This week on NXT UK, Sha Samuels challenges A-Kid for the Heritage Cup, and there’s more spotlight on the increasingly-crowded women’s division.
Heritage Cup: A-Kid defeated Sha Samuels by 2 falls to 1 at 1:25 of Round 5 to retain the Heritage Cup (***½)
Ben Carter pinned Josh Morrell in 6:26 (***)
Dani Luna pinned Aleah James in 3:34 (*½)
Rampage Brown pinned Joe Coffey in 11:15 (***¼)
After last week’s wild tag team main event – which also seemed to include the writing off of Wild Boar, who’s on the shelf with a knee injury, we’re back… and there’s no recap video. It’s straight into the opening titles as Nigel McGuinness and Andy Shepherd return to call the action from the BT Sport studios in London.
Heritage Cup: Sha Samuels vs. A-Kid (c)
We’re opening with the Heritage Cup match then…
Round 1: Sha starts off hot, tying up A-Kid with a side headlock, but A-Kid escapes as he proceeds to trip Sha, forcing him to head to the ropes for a break. Sha’s back with a grounded side headlock, which A-Kid tries to escape, but instead he just bridges up out of a pin as Sha ends up kicking the ropes in frustration. A-Kid comes back with a key lock, but Sha gets to the ropes quickly, then came back with a quick slam, seemingly injuring A-Kid’s arm before throwing him into the corner. A Butcher’s Hook followed, but A-Kid’s in the ropes… so Sha pulls him out and reapplies it for the quick submission at 2:35 of the first round.
Round 2: A-Kid charges out with a shotgun dropkick, but Sha sidesteps and puts his boot through A-Kid’s back for a two-count. Going back to the corner, A-Kid just gets bulled down before another slam threw him onto his bad arm for a near-fall. Wash, rinse, repeat, this time with some grounded punches as Sha looked to score a quick whitewash… but A-Kid kicks out and looked to fight back, grounding Sha with a mounted sleeperhold, only for Sha to get to the ropes to force a break. Another slam attempt’s countered as A-Kid slips out and reapplies the sleeper, but that too ends in the ropes as A-Kid then went to kick Sha’s legs… forcing Sha to pull himself outside, where a wild A-Kid tope crashed into him as he then rolled Sha back in at the bell. That was a rush.
Round 3: A-Kid just kicks Sha in the gut as Samuels was mouthing off. Roll-ups get A-Kid some two-counts, but Sha just takes the mount with some punches before a toe hold broke up Sha’s attempt at another volley. A Dragon screw and a PK from A-Kid has Sha down, but he doesn’t go for a cover, instead waiting to hit a leaping thrust kick to tie it up at 1:23 of the third round.
Round 4: Sha’s suddenly on the rocks as A-Kid was beating him to the punch… but an O’Connor roll’s blocked, so A-Kid goes for a Northern lights suplex, almost getting the win with that. They replay that move for some reason as we come back to Sha sidestepping a clothesline in the corner, before hitting almost a Clothesline from Hell for a near-fall. An enziguiri from A-Kid looks to get him back in it, but Sha kicks out at two, only to get caught with a cross armbar, rolling free… only for A-Kid to hit an enziguiri to the shoulder. A crossbody off the top’s caught as A-Kid’s dumped with a Michinoku driver, but it’s still not enough as A-Kid’s having to hang on for the remainder of the round, blocking a Butcher’s Hook as he was saved by the bell.
Sha thinks he’s won, but the referee has to correct him…
Round 5: A-Kid catches Sha, rolling him down with a cross armbar, but Sha rolls back and fights free, only for the Butcher’s Hook to get broken up. A Pele kick from A-Kid has Sha down, but A-Kid runs into a big spinebuster as Sha nearly took victory. Another crack at the Butcher’s Hook is blocked, as A-Kid rolls through in for an omoplata, forcing Sha to submit at 1:25 of the fifth round, giving A-Kid the win. A really enjoyable TV match, even with the round breaks, with A-Kid having to come from behind to force an unlikely victory against a Sha who’s really slotted into this roster like a glove. ***½
Right, so who’s going on Noam Dar’s show next to get themselves a shot at the trophy?
Promo video time. It’s to build to Rampage vs. Joe Coffey tonight, and I have a feeling a Rampage win will put him in position for a title shot.
We’ve a WALTER promo video now… he tells us he’s true to himself and his roots. And that RINGKAMPF tee. He’s just passed the record for the longest reigning NXT UK champion, which gives us some talking heads, because why not?
Josh Morrell vs. Ben Carter
“Turbo” has yet another outing here… it’s almost like he’s signed. Carter gets an inset promo, telling us he’s here to be a top star.
Morrell goes for a hammerlock, but Carter tricks him with some Johnny Saint-like escapes. Looks like World of Sport tapes are part of the Enfield teachings, eh? Carter works a wristlock as Morrell cartwheels free, before an arm whip’s cartwheeled out of by Carter. A Corning hold from Carter sees him take down Morrell, whose escape plan was plotted out on commentary by Nigel McGuinness… but Carter just takes him back down in a side headlock. Wash, rinse, repeat.
Carter reverses a whip into the corner and charges down Morrell, but Josh comes back with a ‘rana, spiking Carter for a two-count. Carter flips out of the corner, then dragged Morrell in with a Flatliner to the bottom buckle. A snap suplex is next for a two-count, before a front chancery from Carter was escaped, with Morrell tripping Carter ahead of a Romero special. Breaking free, Carter rolls through and manages to apply the hold himself, but Morrell rolls through, only for Carter to turn it into a pin for a two-count. A dropkick gets Ben another near-fall, before Morrell sprung over him and tried his luck. Heading up top, Morrell leaps over Carter, then came back with a crucifix pin for a two-count, before Carter snapped back with a spin-out suplex… then raced up top for a frog splash for the win. A cracker of a TV match that was more of an endurance test for Carter, who took a LOT before finishing off Morrell with a 1-2 punch. ***
Fake press conference time! Apparently Meiko Satomura’s gotten herself a title match already. This feels a little, erm, rushed? They have a question from the “Japanese press”, which has Meiko tell us that because Kay Lee Ray’s not had a title match with her, she’s not had a test yet. Kay Lee turns that into a positive, saying she knows she has to beat the best to be the best. Kay Lee Ray answers a question partially in Japanese, then called herself the “forever” champion as we’re told the title match is in two weeks’ time. I’m surprised they’re waiting that long. Cue staredown…
A video of “three months ago”… Xia Brookside gets one of her many NXT UK wins over Nina Samuels. That led to a post-match attack, and then “two months ago”, Nina gets fascinated with making Xia a bag carrier… and that’s the stipulation for their next match, next week.
“Earlier this week,” Tyler Bate is in Enfield… looking to get away from the hustle and bustle of training. He’s ready for new challenges, and wanders off…
Aleah James vs. Dani Luna
Aleah gets music and entrance ahead of a match they’ve done once before – for ATTACK!, almost a year ago…
We open with a lock-up as Aleah backs into the corner, then leaps over Luna… but Dani’s too strong for a roll-up, or a crucifix, so she shrugs off James before hitting a shoulder tackle. James tries to trip with a dropdown, but just leaps into a bear hug before getting thrown down, as Dani was all about the suplexes and throws here. A headscissor takedown has James escape a gutwrench powerbomb, but after getting a two-count Luna hits back with a clothesline, before Aleah hit back with a springboard dropkick for a two-count. Forearms from Aleah are just swatted away by Luna, who lifts Aleah onto the apron… and James springboards back in with a crossbody, only for it to be caught and turned into a powerbomb for the win. Short, but to the point as Luna’s power outclassed the “super rookie” James. *½
Jinny’s at the neon NXT UK sign, calling out Piper Niven. YEP. We’re doing that again. Joseph Conners says he was like Piper once, blaming everyone else for their woes, and it looks like we’re heading to an almighty blow-off. Again.
Gallus promo time – this time it’s for the tag team champions, as they defend vs. Pretty Deadly next week.
Joe Coffey vs. Rampage Brown
These guys have form, first wrestling each other one-on-one back in 2013, with Coffey winning 5, Rampage 2 and the pair sharing a draw back when PROGRESS were doing their Atlas title tournament.
We open with a lock-up that goes nowhere as they push each other off, before a side headlock from Coffey ended with see-saw shoulder tackles and another lock-up. Rampage pops back up off the ropes, turning a leapfrog into a slam, before some crossface punches left Coffey on all fours.
Rampage goes for the Doctor Bomb early, but Coffey blocks it and came back with a double leg takedown. He looks to turn that into a Boston crab, but Rampage isn’t budging, so instead Coffey comes back down with punches before a backbreaker barely gets him a two-count. Right hands from Coffey leave Rampage down ahead of a strait-jacket choke, but Brown fights free before getting dumped with a back suplex. Coffey’s leaping elbow drop lands for barely a one-count, so Coffey hits the ropes again for a diving clothesline for another two-count. More crossface punches follow as Rampage wasn’t staying down, fighting up out of another strait-jacket before taking a ripcord lariat. A second one briefly knocks Rampage down, as Coffey swings away before he got caught with a quick clothesline.
The pair resort to strikes from there, with Rampage’s big boot knocking spittle into the crowd ahead of a back suplex. Coffey’s up at two from that, and quickly takes Rampage into the corner… only to run into his boots as a shoulder tackle off the middle rope has Rampage firmly on top. A brainbuster’s next for a two-count, but Rampage can’t follow up as Coffey took him into the ropes, hitting a belly-to-belly as they go back to the strikes.
A back body drop chucks Rampage into the air, before Coffey set up for a big splash into the corner. That lands, as does a German suplex, before the Glasgow Send-Off – the charge into the corner – ended up sending Rampage rolling to the outside. On the outside, Coffey looks for another Glasgow Send-Off, but Rampage sidesteps as the Scotsman crashes and burns into the ring steps… and rather than continue the count-out, the ref heads outside to check on Coffey, whose left hand apparently took the brunt of it.
After the count was reset, Rampage rolls Coffey back inside, but gets caught with a double jump crossbody for a near-fall. Coffey looks for the Awra Best for the Bells, but Rampage kicks it away, then ragdolled him with a Doctor Bomb… and that’s your lot. A big win for Rampage after an enjoyable “Mean Guys Match”, handing Coffey perhaps his biggest loss outside of a title match. ***¼
For the most part, the in-ring made this one of the stronger shows in recent NXT UK history – perhaps helped by them not going all ADD on us with over a dozen segments in an hour! Keeping it simple works, eh?