WALTER says goodbye to NXT UK this week, and Nathan Frazer’s the one who’s up against him for the send-off.
Dave Mastiff & Jack Starz pinned Rohan Raja & Teoman in 9:23 (***)
Amale pinned Stevie Turner in 3:59 (**)
WALTER pinned Nathan Frazer in 14:01 (****)
We’re back at the BT Sport studios in London for the show that’s being billed as “WALTER’s last stand”. The show opens with a video package of WALTER, reiterating his “the mat is sacred” motto, set to highlights of his NXT UK run so far. Mostly chopping people. Cue titles. Cue Andy Shepherd. Cue Nigel McGuinness…
Dave Mastiff & Jack Starz vs. Die Familie (Teoman & Rohan Raja)
Winners face Oliver Carter & Ashton Smith for a shot at the NXT UK tag titles… Jack and Dave have a new entrance video, while die Familie have new music and a new entrance set-up altogether.
Raja started with Starz, throwing him aside from a gutwrench before a front facelock from Starz was pushed away. A waistlock’s broken up as Starz tried to pull down Raja, but it’s blocked… as we then get duelling gutwrenches as Starz eventually went to an armbar. A side headlock on the mat from Starz keeps Raja on the defensive, as did dropkicks into the corner and a gutwrench suplex. Dave Mastiff tags in, but Teoman stays on the apron as Raja’s told to knock him down. He did not. Teoman’s help didn’t make a difference either as Starz tagged back in and rolled Teoman down for an uppercut to the back, as quick tags led to a slam and a back senton from Mastiff. Starz’s senton atomico gets a near-fall, before a Hart Attack uppercut off the middle rope led to another pinning attempt on Teoman.
Teoman gets pulled outside to safety by Dempsey, but the ensuing argument by Mastiff masked Teoman and Raja double-teaming Starz in the ring apron. It’s pretty much one-way traffic from there, with Raja throwing Starz into a Teoman clothesline for a two-count, before Starz fought back out of die Familie’s corner…
Starz slides under the apron as die Familie tried more double-teaming… and finally made the tag out to Mastiff, whose crossbody squashed Raja. A back body drop’s next, as Teoman’s run in was quickly thrown out… Raja then got pulled up for a Finlay roll, which gets followed up by a dropkick/back senton that would have won the match. Except the ref’s distracted by Teoman for… reasons. Charlie Dempsey pulls Starz off the apron before Gallus came out to distract the rest of die Familie, allowing Mastiff to get the win with a bridging German suplex. That finish felt a little AEW-y with layered distractions, but a good TV opener to keep storylines going. ***
Jinny’s walking… she’s going to join commentary.
We then get a clip of WALTER’s NXT UK debut from three years ago (almost to the day), an then his debut murdering of Jack Starz. Cue talking heads.
A recap of last week’s Meiko Satomura vs. Blair Davenport match airs, set to poppy music. Not Poppy. The post-match attack’s shown again, as they set up for the quick turnaround rematch…
…then we get a video package for Ilja Dragunov and Jordan Devlin’s title match, throwing in comments from YouTube and Twitter. They confirm that match is happening in two weeks’ time…
Amale vs. Stevie Turner
This one was set up via a pre-tape last week when Turner mocked Amale for that inspirational video package… Jinny’s on commentary, and rather dismissive of how Amale “exposed her past” to get somewhere.
Turner tried to jump Amale at the bell, but it’s avoided as we have my favourite – cut-aways to commentary as Jinny got offended at the suggestion of her not being in the title picture. We’ve a wacky mix of audio qualities dubbed in as Turner hit a rope-hanging neckbreaker… then some ground and pound on Amale for a two-count. Amale remains on the defensive as she’s trapped in an overhead armbar, before a kick in the ropes left Amale down for another near-fall. Eventually Amale got into it with a series of clotheslines, then slams and dropkicks, before a face-washing boot in the corner led to the exploder-like Hope-Breaker powerbomb for the win. **
The constant cuts to Jinny suggested that this match wasn’t worth a damn – my most hated trope in wrestling. Just the sheer volume of them either hid edits in the match, or told you this was a match not worth your time. It was, but the presentation of that whole segment just felt off…
Earlier this week, the assistant to the regional manager is interrupted by Pretty Deadly. They’re upset at Sam Gradwell, and have some self-owns (depending on when they took their GCSEs). Next week, we’ve Pretty Deadly vs. Sam Gradwell and a mystery man… and once again they play the “he’s no friends, so it’s a handicap match” line that I swear gets trotted out every few months for someone.
More clips of WALTER’s run in NXT UK follow, this time focusing on his first match with Ilja Dragunov…
Yet another video package, this time on A-Kid as he builds to his Heritage Cup match against Noam Dar. A-Kid talks about how low he felt losing the trophy, while Dar’s bigging up his resilience as we’ll be getting this match next week.
“During the break,” Amale’s interrupted by Jinny during an interview. Piped in boos end when Amale shoves Jinny, as a mic-peaking screaming match broke out.
Nathan Frazer vs. WALTER
This was it for WALTER – his final match in NXT UK (for now), and he’s going out against one of the names tagged as the show’s future. We’ve got some white Seth Rollins-ish gear for Frazer… does that mean blood? On this show? In this economy?
WALTER throws Frazer aside early on from a side headlock, before Frazer ducked a chop attempt as we’re playing that game. An attempted waistlock’s broken up as Frazer’s dumped with an arm lift, but he’s able to get free of an armbar… only to get lifted onto the apron as WALTER patronised him with a head pat. Frazer slapped back and began to fire off kicks and forearms, only for WALTER to shut him down briefly. A crossbody off the middle rope’s caught as WALTER proceeded to chop and choke him across the top turnbuckle, which led to Frazer taking a nasty spill to the floor. Back inside, Frazer’s dumped with a bodyslam, before a missed Quebrada saw him land in a rear naked choke from the former champion.
Frazer breaks free of the hold and began to kick the Austrian in the leg, knocking him a little with leaping forearms, only to get killed with a leapfrog and a big boot from WALTER. A surfboard stretch has Frazer in trouble, but he’s able to kick his way free… and then get charged down with a shoulder tackle. A neck twist from WALTER leaves Frazer’s ears ringing, as an overhand punch kept Frazer on the defensive… en route to a chinlock as WALTER slowed the pace again. Frazer gets free and hits some chops, then went back to giving WALTER a dead leg… until a single chop downed him once more. Frazer ‘ranas out of a powerbomb for a near-fall, but ran into another chop as that momentum stopped in a hurry.
WALTER’s sleeperhold has Frazer in trouble, but Frazer’s able to roll out of it… then sidestep a shotgun dropkick before running in a shooting star press for a near-fall. Frazer flips out of a RINGKAMPF German suplex, only to get booted down once more, with a powerbomb then getting countered into a Code Red for another near-fall. More kicks to the weakened leg follow, as Frazer tried to kick WALTER’s leg out of his leg, leading to a series of superkicks and the Quebrada into an Eye of the Hurricane as WALTER was forced to roll outside for respite. Frazer dives, but he’s caught… WALTER misses a chop as a shotgun dropkick took him into the rails, as WALTER narrowly beat the count-out.
Frazer’s decked again when they get back into the ring, but he’s able to chop block WALTER’s left leg repeatedly… only to springboard into a chop. WALTER’s knee gave way on a powerbomb, as Frazer then went up to nearly win with a frog splash, before WALTER chop blocked him off the top rope… then snapped back with the quick powerbomb to get the win. This was sublime – they went real hard in making you think that WALTER could lose on his way out, with Frazer coming agonisingly close, but in the end it was WALTER who stood tall on his last night in. Well worth your fourteen minutes, that’s for damn sure… ****
A pretty good episode of NXT UK this week – with a cracker of a main event – as they advanced storylines and bade their farewell to the former champ… but that old reliance on machine-gun like video packages is starting to creep in as we’re coming back around to the feature matches phase of the tapings arc.