NXT UK once again comes to us from New York. The show featured the return of a fan favourite tag team, more from Kay Lee Ray and the continuation of Kassius Ohno’s grudge against the NXT UK division. There were also details on a potential new challenger to the women’s title as Toni Storm addressed the crowd on the future of her title. There’s a lot to get through, so let’s get on with the show.
Kassius Ohno defeated Ligero via Rolling Elbow
NXT UK opened with a contest between Kassius Ohno and a stalwart of the British wrestling scene, Ligero. This was happening because Kassius Ohno called out Ligero for his reputation and dedication to wrestling. Ligero accepted and as a result got brutally beaten down by Ohno. The match started with Ohno taking him lightly but a Big Boot later and Ohno was working over Ligero with strikes galore. A spill to the outside saw Ligero try to come back with a Tope but the momentum allowed Ohno to throw him face first into the steps. From there it was again all Ohno breaking down the body of Ligero. It was slow and methodical but an opening allowed Ligero to strike back and eventually make it back into the match. He nearly won with a roll-up but Ohno kicked out.
The match returned to the outside and Ligero was able to hit the Sliced Bread off the ring steps. The pair only just made it back in for the ring out count and the match looked to be in Ligero’s favour. Instead, Ohno nearly ripped off the mask of Ligero and put the luchador down with a Rolling Elbow to the back of the head as Ligero tried to fix it. Ohno claimed another scalp from the British division but had to do it through dubious means. It was a slow burn match that once again showed Ohno to be a dominating, bullying heel.
Toni Storm Addresses the NXT UK Women’s division
There’s not a whole lot to report here really other than Toni Storm praising the women’s division for the talented performers, listing a few names in the process. She also added that she was going to be women’s champion for a very long time. As she left the ringside area she was stopped by Kay Lee Ray, a name not in the list, who made sure to stare her down before heading to the ring for her match. This felt like a massive hint as to who will be Toni Storm’s next challenger for the title. The commentary team made sure to mention that Kay Lee Ray had said something like “you forgot about me” to really ram home the idea that Ray wants to challenge Storm. I’m all for her being the next contender, Ray is insanely good in the ring.
Kay Lee Ray defeated Xia Li via Dirty Bomb
This was way more even than I was expecting. Xia Li was able to take the fight to Ray and nearly won. That may sound odd but considering Ray’s last two matches have been mostly one-sided affairs. Ray started the match mockingly, using simple technical moves but grew frustrated when Li was able to keep up with her. She next tried to use a mocking test of strength using her height to her advantage but this failed when Li jumped and won the test anyway. From there Xia seemed to have the champion scared and having to dodge her kicks. It wouldn’t be until Ray could use the turnbuckle to her advantage that she really came into the match. She would use the turnbuckle again with a Hammerlock before going to the well one too many times and taking a trip into it herself. Xia followed up with a Roundhouse Kick but only got a two count.
Before the match could slide any further out of her grasp, Ray reacted with an Overhand Chop, Super Kick and ended with the Dirty Bomb, a desperation combo to end a match that had not gone her way. This is the first time we’ve really seen Ray have to work against an opponent. It was fun to see her be cocky then knocked down a peg whilst still looking credible and cunning enough to be the next contender for the Women’s title.
Moustache Mountain defeated Mark Andrews & Flash Morgan Webster via Burning Hammer/Knee Drop Combo
The main event saw the UK’s most popular tag team Moustache Mountain taking on a smaller plucky team in Mark Andrews and Flash Morgan Webster. This wasn’t a high-stakes match but more an exhibition match between two teams with their sights set on the NXT UK Tag Titles. It was all respectful but that didn’t stop the match being hard-hitting.
Neither team slouched on the action as Moustache Mountain had strength whilst Andrews and Webster had speed. There were technical exchanges to start with but it wasn’t long before the pace picked up and the shows of strength became more ludicrous.
At one point, Tyler Bate had Webster in a Fireman’s Carry for an Airplane Spin whilst also trapping Mark Andrews in a Giant Swing. There was also the usual double team moves from the Big Strong Boys and an impressive front kick, Poison Rana combo from Andrews and Webster. The action was fast and spectacular and the match ended with the usual finisher from Moustache Mountain. It was a fun and fast main event that headlined a slow and methodical show.
So there you have it, another week of NXT UK in the rear view. These New York shows couldn’t have come at a worse time as they are delaying the story of WALTER as the new Champion. There are backstage segments trying to further that story but nothing in-ring is happening around it. This is even more apparent by the Devlin vs WALTER match being made a non-title match. It also doesn’t help that the crowd often sounds dead in the venue. It’s not a bit of good luck for what is normally a hot brand. I hope we can get back on track soon with the first show from the Glasgow tapings making air soon. Until then it’ll be a case of enjoying the exhibition matches we get.
(All images courtesy of wwe.com)