– The WWE NXT “Takeover: Philadelphia” pre-show opens with Charly Caruso, Samoa Joe and Sam Roberts inside the Wells Fargo Center. Joe talks about how he’s doing and says he’s getting better but not ready to go and won’t be getting involved in any of the action this weekend. The panel runs down the Royal Rumble pay-per-view. We go backstage to Renee Young and Corey Graves, who will be handing out the 2017 NXT Year End Awards, which were voted on by fans. They send us back to the panel after a brief discussion. Charly sends us to a promo for tonight’s Extreme Rules match with Aleister Black taking on Adam Cole.
We go back to the panel as we see The Undisputed Era walking backstage. Joe gives props to Cole and Black but believes Cole will get the win tonight. Charly sends us backstage to Graves and Renee for the first 2017 award – Rivalry of the Year. Aleister Black vs. The Velveteen Dream wins. Dream walks up to accept the award. He gives thanks to God first as he’s the closest thing to the light that NXT has. Dream comments on his 2018 and guarantees he will knock out Kassius Ohno in 30 seconds tonight. He goes on and walks off with the award. Renee sends us to a break. Dasha Fuentes is backstage with a bunch of wild NXT fans. We go back to Graves and Renee for a video on the Male Competitor of the Year nominees. And the winner is… Aleister Black. Black walks in and says he sets out to do something unique, different and something that isn’t conventional but this validates his success. Renee informs Black that he also wins the award for Breakout Competitor of the Year.
We go back to Charly, Sam and Joe on the panel. Joe believes Dream could actually beat Black tonight. Charly brings up tonight’s NXT Tag Team Title match. Joe and Sam go with The Undisputed Era keeping the titles but Joe says WWE Hall of Famer Paul Ellering could be what helps The Authors of Pain win the titles. Back from a quick break and Renee is with Corey for another award – the Female Competitor of the Year. The award goes to RAW Superstar Asuka. Asuka takes the mic and says there is no one ready for her in the Rumble tomorrow. The next award is Match of the Year. Tyler Bate comes to accept the award for his WWE UK Title match with Pete Dunne. Bate comments on wanting to have another match of the year in 2018. We go back to the panel and the WWE UK Champion is there. Dunne talks about how he hit his goals in 2018 and says there’s more to come. Dunne says the title means the world to him and won’t be going anywhere. He will continue to put the UK on the map and there’s more awards to come as well. Dunne says he also wants the NXT Title and would be down to even face Brock Lesnar.
We go ringside to Mauro Ranallo and Percy Watson for a rundown of the card. Mauro says Nigel McGuinness won’t be here tonight as he’s feeling under the weather. Charly sends us to another break and thanks Asking Alexandria for tonight’s theme song. She sends us to a video package for tonight’s NXT Women’s Title match. Joe and Sam both predict a title change. We go to the ramp to Graves and Renee for the Overall Competitor of the Year award. The winner is… Asuka. The music hits and out she comes. She raises the award and that’s it. We go back to the panel for praise on The Empress of Tomorrow. We see Zelina Vega and NXT Champion Andrade “Cien” Almas backstage walking. We also see Johnny Gargano backstage thinking. We get a video package for tonight’s main event. We go back to the panel and they’re interrupted by Vega, who isn’t happy about Almas not winning an award. She praises Almas and calls the fans losers. Vega goes on arguing with Joe and Sam. She says we will have the pleasure of watching Almas retain his title tonight. She says they can have fun with the rest of this show but she’s done. She drops the mic and walks off. Charly hypes tonight’s show and plugs the Royal Rumble one more time. That’s it for the Takeover pre-show.
– WWE NXT “Takeover: Philadelphia” opens with an intro video narrated by Paul Heyman.
– We’re live from the Wells Fargo Center with Mauro Ranallo and Percy Watson. They send well wishes to Nigel McGuinness, who is feeling under the weather tonight.
NXT Tag Team Title Match: The Authors of Pain vs. The Undisputed Era
We go right to the ring and out comes Akam and Rezar with WWE Hall of Famer Paul Ellering. NXT Tag Team Champions Kyle O’Reilly and Bobby Fish are out next. No sign of Adam Cole.
The Authors attack the champs and unload before the bell rings. O’Reilly and Fish retreat to the floor to regroup. The bell rings and Fish starts off for his team but goes right to the floor as Rezar attacks. Fish enters the ring and tags in O’Reilly, causing Rezar to back off. O’Reilly hits Rezar with kicks and goes for the leg but gets shoved to the mat. O’Reilly tells Rezar to bring it. O’Reilly keeps going for the leg and drops Rezar on his face. Rezar with a double leg takedown and some offense. O’Reilly goes for an early triangle choke and transitions into a leg lock. O’Reilly with strikes. Rezar sends O’Reilly to the floor to regroup. Fish checks on him.
O’Reilly enters the ring and backs into the corner as Fish tags in. Fish goes for the leg as well. Rezar rams Fish back into the corner and in comes Akam for some double teaming. Akam slams Fish to the mat and stomps as Ellering barks orders. Fish with a knee to the gut and a tag to O’Reilly. Akam unloads on O’Reilly and sends him back to the floor. The champs go to leave but Akam and Rezar run them over on the floor. Fish gets sent into the steel steps. O’Reilly gets stomped on the floor. Akam unloads on Fish and slams him face first into the top of the barrier.
The Authors with more double teaming but Akam clutches his knee and sells a left leg injury. O’Reilly sends Akam to the apron and Fish attacks the injured left leg while he’s on the apron. Rezar runs in but Fish runs in and tackles him out to the floor. Fish falls with him and they land hard. O’Reilly and Akam go at it now. Fish tags back in for some double teaming in the corner. O’Reilly tags back in and keeps Akam in their corner. The referee counts as they quick tags and double teams continue. Akam tries to fight them both off but they take out the leg again. Fish unloads in the corner again, focusing on the injured leg of Akam. Akam shoves Fish off but O’Reilly tags in and chops the leg out. O’Reilly goes for a leg submission but Akam tries to kick him away. Akam gets up limping but O’Reilly takes him back down with a kneebar.
Akam finally makes it to the bottom rope and the hold is broken. Fish tags back in and keeps Akam in their corner. O’Reilly tags back in for more double teaming. O’Reilly with another leg submission. Fish sentons in and hits Akam while he’s in a submission. Fish with a 2 count. Fish with more strikes to Akam. Fish decks Rezar on the apron. Fish turns around and gets backdropped by Akam. Rezar tags in and unloads on both competitors with big boots. Rezar follows up with two big slams and strikes to O’Reilly as fans pop. Fish jumps on Rezar’s back while he has O’Reilly lifted up. Rezar nails a fall-away slam on O’Reilly and covers for a 2 count. O’Reilly stops a powerbomb but gets slammed to the mat. Fish with knees to Rezar.
Fish with a close 2 count on Rezar after a big suplex. Rezar stops another double team and lays both of the champions out. Fish stops a double team on O’Reilly. Fish applies a sleeper hold to Rezar while O’Reilly has a leg submission on Akam. Rezar sends Fish to the mat, which also breaks the submission. All 4 Superstars are down in the middle of the ring now. Fans do dueling chants now. O’Reilly with kicks to Akam, still focusing on the knee. Akam yells back at O’Reilly and blocks a kick, launching him across the ring. Akam with knees in the corner to O’Reilly’s face. Akam knocks Fish off the apron. Akam with a Buckle Bomb to O’Reilly. Fish runs in but Rezar floors him. AOP go for the Super Collider but it ends up backfiring. The finish sees O’Reilly roll Akam up for the win.
Winners: The Undisputed Era
– After the bell, Ellering isn’t happy as the champs are down on the outside. Fish and O’Reilly stumble away with the titles as Ellering checks on The Authors. We go to replays. The champs talk trash from the stage as Akam, Rezar and Ellering look on from the ring.
– We see War Machine at ringside. The new WWE recruits get a big pop.
– We see Zelina Vega backstage talking to Andrade “Cien” Almas.
The Velveteen Dream vs. Kassius Ohno
Back to the ring and out comes The Velveteen Dream. Dream has a man and woman at ringside to help with his accessories and put his mouthpiece in. Kassius Ohno is out next.
Fans start counting as Dream has promised a 30 second knockout. Dream treats this like a boxing match but actually drops Ohno but won’t pin him. Dream starts celebrating. Ohno gets up and knocks his mouthpiece out. Ohno boots Dream out of the ring next. Ohno follows but eats a back elbow as Dream heads back into the ring.
Ohno runs the ropes but Dream catches him in a spinebuster. Fans chant for Dream now as he goes to work on Ohno. Dream with offense in the corner now. Dream with a 2 count and more offense, playing to the crowd. Dream drops a big knee to the ribs and keeps Ohno grounded. Dream chokes Ohno on the bottom rope now. Ohno gets up with a big chop but Dream chops him right back. Dream keeps Ohno grounded now.
Fans with dueling chants now. Dream with more offense in the corner as he unloads and talks some trash. More chants for Dream as he kicks Ohno in the face a few times. Dream goes to the top for a big double ax handle and a 2 count. Dream keeps Ohno grounded and talks more trash now. Ohno finally gets a counter in and slams Dream.
They trade big shots in the middle of the ring now. Ohno takes control with a big boot and a senton splash. Ohno with a Cyclone Kick for a close 2 count. Dream blocks a neckbreaker and backslides Ohno for a 2 count. Dream blocks a superkick and delivers one of his own. Dream with a spike DDT for another close 2 count. More back and forth as Dream covers for a close 2 count. Ohno nails the big elbow but can’t get the pin. Dream counters a move and nails the big Death Valley Driver. Dream goes to the top and leaps far across the ring for a huge elbow drop and the pin.
Winner: The Velveteen Dream
– After the match, Dream stands tall as his music hits. Dream steps on Ohno and walks over him as he poses in the corner. We go to replays. Dream continues the celebration as Ohno walks to the back.
– We see Maria Menounos at ringside.
– We get a video package for tonight’s NXT Women’s Title match.
NXT Women’s Title Match: Shayna Baszler vs. Ember Moon
We go to the ring and out first comes Shayna Baszler as we see her walking in from the backstage area. Out next comes NXT Women’s Champion Ember Moon. We get formal ring introductions from Mike Rome.
The bell rings and they lock up, trading holds. They go to the corner and break after the referee warns then. Baszler kicks Moon’s leg out. Baszler works Ember over on the mat now. Baszler smiles at Moon but Moon comes back with offense, including a pair of dropkicks. Fans cheer for Moon as Shayna goes to the floor for a breather. Moon runs the ropes and nails Shayna on the floor. We get a replay of the dive as Moon brings it back into the ring.
Shayna catches a cartwheel across the ring and nails knees to the face. Shayna with a huge kick for a 2 count. Baszler works Moon over and stomps on her arm. Moon screams in pain as the referee checks on her.
Shayna with more offense on the fingers and the arm now. Baszler keeps control for a few minutes until Moon slams her for a close 2 count. Moon goes to the top and hits the Eclipse. Moon can’t get the pin because she lands bad on the arm that Baszler has been working on. Moon rolls around in pain as a referee calls for a trainer. Fans boo as two trainers come out to check on Moon. Baszler is still laid out flat on her back. We get a replay of the Eclipse.
The trainer is telling the referee something about Moon’s arm. Moon gets up and approaches Baszler but Baszler pulls her into an arm submission in the middle of the ring. Moon finally gets her leg on the bottom rope and the hold is broken.
Baszler pulls Moon right back into another arm submission in the middle of the ring. Moon tries to roll but Baszler tightens the hold after they re-position. Baszler pulls Moon’s legs away from the bottom rope and keeps the hold locked in. Baszler tightens the hold and screams out. Moon turns it over but Baszler tightens the hold again. Moon turns the submission into a pin out of nowhere to retain.
Winner: Ember Moon
– After the bell, Shayna and Ember are both shocked at the finish. Moon clutches her arm and rolls out of the ring with the title. Trainers check on Ember at ringside. We go to replays. Baszler sits in the corner with her hands on her head, still shocked. Trainers walk to the back with Ember. Baszler runs out of the ring and comes from behind, putting Ember in a choke hold. Trainers and referees try to pull Baszler off and the hold is finally broken. Baszler goes right back to the submission as fans boo. Ember is laid out as Baszler stands tall and backs up the ramp. Officials help Moon to her feet.
– Back from a Mixed Match Challenge promo and we see Trevor “Ricochet” Mann at ringside. He gets a big pop.
– We get a promo for tonight’s Extreme Rules match.
Extreme Rules Match: Adam Cole vs. Aleister Black
We go to the ring and out first comes Aleister Black. Adam Cole is out next.
Fans chant “this is awesome” as Black and Cole face off. They rush each other and go at it in the middle of the ring. Black kicks Cole and sends him out to the floor first. Black runs the ropes but takes a seat in the middle of the ring for a pop. Cole grabs a steel chair as fans pop and start chanting for ECW. Cole comes in and swings the chair but misses. Black kicks Cole and the chair falls. Cole goes back to the floor for a breather. Black takes a seat in the chair for another pop.
Cole comes back in but they go to the floor. Black with a huge shot to the face. Cole turns it around and sends Black’s head into the apron. Cole brings a few chairs from under the ring. Cole hits Black with a few strikes. Cole tosses the chairs into the ring and delivers a running boot to Black’s face. Black fights back but Cole rams him into the barrier. Cole brings a kendo stick from under the ring now. Black has a kendo stick of his own now. They meet in the ring and face off with the sticks as fans pop.
Black tosses his stick out of the ring and tells Cole to bring it. Cole swings and misses. Black unloads with forearms and a kick. Black goes for a moonsault from the second rope but Cole nails him in the gut with a kendo stick. Fans chant “holy shit” now as Cole takes a seat. The referee checks on Black. Cole with another big kendo stick shot to the back and some trash talking. Cole puts the kendo stick in Black’s mouth and pulls back while talking trash. Cole with a Backstabber for a 2 count.
Fans chant for tables as Cole works Black over. Cole rolls to the floor and brings a table out from under the ring. Cole sets the table up at ringside as Black recovers inside. Cole returns to the ring and decks Black. Fans chant for the table and Cole says they’re going to get it. Cole brings Black to the corner and tries to suplex him through the table on the floor but Black resists. Black decks Cole and throws him on top of the trash can in the middle of the ring. Black with a running knee strike for another 2 count.
Black brings a table from under the ring now. Black stands the table next to the table that Cole set up. The referee checks on Cole. Black brings a ladder from under the ring now and slides it in but Cole kicks it into Black, sending him back into the barrier. Cole leans the ladder up in the corner. Cole’s hand is bleeding now. Cole brings Black back into the ring and goes for a suplex onto the leaning ladder. Black fights him. Cole drops Black with an enziguri. Cole with kicks and punches in the corner now.
Cole unloads in the corner for a pop. Black has Cole in the Electric Chair now. Black drops Cole into the ladder in the corner. We get replays. Black with a 2 count now. Black stands a chair up now. Black runs the ropes but Cole jumps up and hits Black in the gut with the chair. Cole tries to lift Black onto the chair but a back elbow stops him. Cole avoids a few shots but Black stomps on him with both feet. Black positions Cole’s face onto the seat of the chair. Black goes to the top but Cole tosses a chair at him. Black catches it but Cole superkicks him from the top through the two tables on the floor. Fans chant “holy shit” as the referee checks on Black.
Cole brings Black back into the ring and covers for a 2 count. Fans chant “this is awesome” now. Cole positions a chair and pushes another chair up against the first. Black jumps up and counters, slamming Cole on top of the two chairs. We get replays as Cole screams in pain. Cole grabs a chair and uses it to get up but Black kicks it into his face. Black clutches his leg but covers for a 2 count as Kyle O’Reilly and Bobby Fish run in to break the pin.
Fish and O’Reilly take out Black on the floor. They’re still beat up from the earlier match. They drag Black over to the announce table and start taking it apart. SAnitY runs down and stops the table spot. Eric Young and Alexander Wolfe beat Fish and O’Reilly around ringside. Killian Dain enters the ring and stares Cole down. Dain runs the ropes and nails a huge dive on EY, Wolfe, Fish and O’Reilly as fans chant for NXT. Black is still out on the floor. Cole goes after him. Cole tries to put Black through the announce table but Black fights him off. Black puts Cole through the announce table with a big double knee spot.
Fans chant “Mama Mia!” for Mauro now. Black brings it back into the ring but Cole hits a superkick. Fans chant “this is awesome” as Cole crawls for the chair. Cole yells that he’s going to end Black. He charges with the chair but Black hits Black Mass for the pin.
Winner: Aleister Black
– After the match, the referee checks on Black as he tries to recover. Cole is also laid out. We go to replays. Black finally stands tall as The Undisputed Era looks on from the stage.
– Back from a quick break and we see carnage at ringside. Mauro and Percy are standing for the rest of the show.
– We see Ethan Carter III at ringside.
– We get a video package for tonight’s main event.
NXT Title Match: Johnny Gargano vs. Andrade “Cien” Almas
We go to the ring and out comes NXT Champion Andrade “Cien” Almas with Zelina Vega. A Mariachi band performs his entrance. Johnny Gargano is out next. We get formal ring introductions from Mike Rome.
Fans chant “Johnny Wrestling” before the bell hits. They lock up and go at it, trading holds. Almas takes Gargano down first. They break as fans applaud. They lock up and trade holds again. We see Candice LeRae sitting with Gargano’s family at ringside as the back & forth continues for several minutes.
Gargano takes control and hits a dropkick as Vega looks on from ringside. Gargano keeps Almas grounded and works him over. Almas turns it around in the corner with a handful of hair. Almas counters a move and chops Gargano to the mat. We get a replay of the chop as Almas keeps control and takes his time. Almas runs into a boot in the corner. Gargano with more offense and a clothesline to send Almas over the top to the floor. Gargano follows as they trade counters off the apron and the floor. Gargano leaps off the apron but Almas moves and Gargano lands hard on the floor, right in front of LeRae.
Almas brings it back into the ring and covers for a 2 count. Almas keeps control as fans try to rally for Gargano. Gargano fights back but Almas keeps coming with the counters. Almas with an inverted facelock on the ropes as the referee counts. Almas drops Gargano with a big kick for a close 2 count. Gargano finally fights to his feet and nails a big kick. Fans chant for Gargano again. Almas turns it around in the corner and turns Gargano upside down in a Tree of Woe. Gargano avoids the double stomp and nails a big suplex back into the corner.
They get up and trade shots in the middle of the ring. Gargano unloads and ends up hitting an enziguri. Gargano with more offense and a faceplant off the second rope for another close 2 count as Vega screams at ringside. Gargano with more offense. Almas counters but Gargano drops him for another close 2 count after a thrust through the ropes from the apron. Vega jumps on the apron worried. Gargano with another enziguri but Almas plants him for a pin attempt. Vega orders Almas to stay on top of Gargano.
Almas goes to the top for a big moonsault but has to land on his feet as Gargano moves. Almas turns that into a standing moonsault for a close 2 count. They get up and trade shots in the middle of the ring. Gargano unloads with forearms but Almas floors him for another close 2 count. Gargano comes right back and floors Almas for a close 2 count. They trade shots in the middle of the ring again but both go down. Fans applaud them.
Gargano gets dropped in the corner with a knee after more back & forth. Almas takes Gargano to the top for the big draping hammerlock DDT from the top but Gargano slides down and avoids it. Gargano superkicks Almas while Almas is still on the top. Almas hits the drive-by knees but misses the follow-up. They tangle in the corner but Almas hits an inverted tornado DDT from the top for another close 2 count as the crowd pops big and goes wild. Fans chant NXT as both men are down in the middle of the ring.
They tangle on the apron now. Almas tries for a DDT but it’s blocked. Gargano slides out of a fireman’s carry and hits Almas with strikes. Gargano kicks Almas with an enziguri but Almas hangs on the apron. Gargano with a big DDT on the apron, causing Almas to fall out to the floor. Gargano is also down on the floor. The referee counts as Gargano tries to bring Almas back into the ring. Gargano with a 2 count. Gargano tries for the Gargano Escape but Almas resists. Almas with a jawbreaker.
Gargano with forearms in the middle of the ring. Almas drops Gargano with a back elbow. Vega yells at Almas to put Gargano away. Almas charges but Gargano leaps out of the corner with a big clothesline. Gargano sends Almas into the second turnbuckle. Gargano is distracted by Vega, allowing Almas to attack from behind with a dropkick. Gargano counters a move and rolls Almas up for a close 2 count. Gargano ends up dropping Almas for another close 2 count. Gargano is bleeding from his lip now.
Gargano goes to the top as Almas tries to get to his feet. Almas cuts him off. Almas rocks Gargano as he climbs to the top. Almas nails a huge double stomp from the top to the floor. Gargano also falls to the floor. Almas sends Gargano into the apron and slams his head back into it a few times as the referee yells at him. Almas brings a dazed Gargano back into the ring. The referee checks on Gargano but Almas runs in with the knees in the corner. Gargano manages to kick out at 2. Vega can’t believe it.
Fans chant “fight forever” now. Almas slaps Gargano while they’re on their knees in the middle of the ring now. Almas pulls Gargano to his feet but Gargano decks him several times. They trade shots in the middle of the ring now. Gargano with a superkick. Gargano leaps and slams Almas on his neck with an inverted hurricanrana. Gargano runs the ropes but Almas catches him for a tilt-a-whirl. Gargano turns that into the Gargano Escape. Almas tries to get his foot on the bottom rope but Gargano re-positions. Vega pulls Almas’ arm but the referee sees it. The hold is broken as Almas rakes the eyes while the referee is distracted.
Gargano counters the DDT and backdrops Almas out to the floor. Gargano runs the ropes and nails a big dive, sending Almas into the barrier. Gargano brings it back into the ring but Vega sends Gargano into the steel steps. Almas brings Gargano back into the ring and hits the hammerlock DDT but Gargano still kicks out. Fans pop big for Gargano with the “yes!” chant now. Vega approaches Gargano on the floor but LeRae hops the barrier and unloads on Vega, launching her into the barrier. LeRae fights Vega to the back.
Gargano crawls back into the ring where Almas is now. Fans chant “thank you Candice” now. Gargano counters a move and drops Almas on his head for another very close pin attempt. Gargano goes for the Gargano Escape again and gets it locked in. Almas pushes back and gets his foot on the bottom rope to break the hold. Almas sends the back of Gargano’s head into the ring post. Almas runs the apron and delivers the double knees, sending Gargano’s head into the ring post again. Gargano looks dazed again as the referee checks on him. Almas pulls Gargano onto the ring for a draping hammerlock DDT and nails it. Almas covers for the win.
Winner: Andrade “Cien” Almas
– After the match, Almas is handed the title as his music hits. The referee raises Almas’ arm as Vega returns to the ring to celebrate with him. We go to replays. Almas and Vega leave as Candice returns to the ring to check on her husband. Almas’ music stops after he and Vega return to the back. Fans start cheering for Gargano as he recovers. Candice helps Gargano out of the ring and up the ramp. Candice and Gargano stand on the stage as fans cheer them. Tommaso Ciampa makes his return and nails Gargano over the back with a crutch. Fans chant “asshole” at Ciampa as he stands over Gargano and stares at him. The referee orders Ciampa to the back and we see him limping away. Candice and the referee check on Gargano as Takeover goes off the air.