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Hamilton’s NXT UK Review 01.21.21

January 21, 2021 | Posted by Ian Hamilton
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Hamilton’s NXT UK Review 01.21.21  

Quick Results
Rampage Brown pinned Dave Mastiff in 6:31 (***½)
Ilja Dragunov defeated Jack Starz vis referee stoppage in 5:46 (***)
Amir Jordan pinned Tyson T-Bone in 5:01 (**)
Kay Lee Ray pinned Jinny in 11:07 to retain the NXT UK Women’s Championship (**)

— If you’re on Twitter, give me a follow over on @IanWrestling – and check out the GoFundMe that’s still open for Larry’s family.

We open with a recap of Jinny winning her title shot all of two weeks’ ago, mixed with Kay Lee Ray’s promo last week calling her entitled. They do a decent job recapping the rushed build to the actual title shot, and then we hit titles.

Yep, it’s back to the BT Sport Studio for this week’s show, which was touted on Twitter as being a four-match special. Andy Shepherd and Nigel McGuinness are on the call for this…

Rampage Brown vs. Dave Mastiff
We’re straight into Rampage’s entrance as we start with a big lad’s match. On the indies, Rampage has won 9 of their 11 previous matches (according to Cagematch)…

We open with the struggle of a lock-up as Rampage grabs a side headlock, before the shoot-off led to shoulder tackles. Another lock-up sees the roles reverse, as we get something akin to Big Daddy in the 80s before they trade elbows. That’s more modern! As was Rampage’s dropkick after he’d pushed Mastiff into the ropes.

Mastiff hits a dropkick of his own in return, before he took Rampage into the corner… and it descends into more strikes from there as Mastiff’s taken down for an elbow drop for a quick cover. A chinlock wears Mastiff down as Rampage then teased a gutwrench powerbomb, but a back body drop ends up Mastiff then sitting down on Rampage from a sunset flip for added insult.

Rampage tries to hit back, but he’s clotheslined and met with a back senton… Rampage takes to the skies, but gets clobbered down as Mastiff hits a T-bone suplex for a near-fall. Mastiff calls for a clothesline, but it’s kicked away as Rampage’s short clothesline lands for a near-fall, so he tries some more. They’re ducked as Mastiff hits a forearm to the back, then a release German suplex but Rampage escapes a cannonball by rolling to the apron.

Mastiff tries to superplex Rampage back in, but gets knocked down as Rampage chopped out the knee. A back suplex followed back inside, before a Doctor bomb planted Mastiff for the win (after a weird camera cut). Considering the miles on both men’s clock, this was a damn good outing, rolling back the years, as Rampage continues his good start in NXT UK. ***½

Bloody hell, they follow up on last week’s title match. They give A-Kid a vignette as he looked back on his loss last week. He tells us that next time, it’ll be a different result. Maybe by then they’ll actually have engraved his name somewhere on one of those blank plaques…

Kenny Williams is on his phone, waiting for Amir Jordan. They’re in a happier mood because Kenny’s arranged a singles match for Amir. Against Tyson T-Bone. Hey, long time no see! Amir seems nonplussed, but Kenny’s bigging him up a little too much if you’ve ever watched wrestling. Bad times are coming.

Jack Starz vs. Ilja Dragunov
Yeah, Ilja’s finding his music is no Soviet Union theme from Red Alert 3…

Dragunov’s story is that he wants to start from the bottom after his loss to WALTER. He gets taken into the ropes by Starz early on, before he threw him down by the arm. A wristlock’s reversed as Starz flips in the ropes, then took Dragunov down in a wristlock of his own, but there’s a break as they reach a stand-off. A hiptoss takes Starz down, and again as they go back-and-forth… an O’Connor roll nearly nicks it for Starz, then a sunset flip as Dragunov looked out of sorts. Starz followed in with a clothesline, but then Ilja just muscles him into a delayed takedown as we went back to the mat in a side headlock.

Dragunov gets pushed off, but comes back with a shoulder tackle before catching a crossbody. Starz wriggles free, but runs into a chop, and recovered quickly with a clothesline as Dragunov looked for a Torpedo Moscau. A ‘rana from Starz gets caught though, but he punches free before a German suplex plants Dragunov for a two-count.

Starz pulls ahead with uppercuts, then a chop to the back as Ilja then snapped back with a palm strike and a front kick. Elbows pepper Starz in the corner as the referee had to separate the two, before a head-and-arm suplex and some German suplexes put the match back in the Russian’s favour. From there, a teardrop spin-out suplex leaves Starz down as Ilja ranted, before a Torpedo Moscau to the back of a kneeling Starz and some crucifix elbows forced the stoppage. Ilja’s intensity was off the charts here, which is his real strong suit… but knowing how WWE does the “why am I so evil?” stuff, I can’t help but worry. ***

Post-match, Ilja seemed to show some remorse. Please, God. No.

They play highlights of Ben Carter’s debut from two weeks’ ago. Hey, they’re actually following up on stuff. Ben’s “in action” next week… which segues to Sam Gradwell mocking the news as he cuts a promo to his iPhone. Looks like he’s facing him next week…

Tyson T-Bone vs. Amir Jordan
This was Tyson’s first appearance in a NXT UK ring since the battle royal last April – the one that Ilja won for his eventual title shot.

We open with a lock-up as Jordan tried to out-wit T-Bone early on. A side headlock’s clung onto as one guy on the video wall was losing his mind for the hold. T-Bone’s snapmare and shoulder tackle has Jordan down, before he muscled him up into a backbreaker and a fallaway slam.

Jordan’s taken into the corner as T-Bone clubbed away some more, following up with some boxing and kicks that had Amir down. A shot to the lower back drops Jordan, leading to a two-count before an attempt to repeat it was countered with a back elbow. Jordan tries a monkey flip, but just gets dropped as he’s taken to the ropes for a slingshot.

A chinlock wears Jordan down, but a jawbreaker separates them as Amir tried to strike his way back in. Clotheslines and dropkicks wobble T-Bone before a roll-up’s blocked… T-Bone misses an elbow drop though, before he hit a back body drop to throw away Jordan. A crossbody’s caught, but this time Jordan goes for the sunset flip, wobbling T-Bone… who sits down on him. Jordan floats up and rolled T-Bone up for the win, much to Kenny Williams’ bemusement. That ended out of nothing, and we can set the timer to the turn, right? **

“Earlier today”, Xia Brookside remembers her arguments with Nina Samuels, recapping their feud. They’re bringing that back, once they’ve finished the other women’s storyline that’s ongoing…

Vignette time. Gallus will be watching the four-way elimination tag match next week that’ll set new challengers for them, as we get a recap of the teams involved: Webster and Andrews, Smith and Carter, the Hunt (who won’t have Eddie Dennis with them), and Pretty Deadly. That’s the entire division right now, especially with Imperium in the US right now…

Jinny and Kay Lee Ray are walking…

NXT UK Women’s Championship: Jinny vs. Kay Lee Ray (c)
We get the big match introductions for this, as is the norm…

The opening lock-up sees some hair-pulling as they headed to the corner, forcing a break. Kay Lee Ray hits a slap, but Jinny takes her down in an armbar as they show Piper Niven smiling on the video wall of old ThunderDome viewers. Dani Luna’s also patched in as Jinny’s kicked out of the corner… are they going to Brady Bunch the women’s roster?

Yes, there’s Amale, weirdly superimposed onto the screens. Jinny pulls ahead with a Japanese armdrag into the buckles for a two-count, with Ray rolling outside for respite. Jinny breaks the count but gets charged into the barricades, only to take over back inside as she wrestled Ray down for a pin. The fake Thunderdome walls are overcome by Aoife Valkyrie’s tiled video for a second, which commentary waves off. It’s getting distracting, all these cameos. Hey, there’s Nina Samuels, but just on the one tile. A seated surfboard from Jinny has Kay Lee in trouble, but she frees a hand and manages to force a rope break.

We get a chinlock from Jinny, but some hair-pulling forces the ref to call a break. Which we get after a forearm, before Jinny went for a ripcord lariat, only to counter a counter with a pair of Koppo kicks. Kay Lee returns with a superkick, with both women falling to the mat. Is anyone else left to go on the screens? Seemingly not, as they both get back up and trade right hands, but another superkick from Kay Lee, then a DDT drops Jinny for a two-count. A Koji Clutch followed, as Joseph Conners just stood and watched in the aisle… but Jinny manages to roll her way free and get a two-count.

Jinny builds momentum with a facebuster, sweeping Kay Lee’s face to her knee before a clothesline drew a two-count. A Gory bomb’s broken up as Conners distracts on the apron, which Jinny capitalised on, hitting a knee to the gut before propping Kay Lee into the corner for the X-Factor out of the buckles… but Joseph Conners grabs Kay Lee’s legs to try and force the win.

Except he’s caught by the ref, who stops the count and orders him to the back. Conners tries to nick the belt, but gets slapped by Kay Lee. Jinny grabs the belt and swings it, only to get stopped by the referee as a Gory bomb ends up getting the win. The match itself was fine, but the backfired run-in and all of the surrounding crap with the fake ThunderDome was a massive negative. **

The final score: review Good
The 411
Another decent outing of NXT UK - one that felt a little calmer, having much less stuff thrown at you compared to recent weeks. Is this… turning a corner?! Well, I’d have said that had the main event not been designed to be such a distracting mess - I guess they couldn’t (or didn’t want to) have the rest of the roster in the crowd, but the way they worked around it just didn’t work.

article topics :

NXT UK, Ian Hamilton