NXT TakeOver: Stand & Deliver Night One managed to get the ball rolling for WrestleMania week. Fans and critics alike raved that it was one of the better TakeOver events in recent memory, and that's high praise. Luckily for all of us, that was only the first half, and tonight's show was set to wow the NXT faithful once again.
The NXT Championship was on the line tonight, as Finn Balor faced off against the dominant and deadly Karrion Kross. Would Kross be able to regain the championship he never truly lost, or would he be added to Balor's impressive resume?
Johnny Gargano also defended his Championship against the Colossal Bronson Reed, who won the right to challenge for the North American Title last night. All that, plus the Cruiserweight Unification Match and the NXT Women's Tag Team Title Matches filled up the card for tonight.
The match that everyone seemed to be looking forward to, of course, was the Unsanctioned Match between Kyle O'Reilly and Adam Cole. The Undisputed Era officially imploded a few months back, and these two have been trying to ruin each other's lives ever since. The friendship is dead. The question is, who would leave tonight the better man?
On the kick-off show, Killian Dain and Drake Maverick defeated former NXT Tag Team Champions Breezango to earn a shot at the newly crowned titleholders, MSK. Prior to the opening match, we got Poppy, an artist very familiar to the NXT faithful, performing a new song for the crowd.
The first match of the night was the highly anticipated Unification Match between the two NXT Cruiserweight Champions Santos Escobar and Jordan Devlin.
NXT Cruiserweight Championship Unification Ladder Match: Santos Escobar (c) vs Jordan Devlin (c)
Both men went right at each other, beating one another down before Jordan Devlin got the best of Santos Escobar with an armdrag. Escobar countered the Devlin Side but was dropped with a uranage/moonsault combination. The CWC crowd showed no love for the NXT UK star.
Escobar moved to the floor but was taken out with a springboard moonsault. Devlin was the first to introduce the ladder. He baited Escobar in, lifting it to avoid a baseball dropkick and crashing it into Escobar's face. The leader of Legado Del Fantasma finally managed to take control when he forced Devlin off the ladder, smashing his face into the steel construct.
Devlin was launched spine first into the ladder and bounced over the ropes all the way to the floor. As he struggled to stand, Escobar drove his knees into Devlin, sandwiching the Irish Ace of NXT between himself and the barricade.
In the ring, a ladder was dropkicked into the ribs of Devlin, leaving him gasping for air as Escobar grabbed another one.
Escobar hit a short missile dropkick into the ribs of Devlin, further focusing on the injured body part. Devlin countered with a slingshot, landing on the ladder and climbing up. Escobar yanked him off again, but Devlin turned around in mid-air, spiking Escobar with a vicious DDT.
That wasn't enough to put him away, as Escobar responded with The Arrow from the Depths of Hell, slamming Devlin into another ladder. However, the original NXT Cruiserweight Champion refused to stay down. Escobar countered another Devlin Side attempt, stunning The Irish Ace with a flash knee strike. Devlin responded with a Spanish Fly and a slingshot cutter.
After all of that, Jordan Devlin moved to the top of the ladder for a moonsault on high, crashing right onto the midsection of Santos Escobar. Devlin moved up the ladder, but Legado Del Fantasma rushed the ring, sending him crashing to the floor and into the steel steps.
Escobar sent his lackeys back, believing he had the match won. As he climbed up to get the titles, Devlin threw a ladder into his spine. He followed Escobar up, countering the Phantom Driver with a sky-high Spanish Fly.
Devlin, all too slow, made it to the top of the ladder. Just as he reached for the NXT Cruiserweight Titles, Escobar joined him. A headbutt sent Devlin through a ladder, allowing Escobar to be crowned the true and Undisputed NXT Cruiserweight Champion.
Results: Santos Escobar defeated Jordan Devlin at NXT TakeOver: Stand & Deliver.
After the match, Escobar was joined not only by Legado Del Fantasma but his nine-year-old son, who donned his father's mask and raised one of the titles high over his head.