NXT TakeOver: WarGames (2018)
NXT TakeOver: WarGames (2018) was a professional wrestling show and WWE Network event that took place on November 17, 2018 in the Staples Center in Los Angeles, California. The event was produced by WWE for the NXT brand that is streamed live on the WWE Network.
|NXT TakeOver: WarGames (2018)|
Promotional poster featuring various NXT wrestlers
|Date||November 17, 2018|
|City||Los Angeles, California|
|WWE Network event chronology|
|NXT TakeOver chronology|
|NXT TakeOver: WarGames chronology|
Five matches were contested at the event. In the main event, Pete Dunne, Ricochet, and War Raiders defeated The Undisputed Era in a WarGames match. In the penultimate match, Tommaso Ciampa defeated Velveteen Dream to retain the NXT Championship and Aleister Black defeated Johnny Gargano.
NXT TakeOver is a series of professional wrestling shows that began on May 29, 2014, as the WWE developmental league NXT held their second WWE Network exclusive live broadcast billed as NXT TakeOver. In subsequent months, the "TakeOver" moniker became the brand used by WWE for all of their NXT live specials. NXT TakeOver: WarGames was the twenty-third overall show held under the NXT TakeOver banner, and the fifth to be held in 2018. It was the second NXT TakeOver: WarGames.
The card included five matches that resulted from scripted storylines, where wrestlers portrayed villains, heroes, or less distinguishable characters in scripted events that built tension and culminated in a wrestling match or series of matches, with results predetermined by WWE's writers. Storylines were produced on the NXT television program.
On the July 25 episode of NXT, Aleister Black lost the NXT Championship to Tommaso Ciampa due to interference from Johnny Gargano. On the August 8 episode of NXT, Black and Gargano fought to a no contest when Ciampa attacked both men. A triple threat match between the three for the title was scheduled for NXT TakeOver: Brooklyn 4. After the show was over, Black was later found unconscious in the parking lot (This was done to allow Black to recover from a groin injury he underwent surgery for). With Black out of action after a groin injury, the match was changed to a Last Man Standing match between Ciampa and Gargano, which Ciampa won. On the October 24 edition of NXT, Gargano was revealed as the one who attacked Black before their original TakeOver: Brooklyn 4 title match, turning heel in the process. The following week, a match between the two was scheduled for the event.
On the October 31, 2018 episode of NXT, Adam Cole and Bobby Fish of The Undisputed Era were scheduled to face War Raiders (Hanson and Rowe) in the main event. However, Hanson and Rowe attacked the group during a backstage promo. The fight ended up in the ring, where the Undisputed Era got the upper-hand. Ricochet entered on the War Raiders' behalf, but was ultimately overtaken. Pete Dunne evened the odds for Hanson, Rowe and Ricochet. During the brawl, NXT general manager William Regal announced that the two sides would face each other in a WarGames match.
At Evolution, Shayna Baszler won the NXT Women's Championship back from Kairi Sane after interference from Baszler's fellow and former MMA Four Horsewomen Jessamyn Duke and Marina Shafir, becoming the first two-time NXT Women’s Champion. On the November 7 episode of NXT, as Sane was invoking her rematch clause, a two-out-of-three-falls match between the two for the title was scheduled for TakeOver.
|English commentators||Mauro Ranallo|
|Spanish commentators||Carlos Cabrera|
|Ring announcer||Kayla Braxton|
|Pre-show panel||Charly Caruso|
Next, Shayna Baszler defended the NXT Women's Championship against Kairi Sane in a two-out-of-three falls match. Baszler scored the first fall by making Sane tap to the "Kirifuda Clutch" after interference from Jessamyn Duke and Marina Shafir. Sane evened the score when she performed the "Insane Elbow" on Baszler. In the end, Duke and Shafir tried to interfere again only for Dakota Kai and Io Shirai to stop them; in the end, Sane attempted the "Insane Elbow" on Baszler, only for Baszler to catch Sane's arm and roll her up to retain the title.
After that, Aleister Black faced Johnny Gargano. Gargano performed a slingshot DDT for a near-fall. Black performed a diving meteora for a near-fall. Gargano applied the "Garga-No Escape", but Black touched the ropes. In the end, Black performed two consecutive "Black Masses" on Gargano to win the match.
In the penultimate match, Tommaso Ciampa defended the NXT Championship against Velveteen Dream. Ciampa performed a "Project Ciampa" for a near-fall. Dream performed the "Purple Rainmaker" on Ciampa for a near-fall. Dream attempted a second "Purple Rainmaker" again on the ring apron, only for Ciampa to move out of the way. In the climax, Ciampa performed an elevated DDT on Dream onto the metal divider between the rings to retain the championship.
The main event was a WarGames match between The Undisputed Era (Adam Cole, Bobby Fish, Kyle O'Reilly, and Roderick Strong) and the team of WWE United Kingdom Champion Pete Dunne, NXT North American Champion Ricochet and War Raiders (Hanson and Rowe). The match began with Cole and Ricochet in the ring. After 5 minutes, O’Reilly of The Undisputed Era joined the match. Three minutes after, Hanson would join the match, and following a further three minutes, Strong joined the match. After another three minutes, Rowe joined the match and simultaneously performed a powerslam and powerbomb on O’Reilly and Strong respectively. After another 3 minutes, Fish escaped and locked Dunne in a cage, throwing the key lock into the audience. Fish then retrieved chairs for the Undisputed Era who struck Ricochet, Handon and Rowe with the chairs. Three minutes afterwards, the referees attempted to unlock Dunne's cage, but failed to do so as The Undisputed Era's and Dunne's cages used different keys for the individual locks and thus a bolt-cutter had to be used to open the cage. Dunne struck Fish and O’Reilly with a kendo stick and retrieved tables, trash cans, a steel chain and kendo sticks for his team. During the climax, Cole reversed the "Bitter End" into a DDT and performed the "Last Shot" on Dunne for a near-fall. Ricochet and Cole went up to the top of the cage, and all competitors climbed up with them to help their team gain momentum. Cole got suplexed and everybody was left lying, and Ricochet performed a double Moonsault onto the pile. Cole went for another attempt at the Last Shot, but Dunne reversed it into the "Bitter End" and Ricochet executed a springboard 450° splash and both of them pinned Cole for the win.
|1N||Keith Lee defeated Fidel Bravo||Singles match||N/A|
|2N||Lars Sullivan defeated Keita Murray||Singles match||1:30|
|3N||Nikki Cross defeated Candice LeRae||Singles match||12:30|
|4||Matt Riddle defeated Kassius Ohno||Singles match||0:06|
|5||Shayna Baszler (c) defeated Kairi Sane 2–1||Two-out-of-three falls match for the NXT Women's Championship||10:55|
|6||Aleister Black defeated Johnny Gargano||Singles match||18:10|
|7||Tommaso Ciampa (c) defeated Velveteen Dream||Singles match for the NXT Championship||22:25|
|8||Pete Dunne, Ricochet, and War Raiders (Hanson and Rowe) defeated The Undisputed Era (Adam Cole, Bobby Fish, Kyle O'Reilly, and Roderick Strong)||WarGames match||47:10|
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