NXT Takeover: Chicago II Report Card
It was a near-impossible task for the NXT roster to top NXT Takeover: New Orleans during WrestleMania weekend.
It was arguably the best Takeover in the history of NXT highlighted by the unsanctioned match between Johnny Gargano and Tommaso Ciampa and the NXT North American Championship Ladder Match.
While the second installment of NXT Takeover: Chicago didn't surpass New Orleans, it stood out on its own and an amazing night of action. With Money In The Bank tonight, the NXT roster once again served the main roster notice to try to top what they did here on Saturday.
As is standard on NXT Takeover events, there were five matches on the card, and a few matches that took place beforehand that will air this Wednesday on NXT television.
Of those five matches, three of the NXT Championships were on the line to go with the grudge match between Ricochet and Velveteen Dream and the Chicago Street Fight between Ciampa and Gargano.
Just like my WWE television report cards, the format for these specials is the same, the best grade a segment or match can get is an A+, with the worst grade one can earn is an F.
Let's kick things off with a hard-hitting NXT Tag Team Championship Match...
The Undisputed Era (Kyle O'Reilly & Roderick Strong) d. Oney Lorcan & Danny Burch to retain the NXT Tag Team Championships
The opening match of the evening saw the first title defense of The Undisputed Era's Kyle O'Reilly and Roderick Strong taking on the hard-hitting duo of Oney Lorcan and Danny Burch.
Chicago gave The Undisputed Era a huge ovation when they came to the ring, but in the end, it was Lorcan and Burch who won the crowd over. Submissions and brutal strikes were the hallmarks of this brilliant 16-minute match.
Burch put O'Reilly on his shoulders and Lorcan hit a devastating flying uppercut. It almost seemed certain that they were going to get the upset win, but Adam Cole pulled O'Reilly out of the ring, leading to his ejection.
The end of the match so a great brawl of all four men (seen in the photo above) before The Undisputed Era got the advantage and hit a double team leg sweep and clothesline combo to end a great opening match.