The SmarK Rant for NXT UK – 10.15.20

The SmarK Rant for WWE NXT UK – 10.15.20

A couple of people have asked for this one, so why not.

Taped from…I wanna say the UK?  I actually prefer the setup of the BT Sports studio to regular NXT’s cramped Thunderdome-lite.

Your hosts are Andy Shepherd & Nigel McGuinness

Heritage Cup first round:  Dave Mastiff v. Joseph Connors

So this tournament is a series of matches with 3:00 rounds, 2/3 falls.  Interesting!  Mastiff tries for the arm to start and uses the power, but Connors tries a sunset flip and then turns it into a crucifix for two.  Mastiff throws him around and hits him with a dropkick, which is impressive for a guy who looks like Otis, and then forearms him into the corner as the first round ends.

Second round and Mastiff continues overpowering Connors, so Connors works for the arm again.  Mastiff fights him off with a shoulderblock for two and traps the arm as the announcers point out that he can just give up a fall and get out of the hold.  You gotta be pretty confident in yourself to use that idea.  They slug it out with chops on the ropes, and that’s the second round.

Third round and Connors comes out swinging, and that goes pretty badly for him.  In fact, Mastiff knocks him out to end the match at 7:12.  I don’t really understand why a pin is only one fall but a knockout ends the match altogether, but rules are rules I guess.  This was OK.  **

Meanwhile, Jordan Devlin is still carrying around the Cruiserweight title and didn’t really appreciate someone else claiming to be the champion.

Meanwhile, Oliver Carter returns to the show.

Isla Dawn v. Piper Niven

Apparently there was a kerfluffle between these two last week, and this should settle it.  Isla tries for the arm and Piper bends her fingers to escape that, so Dawn throws forearms and grabs a headlock.  Piper wraps up the arm, but Dawn rolls her up for two.  Piper throws her around, but misses a senton, and Dawn pounds on the back to put her down.  But then she rebounds off a dropkick and hits the splash for two.  She tries a suplex, but Dawn escapes and takes out the leg for two.  Dawn goes up with a flying double knees, but that only gets two.  She gets a dragon sleeper, but Piper powers up and throws her into the corner with a backdrop driver, then follows with the cannonball and finishes her off with the Michinoku Driver at 8:15.  The WWE-ized announcer said “building momentum” way too much, but this was all right.  I know the empty arena stuff is the new normal now but it just comes off as so flat still.  **1/4

Meanwhile, Kenny Williams trains for his match with Trent Seven next week in the Heritage Cup.

Last week, someone mysteriously leaves Flash Morgan Webster laid out.

Meanwhile, Trent Seven and his amazing moustache mask work out in preparation for next week as well.

WALTER & Alexander Wolfe v. Pete Dunne & Ilya Dragunov

Wolfe takes Dunne down, but Pete immediately ties him up for some SMALL JOINT MANIPULATION and then slugs him down.  So it’s over to WALTER and they get into a little shoving match in the corner before WALTER just manhandles Dunne to prevent from locking up.  WALTER goes to work on the arm, but Dunne manages to take him down with a headscissors and then jumps into an armbar before turning it into a short arm scissors on the mat.  WALTER powers out of that, so Dunne gets a sunset flip for two and they’re at a stalemate.  Dragunov wants a piece of WALTER, so the champ takes him down with a headlock and squeezes that to teach him who’s boss.  Dragunov powers up, so WALTER just calmly takes him down again and continues cranking on it.  Ilya fights up and wants to chop the champ, so WALTER takes him down again and holds them there.  I like that they’re not doing the usual WWE bullshit where the heel is a chicken who teases facing the challenger and then makes the other guy do all the work.  WALTER is the champ and he will handle shit HIMSELF, thank you.  Over to Wolfe, and he hits Ilya with a backbreaker for two and goes a neck vice, grinding him down further.  Dragunov tries to irish whip him out of the corner, so Wolfe just YANKS him down by the wrist to block that in an amazing spot.  WALTER comes in and blasts Dragunov with a chop, which is actually way more scary in the empty arena.  But then Dragunov fights back on Wolfe and misses a senton, allowing Wolfe to work the back.  They slug it out and Dragunov wins that battle long enough to make the tag to Dunne, and he ain’t a-scared of WALTER.  Snap german suplex and he stomps the fingers for two, then boots him in the face and curb stomps him into an armbar.  But WALTER fights out and puts him down with a shotgun dropkick, so Dunne brings Ilya back in and he runs wild on Wolfe with a running knee.  He does a Matrix bridge to escape Wolfe’s strikes and suplexes him for two.  To the top, but he misses and Wolfe hits him with forearms.  Dragunov rebounds off that and hits a 619 lariat for two.  Both guys are down, but Dunne comes in with an X-Plex on Wolfe and Dragunov follows with a flying stomp for two.  Dunne stomps the fingers, but Wolfe boots him in the face and WALTER tags himself back in with a chop to Dunne before going up for the big splash.  Dunne catches him with an armbar on the way down and tries for a triangle, but WALTER powerbombs him onto Dragunov to break that up.  What a magnificent bastard.  WALTER beats on Dunne with chops, but Dunne hits him with the enzuigiri and Dragunov goes up…and WALTER fucking murders him with a chop on the way down and powerbombs him for two.  Dunne saves and takes out Wolfe, while WALTER hits Ilya with a german suplex for two.  WALTER kicks him in the face, as likes to do, but Dragunov won’t stay down, so WALTER just blasts him with chops while holding the wrist, not letting him fall.  Dragunov fights back with a lariat for two, but Wolfe saves this time.  Dunne takes care of him with the Bitter End, but WALTER boots him in the face to get him out of the ring.  Dragunov tries to attack WALTER again, but he gets chopped and put into a sleeper before fighting out with knees.  He actually hits the Gotch Lift on WALTER, but Wolfe interferes from the floor, so Dunne breaks some fingers and takes him out again.  WALTER catches Dragunov with another sleeper, then drops him on his head with a suplex, but Dragunov fires off one last torpedo attack and pins WALTER at 19:08.  This was some BALLS OUT great wrestling and I’m looking forward to the title match between Dragunov and WALTER whenever that’s supposed to be happening.  ****1/4

Most of the show was pretty pedestrian stuff but HOLY SHIT that main event was something else.  I don’t know that I’ll keep watching because there wasn’t really much here to hook me and I don’t exactly understand who this show is aimed at, but I’m glad I checked this one out!