Piper Niven has another crack at the NXT UK Women’s title this week, as she took on Kay Lee Ray in a Falls Count Anywhere match.
Joe Coffey pinned Sam Gradwell in 7:00 (**)
Lewis Howley & Sam Stoker pinned Ashton Smith & Oliver Carter in 8:29 (***)
Saxon Huxley pinned Levi Muir in 3:30 (*½)
Falls Count Anywhere: Kay Lee Ray pinned Piper Niven in 14:58 to retain the NXT UK Women’s title. (**)
We open with a video package for tonight’s main event, recapping Piper Niven’s new-found aggression and the brawl she had with Kay Lee Ray had a few weeks back that’s led to tonight’s main event. Then it’s back to the BT Sport Studio in London as Andy Shepherd and Nigel McGuinness return to the booth…
Joe Coffey vs. Sam Gradwell
Something something our kingdom.
We open with a lock-up that’s aborted, before Coffey took Gradwell into the ropes. Wash, rinse, repeat. Coffey lands a shoulder tackle, before a wild back elbow from Gradwell caught the Scotsman unawares…
A hammerlock from Gradwell traps Coffey for some short-range clotheslines, but Coffey headbutts free… and comes back with a low dropkick. A shin breaker’s next before Coffey kicked Gradwell’s leg out of his leg, following up with punches to the lower back as Gradwell had his leg torqued on in the corner. Coffey pushes Gradwell into the ropes, and rolls through a sunset flip before he came in with some ground and pound. Gradwell manages to escape with some headscissors, but Coffey extricates himself… only to get rolled back before he went back to the bad knee. A piledriver’s next… but he instead looked to convert it into a cloverleaf, before dropping Gradwell down for a leg spreader.
A stomp to the knees keeps Gradwell down, as Coffey ran through slogans. It gets some of the video wall to clap, for some reason, before Gradwell came back with a slam. Coffey’s right back with a dropkick to the knee, only to get caught with a STO from Gradwell for a near-fall. Coffey’s back with a Corning hold as he fires off some more clotheslines, before a step-up stomp to the bad knee left Gradwell hobbling… ahead of a diving charge to the back. Awra Best for the Bells is next, and that’s it. Gradwell’s been out of action for virtually the entire duration of this “brand”, and after such a one-sided match, he badly needs rebuilding. **
Somehow Joe Coffey busted his eye up in all that…
The Assistant to the General Manager is with Jordan Devlin announcing they’ve “sanctioned defences of the Cruiserweight title.” Kenny Williams and Amir Jordan appear to challenge, and I guess we’re getting Jordan vs. Jordan?
Hey! They found Ilja Dragunov! It’s a well-done recap of the NXT UK title match they’ve largely not paid attention to since. They fade in classical music to contrast the brutality of Ilja being choked out… and then we cut to Alexander Wolfe cutting apromo, and acting annoyed because the Gallus boys were celebrating loudly. Get off my lawn. Joe Coffey’s celebrating like Scotland’s beaten San Marino. Like Celtic’s beaten Brechin. It segues to Coffey challenging Wolfe to a match, still sour at how Imperium “cost him” the title against WALTER.
Pretty Deadly (Sam Stoker & Lewis Howley) vs. Oliver Carter & Ashton Smith
Carter and Smith finally bust out the gear they were showing off during the lockdown shows… they get new music too.
Smith and Stoker start, trading arm wringers, before Stoker’s roll-up was blocked. He’s able to flail an arm out to tag in Howley, who just gets thrown into the ropes for a back body drop. Stoker’s back to work a seated armbar on Smith, but Ashton powers up and talkies Stoker to the corner… only to have his hand stood on on the ropes. A crossbody off the top from Stoker’s caught and turned into a backbreaker for a two-count, with Carter tagging in to hit the rebound splash – better known as Private Party’s Silly String. They’ve not branded the move here. Carter keeps going with an armdrag to Stoker out of the corner, before Stoker fought his way free… then snuck out a tag to Howley, who caught Carter with a slam.
Carter gets another armdrag in, before a leapfrog and a crossbody caught Howley for a two-count. Howley stops to knock Smith off the apron, then avoided a suplex. Smith runs in and distracts the referee, with Stoker sliding in neatly to trip a whipped Carter into the middle buckle. I’ve never seen that before – it looked quite deft. Quick tags cycle in Stoker and Howley as they beat on Carter in the corner, while a chinlock gives the lads on commentary a time to crack wise. Carter lifts Howley to the floor, with a nasty landing, but took too long to follow up or even make a tag as Howley dove back in and charges Carter into the wrong corner.
Stoker’s back as they try to isolate Carter some more, but Howley tags back too quickly and loses Carter… which means Ashton Smith returns like a house afire. A Judo-style takedown has Howley down, but Stoker distracts, allowing Howley back in briefly, only for him to run into a Blue Thunder bomb for a near-fall. Carter takes care of Stoker with a tope, then tagged back in for a spinning heel kick into the corner. Smith floats Howley into a Carter superkick, before an assisted 450 splash looked to get the win… because Stoker put Howley’s foot on the rope. Stoker posts Carter from there, as Smith looked for an O’Connor roll… from the kick-out, Smith’s caught with an uppercut from Stoker on the floor, before Howley won with a roll-up. I’m starting to dig Pretty Deadly as a tag team here – their work is standing them out from a really crowded pack. ***
“Earlier this week” Mark Andrews makes the UK PC messy by throwing over some chairs. Clearly someone reminded him of the attack earlier in the year, as he blames Eddie Dennis for what happened. Flash Morgan Webster brings up how he knew “Mike” (Wild Boar) as a kid, and that friendship is now gone. Wait, you’re not gonna tidy up? You hooligans…
They show a package for Rampage Brown, showing his squash last week and some of the buzz for it. “The Rampage Has Begun”.
Levi Muir vs. Saxon Huxley
Levi lost in pretty short order to Jordan Devlin a few weeks back… he may fare a little better here. That music badly needs to change though, it’s so non-descript.
Oh yeah, they repackaged Huxley as a sorta-Bruiser Brody fella a while back. He locks up and takes Muir into the corner, then threw him aside, following up with a clothesline and a cravat. Knee strikes come next, but Muir shoves him into the ropes… and gets some more knee strikes for his woes. A rugby-style takedown leaves Muir on the mat, with an elbow drop to the back making it worse. Boot chokes in the corner. Face-washing boots… and then Huxley goes outside to hit a running boot on the floor. Huxley keeps going with a neck crank, as Jack Starz runs out to cheer on his friend Levi Muir, a fact that just popped up just now, apparently.
Muir manages to come back with dropkicks, but gets swatted out of the air as he went for a leapfrog. Huxley beats him down, throwing him down with a slam ahead of a running boot and a Clothesline from Hell for the win. Warm body duty for Levi here. *½
The camera focused on Starz aiding Muir at ringside afterwards… and we then switch to a recap of the Heritage Cup tournament. The final’s next week – A-Kid vs. Trent Seven for that new trophy.
Next week: Amir Jordan challenges for Jordan Devlin’s NXT Cruiserweight title… I bet Jordan wins.
Falls Count Anywhere for NXT UK Women’s Championship: Piper Niven vs. Kay Lee Ray (c)
Commentary’s going a little hard on Piper Niven’s recently discovered nasty streak… something accentuated when Niven attacked Kay Lee in the aisle.
They fight into the ring so they can start the match… Ray rolls outside, and gets obliterated with a low-pe for a two-count on the floor. Luckily, there’s plunder under the ring, like Kendo sticks, pipes and… a chain? There’s tape and a chair too, but Niven gets the chair knocked away as Kay Lee gets whipped into the guard rails. Niven keeps going with an arm-trapped belly-to-belly on the floor as the video wall crowd barely reacted. She teases a Piper Driver, but Kay Lee slips out “into the crowd”, then came back with a sunset flip over the barriers for a two-count. Then Piper just whacks Kay Lee with a chair from behind, but the champion comes back, taking Niven into the ring steps before she flung the ring bell at her.
Niven gets out of the way and got back on top with… a turnbuckle? She whacks it off of Kay Lee’s knee repeatedly, then used it as she tried to torque the knee some more. There’s a convenient bin at ringside too, but Kay Lee superkicks the bin into Niven back inside, before a Gory bomb was teased. It doesn’t come off though, as Niven gets free and hits a headbutt. She tries to prepare a chain, but Kay Lee beats her to the punch, and pulls back with the chain in her mouth as the piped in boos permeated the backing track. Piper stands up and falls back onto the bin to break the hold, then covers Kay Lee for a two-count, before she set up a chair and teased another Piper Driver.
Instead, Kay Lee pushes out, then trips Niven by the ropes, before dragging her to the apron for a draping DDT on the floor. It gets a two-count as I think the only trope we have left is the bag of drawing pins. A knee drop catches Niven in the mouth, and gets more pantomime boos, before a tornado DDT from Ray was countered into a suplex on the floor. Oh hey, here’s Jinny to attack Niven. She’s feeling disrespected, but Niven just throws her into the no-crowd. It bought Kay Lee enough time to recover, but her Gory Bomb’s countered into a backslide in front of the fake Thunderdome screens for a two-count, before they fought backstage. Niven smashes a framed WrestleMania poster over Kay Lee’s head, before a curiously placed guitar was grabbed by Ray and smashed on Niven’s back for a two-count.
Setting up a chair, Ray looks to hit a Gory Bomb, but instead a Piper Driver puts Kay Lee through it for a two-count. Grabbing a pipe, Niven swings for the champion again, before Ray superkicked her and whipped her into a production crate. A back body drop takes Ray onto a crate, but it’s a flat surface as Kay Lee almost gets pinned right there. Niven then climbs onto another crate, dragging Ray up and teases throwing her off… but Jinny’s back with a steel chair, knocking them both down through a table. Kay Lee lands with her arm over Niven, and that’s enough for the pin. The effort was there, but this really felt like a paint-by-numbers checklist of falls count anywhere spots – all we missed were the pins/thumb tacks. It’s a win for Kay Lee Ray, but hardly dominant… and it’s clear that Jinny’s next in line for at least one of these two. **
In spite of the hyped main event, this felt like a flat, run-of-the-mill episode of NXT UK this week – they’re telling stories and progressing things, but as usual, things feel forced and inorganic. Pretty Deadly were the stand-outs this week – but there’s a LOT being thrown at you in this hour.