It was a busy week on NXT UK. We had a first-time meeting, a tag team title match and some shocking acts of violence all wrapped up into an hour’s programming. It once again took place from the rabid fields of sweaty goths, Download Festival, and once again had a crowd hotter than the sun. Wait it’s a festival they probably didn’t get any. Anyway, let’s get into this bumper edition of NXT UK and see what took place.
Piper Niven defeated Rhea Ripley via Michinoku Driver
Talk about a hot open. The commentators couldn’t even finish their introductions as Rhea Ripley stormed to the ring and demanded her match with Piper Niven start there and then. Niven followed suit and the match was underway. What followed was a total war as Rhea Ripley used the ring posts to gain an advantage and worked over Niven with strikes and a Body Scissors. She was all over Niven until the inevitable comeback happened and Niven was able to get back into the match. A lot of the time Niven got the offence in because Ripley got too cocky and left her self-exposed. In the end, a Cannonball to the back and the Michinoku Driver saw her lose their first encounter but I highly doubt this will be the last time we’ll see them against each other. This was a strong first encounter as two titans of the Women’s division collided in a WWE kaiju battle. It was hard-hitting, controlled and a very strong showing for both women. Please let them fight again.
Alexander Wolfe defeated Jack Starz via Sit-Out PowerBomb
Jack Starz is incredibly unlucky. Every match he is in sees him get the absolute hell beaten out of him by a dominant opponent. This time it was Alexander Wolfe who issued the WWE mandated beatdown. Wolfe was in control for 90% of the match as he used simple yet effective, European style offence to keep Starz under control. The only time he lost control was when Wolfe taunted for too long and Starz was able to dish out a small amount of attack. He was soon caught again though and smashed with a Death Valley Driver. That was chased with a Powerbomb and the match was over. Wolfe proved why he belongs with Imperium and played a dominant, demanding brute who used his European style offence to respect the mat and destroy his opponent. He barely flinched when attacked by Starz and destroyed him with relative ease.
Jazzy Gabert w/Jinny defeated Dani Luna & Mercedes Blaze via Dominator
What would NXT UK be without a squash match? This week saw Jinny’s hired gun, Jazzy Gabert, destroy not one but two opponents in easy fashion. She started strong and never stopped as she slammed, smashed and no sold her way through her opponents. It was pure carnage from start to finish for the jobbers as Gabert was unphased by anything they did. She ended it quickly with a Dominator and left. No fanfare, no difficulty, just destruction.
Moustache Mountain vs Grizzled Young Veterans ended in No Contest
Talk about a main-event. This was fun from start to finish. From the technical start, the face/heel domination sections, the double team moves, false finishes to the outright brutal end. Both teams have amazing chemistry and the Grizzled Young Veterans are the absolute masters of heel tactics. They know how to work a crowd, implement sneaky and vicious tactics and have some absolutely amazing double team moves. The same can be said of Moustache Mountain in the inverse role. Both teams will always put on excellent matches when in the ring together. We saw Bate look like a beast, Seven be the sympathetic beating victim and the veterans work to brutalise both men when not being beaten down.
To describe what happened here would do the match a disservice as, the result revealed or not, the match deserves to be seen. In the last throes of the match, Moustache Mountain looked set to win when Imperium appeared and beat the hell out of them. They put Seven in handcuffs, wrapped him around a turnbuckle and forced him to watch as WALTER Powerbombed Bate onto the ring apron and once again into the ring post. Bate was left knocked out and broken whilst Seven screamed for help and called out to his partner. The show ended with the dramatic shot of Imperium posing whilst just offscreen you could hear Trent Seven agonising over his partner, continuously shouting and thrashing against the ring post. It was a nightmarish auditory experience. It certainly takes the feud to the next level as we now have to wait and see how Seven reacts to Imperium’s attack and whether he goes after them alone or with friends.
So there you have it, another episode of NXT UK passes us by. We had another strong episode that saw both strong opening and finishing matches, Wolfe showing he can wrestle after going missing on the main roster and Jazzy Gabert getting screen time. Imperium and the women dominated this show as they will be the most talked about points and certainly had the most impact. We have first blood in Niven vs Ripley and more blood in Imperium vs British Strong Style. Next week’s matches haven’t been confirmed but Kassius Ohno vs Mark Andrews has been teased and we may see more confrontation between Noam Dar and Kenny Williams following a meeting that saw Williams get a face full of mud. Only time will tell, but the hype is there. Let’s keep the quality coming, please.
(All images courtesy of wwe.com)