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411’s NXT UK Review 01.23.19 (Ep. 27)

January 24, 2019 | Posted by Jake Chambers
Travis Banks Jordan Devlin NXT UK 1-23-19
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411’s NXT UK Review 01.23.19 (Ep. 27)  


Nina Samuels defeated Lana Austin @4:11 via pin [NR]
Eddie Dennis defeated Jamie Ahemd @4:40 via pin [NR]
Travis Banks and Jordan Devlin ends @14:04 by COUNT OUT [***1/2]

We start the show with a nice pre-opening video package highlighting the events in the Travis Banks / Jordan Devlin feud so far, including the attack on Banks that had him removed from the Takeover – Blackpool card. An emphatic touch for a marquee match that I think many were looking forward to at the event, and it finishes with a cool little staged back-lit close-up shot of the combatants going nose-to-nose like they’re getting ready to start the climatic final fight at the end of tense, drama-filled boxing movie.

Speaking of video packages, it should be noted that the opening theme song for NXT UK is pretty awesome, especially when it switches over to crescendoing second half that mixes awesomely with the quicker editing. It also sounds very British, which obviously matches well. Not sure if the original version of “Dusted” by Astroid Boys has the same effect, but here’s the video in case you’re curious.

The show starts with a very dapper Pete Dunne coming out with his skinny floods, loafers without socks and a winter scarf in the place of a tie. After a generic moment of praising himself, Gallus interrupts and Joe Coffey, like any good bad guy, delusionaly refuses to accept his loss to Dunne as being indicative of any weakness. Coffey then invites anyone else who questions his future as champion to come out, and the lights go down and we hear the sweet sounds of Dvork’s Symphony No. 9.

Walter, looking about as evil as a good guy can look, comes to the ring and scares off Gallus… or does he? Wolfgang and Mark Coffey run back into the ring from the ramp only to get turned away by a kick and finger-twist by Walter and Dunne respectively. The two have a brief stare-down before Walter just up and leaves. A pretty pointless segment, I gotta admit.

We see Assistant to the General Manager Sid Scalla having some kind of press conference in the foyer of the venue, who then tries to play the role of interviewer when he sees new NXT UK Tag Team Champions Zack Gibson and James Drake enter the building. The ever-belligerent Gibson refuses to comment, saying they will give a championship address next week.

Nina Samuels vs. Lana Austin: Newcomer to NXT UK, Austin is sold on commentary as a mother of three, which seems already very Coronation Street of them compared to the usual glamorous E! reality show style of promotion we expect for the main roster female wrestlers. However, this is basically a squash match for Samuels, as she dominates mostly throughout and finishes it off quickly with the Primadonna, a Goto-esque fireman’s carry into a neck breaker. Nina Samuels defeated Lana Austin @4:11 via pin [NR] Although a crisp performance from all involved, not really a match worth rating as it was basically just a showcase for Samuels.

We then get a recap of how Moustache Mountain lost the finals of the NXT UK Tag Team Championship tournament, followed by an “exclusive” post-match interview from wwe.com:

Followed by this we get another “exclusive” backstage interview from Takeover – Blackpool with Toni Storm:

Eddie Dennis vs. Jamie Ahmed: Nigel tells us the newcomer Ahmed is also known as “Screwface” for his bitterness towards his opponents. Ahmed surprisingly gets in some early offense against the predictably dominant Dennis. And it doesn’t take long for Dennis to take control, mostly on the heels of a cranking 3/4 Nelson. Nicely showing some of the boxing background inherited from his father, Ahmed gets in a mid-match punch combo that is his last moment to shine before being on the receiving end of a top-rope super-plex and a “neck-stop driver” for the win. Eddie Dennis defeated Jamie Ahmed @4:40 via pin [NR] Much like the previous match, this was a fine showcase for Dennis but not a rate-able one.

The main event for next week is announced as Mustache Mountain vs. Marcel Barthel & Fabian Aichner, with both awesome teams jockeying for position in the tag team ranks. As well, we’re getting the NXT UK debut of Walter in action (no spoilers, but let me guess; it’s a squash against C level competition).

Travis Banks vs. Jordan Devlin: Banks runs to the ring to start the match in the middle of his introduction, unleashing his pent-up anger for being taken out of the Takeover event early by Devlin. He takes the brawl to the floor and then into the crowd, a great way to curry favour with the audience, who quickly start chanting “Kiwi Buzz-saw!” There is some question about the strength of Banks’ previously injured knee, which he seemingly shrugs off with a double-stomp from the apron to the floor, and a series of shin-pad kicks to the prone Devlin in the middle of the ring.

The WWE’s fourth-best Irish wrestler is able to turn things around with a back-stabber in the corner, having survived the opening salvo by Banks without even having ot kick out of a single pinfall attempt. Devlin rotates between back assaults and shoulder submissions, holding on to control for a good chunk of the match, and seemingly close to victory following a Spanish Fly from the apron to the floor. Banks narrowly returns to the ring before being counted out, giving the audience a perfect moment to pump up their favourite.

This leads to a wild quick exchange, where Delvin hits a second surprising Spanish Fly on a charging Banks, from which Banks actually pops instnatly back to his feet. This leads to a pretty fantastic sequence where Devlin is holding on to Banks’ wrist like it’s the gang fight at the end of “Beat It” and doesn’t let go after a head butt, which then leads into a short-arm back-drop suplex on Banks for a near-fall. Exhaustively, the two men try to finish the other off, and a weary fireman’s carry sends both through the ropes, where they are are eventually counted out to end the match. Afterwards they have a spirited punch out, signalling we can all assume, that this rivalry MUST CONTINUE! Travis Banks and Jordan Devlin ends @14:04 by COUNT OUT [***1/2] Aside from the count-out ending, the match was a nice display of control by both wrestlers; Banks the energetic babyface out for revenge, and Delvin the crafty heel using his technical prowess to keep his opponent in check. The final minutes of back-and-forth were just picking up, and the eventual contrived ending does taint what could have been a TV classic from these two if allowed to finish. So for that we’ll just have to wait.

– End scene.

– Get well soon Larry.

The final score: review Not So Good
The 411
I wouldn't call this one of the better NXT UK episodes, as usually when they feature squash matches you'll get at least one more. With only two, this card felt thin, and the backstage interviews from an event that took place two weeks ago were pretty lame. The opening segment did little to propel the narrative of the show forward, and the ending of the main event felt like a place holder for the real conclusion down the line. A little too much thinking went into this episode as part of a serial, and not enough effort into making THIS feel like one great episode.

article topics :

NXT UK, Jake Chambers