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NXT Championship match sets up two huge feuds for Stand & Deliver

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Since returning to his full-blown heel ways at last month’s TakeOver: Vengeance Day, Adam Cole has been on a collision course with NXT champion Finn Bálor. The black-and-gold brand couldn’t wait until their next TakeOver (Stand & Deliver, coming our way on April 7 & 8) to book a showdown between two of the great champs in NXT history.

In his quest to get the title back, Cole went through his Undisputed ERA brothers, Kyle O’Reilly & Roderick Strong. Despite that, he said the group would only be done when he said it would. He even wore a TUE armband to the ring. Surely that would come into play?

Before we found that out, we were treated to the very good match we expected.

The challenger targeted Finn’s recently injured jaw, while the champion focused on Cole’s knee. After both men landed big shots, it seemed a superkick to the face could spell the end of The Prince’s reign. But he fought out of a crossface follow-up to reach the ropes, then kicked out before three on a Last Shot, and then he survived a Panama Sunrise!

With Cole scrambling for the answer to how he would put Bálor away, one of the men he betrayed showed up haunt him.

The distraction allowed Bálor to take out Cole with a topé, then follow up with Coup de Grace. He then gave O’Reilly the floor. Kyle was wise to the begging/low blow trick Cole had pulled on Roddy...

...and KOR proceeded to beat the brakes off his former friend. It took a team of officials to pull him off, and allow Cole to escape.

Meanwhile, another big match was set-up in the ring. After watching the drama between the former teammates play out, Finn looked over his shoulder to see a man who never lost the belt he now holds. The Prince asked Karrion Kross what took him so long, Kross replied with his catchphrase, and the screen faded to black.

Is it TakeOver yet?

Catch up on everything that happening on tonight’s eventful edition of NXT in our live blog.