Every year, WWE loves to bring up facts, figures and records for it’s Grandest Spectacle of them all, WrestleMania. And for good reason. For most of us, it’s a fun reminder of the events history, a reminder of some of the moments that made us life long fans, and a loving glimpse at faces we haven’t seen for years. But this Sunday, with NXT TakeOver: Orlando becoming NXT’s “WrestleMania” style event, perhaps we should start to look at some of the records and legacies of NXT’s big event. Who have been the stars of TakeOver?
There have been 14 TakeOver events since they began in 2014 – on average, there is four a year (although 2015 did get five), and last year they decided that they would pair exclusively each weekend of the WWE’s “Big Four” events – SummerSlam, Survivor Series, Royal Rumble and, of course, WrestleMania. This year’s NXT TakeOver: Orlando will mark NXT’s fifteenth major event.
Here’s a look at some facts, figures and records of the NXT TakeOver series.
FIRST NXT TAKEOVER
NXT Arrival, February 27, 2014
Headlined by Neville capturing the NXT Championship from Bo Dallas, the first event wasn’t even called TakeOver (yet). But it would begin the start of the new era, as the FCW mainstays moved up to the main roster (The Shield, Wyatt Family, Bo Dallas) and the first true breed of NXT arrived.
FIRST NXT TAKEOVER OUTSIDE FULL SAIL UNIVERSITY
NXT TakeOver: Brooklyn, August 22, 2015, Barclays Center, Brooklyn, New York
The first six NXT TakeOver events all hailed from Full Sail Live, the television production center at Full Sail University (the same venue they tape the NXT episodic series). With the buzz of both Finn Balor and Kevin Owens‘ arrivals in NXT, the WWE took a gamble and booked their first NXT TakeOver outside of their home and paired it with SummerSlam ’15 in Brooklyn. But it wasn’t the Balor and Owens NXT Championship match that most people were talking about the next day – it was the near 20-minute instant classic between NXT Women’s Champion Sasha Banks and underdog challenger Bayley, which saw Bayley win the NXT Women’s title and the hearts of the WWE Universe. This events monumental success sparked the concept of pairing the TakeOvers with WWE events.
NUMBER OF COUNTRIES TO HOST AN NXT TAKEOVER
3, USA, England, Canada
The United States is a given. Thirteen of the fifteen NXT TakeOver events stem from its home country. But in it’s short lifespan, NXT has already held major events in two other countries. The first was NXT TakeOver: London, held at The SSE (formerly Wembley) Arena in London, England, December 16, 2015, only months removed from the first Brooklyn TakeOver. Finn Balor defeated Samoa Joe in the main event, defending his NXT Championship, and the NXT Universe was introduced to the debut match of Asuka.
This past November at Survivor Series ’16, NXT TakeOver: Toronto took place, with NXT’s first TakeOver on Canadian soil. The vocal and passionate Canadian crowd made Superstars of both Bobby Roode and Tye Dillinger – the 10 count for every ref count you hear now originated at this event – and former Women’s Champion Mickie James returned to the WWE in almost a decade in a losing effort to Asuka.
BIGGEST ATTENDANCE AT AN NXT TAKEOVER
15, 671, NXT TakeOver: Brooklyn II, August 20, 2016, Barclays Center, Brooklyn, New York
Sure, it’s nowhere near WrestleMania or any of WWE’s Big Four attendance numbers, but let’s put that 15, 671 in perspective. The first Takeovers held at Full Sail University averaged just over 400 people (capacity), when they started in 2014. In two years, they were filling an NBA arena with over fifteen thousand people. Hot off the previous year’s show stealer with Bayley and Sasha, with the buzz of emerging Superstar Shinsuke Nakamura facing NXT Champion Samoa Joe, proved to be another winning move by NXT, and a solidification that future NXT TakeOver specials would be paired with the WWE’s Big Four. Brooklyn II just edged the first Brooklyn’s attendance of 15,589 – the next highest not from a city called Brooklyn is the 12,649 who attended NXT TakeOver: Toronto at the Air Canada Centre.
MOST APPEARANCES AT NXT TAKEOVER, MALE
8, Baron Corbin, Finn Balor (tie)
Both Baron Corbin and Finn Balor also share the record for most matches at an NXT TakeOver with nine in those eight appearances – both competed twice at NXT TakeOver: Respect as part of the inaugural Dusty Rhodes Tag Team Classic. Baron Corbin was an impressive 6-3 in his eight appearances, but nowhere near the domination of Finn Balor’s 8-1 record at NXT’s marquee events. The Revival will tie Corbin and Balor following their match at NXT TakeOver: Orlando.
MOST APPEARANCES AT NXT TAKEOVER, FEMALE
Bayley not only holds the record for most appearances by a female wrestler at NXT TakeOver events, but co-shares the overall NXT TakeOver record with Finn Balor and Baron Corbin. From perennial underdog to fighting Champion, for years Bayley encapsulated what NXT was all about and her departure left a hole that they still haven’t truly filled. Asuka will tie Bayley for this total after her match this Friday.
MOST WINS AT NXT TAKEOVER
8, Finn Balor
BEST WIN/LOSS RECORD AT NXT TAKEOVER
Asuka is on a win streak over 150 matches since entering NXT a few years ago (combining NXT TV, Live Events and NXT TakeOvers), including seven straight wins at NXT TakeOver alone. She’s still just under 20 shy of Goldberg‘s WCW Streak of 173 wins and this Friday will be the next question of whether she’ll advance to beat it or take her first singles loss in NXT.
MOST TITLE DEFENCES AT NXT TAKEOVER
Lots of people have defended their titles twice, but Asuka leads them all with three successful title defences of her NXT Women’s title, against Peyton Royce, Billie Kay and Nikki Cross at TakeOver: San Antonio, Mickie James at TakeOver: Toronto, and Bayley in her rematch at TakeOver: Brooklyn II.
MOST LOSSES AT NXT TAKEOVER
5, Tye Dillinger
He may be the Perfect 10 with the crowd, but his win-loss record in the big matches in NXT have been abysmal. He hasn’t won in five matches. Regardless, Tye Dillinger is one of the most over characters in NXT right now and a clear crowd motivator – his “10” count has infected multiple promotions during referee counts.
OLDEST COMPETITOR AT NXT TAKEOVER
50, Jushin “Thunder” Liger
The Japanese legend finally appeared in a WWE ring in a victory over TakeOver whipping boy Tyler Breeze (1-4-1 in 6 TakeOver matches) at the ripe old age of 50 years old. And the aerial innovator barely looked out of step. Liger is the oldest by a bit, over 40-year old Rhyno in 2015, 39-year old Bobby Roode or a pair of 37-year olds in Eric Young and Mickie James.
INDIVIDUAL WIN/LOSS RECORD AT NXT TAKEOVER
To close out, here’s a look at every person’s win/loss record at an NXT TakeOver event (listed by name, win-loss-no contest, win percentage), by win percentage.
- Asuka, 7-0, 100% (3 title defences)
- Bobby Roode, 3-0, 100%
- Authors of Pain, 2-0, 100%
- Hideo Itami, 2-0, 100%
- Paige, 1-0, 100% (1 title defence)
- Adam Rose, 1-0, 100%
- Ember Moon, 1-0, 100%
- Eric Young, 1-0, 100%
- Jushin ‘Thunder’ Liger, 1-0, 100%
- Roderick Strong, 1-0, 100%
- Finn Balor, 8-1, 88.9% (2 title defences)
- Charlotte, 4-1, 80.0% (2 title defences)
- Baron Corbin, 6-3, 66.7%
- Austin Aries, 2-1, 66.7%
- Blake & Murphy, 2-1, 66.7% (2 title defences)
- Lucha Dragons (Kalisto & Sin Cara), 2-1, 66.7% (1 title defence)
- Samoe Joe, 5-3, 62.5%
- Neville, 3-2, 60% (2 title defences)
- Shinsuke Nakamura, 3-2, 60%
- The Revival, 4-3, 57.1% (2 title defences)
- Bayley, 4-4, 50.0% (2 title defences)
- The Ascension, 2-2, 50.0% (2 title defences)
- Kevin Owens, 1-1-1, 50.0%
- Mojo Rawley, 1-1, 50.0%
- American Alpha, 1-1, 50.0%
- Apollo Crews, 1-1, 50.0%
- Bull Dempsey, 1-1, 50.0%
- Sasha Banks, 2-3, 40.0%
- Andrade “Cien” Almas, 1-2, 33%
- DIY (Gargano & Ciampa), 1-2, 33%
- Rhyno, 1-2, 33.3%
- The Vaudevillains, 1-2, 33.3%
- Sami Zayn, 1-4-1, 16.7%
- Tyler Breeze, 1-4-1, 16.7%
- Xavier Woods, 0-0-1, 0.0%
- Bo Dallas, 0-1, 0.0%
- Camacho, 0-1, 0.0%
- Cesaro, 0-1, 0.0%
- Mickie James, 0-1, 0.0%
- Natalya, 0-1, 0.0%
- Nikki Cross, 0-1, 0.0%
- No Way Jose, 0-1, 0.0%
- Peyton Royce, 0-1, 0.0%
- TM61, 0-1, 0.0%
- Too Cool (Scotty 2 Hotty & Brian Christopher), 0-1, 0.0%
- Becky Lynch, 0-2, 0.0%
- Billie Kay, 0-2, 0.0%
- Dana Brooke, 0-2, 0.0%
- Enzo & Big Cass, 0-2, 0.0%
- Nia Jax, 0-2, 0.0%
- Tyson Kidd, 0-2, 0.0%
- CJ Parker (Juice Robinson), 0-3, 0.0%
- Emma, 0-3, 0.0%
- Tye Dillinger, 0-5, 0.0%