NXT UK Review: 09.24.20

Here we go again with our second show from the rebooted NXT UK brand. We’re at the BT Sport TV Studio in London, where our main event tonight will deliver the first NXT UK title defence in over six months when Piper Niven challenges NXT UK Women’s Champion Kay Lee Ray. They’re no strangers to each other, so this should be a great one.

We’re also promised the return of Pete Dunne to NXT UK, as well as the draw for the Heritage Cup. It was a great show last week, so the bar was set pretty high. There’s an awful lot to squeeze into an hour, so let’s get started.

We start with a still paying tribute to Joe Laurenitis – Road Warrior Animal – who passed away this week. Tell ’em, Hawk. Rest in peace, big man.

One of these men will win the Heritage Cup. Unless it’s the Wild Card entrant. Obvs.

A video package recaps the action from last week – that’s quite the highlight reel. We get a proper look at the Heritage Cup, and told that Pete Dunne will be “presiding” over the event. I’d rather see him fighting in it. Then it’s all about our main event and the Women’s title.

We see our competitors for the Heritage Cup backstage with Sid Scala, before being greeted by Andy Shepherd and Nigel McGuinness. Straight from the off, to steal a line from Jim Ross, business is about to pick up because here comes Walter.

IV Allegro con fuoco kicks in, and we’ve got our NXT UK Champ on his way to the ring. He’s facing Saxon Huxley in a non title contest.

Walter with a shotgun of a chop to Saxon Huxley.

Walter Vs Saxton Huxley

The Divine Beast measures up well physically against Walter, but it doesn’t take the champ long to drive Huxley to the outside. Walter won’t let him in, and Huxley gets irate about it. He’s challening the Bezerker out there. Huss. Huss. Or should that be Hux, Hux?

Huxley manages to catch a Walter chop, before firing off some kicks to the head and easily powerslams the champ. Huxley lands a pretty sweet flying clothesline from the corner for two.

Walter rolls out, and Huxley follows, knocking Walter down with a Lou Thesz press. Walter is being a wee bit manhandled here.

A missed kick, and Walter lands a sickening chop on Huxley. Brawling continues outside the ring, and Huxley breaks the count at 9. That was close.

Huxley’s chest already looks like it’s been whipped from one chop. One chop, people. Powerbomb onto the edge of the ring apron. Hardest part of the ring, as you may have heard.

Hux is motionless outside the ring and makes it in at a looooong nine count. More sickening chops from Walter, an openhand slap from Hux in return, but Walter answers with a sleeper and a hammering German Suplex.

Walter pops Huxley up on the top turnbuckle, before landing a sweet Butterfly Superplex to bring both men crashing down. A RIDICULOUS chop to the back of the neck of Huxley leads to a powerbomb and (mercifully) the end of the match.

Huxley is understandably laid out in the ring. Strong showing from the NXT UK Champion.

From one champ to another, we see Kay Lee Ray pacing around backstage. She looks ready.

“Make a name for yourself…”

Now we’re back in the ring with Sid Scala and the competitors for the Heritage Cup… well, seven of them anyway. Here comes my fellow Brummie Pete Dunne! Trent Severn claps for Dunne, while Flash Morgan Webster gives his helmet a bit of a slap. You know, his scooter helmet.

“The Heritage Cup is for those who paved the way,” says Dunne. He invokes some legendary names in British wrestling, challenging the seven men to make a name for themselves.

The first draw sees Joseph Connors taking on Dave Mastiff. Next, the Wild Card Entrant takes on Trent Severn. He shakes hands with… no one. Nice. Next, Flash Morgan Webster will face A-Kid. That’ll be a high flying match, right there. They shake hands.

Process of elimination, that leaves Noam Dar to Face Alexander Wolfe. Dar takes a cheap shot at Wolfe, but Dunne grabs his arm and gives him a finger-break for his trouble, before dumping him out the ring. This is the same Pete Dunne that took a cheap shot of his own in a tournament not so long ago. Our Pete’s all grown up. That’s our matches sorted for the Heritage Cup then!

Piper is shown warming up backstage.

The Hunt Vs Pretty Deadly

Exactly who is Pretty and who is Deadly is yet to be determined.

Wild Boar and Primate are out – the tag team of The Hunt. Presumably this tag team will still be allowed to compete even in lockdown here in the UK, because… well, Google it. They’re facing Pretty Deadly – the team of Sam Stoker and Lewis Howley. If you’ve not seen Pretty Deadly before, think Breezango meets the Brood, crossed with the Hardy Boys, with just a sprinkle of John Morrison.

Suprisingly technical stuff from The Hunt to start, with both Stoker and Howley being flung around the ring with little offence to speak of. A cheeky bit of double teaming on the part of Pretty Deadly turn the tide, withWild Boar being pulled from outside to be literally clotheslined against the ropes. Boar is worked over in the corner. McGuinness calls Pretty Deadly “this generation’s Likely Lads.” Most people won’t get the reference, Nige, but I do.

I do like how Pretty Deadly have the basics of tag wrestling down. They’re keeping their opponent in their corner, making frequent tags… it’s good stuff. Hot tag and Primate is in on fire, but Pretty Deadly turn things around quickly after a back and forth where Primate misses a wild charge outside the ring, and the legal Wild Boar is rolled up from behind for the Pretty Deadly win.

Eddie Dennis grabs a few words with Pretty Deadly on their way out. Someone’s gonna be their new manager, I feel…

The Hunt aren’t too happy, bumping into Flash and Mark Andrews backstage. Down the corridor, Scala is chatting with Pete Dunne. It’s agreed that Dunne is going to be the special guest referee for Wolfe versus Dar next week.

“I’ll ref it…” says the obviously soon to be turning heel Pete Dunne.

We’ll also find out that there’s a triple threat wildcard match, with the winner taking the eight spot. Nice.

NXT UK Women’s Championship: Kay Lee Ray (C) Vs Piper Niven

“Ring the bell!”

I’m really excited for this one. Piper is out first, and we’re joined by our champ, who is now into her second year of holding the title. 390 days and counting, Shepherd tells us.

The bell rings, and we’re underway. Cautious start from the two women. Test of strength to start, which Ray is never going to win. She bails out of the ring to take a breather. Back in the ring at five.

Kick to the stomach of Niven, and Ray begins working on the left arm and leg of the challenger. Niven tries for a slam to break it, but Ray applies more pressure, taking control again. Ray is really tying up Niven here, with some good chain wrestling. Shoulderblock from Niven drives the champ down, while some hip tosses throw Ray half way across the ring. McGuinness references Klondike Kate and the similiarities that can be drawn between her and Niven. Give some of Klondike’s matches a Google. You’ll see what he means.

Niven with an attempted submission, but Ray reverses, locking up Niven’s legs on the mat. She’s still working over the challenger’s left leg and arm. Ring psychology, people.

Niven fires back, launching Ray out of the ring. They fight outside, with Ray landing a sweet Tornado DDT outside the ring. We’re up to six until Ray breaks the count.

Niven eats the ringsteps, but Ray misses a running knee strike and slams into the steel steps herself. Ouch.

“I’m fine,” protests Ray – before collapsing to the floor. The ref calls for medical help. “You can defend this another time,” says the ref. Niven goes NUTS by the ringside barrier.

Ray is lead out. “I don’t want to take the title,” says a resigned Niven, only to be greeted by a hard slap across the face from the champ. An enraged Niven returns the slap, dragging Ray back into the ring. The match is continuing after all, and Niven goes straight for the right knee.

Out of nowhere, Ray lands a superkick that levels Niven. Ray goes up to the top, and lands a senton to Niven for two. After a breather for both wrestlers, Niven regains control, stomping away on the injured leg and tying it up in a grapevine. Piper Driver and cover – but Ray is too close to the ropes, getting her leg on there at two. Niven tries the Vader Bomb, but Ray brings up her knees – that hurt both women. A missed Cannonball that sees Niven smash against an exposed turnbuckle in the corner gives Ray the opening she needs, quickly rolling up the challenger for the three.

Great outing from both women, and our first championship match of this new NXT is in the bag. Still absolutely loving having NXT UK back. The hour really does fly by. Intrigued to see where they go with Dunne, and who will make up the three man Wild Card triple threat match. Join me next week to find out.

   

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