On May 20th, 2015 one of the best matches of the year took place. One of the best womens matches in recent years. Becky Lynch challenged the NXT Womens champion Sasha Banks in the second main event of NXT: Takeover-Unstoppable. NXT is the developmental promotion of WWE. An in between place where WWE allows indy wrestlers or athletes hired and trained the opportunity to develop characters and their WWE approved in ring style. They pick who they like and call them up or they wash out, sometimes before even doing an NXT show. NXT has become a major component within WWE featuring stars who transitioned successfully onto the main roster (Paige, Bray Wyatt, Neville) or future stars (Kevin Owens, Sami Zayn, Charlotte) and helping some WWE mainstays to get some new juice in their step (Tyson Kidd used NXT to readjust after an injury and Natalya have spent time down there and delivered excellent matches with several NXT women).
But lets talk a moment about why this match is important. WWE has a bad track record with their Divas. A division filled with many talented women (some not so much) trading a title in short and rather pointless feuds. A former creative divulged that Vicne McMahon did not see faces or heels but rather catty, unstable women. Divas title matches on cards are done as buffer matches. Between what are expected to be hot contests. It does not help that a lot of the actual WWE fanbase who attend these shows have now been conditioned to care little. “Bathroom break” if you will. Sure there are divas who get a good response and cheered but the matches rarely have a strong reaction.
NXT Women matches are different. The crowd is conditioned to believe these women can go. They are hyped and love their favorites and boo the the bad guys. There is respect among the women. Its a different atmosphere and shows that Vince McMahon and his son-in-law Triple H handle products quite differently. Triple H champions NXT and the ladies. This latest NXT special had two women’s matches because they knew the crowd would enjoy it and they did. While the first one was a fun match it was the women’s title match that stood head and shoulders over every match on the card.
Sasha Banks is the Boss of NXT. That’s her gimmick. She has flash and style and has rose up the NXT system for three years to being one of the women ready to make it to the main roster. Becky Lynch is interesting as she actually been wrestling since her teens, having almost 8 years more experience then Banks. Signed to WWE in 2013 and mad her official NXT debut last year. She’s been steadily rising in the card. The two ladies had a friendship/partnership for several months that went out the window around the last NXT special when all both faced off in a Fatal 4 Way with Bayley and then champ Charlotte. This break down of the partnership is Sasha Banks first major feud as champion.
This match had easily the most technical wrestling I’ve seen of any WWE event I’ve seen this year. The amount of arm work, counter-wrestling and just mat work was incredible. These two women complimented each other. Becky was excellent in her movements, transitions, and application. There was this reversal she did to Sasha’s attempted Vertical Suplex that involved a sort of monkey fip/judo roll up where she put brought Sasha over and on her back, then using her arm positioned Sasha on her back and when into a seated armbar. She also pulled off a hammerlock Half Hatch Suplex. I’ve seen wrestlers add hammerlocks to throws before but never a female wrestler let alone in this way. Not to mention the show of pure strength, reversing a armbar by grabbing her hand and pulling Sasha up, falling back into a suplex.
Not to take anything away from Sasha Banks who kept up with the majority of Becky’s wrestling for sure, showing off her own excellent technical acumen throughout, but the best thing about Banks is the attitude and how she translates that into her style. Those diving double knees into the corner are great. Another tactic in the corner I approve of is when she gets her opponent caught in the middle and then hops up and stomps on them. There is a nice highlight reversal people loved with Sasha blocking a kick while on the apron (the hardest part of the ring, on the outside of the ropes), throwing the kick away hooking Becky’s arm and reeling it while hoping down to the floor into a nice takedown onto the apron. Sasha has such star power about her.
The match started hot, cooled in the middle as each of the wrestlers showed off their skills in front of a great crowd eating it up. They trades blows, submissions, reversals and fans jumped at each of the right moment. The end was almost sudden but excellently delivered with Sasha taking on a risky reversal and transitioning into her finisher. With ref, former indy darling Drake Younger, officiating another excellent womens title match. Trust me, refs can be important and Drake really knows when to be seen and when not to be. This was a phenomenal match. Check out the match HERE. Dailymotion has a weird ad thing so maybe download the match and watch it. Until WWE gets it taken down.