We’ve a number one contender’s match on NXT UK this week, as four teams fight to get a shot at the tag team titles.
Mark Andrews pinned Nathan Frazer in 10:21 (***¼)
Dani Luna pinned Stevie Turner in 5:08 (**¼)
Tyler Bate & Trent Seven pinned Primate & T-Bone, Oliver Carter & Ashton Smith, Jack Starz & Dave Mastiff in 14:01 (***¼)
We’re back in the BT Sport Studios in London, with the distanced, masked fans… Andy Shepherd and Nigel McGuinness, as ever, are on the call.
Nathan Frazer vs. Mark Andrews
This one was set up by Andrews catching Frazer watching him on the Network last week…
Andrews grounds things to start, working over Frazer’s wrist, clinging on before Frazer cartwheeled free. A side headlock takedown has Frazer on the mat, before Andrews ducked a crossbody, scored one of his own, then burst into some tit-for-tat exchanges that ended in a stand-off. Frazer struck back with a dropkick, then with a snap suplex as he drew a two-count, before Andrews caught him in the corner with a diving kick. Andrews continued with a back suplex, then a Northern Lights for a near-fall, while a dropkick kept the momentum going. An Octopus hold followed, before Andrews looked for a Northern lights, only for it to be countered as Frazer eventually hit a twisting suplex.
Chops from Frazer sting Andrews, as did a Slingblade, but a 619 in the corner caught out Frazer, as Andrews returned with a leaping enziguiri. Frazer elbows out of a uranage before he was flipped back into a facebuster for a near-fall. A lawndart from Frazer plants Andrews in the corner, but Andrews slips outside to evade Frazer, landing a moonsault off the ring steps for good measure. Another springboard back in from Andrews gets countered into a Spanish fly by Frazer as commentary needed a change of underwear… that’s followed up with a Phoenix splash that Frazer aborted, as a roll-up’s kicked out of. Yep, we’re into the frantic pins now, as Andrews counters a suplex into a Stundog, before he whiffed on a shooting star press… THE FAKE AUDIENCE TRACK IS BACK as Andrews snatches the win, countering a Magistral cradle. This was good, but for far too long it felt like movez for the sake of them. Maybe it’s me just being cranky again? ***¼
They recap Rampage Brown challenging Ilja Dragunov last week, then it’s back to the UK PC earlier this week as Sam Gradwell bumped into A-Kid, who had a cup of tea for him? A-Kid’s annoyed at what Gradwell said about him, so they’re going to have a match. Oh, that tea wasn’t for Sam. Shame.
Earlier this week, Pretty Deadly are in London to watch a private showing of the Magic Mike stage show. They take part in a practise, and… well, they’re no Kevin Nash, that’s for sure. Even if the choreographer put them over…
Also earlier this week, Kenny Williams is spelling Sha Samuels’ name badly on the UK PC wall. He’s put off by Saxon Huxley nearby screaming, and that’s a match next week against “Kenny Cockroach.”
Dani Luna vs. Stevie Turner
That’s the second airing of the SubCulture theme tonight, as we’ve another match that was set up last week…
Luna backs Turner into the corner, who then heads onto the apron to get away from Dani. Back in the ring, Turner cornered Luna, but gets shoved away before she offered Luna a Test of Strength. She goes low to pull ahead, but Dani easily takes her down with hiptosses and elbows, before a slam drew a two-count. Turner uses the hair to escape a suplex, as a Thesz press followed… only for Dani to power out and go for a wheelbarrow German suplex… but Turner counters by rolling her into the ropes. Neckbreakers get Stevie a two-count, but Luna powers back with slams before Stevie caught her with a Side Effect for a near-fall.
A pump kick from Luna puts her back in it, ahead of her crack at EVIL’s Darkness Falls… and that Fireman’s Carry sitout powerbomb proved to be enough for the win. Okay for the time, but this was largely even until the finish. **¼
Everyone’s warming up backstage for the tag team main event…
Nina Samuels is backstage for her skit. She bumps into Isla Dawn who blows her off. Isla doesn’t steal the mic. Instead, Aleah James just happens to be there as Nina ranted about her, and Aleah goes to campaign for a match between them. I’ll give Nina this – she’s doing her damndest to make what she’s been given work…
Vignette time – it’s Gallus driving in their car. It’s not quite a Jaguar. They’re a little paranoid about Teoman and Rohan Raja, and police sirens sound as they’re pulled up.
Backstage, Dani Luna’s celebrating with SubCulture. Blair Davenport’s right by them, unimpressed. That’ll be a match soon, I bet.
Next week, Teoman and Rohan Raja vs. Wolfgang and Mark Coffey… Sam Gradwell vs. A-Kid.
Ashton Smith & Oliver Carter vs. Dave Mastiff & Jack Starz vs. Symbiosis (T-Bone & Primate) vs. Moustache Mountain (Trent Seven & Tyler Bate)
Moustache Mountain got themselves added to this match last week as Trent looked to make amends for costing Tyler Bate the Heritage Cup two weeks ago… and considering they’re the team with the most recent interactions with Pretty Deadly, I do wonder…
We get TOWEL LORE (okay, it’s just an accurate recap, but everything’s gotta be LORE these days, right?) during Moustache Mountain’s entrance. Trent and Starz start off, as Trent looked for some early pins, albeit to no avail. Starz rolls out of a wristlock, then worked a toe hold on Trent, before Mastiff tagged in… and squashed Trent as he was almost slammed. Oliver Carter’s in to try his luck, having forcibly tagged in, before he took Trent into the corner for Ashton Smith to come in. They trade quick tags as Carter’s slingshotted in for a shoulder tackle on Trent for a two-count, before Trent tried his luck with a wristlock. It’s kicked away as Primate tagged himself in, only to run into a hiptoss as Smith came in for an overhead wristlock.
Primate charges into the corner as Starz tagged in on Smith, but despite some help from Mastiff, was quickly on the defensive as Primate grabbed an armbar. A cartwheel frees Starz, who dropkicked Primate off the apron, before he cleared house with a whack tonne of dropkicks, only for Tyler Bate to tag in as those two went at it, echoing their singles match from earlier in the year. Eddie Dennis nonchalantly trips Starz… but it’s spotted by the ref, who ejects Eddie. Symbiosis took over as Eddie went to the back, chucking Mastiff with a fallaway slam before they began to focus on Starz, throwing him repeatedly into the corner. We’re back to Carter and Smith as they looked to team up on T-Bone, who’s superkicked into Trent Seven’s tag as the elder statesman of the show ended up being bounced around.
Carter’s propelled onto Trent with a moonsault for a near-fall as Mastiff breaks up the cover, then flung Carter to the outside. Tyler tags in to uppercut Smith, but ends up getting booted outside after an exchange… Trent heads up top, but Smith stopped him as instead T-Bone joined the pair in the corner, throwing Trent into the pile before he brought Smith down with a superplex. Primate’s springboard crossbody keeps the pile wiped out on the floor, before he threw Tyler Bate in. Bate rolls through a Primate crossbody, turning it into an airplane spin… throwing in a Giant Swing on Starz too, before a German suplex on Primate was ended with a brutal back senton by Mastiff. I gagged a little at that.
Mastiff tagged himself in as the ring began to fill up for a Parade of Movez. Starz powerbombed Trent before getting flung into the steps, while Mastiff took a Doomsday Cutter from Oliver Carter for a near-fall, as Primate’s swandive headbutt saved the day. Tags bring us back to Tyler and T-Bone, as Bate’s quickly slammed down… he avoids another Primate swandive headbutt, then hit a rebound lariat, as Trent tagged in to get a near-fall off of a Seven Stars lariat. Trent brings Tyler back in for a stomp-assisted Birming Hammer, and that’s your lot. A fun main event, even if the blind-tags in stuff was becoming overly worn out… but Moustache Mountain back in the title picture isn’t the way I’d have gone, particularly given how much of the midcard there is just floating aimlessly. ***¼
Pretty Deadly are in the aisle, coming straight from their Magic Mike tryout, as we end with the obligatory staredown to close the show. By NXT UK’s standards, this was a solid enough hour of wrestling, but given the wider state of WWE, it really does feel like a show that’s doing little other than running in circles.