#AndStill: Velveteen Dream retains NXT North American Championship

Photo / WWE

On Friday, April 5th, at the NXT TakeOver: New York event, Velveteen Dream would defend his NXT North American championship against the King of Bros, Matt Riddle. The match came together rather quickly as it was being hyped some few weeks ago as both Riddle and Dream would verbally spar with one another jocking for position and their place as the rightful title holder for the championship.

In the weeks leading up to NXT TakeOver, the Velveteen Dream came out and stood atop the NXT announcers table addressing his newly won championship and the crowd at large. By doing so it also appeared to open the doors to new opportunities and new challengers and with that, the unmistakable voice of Matt Riddle with the word ‘BRO’ could be heard on the overhead speaker. Riddle came out and first congratulated Dream, but then wanted to challenge him for the championship. With that, the seeds were planted and what was rumored to have initially been slated to be a triple threat match involving Adam Cole became a one on one match for the championship. Fans may recall Cole initially making a claim for his NXT North American championship in a backstage segment.

With the decision to move toward the match between Dream and Riddle the night and match had finally come to be and it didn’t disappoint. Fans would chant ‘both these guys’ in a celebration of their effort. They hit each other with everything and anything. Riddle’s sheer strength was on display as he hit a belly to back German suplex from the ring apron while he stood on the inside rope hoisting Dream into the ring. Perhaps the scariest moment was Dream’s landing as it appeared to be directly on his head causing quite a reaction from the crowd. None the lease two showcased heart and determination with the ability to not only endure punishment but execute it. The Dream would use his deceptive strength to hit a Dream Valley Driver on more than one occasion while at also enduring incredible strikes at the hands of Riddle.

Photo / WWE

One of the more intriguing moves executed was a floating bro splash by Riddle from the top rope. It appeared to be a combination moonsault/Phoenix splash but had the King of Bros own personal zip to it. Fans were also witnessed to the Dream coming in and demonstrating his best Hulk Hogan impersonation as he ‘hulked up’ at one point. It truly was a fun match that showed both challengers were able to weave in more traditional storytelling in wrestling with a more growing hybrid of wrestling that includes a succession of strikes used by talent implement today.

As the match was drawing to a close the sequence involved a superkick by Dream which was followed by a powerbomb and a knee strike. Riddle then attempted to cover the Dream, but it was only for a count of two. The fans were electric for this match showing their respect for both competitors. Without hesitation, Riddle slapped on his submission but doesn‘t maintain having his legs wrapped around the waist of Dream. That split second was all that Dream needed to rotate backward and use his own leverage to hold Riddle’s shoulders to the mat for the 1, 2, 3. The win was not only a title defense by the Velveteen Dream but also the first defeat suffered by the King of Bros since joining NXT. After the match, a show of mutual respect appeared to take place as both shared a moment and fist pump in the center of the ring. The winner AND STILL NXT North American Champion the Velveteen Dream.