Welcome back to NXT UK. The stakes couldn’t be higher as this week sees the monumental title match that could end Toni Storm’s chances of ever challenging for the NXT UK women’s title again. The I Quit match would main-event an episode that would also see Kassius Ohno look to break Jack Starz, the Hunt pummel the Grizzled Young Veterans and A-Kid tangle with The Brian Kendrick. It’s going to be a roller coaster of an episode so let’s get into it.

The Grizzled Young Veterans (James Drake & Zack Gibson) defeated The Hunt (Primate & Wild Boar) via Ticket to Mayhem

The show started with Liverpool’s number one tag team taking on a team they had thoroughly mocked, The Hunt. Following some disparaging remarks on a previous episode, The Hunt was out for the GYV’s blood. The Hunt started things as they grew tired of James Drake stalling and battered him around a bit. Gibson saved his partner from a large amount of damage and tagged into the match. Gibson and Wild Boar mixed it up until Drake made a save and the GYV took over the match. They worked over Wild Boar whilst keeping Primate out of the match. Whenever Boar tried to escape, he would be smashed back down, usually with backbreakers. Gibson’s trash talk allowed Boar to escape and bring in Primate, who then proceeded to murder Drake and Gibson. He put up a good fight but the GYV regained control and started targeting his neck. The Hunt brought the fight back with stereo German Suplexes and almost put Drake away. Gibson prevented the double Splash but Primate still hit Drake. Gibson made a sneaky tag and the Ticket to Mayhem ended the match. The Hunt got to prove they could go but it was never too far out of the GYV’s control. It was a decent opening match and I’ll never get sick of seeing the GYV in action.

Kassius Ohno defeated Jack Starz via Kassius Clutch

Everyone’s favourite crash test dummy was in action next as Jack Starz got a beating courtesy of Kassius Ohno. He always loses but never goes down without a fight. This time he would have to contend with the wrestling genius, a man who’d mocked him for his training regimen. Ohno started with technicality and trash talking as he trapped Jack Starz with a wristlock and escaped a Cravate attempt. Ohno tried to be too much of a show-off and nearly got trapped by a roll-up, narrowly escaping at 2.5. Starz tried to show off with a turnbuckle headstand but Ohno trapped his hand and crushed it in the corner. Ohno instantly started working over the injured limb hitting a unique hammerlock backbreaker and launching Starz around via his arm. Starz escaped a short arm scissors and started to come back with some classic British wrestling and a second rope elbow. Starz hit a Butterfly Suplex and the pair traded roll-ups. Starz tried to go top rope but Ohno brought him crashing down with another attack to the injured arm. He locked in the Kassius Clutch and Starz instantly tapped. This was way better than it should have been. Starz made Ohno work for his win and got to show off a bit whilst doing so.

A-Kid defeated The Brian Kendrick via Backflip DDT

Next up was a technical/high flyer hybrid bout as A-Kid took on one of his rude heroes, The Brian Kendrick. It was almost like the past meeting the future as these two are eerily similar in their in-ring approach. The pair started with a lock-up that Kendrick won by trapping Kid’s arm. Kid escaped so Kendrick backed off. He kept away from Kid, picking his moments to strike but he got punished when the pace kicked up. Kid managed to lock in an armbar off a pinfall attempt. A-Kid kept on the offence, catching Kendrick off-guard with fast strikes. Well, until Kendrick drove him throat first into the ropes. Kendrick continued to go after the neck locking it in the ropes and attacking with a head crank. A-Kid tried to strike back but Kendrick stopped this with more shots to the throat. He followed up by throwing him neck first into the turnbuckle but Kid made him bail with a dropkick. A dive to the outside followed and Kid threw him down the ramp. Kendrick nearly ran into the steps but stopped himself, potentially jamming his knee in the process. Because of this stalling, A-Kid hit a Moonsault off the steps. A-Kid got Kendrick back in-ring and tried to submit Kendrick with a tilt-a-whirl armbar but Kendrick bailed again. A-Kid looked to fly high but Kendrick hung him on the ropes and brought Kid down with a tope rope Butterfly Suplex. When that didn’t get a three count, Kendrick locked in the Captain’s Hook. A kid got out and launched himself at the ropes for a flipping DDT to win the match. It was a spectacular way to end a highly tense match. Kendrick made Kid look like a star here.

Kay Lee Ray defeated Toni Storm via Chair to Throat Torture

Last but not least, the main event for the NXT UK Women’s Title. The challenger, Toni Storm, has been on a warpath after coming back from a self-imposed exile. She has done everything to try and get her title back but Kay Lee Ray has foiled her at every turn. Now she had the ultimate challenge, beat Kay Lee Ray in an I Quit match or lose her right to challenge Ray for the title ever again. There were no rules, just make your opponent quit, any way you could. A hockey fight broke out then both women spilled to the outside where Storm threw Ray into the barricade and a ring post. Ray took another trip into the steps and continued to get beaten up in-ring. Storm tried to hit Storm Zero but settled for an STF. Ray went to the ropes so Storm let go and started stomping a mudhole. Ray survived this and planted Storm with a DDT. Ray continued to work over Storm with a Dirty Bomb on the ropes and locking in the Gory Special. Storm countered a second Dirty Bomb and used the ropes to lock in an octopus. Storm went under the ring and started looking for plunder. She pulled out a table, pleasing the crowd. She took a second to batter Ray when she tried to stop her from setting up the table. Ray smashed Storm into the ring apron and set up for a Superplex aimed at the table. Storm reversed and faceplanted Ray on the turnbuckle. Ray fell onto the table and Storm put her through it with a Splash. She dragged Ray onto the apron, aiming for a Storm Zero but Ray escaped, earning a stiff forearm for her troubles. Ray came too and dropped Storm with a draping DDT to the floor.

Ray looked for plunder of her own and took out a roll of tape. She dragged Storm into the ring and tied Storm’s hands behind her back. She pummelled a defenceless Storm using her fists and kicks before leaving the ring to get a chair. As she stalked towards Storm though, she was hit with a headbutt and knocked to the canvas. Ray kicked out Storm’s leg and stuck her head in the chair. She Super-kicked Storm’s head and the chair then drove the chair into Storm’s neck. The chair was then wrapped around Storm’s neck and chest as Ray slowly crushed it in on her. Storm refused to give up so Ray stomped the chair from the top rope, further crushing it into her neck. Piper Niven came out but was conflicted about helping Storm, becoming a bystander to the torture Kay Lee Ray was inflicting. She pleaded with Storm to quit as Ray looked set to break Storm’s neck. She gave up and Niven attended to her. Ray posed from the top rope with her belt, pleased with the sheer destruction she had caused to Storm. I loved this. It was so well-paced, with a mix of brutal violence and desperation throughout. Storm’s early onslaught led brilliantly into the sadistic torture of Ray at the end. Something tells me that more than Toni Storm’s body will be broken after this match.

So, there you have it, another NXT UK episode reviewed for your reading pleasure. What a show. An episode packed from start to finish with great matches and the main event that delivered everything it should have. Toni Storm has been dragged kicking and screaming from the title scene and Piper Niven has unintentionally re-entered the title scene by helping Storm. A-Kid got a win over the architect of the cruiserweight division and the GYV continued to prove why they are one of the top tag teams in NXT UK. Next week will be even bigger as we get the NXT UK Title match between WALTER and Dave Mastiff. That is going to be the ultimate big man battle, I’ll see you all there.


All images courtesy of wwe.com, Video courtesy of WWE YouTube

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