NXT Takeover: R Evolution results: Sami Zayn wins NXT Title; attacked by Kevin Owens
Charlotte and Lucha Dragons retain gold on Thursday night
Last Updated: 12/12/14 1:50pm
Sami Zayn’s ecstasy turned to agony at Takeover: R Evolution when he was brutalised by Kevin Owens moments after winning the NXT Championship.
Fan favourite Zayn downed Adrian Neville on Thursday night with a crunching Helluva Kick to seize the belt he has been chasing for the best part of 2014.
But while the Canadian celebrated his triumph with his fellow NXT Superstars, debutant Owens powerbombed the new champion onto the ring apron, causing him to be stretchered out of the arena.
Zayn had been joyous before Owens’ vicious intervention, having finally won the NXT Title following a thrill-a-minute match with Newcastle fighter Neville, who had held the strap since February.
Neville resorted to nefarious tactics during his previous title tussle with Zayn – feigning injury before pinning his opponent with a roll-up – and employed some dirty moves on Thursday, too.
The Brit pushed the referee in front of Zayn’s first Helluva Kick and then tried to whack his rival with his cherished NXT Championship while the official was seeing stars.
But Zayn – who had vowed to quit WWE if he failed to win gold at Takeover: R Evolution – proved too astute for Neville and secured victory after evading a pin attempt from his adversary.
Neville’s sportsmanship returned post-match when he hugged his long-time friend but after the majority of the NXT roster returned backstage to let Zayn soak up his moment, Owens struck.
Owens had already left his imprint on NXT during his debut match, flattening CJ Parker with a series of high-impact moves, though his final gambit was his most memorable act of the night.
Elsewhere, NXT Women’s Champion Charlotte and NXT Tag Team Champions The Lucha Dragons enjoyed successful title defences, besting Sasha Banks and The Vaudevillains respectively.
Charlotte deployed a summersault senton and a stunning top-rope Natural Selection to pick up her win, while Lucha Dragons sparkplug Kalisto felled Vaudevillain Simon Gotch with Salida del Sol.
Finn Balor, meanwhile, rocked some dazzling red and black body paint as he and Hideo Itami teamed up to defeat Konnor and Viktor of The Ascension in a cracking contest.
The Ascension foiled an early burst from the international sensations and soon began to pick apart their foes in methodical fashion, but Balor’s arsenal of kicks turned the tide.
And after Itami helped his pal evade Fall of Man, the livewire duo clobbered Konnor and Viktor with dual double stomps to triumph.
Plus, Baron Corbin, the heavily-tattooed ex-NFL player, blitzed Tye Dillinger in 30 seconds, before engaging in a stare-down with Bull Dempsey as the NXT fans implored the powerhouses to fight.
And, after announcing his in-ring retirement due to a concussion, Corey Graves revealed he would be joining the NXT announce booth alongside the likes of Alex Riley and Renee Young.
You can watch NXT – Takeover: R Evolution at 11pm on Saturday on Sky Sports 3.