By Laurence Gibbons, ProWrestling.net Contributor (@Gibbonsgob)
NXT UK TV
Taped in London, England at BT Sport Studios
Streamed April 8, 2021 on WWE Network and Peacock
NXT UK Prelude started with a hype package for the hour of wrestling ahead… Andy Shepherd and Nigel McGuinness were the broadcast team… Tyler Bate made his entrance whilst the announcers recapped the Heritage Rules. Noam Dar entered the BT Sports Studio… A-Kid appeared on the video screen and said he’d be watching closely…
1. Tyler Bate (w/Trent Seven) vs. Noam Dar (w/Sha Samuels) in a Number One Contenders’ match for the Heritage Cup Championship.
Round 1: Both men looked for a backslide, forcing each other around the ring for most of the first minute of the round until Bate took down Dar. Bate then rolled up Dar for a quick first fall victory in 1:14.
Round 2: Bate came out of the traps quickest, working a succession of headlocks. Bate sent Dar to the mat with a beautiful dropkick with 30 seconds left of the round. Dar struggled to get into the match and the round finished.
Round 3: Dar came out kicking to put Bate on his back. Dar scored a close two count from a back elbow strike. Bate got back into the round in time to perform a Helicopter Spin that lasted the final 20 seconds.
Round 4: A dizzy Dar walked straight into another Helicopter Spin to begin the round. Bate hit a big uppercut for a two count. Dar worked the leg to good effect but couldn’t score a pin. The round ended with both men on the mat.
Round 5: Bate came out punching and Dar matched him with multiple kicks.
Dar caught Bate off the middle rope as he attempted his Rebound Lariat and locked the Champagne Super Knee Bar to force him to tap out in 40 seconds.
Round 6: Dar countered a Tyler Driver into a roll-up for a two. Samuels and Seven came to blows on the outside and Bate sent Dar through the ropes into them both. Bate followed this up with a senton into Samuels and Seven. Dar sent Bate into steps and back into the ring. Bate hit the Tyler Driver in 1.33 to win the round and the contest.
Tyler Bate defeated Noam Dar in 12:45.
Gibbons’ Opinion: This was a fun opener. They exploited the Heritage Rules to tell a story we don’t often see so that was nice. I enjoyed Bate scoring the first fall early and it taking Dar until late to draw level. You wondered if it would end 1-0. The combustion on the outside with Seven and Samuels helped to create a chaotic finish. It looks like Dar will go back to his chat show and Bate will go on to challenge for the Heritage Cup.
We saw Flash Morgan Webster and Mark Andrews working out with Dani Luna… A recap of Ilja Dragunov’s recent mental issues aired… Jack Starz threw some bags around the workout ring whilst Piper Niven barked encouragement …
Jordan Devlin cut a promo from Orlando saying that he would be back in the UK after he beats Santos Escobar at NXT Takeover Stand & Deliver for the Cruiserweight Championship…
Meiko Satomura made her entrance, followed by Emilia McKenzie. Isla Dawn and Kay Lee Ray made their entrances…
2. Emilia McKenzie and Meiko Satomura vs. Kay Lee Ray and Isla Dawn. McKenzie and Dawn started the match. Dawn locked in a headlock but McKenzie countered into a roll-up for an early two count. With Satomura in the ring, Dawn and KLR sent her to their corner and used quick tags to keep the legend grounded. She eventually got free and tagged in McKenzie.
McKenzie hit a huracanrana on KLR and then a German suplex on Dawn as the latter looked to interfere. McKenzie flipped into the ring and hit a spear on KLR. Dawn ran and took out Satomura in her corner.
KLR hit the Gory Bomb on Satomura but McKenzie made the save before hitting a suplex on Dawn. KLR sent McKenzie to the outside with a superkick. Satomura locked the STF on KLR but Dawn helped her partner grab the rope. Dawn went for the Fisherman suplex but McKenzie reversed it into a roll-up for the win, whilst Satomura prevented KLR from making the save.
Emilia McKenzie and Meiko Satomura defeated Isla Dawn and Kay Lee Ray in 8:59.
After the match, Aiofe Valkyrie entered, removed one of her feathers, and left it on the ground to symbolize she was challenging either Satomura or McKenzie…
Gibbons’ Opinion: This match was pretty topsy-turvy and never seemed to find its groove. I enjoyed Isla Dawn’s constant interference and heel tactics. It was a good showing of what we can expect from McKenzie with some acrobatic moves and plenty of suplexes. We’ve seen better from Satomura and KLR in the past. Not a bad match, just ok.
Amir Jordan arrived at the BT Sports Studio and demanded to know where Kenny Williams was. Sid Scala said the two would meet next week. Williams cut a promo saying that his betrayal of Jordan had been two years in the making…
A hype package aired to build up the NXT United Kingdom Championship match…
Rampage Brown made his entrance. Walter entered whilst McGuinness recapped the Austrian’s successful championship defense against Tomasso Ciampa last night…
3. Rampage Brown vs. Walter for the NXT United Kingdom Championship. The two men locked up and Walter took Brown to the corner. He went for a chop but missed. Brown took Walter down with a chop of his own and then sent him to the outside with a dropkick. On the outside, Brown took Walter down with a shoulder tackle. Walter dropped Brown onto the ring apron and took the action back in between the ropes. Walter further damaged the back of Brown with knee strikes and a deep-seated Boston crab.
The two men traded devastating chops with Brown, unsurprisingly, coming out the worse. Walter went for a powerbomb but Brown countered into a clothesline. He followed this up with a top rope shoulder block but only kept Walter down for a one count. Walter managed to hit the powerbomb at the second time of asking but Brown kicked out at two. Brown hit a massive top rope power slam but it only kept Walter down for a two count. The challenger managed to nail Walter with his Dr Bomb but Walter instinctively rolled to the bottom rope. Brown went for a second Dr Bomb but Walter escaped with a backdrop. He followed this up with a knee strike and two massive lariats but Brown kicked out at two. Walter then hit the powerbomb but only scored a two so he went to the top rope and hit a splash for the victory.
Walter defeated Rampage Brown in 13:42 to retain the NXT United Kingdom Championship.
Gibbons Opinion: Walter came into this contest hot off the heels of last night’s incredible match with Tommaso Ciampa at NXT Takeover Stand & Deliver. There are so many matches booked between now and the end of WrestleMania Night 2 but Walter and Ciampa’s match is the one to beat. I would have liked to see Walter still selling the injured hand from last night but I guess they didn’t know about that injury when they taped this.
This was never going to be as good as last night’s match but it wasn’t far off. It was hard-hitting and physical throughout. There was never any doubt that Walter would lose. This had a big fight feel but I felt this could have been intensified if they had brought some fans or the crew into the studio to watch it. Walter does feel like one of the hottest acts in pro wrestling at the minute. He has a mystic around him that nobody else does. I’d love to see him continue to hold the United Kingdom Championship for an extremely long time but his destiny is definitely beyond performing to nobody in the BT Sports Studio.
Walter is a total enigma and I’d love to see WWE continue to present him in this way. Perhaps he can be a surprise winner of the Royal Rumble next year or be brought across for a marquee match at WrestleMania next year.