The Death of NXT UK & Its Ramifications

The death of NXT UK is a matter of time. The brand created with the purposes of raiding all the top UK, European and Australian talent and stopping the revival of WOS has pretty much completed its goals long ago. NXT UK survived longer than most people gave it credit for but it also creates a great example of modern fans to what happens to a scene when WWE wants to take their best wrestlers, just like we saw in the 80`s with the territories.

NXT UK was originally part of the massive plan orchestrated by Paul Levesque called global localization. The plan was all about setting NXT subsidiaries all over the world, in places like Japan, Mexico, and so on. This idea had the goal to strengthen WWE’s control of the wrestling business to an unprecedented level. Global localization would also help WWE sign the best talent from all over the world and have them under WWE contracts. This plan also had the idea of hurting direct competitors on specific territories like NJPW in Japan, and CMLL/AAA in Mexico.

Another part of WWE’s plan regarding NXT UK, was forcing local promotions to have deals with WWE so they could get access to wrestlers under NXT UK contracts and following certain rules, like not booking AEW or IMPACT wrestlers to their cards. This obviously limited what promoters could do regarding cards. Slowly, WWE started pulling back wrestlers from cards pretty much becoming exclusive wrestlers under contract.

NXT UK will also be part of the legacy of wrestlers like Pete Dunne in the sense that he was one the biggest advocates of NXT UK and said multiple times this would benefit scene tremendously, and with hindsight we know we was wrong. But predicting the consequences of WWE on the European territory was something a lot of people saw from the start, especially those who know about what WWE did to the territories. Pete Dunne and several wrestlers criticized people that were adamant of NXT UK and how they would benefit the scene, and this will always be part of Dunne and other wrestlers’ careers.

With several reports indicating about NXT UK not recording new episodes in the BS Sports studios, and most likely all new episodes going to be recorded on the PC, it makes the death of NXT UK closer than ever. But this could also mean that with Triple H being the head booker of WWE that the global expansion plan might return and with a vengeance; especially considering AEW and NJPW were not working together the first time around, but this is a conversation of another time.

The European scene has suffered a lot since NXT UK was established. From Spain to Germany, all the scenes in Europe lost a lot of talent and local wrestling has stagnated in Europe and it will take a long time to recover from what NXT UK did to Europe. While NXT UK is also a huge factor on the current state of European wrestling, other things contributed too like COVID-19 as an example.

The end of the reign of terror of NXT UK might allow European wrestling to recover again, it’ll take a long time but this would be the best for the scene. But there’s still work to be done regarding #SpeakingOut and earning people’s trust again, and promotions are not doing a job with since they still keep booking abusers. Only time will tell how things will go.