NXT TakeOver NOLA – Match Grades And Ratings 0

unnamed 6 - NXT TakeOver NOLA - Match Grades And Ratings

The Wrestlemania weekend has concluded and with it has ended one roller coaster of a week. Stellar matches at TakeOver on Saturday followed an emotional Hall of Fame induction ceremony on Friday. The grandest stage of them all Wrestlemania took place on Sunday and the week was capped off with Raw and Smackdown on their usual Monday and Tuesday run time. The two major shows of the weekend was NXT: TakeOver New Orleans and Wrestlemania 34. The couple shows received overwhelmingly positive and mixed reviews respectively. Dave Meltzer of the Wrestling Observer Newsletter is usually the forerunner for rating matches and has finally dished out his highly controversial ratings for the couple of shows and again became the talking point of the wrestling world. For the first time ever, WWE garnered two 5 star matches in the same PPV. Not at Wrestlemania however, at NXT TakeOver. Johnny Gargano also became the 3rd ever WWE superstar to have two 5 star matches following the footsteps of Shawn Michaels and Bret Hart.

However, here is my unfiltered opinion on the matches on NXT TakeOver: New Orleans, Los Angeles in contrast to Dave Meltzer’s ratings. Again, both ratings are based completely on 2 individual’s opinions and can differ from anybody else’s.

1. Adam Cole vs Velveteen Dream vs Killian Dane vs Ricochet vs EC3 vs Lars Sullivan – 6 man ladder match for the NXT North American Championship.

The match which started Wrestlemania weekend was perfect. It was exactly what a ladder match should be. Spots all over and entertaining throughout. Everyone got to shine during the match as well. Inspite of Adam Cole’s victory; Ricochet, Velveteen Dream, Killian Dane looked incredible. Although EC3 and Lars Sullivan got a bit overlooked due to overcrowding the match, they did their job pretty good as well. Every moment was exciting and kept one at the edge of his seat. Adam Cole’s victory was just the icing on the cake as the crowd loved it, we loved it and Adam Cole surely loved it BayBay!

Verdict – 5 Stars
Dave Meltzer’s Rating – 5 Stars

2. Ember Moon(c) vs Shayna Baszler – NXT Women’s Championship

In what turned out to be Ember Moon’s final match(maybe) before being called up to Raw, she put over Shayna Baszler in the best match of the three matches they have had over the past few months. The match ended in similar fashion played out in their previous matches with Baszler locking in her Kirifuda Clutch and making Moon pass out. The finish however was great as Baszler locked in her submission with just one arm in a great spot. The match felt like a believable crowning moment for Baszler who had so far been seen as overpushed and not ready.

Verdict – 3.5 Stars
Dave Meltzer’s Rating – 3.25 Stars

3. Authors of Pain vs The Undisputed Era vs Roderick Strong and Pete Dunne – Triple Threat tag team match for the NXT Tag Team Championships.

For me, this match continued a let down of the tag team division of NXT. Ever since DIY broke up and The Revival got called up to the main roster, the tag team division hasn’t quite been the same. Every TakeOver, DIY and Revival would flawlessly put up the match of the night. Such a thing happened for over a year. AOP who were put in the tag team title scene fitted in seemlessly and their chemistry with the former two teams were incredible. However, the current scene isn’t as consistent as AOP was the biggest let down in the match and Adam Cole and Kyle O’Reily shone like superstars. Adam Cole looked incredible as he pulled off double duty and won the Tag Team Championships as well after a Roderick Strong heel turn. The Undisputed Era is now clearly the faction who will run NXT for the next year or so.

Verdict – 3.5 Stars
Dave Meltzer’s Rating – 3.25 Stars

4. Andrade Cien Almas(c) vs Aleister Black – NXT Championship match

The match was great as Black proved he can work any match at any given time. Black played the babyface hero overcoming Vega’s constant interference and oversmarting Almas for the victory. Almas and Celina Vega also played their role to perfection and the rematch will be eagerly awaited. Black’s coronation was also great as he truly was looking like a major star. The new face of NXT should be good enough to carry the brand throughout 2018 and maybe even further.

Verdict – 4 Stars
Dave Meltzer’s Rating – 4.25 Stars

5. Johnny Gargano vs Tomasso Ciampa – Unsanctioned Match

Johnny Gargano. Not enough can be said about the sheer brilliance and talent of this man. His ability to play the weaker underdog is almost parallel to Daniel Bryan’s. The crowd literally showered Ciampa with boos when he appeared on the stage and worshipped Gargano. Everyone in the building wanted Gargano to kick Ciampa’s ass. And NXT delivered. We have to give Triple H props for booking this long term story perfectly as this entire thing started in 2016’s Cruiserweight Classic. A throwback to that very tournament where these two faced each other was also carried out when Gargano just sat beside Ciampa and refused to hit him. The crowd was wild for the entire duration and rightfully so. With Gargano now reinstated to NXT, we can just pray for these two to have more matches in the future.

Verdict – 5 Stars
Dave Meltzer’s Rating – 5 Stars.