We’re one week away from the restart of NXT UK – and this week we’ve a big announcement, and news on Kay Lee Ray’s next challenger.
– From NXT UK TV in February 2020: Kay Lee Ray beat Toni Storm in an I Quit match to retain the NXT UK Women’s Championship in 12:55 (***)
– From NXT UK TV in July 2019, WALTER defeats Trent Seven via referee stoppage in 15:00 (***¼)
It’s the last week of the Asteroid Boys providing the theme. It’ll be done and Dusted after tonight, as Wargasm’s “God of War” behind the tune from next week. This week… Andy Shepherd is on location at the BT Sports studio, in front of a big NXT UK backdrop. He’s finally left the house! He pitches to the first big announcement… a highlight reel of some of European names that’s made it in WWE… and then it’s over to Johnny Saint’s regular proxy making the announcement.
It’s the announcement of the NXT UK Heritage Cup – an eight-man tournament. Seven of eight names will be announced tonight. All of the matches will be under the British rounds rules, because… heritage. William Regal recaps the rules. There’s six 3-minute rounds, with 20-second rest breaks between rounds, under best-of-three falls rules. Whoever’s ahead at the end of the sixth round wins (no word on what happens in draws), and while a fall marks the end of the round, a DQ or a KO ends the match. I would have said that was a weird choice, but then Kassius Ohno did the rounds match last year that worked well.
They reveal some names for the tournament, complete with mini-highlight reels and sit-down promos in front of the neon NXT UK sign: Flash Morgan Webster, Noam Dar and Alexander Wolfe.
More from Johnny Saint’s mouthpiece. He tells us that Kay Lee Ray defends the NXT UK Women’s title against Piper Niven… who’s up next for a sit-down promo as they recap their lengthy feud that’s gone around the world. There’s clips from ICW, their social medias, and clips of the two of them (in years gone by) talking about getting back up from low points. Niven mentions how Kay Lee Ray was always by her side… and then we pitch to Kay Lee saying how she’s not the person Piper thought she was. Piper reckons that Kay Lee was happy with her doing well, as long as she never overtook her… and they point to 2017’s Mae Young Classic where Kay Lee went out in the first round as a turning point. Kay Lee’s the longest reigning NXT UK women’s champion right now, and she vows to make sure that doesn’t change… and then they instantly throw to…
I Quit Match for NXT UK Women’s Championship: Toni Storm vs. Kay Lee Ray (c)
If Toni loses, she can’t challenge Kay Lee Ray again – and this crowd is shockingly subdued given the stipulation.
The pair charge at each other at the bell, then head outside as Storm threw the champion around the ringside area. The ring post, the steps, the guard rails, you name it. In the ring, the pair trade kicks until Storm countered a springboard with a German suplex… then teased a Storm Zero, but let go so she could go for a submission with a STF. The referee hasn’t got a mic by the way, unlike recent I Quit matches… Ray gets to the ropes, but it doesn’t matter… so Storm reapplies the hold before she let go. Just because. Kay Lee sneaks back in with a DDT, before she stretched Storm in the ropes, letting go as well so she could go for a Gory Bomb… but insteads holds on for a Gory special, stretching out the Aussie before an attempted Gory Bomb into the ropes was countered into an Octopus hold by Storm.
That’s broken up with Storm throwing Ray outside, as she followed up by grabbing a table from under the ring. The table’s set up, but Kay Lee Ray takes control as she took Toni up top, teasing a superplex through the table on the floor. Toni tries for a German superplex through the wood, before she placed Kay Lee on the table and hit a splash through it! Dragging the champion towards the ring, Toni goes for a Storm Zero, before letting to as Kay Lee cuts off a dive and lands a draping DDT off the apron to the floor. More plunder comes as Kay Lee Ray went for some tape… learning from Yano? Yep! She tapes Toni’s hands behind her, leaving her defenceless… but a headbutt saves Toni from a chair shot.
Kay Lee kicks away the legs though, before setting Toni’s head in the chair and superkicks it. She then uses the chair, driving it into Toni’s neck before she threatened to Pillmanize the neck… which drew out the management. They arrived too late as Toni gets the chair stomped onto her, so Kay Lee heads to the top rope and stomps again as Piper Niven came out. Again, too late. This is looking a wee bit too violent for just before 4pm on a Thursday, and when Kay Lee threatened to jump again, this time off the top rope, the referee waves it off. Presumably because Toni had said those words. Well, it’s a definitive win, but the dastardly finish drew nary a reaction from the York crowd. ***
That’s followed with footage from after the match of Niven carrying Toni Storm backstage… they then segue that into a promo from Kay Lee Ray saying that Niven’s heart is always in the right place, and it makes it easy for her to be taken advantage of. Piper wants to win the title “to be seen” for herself… but Kay Lee’s still vowing to send her packing back to Scotland. That’s in two weeks!
After a break, Gallus’ Wolfgang and Mark Coffey are back. They’ve an open challenge for their tag titles next week.
Then we get a Zoom call as Andy Shepherd is with Robbie Brookside, William Regal and Drew McIntyre to put over the British rounds-format and the Heritage Cup. Both Regal and Brookside put those matches over as a big part of their lives, and if you’re thinking “it’s weird they’re going big on British rules given WWE’s history with the past”, you aren’t alone. Of course, they try and make the newly-created Heritage Cup seem like a big deal, before announcing the next four names: A-Kid. Dave Mastiff. Joseph Conners. Good rib, Larry. Finally, Trent Seven.
There’s an eighth name that they’re holding back. That’s a decidedly a mid-card line-up, but it’s a way to fill these shows out while things are still looking rather dicey as far as next steps. NXT UK still has a show in Dublin technically on the cards, but I wouldn’t hold my breath… Next week: NXT UK returns from the BT Sports Studios. Kay Lee Ray speaks, plus more details on the Heritage Cup, presumably the bracketing… also, Gallus’ Wolfgang and Mark Coffey face Amir Jordan and Kenny Willliams.
Trent Seven vs. WALTER
This isn’t a title defence for WALTER, and he’s met in the aisle with a low-pe as Trent was chopping him before the bell.
After throwing him into the guard rails, Trent takes WALTER inside as the bell rings… but Trent low bridges WALTER again as another low-pe connected. Except this time Trent grabbed his knee on the impact. Back inside, WALTER took advantage, keeping Trent down as chops and forearms made Trent’s challenge a little more problematic. Trent tries to make a comeback with a chop, but WALTER easily scoops him up and dumps him with a slam, as the NXT UK champion was having it all his own way. WALTER pulls Trent into the ropes for some crossface punches, before he swatted away some more hope from Trent and rolled him into a STF.
Eventually making the ropes, Trent’s still on the deck… and is put back down pretty quickly when he pulled himself up, as a big boot waited for him in the corner. Finally Trent fought back, sidestepping a boot to trap WALTER in the corner as a Dragon suplex took the Austrian down, as did a clothesline as Trent was finally starting to chain stuff together. WALTER struck back pretty quickly though as the crowd again got behind Trent. Despairing forearms just served to anger WALTER, whose kicks ended up getting caught as Trent had one last comeback… firing back with more chops, only for WALTER to goozle and slap him down again. A spinning backfist took WALTER outside though as Trent wasn’t quite done… but he took way too long to follow up.
As did WALTER, who got caught on a rare trip to the top rope, before he teased a top rope powerbomb. Trent slaps him away and countered with a superplex for a near-fall, and they’re back outside where WALTER turned the tide with a big boot and a chop, before a powerbomb onto the edge of the ring left Trent in a nasty heap. He’s thrown back into the ring as WALTER hits a second one, but he refuses to make the cover, opting to hit a third powerbomb. Out comes the rest of Imperium to act like bodyguards to stop anyone helping Trent, who’s powerbombed into oblivion as the referee waved off the match. With this not being a title match, there was a little more belief than usual that Trent could win… but despite that opening flurry, WALTER took control for huge swathes of the match – and ended up winning by a proverbial country mile. ***¼
We fade out to a final video package for the show’s return next week, focusing on Kay Lee Ray/Piper Niven, WALTER/Ilja and the NXT UK tag team division. The women get their spotlight too, as does the Heritage Cup, as the recap-and-old-matches era of NXT UK came to a close.
They crammed this bumper show with announcements, but this was a show you’d be able to get away with just reading the report on, especially if you’ve already seen the matches they replayed. Regular service resumes next week…