Even though NXT may be considered the “training ground” for WWE, it’s actually where some of the best action takes place. That was exactly what happened on the evening of December 10 when their next special, NXT Takeover R-Evolution, took place, and it was a night of many firsts — so read on for all the results and the full recap.
This was a highly anticipated night as it would include the NXT debut of Kevin Steen, who has been renamed Kevin Owens. He was set to just make an appearance, but earlier in the day it was announced he would make his in-ring debut at NXT Takeover R-Evolution.
In a bit of sad news, NXT superstar Corey Graves officially retired from in-ring action due to a series of concussions. Doctors said he could no longer continue, but he was staying with the company and would make his commentary debut at the live event.
Throughout the evening, WWE Universe’s Twitter was tweeting about all that happened at the event.
Getting things underway, Kevin Owens made his way out to the ring for his debut and the crowd went absolutely nuts for him.
Kevin Owens vs. CJ Parker
Owens came out and got things started right away by just destroying Parker. The crowd exploded when he flipped over the top rope to land on Parker on the outside. Parker eventually gets a bit of the upper-hand and even bloodies Owens’ nose. Owens took over again and hit a pump-handle slam and a pop-up powerbomb for his NXT debut win.
Winner — Kevin Owens via pinfall
— WWE Universe (@WWEUniverse) December 12, 2014
NXT Tag Team Titles – Lucha Dragons (c) vs. The Vaudevillains
The Lucha Dragons are simply insane and hit some huge moves throughout the match, but the Vaudevillains stay in it throughout the match. It’s a back and forth match that ends with Aiden shoving Gotch out of the way as Kalisto hits Aiden with the Salida del Sol for the win.
Winners (and still champs) — Lucha Dragons via pinfall
Tye Dillinger vs. Baron Corbin
In an unannounced match for NXT Takeover R-Evolution, it’s virtually a squash. As the bell rings, Dillinger gets in a few slaps, but that’s it. Corbin simply kicks Dillinger right in the face and then nails him with End of Days for the victory.
Winner — Baron Corbin via pinfall
— WWE Universe (@WWEUniverse) December 12, 2014
The Ascension vs. Hideo Itami & Finn Balor
Balor actually comes out with the top half of his body painted like Marvel character Venom, and it’s awesome. He even slithers toward the ring as the crowd explodes and goes nuts for him. For the majority of the match, Itami is beaten down by the Ascension until Balor gets the hot tag and just destroys both Viktor and Konnor.
And this is the moment the Ascension knew they were boned… #NXTTakeover pic.twitter.com/ctnqcU2EHY
— Mike Killam (@MikeKillam) December 12, 2014
Itami and Balor finish the match off with a double stomp from the top rope and the clean pin. This isn’t much of a surprise as the Ascension are about to head up to WWE’s main roster. Fantastic match.
Winners — Hideo Itami & Finn Balor via pinfall
Backstage, Renee Young interviews Roman Reigns who says he will be the first NXT alum to win the WWE Heavyweight Championship.
NXT Women’s Title – Charlotte (c) vs. Sasha Banks
Fresh off of her WWE debut loss to Natalya, Charlotte put her title on the line against the high-flying Banks. Throughout the match, Banks displayed her big spot moves, but it was Charlotte bringing the power and the extreme technical aspects of wrestling.
Banks attempted to hit a superplex and finish off the champion, but Charlotte pushed her off. Charlotte was then able to hit the Natural Selection for the win. This was an excellent match by both women.
Winner (and still champ) — Charlotte via pinfall
NXT Heavyweight Title – Adrian Neville (c) vs. Sami Zayn
If Zayn lost this match, he would have to leave NXT. It’s truly hard to recap this match and do it justice because it was simply phenomenal on the part of both Neville and Zayn. Back and forth throughout with some great spots, so let’s jump to the ending for the result.
The ref gets bumped and Neville goes to hit Zayn with the title, but Zayn blocks it and wonders if he should use it. He eventually puts it down and Neville rolls him up for a quick two. As Zayn kicks out, he gets up and it’s a reverse STO into the corner and then the Helluva Kick for the win and the title.
Winner (and new Champ) – Sami Zayn via pinfall
— WWE (@WWE) December 12, 2014
As everyone came out to celebrate with Zayn, confetti fell from the rafters and it was a great ending. The ring cleared and Zayn celebrated by himself until Kevin Owens came out, hugged him, and was even referred to as “Zayn’s best friend.” Then, Owens turned on Zayn and powerbombed him into the ring apron.
That means the next feud for the NXT Championship will be Sami Zayn against Kevin Owens, and that is phenomenal.
NXT Takeover R-Evolution was yet another great special from the “training ground” of WWE, and it’s clear that the future of the company is in good hands.
[Image via WWE]