NXT Champion Finn Bálor def. Samoa Joe
The Demon came to Dallas for a war, and he survived to live another day with NXT’s top prize.
Decked out in full war paint and brandishing a roaring chainsaw, NXT Champion Finn Bálor approached the ring with the wild intensity of a madman for his clash against Samoa Joe. The instant the bell rang, the champion and challenger literally butted heads and collided with punches, setting the tone for the hard-hitting brawl, as Joe emerged from the dust-up with a laceration over his right eye.
Perhaps enraged by the sight of his own blood, Joe surged into attack mode, rushing Bálor to the floor and throwing the champion over the ringside barricade and into the NXT Universe. As Bálor recovered, medical personnel tended to Joe’s laceration, which only seemed to anger Joe further. The champion took advantage of the respite and launched back into the fight, springboarding off the barricade with a flying forearm.
Back inside the ring, both Superstars traded blistering forearm strikes and kicks, but the 280-pound challenger got the better of it. Samoa Joe brutalized Bálor with a dive outside the ring and a uranage inside it. Sensing his title was in jeopardy, The Demon battled back, connecting with an enzuigiri, but Joe countered a Slingblade moments later into an overhead belly-to-belly suplex.
Joe continued his assault, punishing Bálor with a powerbomb, Boston crab and crossface. An exhausted Bálor rolled through the submission hold and sprang into a double foot stomp onto Joe. As the champion scaled the turnbuckles for the Coup de Grace, Samoa Joe rebounded and trapped him in the Muscle Buster. Joe went for the pin, but Bálor kicked out at two-and-a-half, leaving Joe in disbelief as he stared at the Superstar he considered his prey.
The Demon regained his senses and dropped Joe with the Slingblade before finally landing the Coup de Grace. Instead of going for the pin, though, Bálor attempted the 1916 DDT, but Joe countered it into the Coquina Clutch as both competitors faced the turnbuckles. Displaying his great ring awareness, the champion wisely walked up the turnbuckles and flipped backward, pinning Joe’s shoulders to the canvas for a three-count.
NXT TakeOver: Dallas’ main event was hard-hitting, bloody and full of pulverizing attacks, but when the dust settled, The Demon still stood tall as champion.