or temporarily suspends his disbelief) in pro wrestling. The Smark is the fan who knows wrestling is choreographed, but appreciates it on a higher level.”) and usually backs the heels (ie the bad guys) such as Sasha Banks in this match, the video package help to endear Bailey, the baby face, (ie the super good guy) to the crowd. Sasha Banks kept her heel tactics up throughout this entire match and lead to this being what I would consider a match of the year contender.
This match was utterly amazing. Full disclosure I did not see this live nor did I read up on any of the NXT match results. On Sunday night we went to bed and I decided to turn on SummerSlam to watch the main event with The Undertaker vs Brock Lesnar and was so disappointed in the ending to the match that I just had to get my mind off of it and turned on the NXT Take-Over Brooklyn special. I was blown away by this match. I haven’t seen a great women’s match like this since the days of Trish Stratus and whoever she was feuding against (Lita, Victoria, Mickey James, etc). This was epic. These women put it all on the line and I feel that if you walked into watching this match a non-believer you would walk out a fan.
Do yourself a favor and find this match, watch it, and let me know what you’re thoughts were.