It’s a four-match card on this week’s NXT UK as we see the debut of Charlie Dempsey, plus Moustache Mountain give themselves a tag team test.
Trent Seven & Tyler Bate pinned Ashton Smith & Oliver Carter in 9:58 (***½)
Dani Luna pinned Xia Brookside in 5:35 (**¼)
Charlie Dempsey submitted Josh Morrell in 6:13 (***)
Joe Coffey pinned Jordan Devlin in 11:39 (**½)
After last week’s so-so undercard (and the fantastic main event), we’re back at the BT Sport Studios in London. Andy Shepherd and Nigel McGuinness are on commentary as we wonder when fans will be watching this live – regardless of where it’s taped…
Moustache Mountain (Trent Seven & Tyler Bate) vs. Ashton Smith & Oliver Carter
We’re told that the Heritage Cup final is next week, so Tyler may want to refocus sharpish…
Carter starts off with an armdrag on Bate, as commentary was talking up Smith and Carter’s search for a big win. Tyler rolls free and whips Carter to the mat, following in with a dropkick before Trent came in for a shoulder block and an assisted back senton. Another armdrag puts Carter back in it, before Ashton Smith came in and continued to work over Trent’s arm. Carter’s back with a PK to Trent’s back for a two-count, before a blind tag from Smith sets up for a see-saw sunset flip before Trent got dumped onto Carter’s boots. That new move gets a two-count, before a crossbody, a slam and a legdrop got Trent a two-count, brother. Tyler’s back in for an assisted senton off of Trent’s shoulders, but Smith counters the pin as the tide turned again, leading to a uranage from Carter for a near-fall.
A missed boot from Carter opened him up for an airplane spin from Bate, who then tagged out to Trent as an assisted senton from Trent (?!) nearly got the win. Go on, do the airplane spin next! Instead we get a backfist from Trent, who then cheapshotted Smith off the apron… before Emerald Flowsion almost put Carter away. Tyler comes in for the rebound lariat, almost catching Trent in the process… that gives Carter some hope, but a Quebrada doesn’t get the win as Tyler Victory rolls away from a Doomsay spinning heel kick to almost put Smith away. Instead, Smith charges into the corner, then eats the bop/bang punch for a two-count, which looked to be the cue for Symbiosis to wander out.
Tyler sets up for a Tyler Driver on Smith, but a back body drop sends him to the outside. Trent’s quickly on hand to protect, but Jack Starz and Dave Mastiff find their way out to take care of Symbiosis, while we get dives into the pile, and I smell a four-way for a title shot. Meanwhile, for this match, Smith tags in to slam Bate into a nasty superkick from Carter for a near-fall. Trent pulls Carter off the apron to prevent their version of Silly String, and that leaves Smith on his own for an elevated deadlift German suplex to Smith. A tag brings Trent in to finish things off, with a clothesline-assisted Dragon suplex, and that’s an end to a rip-roaring TV opener – even if things got a bit fuzzy with the run ins in the middle. Loved the exchanges between Carter and Bate here, and hopefully that can be a singles match at some point down the road. ***½
Tonight, A-Kid and Ilja Dragunov go face-to-face…
Then Jinny and Joseph Conners are interviewed about their futures. They blow off the interviewer, because a second one accosts them before Jinny interrupts Emilia McKenzie and Meiko Satomura doing a tug of war. That’ll likely be a match in the next week or two…
During the break, Mastiff and Starz’s interview is interrupted by Nina Samuels, who’s now a roving reporter? Nina tries to make it all about her, so Jack and Dave wander off…
Dani Luna vs. Xia Brookside
Dani’s out by herself – presumably Mark and Flash are repairing the graffiti in the PC…
Brookside rolls away from Luna to start, hoping to avoid a jab or two, but Dani takes her down with a waistlock instead. Xia’s wristlock’s held onto despite Luna’s slams, but Dani gets free, blocking a sunset flip as I wonder… which of the two goodies am I meant to be cheering here? Xia rolls through, but her wheelbarrow bulldog’s pushed away… as were some headscissors, with Brookside crashing and burning. A suplex from Luna lands for a two-count, as it’s followed up with an armbar, before a roll-up from Brookside just seemed to anger Luna.
Dani stays back on Brookside with a chinbar, before dropkicks turned it around… a neckbreaker’s good for a two-count for Brookside, before we go to strikes. An elbow from Brookside leads to a blocked Codebreaker, which Luna turned into a slam, then a fallaway slam, before Darkness Falls got Luna the win. **¼
Post-match, Xia Brookside seemed angry and slapped away a handshake. Hey, after three years, they’re making a change in her character!
Blair Davenport vignette time – she’s putting everyone on notice, as we get a recap of her attacks, suspension, and her demands and threats to be reinstated. We then go to Stevie Turner storming in on the ineffective assistant to the regional manager, complaining about Blair… Turner demands she be reinstated so they can have a match, but of course, Sid has no actual power as he needs to speak to kindly granda Johnny Saint away from the cameras.
“Earlier this week” Sam Gradwell’s interviewed. He’s fed up of Mark Andrews getting the glory around here, and apparently he’s broken Mark’s skateboard. So that’s why he wasn’t out earlier. Dan Moloney and Andy Wild break up their pullapart, and they stay on course for A MATCH.
Josh Morrell vs. Charlie Dempsey
Dempsey’s got the look of an old-school carnival wrestler in his entrance video.
Dempsey snapmares Morrell early on, then went for the arm, before a top wristlock was rolled out of by Morrell. Rolling free, Dempsey finds his way in with a side headlock, before a Jim Breaks-ish arm lift took Morrell back to the mat. Morrell tries a shoulder block, but gets pushed off as Dempsey came back with a hiptoss for a two-count, before a Cornish Hipe continued the focus on the arm. Dempsey and Morrell see-saw on a sunset flip, with back-and-forth pins leading to a Fujiwara armbar from Dempsey, then a knee bar that Morrell managed to stand up out of.
Flipping free, Josh is back with a forearm, then somersaulted out of the corner ahead of an enziguiri. Dempsey pulls Morrell into the buckles, before he returned with a gutwrench suplex to continue the search for the win, before legscissors took us back into pins as the match looked to end on a backslide, only for Dempsey to come close with a German suplex. In the end, Dempsey holds on with a key lock, before he rolled Morrell to the mat and folded back the leg, holding it all the way back – like a kind of half Garcia lock. A very weird and painful looking hold to describe, let alone experience, as Dempsey gets off to a win. Shades of William Regal (ahem) and a very-non-union equivalent of Zack Sabre Jr. here… ***
The A-Kid/Ilja Dragunov is a pre-tape set in a meeting room with the NXT UK banners around. We’ve got background music as they chat, trying to make this overly dramatic as A-Kid claimed to “understand” Ilja, then threatened to make him “tap, snap or nap.” Hey, that’s the summation of 5* Wrestling! Dragunov fired back by saying he’d put A-Kid in his place when they meet in two weeks’ time…
Promo time as we’ve the Heritage Cup title shot tournament final next week – Noam Dar and Wolfgang look to win a shot at Tyler Bate’s trophy. Wolfgang claims to care about heritage, while accusing Dar of only being in it for the money…
Also next week, yes, Jinny vs. Emilia McKenzie as they keep doing the one-week-build women’s matches… plus Sam Gradwell vs. Mark Andrews in A MATCH.
Joe Coffey vs. Jordan Devlin
Coffey’s got Gallus out with him…
Commentary mention show Coffey and Devlin trained together in Japan a decade ago, as the feeling out process began in earnest. Coffey tries to get a pin from a shoulder block, before a side headlock saw Devlin cling on to the Scotsman. Coffey’s attempt at an escape is turned into another headlock takedown, before the push-off led to Devlin tripping Coffey ahead of a walkover. Devlin turns around into a right hand a Coffey looked to get back in, eventually doing so with a pounce after the pair criss-crossed the ropes. A clothesline takes Devlin to the floor, before he’s thrown back in as Coffey’s momentum stopped with a chinbreaker.
Coffey’s whipped into the corner, but he rebounds back with an uppercut, only for his springboard crossbody out of the corner to be countered into a backcracker. Devlin’s legdrop is only enough to get a one-count, before the pair struggle over a backslide, only for Devlin to come back with a hiptoss for a two-count. Devlin stretches out Coffey, who hiptossed his own way free, before a uranage and standing moonsault kept Devlin ahead. Devlin stops to mock the Gallus pose, but Coffey gets back to his feet and beats Devlin into the ropes, leading to an overhead belly-to-belly… a German suplex out of the corner sends Devlin flying, as did a back body drop, before Coffey landed the crossbody out of the corner.
Coffey keeps going with an uppercut, but Awra Best for the Bells is countered into a standing Spanish Fly by Devlin, before Mark Coffey popped up on the apron, wearing Devlin’s sunglasses and jacket. Wolfgang’s holding Coffey on the other side of the ring to block a Devlinside, before a Glasgow Send Off, and Awra Best for the Bells put away the former NXT Cruiserweight champion. That “this is awesome.mp3” chant must have been ironic, because this felt stone cold to me throughout, and I guess that the junior Devlin will continue this feud given the post-match shenanigans with Mark Coffey and the jacket… **½
Much better than last week’s largely turgid mess, but NXT UK is seemingly stuck in the week-to-week build as those nagging questions over just what the future looks like for this show. Touring? Fans? I guess while they still fine tune NXT 2.0 and whether they get Takeovers again, the UK branch of the “super indy” remains up in the air…